Data Services Newsletter

Volume 13 : No 1 : Spring 2011

IRIS Web Statistics for the M9.0 Tohoku, Japan earthquake

On March 11, 2011, the M9.0 Tohoku, Japan earthquake generated a lot of public interest – leading to a 300% increase in visits to the IRIS website.

IRIS website sets new record

In March 2011, there were 17 million pageviews from 2.3 million visits to the IRIS website. Seismic Monitor, our most popular webpage, set a record with 6.5 million pageviews.

Summary pageviews
Figure 1: March 2011 was a record-setting month for the IRIS website.

Daily web visits 2010-2011
Figure 2: Number of visits per day for December 2009 through April 2011.

IRIS web traffic peaked at 296,000 visits on March 11th, 2011 – the day of the Japan event.

Daily web visit Jan-Apr 2011
Figure 3: Number of visits per day for January through April 2011.

Three weeks after the Japan event, the baseline increased form 25,000 to 50,000 visits per day – twice the average for the year. Note that it can take two to three weeks for web traffic to return to a baseline level following a major event.

Comparison of IRIS Web Visits for Seismic Events in 2010-2011

Daily web visits - comparing recent earthquakes
Figure 4: Compare the web traffic of the Haiti and Chile events in 2010, to the Japan event in 2011.

The Japan event had over twice as many web visits, on the first day, as the Chile event. The Haiti event displays two peaks, of 60,000 visits each, from M7.0 and M5.9 events.

Education and Public Outreach

Teachable moments - web visits
Figure 5: Monthly visits to the “Teachable Moments” webpage.

In March 2011, there were over 110,000 hits to the Teachable Moments webpage featuring information about the Tohoku, Japan earthquake. The peaks in February and March 2010 correspond to the M8.8 Chile earthquake.

by Tim Knight (IRIS Data Management Center)

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