Obama Victory Is Record News on the Web
The hour beginning 11 p.m. Tuesday — when Senator Barack Obamawas widely projected to have won the presidency — was the biggest for news Web sites since measuring began three years ago.
Demonstrating the Web’s growing dominance as a news source, an average of 8.5 million visitors per minute clicked onto news Web sites worldwide from 11 p.m. to midnight, according to the Internet distribution company Akamai. The company typically reports an average of about three million visitors.
Several online news sites, including those produced by MSNBC, CNN and ABC News, said that Tuesday ranked as their most-visited day ever.
“The traffic is getting bigger and bigger every election,” said Charles Tillinghast, the president of MSNBC.com. Nielsen Online said that MSNBC.com’s number of unique visitors rose 337 percent from the 2004 election.
Following a pattern set in 2000 and 2004, Web traffic to some major news sites also rose the day after the election. The New York Times’s Web site, nytimes.com, saw a record 61.6 million page views on Wednesday, compared with 55.1 million on Election Day, according to internal data. Washingtonpost.com also set a record on Wednesday, with 17.5 million page views compared with 13.2 million the day before.
Yahoo and MSNBC.com, among others, did not match Tuesday’s highs on Wednesday, perhaps because a winner was announced before midnight. “A lot of people in the last two cycles went to bed not knowing who won,” Mr. Tillinghast said. “Many people went to bed knowing who won this time.”
On Wednesday, millions watched or rewatched Mr. Obama’s late-night victory speech on the Internet. As of Thursday evening, the speech had been streamed more than two million times on Mr. Obama’s YouTube channel. CNN.com said it had been watched 1.7 million times on its site, and MSNBC.com reported 1.1 million viewings.