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Chinese Internet Audience Outranks the U.S.


comScore reported that total global Internet audience has surpassed 1 billion visitors in December 2008. The actual distribution of those users may surprise many in the "developed" Western nations.

The Asia-Pacific region accounted for the highest share -- by far -- of global Internet users at 41 percent, followed by Europe (28 percent share), North America (18 percent share), Latin-America (7 percent share), and the Middle East & Africa (5 percent share).

"Surpassing one billion global users is a significant landmark in the history of the Internet," said Magid Abraham, President and Chief Executive Officer, comScore, Inc.

China represented the largest online audience in the world in December 2008 with 180 million Internet users, representing nearly 18 percent of the total worldwide Internet audience, followed by the U.S. (16.2 percent), Japan (6.0 percent), Germany (3.7 percent) and the U.K. (3.6 percent).

The most popular Web property in the world in December was Google Sites, with 777.9 million visitors, followed by Microsoft Sites (647.9 million visitors), Yahoo! Sites (562.6 million visitors).

Facebook.com, which has grown a dramatic 127 percent in the past year to 222 million visitors, now ranks as the top social networking site worldwide and the seventh most popular property in the world.

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