Scroll’s SocialWire is built to comb the internet for the people and the stories that have the biggest impact on us. Its algorithms carefully examine more than 100,000 posts every day and then turn that into a frequently updated list of the most influential stories on the internet.
We asked that algorithm to look into its archives over 2015 and give us the most influential articles of the year, for the Indian audience. What emerged is, in turn, both expected and surprising.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi made news – he also remained the most influential person on Twitter all year long – but not as much as you might have expected. Bharatiya Janata Party leader Subramanian Swamy cracked the top 20, but came far below Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, albeit with stories about the latter that weren’t exactly complimentary.
One of the most influential pieces of a year is one that is non-existent: Soumyadipta Banerjee’s post describing the life and death of Constable Ravindra Patil, the only eyewitness in the Salman Khan hit-and-run case. Khan’s legal team not only pressured Banerjee into deleting his posts, which is why they are not there, he was also forced to issue a public apology.
A surprising entrant in the top 10 was this Pew Research post about which countries do not permit women to pass on their citizenship to their children. Another was a story about a Muslim girl being kicked out of class in France because her skirt was “too long”.
Here is the full list of the year’s most influential stories, according to Scroll‘s SocialWire.
1. Strong earthquake rocks Nepal, damages Kathmandu: BBC News
2. Full text of PM Narendra Modi’s HT interview
3. Nepal earthquake live: Death toll rises to more than 3,300 as video reveals the moment deadly Mount Everest disaster struck
4. 27 countries limit a woman’s ability to pass citizenship to her child or spouse
5. Rahul’s own district remains one of nation’s poorest
6. Rahul Gandhi’s ‘Are you serious?’ moment
7. School kicks Muslim girl out of class because her skirt’s too long
8. Nehru Shared Information On Netaji With British MI5, Declassified Files Reveal
9. PM’s World Tours: Modi’s office paying billionaire Adani’s hotel bills!
10. Ravindra Patil: The death of a messenger
11. Would not be bad if we fulfill 50 percent promises: Arvind Kejriwal
12. Opinion: Why AAP Expelled Yadav and Bhushan
13. Media Briefing on rescue and relief efforts in Nepal (April 27, 2015)
14. Timeline: Nepal earthquakes
15. Farmer’s suicide at AAP rally: Rajasthan administration says not due to crop loss
16. Google and the Obama White House, sitting in a tree?
17. Subramanian Swamy meets Asaram, to fight his case
18. India’s Prime Minister Modi is obsessed with taking selfies
19. The forgotten rivalry between Patel and Bose
20. It took cops 60 hours to find Salman Khan’s missing case papers