Wikipedia hits record numbers following SOPA black-out

We always want what we can't have. And clearly that was the case on Wednesday when Wikipedia blacked-out for the day in protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA), and recorded bigger hits than usual.

In the UK, Wikipedia was the eighth most visited website; a higher position than it held the day before despite the fact that visitors were welcomed with nothing more than a black screen and a message about the free-web (unless they pushed the escape key quickly, that is).

There were 5.8 million UK Internet visits to Wikipedia on the black-out day, accounting for 1 per cent of all UK website visits.

The continued availability of Wikipedia Mobile resulted in a 14 per cent increase to the platform with over 1 million UK Internet visits to the mobile site.

James Murray, marketing research analyst at Experian Hitwise said: "Contrary to expectations visits to Wikipedia actually increased on the day of the blackout and millions of UK Internet users saw the message of protest.

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales hailed the protest as a success, tweeting: "Update! 8 million in US looked up Congressional phone numbers. 162 million worldwide saw the blackout page!"

It wasn't just Wikipedia protesting though. A spokeswoman for Google also confirmed that 4.5 million people added their names to the company's anti-SOPA petition.

Catch up on exactly what it was all about right here.