President Obama's Reddit AMA: The Numbers Are in, and They're Huge


The stats behind the "the only link in recorded history to have surpassed the front page"

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When President Obama took to Reddit for his "Ask Me Anything" session this week, he pretty much immediately brought down the site. Visitors trying to read the president's answers to questions posed by the Reddit community were, for a time, greeted with this: 

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Reddit recovered, though, and was able to host an event that represented an escalation not just in terms of traffic, but in terms of public credibility. The president's AMA, Reddit announced today, is now "the only link in recorded history to have surpassed the front page." Below, some of those numbers:

    • Unique visitors to Reddit before the AMA began: 518,312 
    • Unique visitors to Reddit during the first hour of the AMA: 865,092
    • Active concurrent visitors during the peak of the AMA: 198,000
    • Pageviews received on the day of the AMA: 2,987,307 
    • Pageviews per minute during the AMA: 100,000+
    • Total pageviews received so far (as of 9 am EST on August 31): 5,280,441
    • Pageviews received by President Obama's user page on the day of the AMA: 428,004
    • Comments received during the first 5 minutes the AMA was live: 37
    • Comments received during the first 10 minutes the AMA was live: 278
    • Comments received during the first 30 minutes the AMA was live: 5,266
    • Comments received during the first 60 minutes the AMA was live: 10,000+
    • Typical percentage of overall visitors on the homepage at any moment: 15-20
    • Percentage of active visitors on an "extremely popular" submission at any moment: 2-5
    • Percentage of active visitors on President Obama's AMA, at its peak: 30
    • Dedicated servers added by Reddit to prepare for the AMA, just for its comment thread: 30 
    • Percent increase represented by those server additions: 20
    • Additional servers added after it became clear that the initial 30 weren't enough: 30 
    • Minutes the president spent answering questions: 30
    • Months' worth of Reddit gold the president earned for his appearance: 69
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Megan Garber is a staff writer at The Atlantic. She was formerly an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab, where she wrote about innovations in the media.

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