We looked at the top technology publishers for the last year, ranking them by overall Facebook engagement.
Traditionally, we have broken down publishers by top overall coverage, which we do in our monthly rankings.
Obviously, one issue that this runs into is the fact that the big publishers with broad coverage tend to dominate, so we decided to break it down by various individual categories in our latest series.
We are going to begin with technology publishers. These insights are gathered using the tech industry news filter in NewsWhip Analytics.
The top technology publishers of the last year
Our analysis runs from May 15th of last year to May 14th of this year. The graph below shows the engagement to tech content over time. As we have seen with nearly every publication in the beginning of this year, engagement has risen considerably through the early months of the year, in part due to coronavirus coverage.
Engagement to tech websites and coverage peaked in March, and has fallen back to a similar level as it was at at the beginning of the year since then.
Which were the websites driving the majority of these engagements, then? The graph below shows the top ten tech publications in terms of engagement in the last year.
It is unsurprising to see a number of technology-focused publishers dominating the list, with The Verge and Gizmodo the top two. They garnered around 15 million engagements respectively to their tech content.
What is perhaps a little more unexpected is mainstream websites’ tech coverage specifically rivalling and sometimes surpassing the engagements of publications for whom it is the sole focus. We see that here with the likes of the BBC and the New York Times.
We’ll come back to what exactly drove engagement for the top sites specifically, but first let’s check in on the top tech content overall.
Top technology content
The top tech content was extremely varied, with the top ten articles coming from nine different publications.
The top article was from The New York Times, and was a profile of the man who bought 17,700 bottles of hand sanitizer and then was unable to sell them anywhere at the height of the coronavirus panic buying. The tech angle here is that Amazon cracked down on anything it viewed as price gouging on crucial products during the pandemic. The man had bought the products from local retailers planning to sell them on the platform, but then found himself unable to do so.
Second came some speculation from CNET looking at a possible future lacking in handshakes, and proposing a Vulcan salute as an alternative.
Nikon offering free online photography courses as a response to the pandemic, to help people pass the time, was the third most engaged piece of the year from The Verge, garnering more than 1.5 million engagements.
Data privacy was surprisingly lacking from the top articles, though Forbes’ piece on FaceApp owning more than 150 million faces and names thanks to their terms and conditions did appear in the top ten, driving more than 1.4 million engagements.
So that covers the top articles overall, but what were the top articles for the top publishers. Let’s look at The Verge and the BBC.
Top articles from top tech publishers
The Verge’s primary source of resonance was the Nikon piece mentioned above, which was their only piece that received more than a million engagements.
There were several other significant pieces for The Verge, however, chief among them about a Facebook bug that was temporarily marking legitimate articles about the coronavirus as spam in the first days of the pandemic. This received around 830,000 engagements.
The publisher’s third most engaged article was about 3D printing, and how it was being used to create valves for coronavirus patients, which saw over half a million engagements.
For the BBC, the top article was about Apple being fined for slowing down old iPhones in France, specifically its iPhone 6s model. The fine, from February of this year, amounted to 25 million euros, and the piece about it in the BBC garnered some 1.1 million engagements.
The remainder of the BBC’s top content on tech tended to be about personalities or platforms.
The second and third most engaged articles were deaths of two titans of the computer age from different ends of the spectrum. These were Grumpy Cat, one of the earliest memeable pets on the modern web, and Larry Tesler, who invented cut, copy, and paste. Both articles saw more than a million engagements. Alan Turing was also unveiled as the face of the new 50 pound note in the United Kingdom.
Most of the rest of the BBC’s top articles were about platforms, and how they are combating various problems which they currently face, from misinformation to photo glitches. Facebook, WhatsApp, and YouTube all featured in the top ten articles.
To sum up, the tech industry has been a relatively highly engaged one in the last year, with a mix of engagement to traditional tech websites and the tech sections of bigger publications. Among these, it was The Verge and Gizmodo that dominated for the former, while the BBC and the NYT shone for the latter.
If you’d like to perform a full analysis of tech content or publishers, take a tour of NewsWhip’s suite of products.
Benedict Nicholson is the Head of Research and Editorial at NewsWhip. An Englishman in New York, he is interested in the intersection of PR, brands, and journalism, and the trends and innovation around that.
Email Benedict via firstname.lastname@example.org.