AddThis: Facebook Makes Up 52% of Sharing on the Web

A Look at Top Social-Sharing Trends of 2011, From the Leading Sharing Platform

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Facebook was the means for more than half of the web's sharing this year, data from sharing platform AddThis suggests.
Facebook was the means for more than half of the web's sharing this year, data from sharing platform AddThis suggests.

AddThis, the sharing platform owned by Clearspring, is huge (or uuuuuugggggge, as Donald Trump would say). It's used by more than 11 million sites, which gives it aggregate sharing data for more than 1.2 billion users -- and a bird's-eye view of the relative popularity and influence of everything from a Facebook Like to a click on a Google +1 button.

Today, AddThis releases its year-end look at social-sharing trends. Clearspring gave Ad Age a sneak peak at the report and is letting us share the graphic below. You can find out more about AddThis Analytics -- the tool for publishers and marketers that produced the graphic -- here. For now, some notes and context on the graphics:

  • According to AddThis data, Facebook accounts for 52.1% of sharing. Given the size of AddThis' data set, that number's probably a solid proxy for sharing across the entire web.
  • Twitter was up 577% this year and accounts for 13.5% of sharing, per AddThis Analytics.
  • Usage of Google's +1 button grew in 2011 but has plateaued, according to AddThis. And if you want to feel bad for Digg and MySpace, just take a look at their depressing shrinkage numbers.
  • AddThis tracks what browsers its users prefer. Great news for Google's Chrome: It's been on a hot streak and actually overtook Firefox last month.
  • An astonishing 28% of all AddThis shares on May 1 and 2 were about Osama bin Laden's death. (The news broke in the U.S. on the evening of Sunday, May 1, but he was technically killed on May 2, Pakistan time.) Other news and events that were widely shared on AddThis were the earthquake on the U.S. East Coast, the Japanese tsunami and earthquake, the death of Steve Jobs, the launch of Occupy Wall Street , the British royal wedding, the resignation of Hosni Mubarak, Hurricane Irene, the final Space Shuttle mission and the Super Bowl. Also, somebody named Kardashian got divorced or something? Ring a bell?
  • Thanks to Twitter user @sandrogisler for flagging an error in the wording regarding Osama bin Laden in the original version of this post; the passage above has been updated to clarify.

    Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" media columnist for Advertising Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.

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