FRS vs Oscars: Scientists and Hollywood in Wikipedia

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An Oscar, picture via mafleen on flickr.

As of 2016, Wikipedia now has a page describing the award of Fellowship of the Royal Society. For the last ten years, this page (which is linked to by more than 5000 other wikipedia articles and visited about 800 times per day) had a redirect that sent readers to the “Fellows” subsection of the Royal Society wikipedia article, which was not very satisfactory.

Now, if you believe The Guardian newspaper, Fellowship of the Royal Society is the (quote) “equivalent of a lifetime achievement Oscar”, so the award probably deserves a page all of its own. For example, The Academy Awards (aka Oscars) have a separate article to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that awards them.

So, how does interest in scientists compare with interest in oscar-winning actors and the like? If page views are anything to go by, then the actors are winning by about an order of magnitude. Where the FRS page gets around ~800 visits a day, the Oscars page gets around ~8000, though there are significant seasonal spikes in traffic for both, see screenshot below from Pageviews Analysis.


Pageviews Analysis of FRS vis Oscars





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