Every once in a while there seems to be a question which starts bringing in tons of traffic from an external link. For example, I've noticed that the question Why do programmers write applications and then make them free? has brought in around 33k views today alone.

I've seen a lot of cool new tools added such as the (automatic?) link-posting to Twitter (that shows up in the history, which is really cool), as well as the Publicist badges and popups, and the Facebook/Twitter buttons (some of these may even be responsible for the traffic).

I think it would be pretty cool to get the reverse of these new tools and show those of us who are regulars of the site where all the new traffic is coming from. It could work by checking if the majority of the views are coming in from an external referrer. If it was, it could post the top referrer.

I have no idea if this is possible or if SE would want to publicize this information. Any thoughts?

[Edit] And apparently it was "reddited": http://www.reddit.com/r/programming/comments/fg8gt/why_do_programmers_write_apps_and_then_make_them/


2 Answers 2


Moderators do have access to analytics, including referral data, but this information is considered confidential information and is likely never to be made available to the public.

If you ask a moderator in chat, we can see about providing glimpses of that on a case-by-case basis.


I think it would encourage others to publish links on Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms. Not everyone will do this if they don't see the benefit, and seeing the benefit might encourage me to do so. I wouldn't want to come off like a spammer, so I'd have to know that there is a target market for what I'm publishing.

  • What wasn't liked about this answer? Constructive feedback? Anyone? (Cricket sounds)
    – jmort253
    Feb 13, 2011 at 0:00

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