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The Register's Top 20 Most-Commented Stories in 2016

This is what got you stoked

By Andrew Orlowski, 30 Dec 2016

Brexit and Windows 10 stories dominated reader discussions in 2016.

It’s no surprise that the departure from the European Union of its second biggest economy should be a major talking point. It was the biggest political shock in the UK since 1945, few UK readers are unaffected, and it most likely terminates a political project that most of us have taken for granted.

But we’ve forgotten how much Microsoft’s determination to foist Windows 10 upon us annoyed users – whether at home or in business.

If you scan the Top 20 (below), you might be forgiven for thinking these are instalments in the same story. But that’s the crazy thing – they’re not. The hyper-aggressive Windows 10 upgrade initiative took so many forms, and broke so many norms, it was hard to keep count. To stay on Windows 7 or Windows 8.x, you needed to negotiate trick dialog boxes, polymorphous patches, and persistent nagging. And even then Microsoft would keep trying to force the upgrade on you. At least the Anniversary Update brought real and solid improvements to an OS that had been released in 2015 half-finished.

In a year of "fake news", you may enjoy a terrific demolition of the fake BBC detector van story that a few papers ran – updated for the iPlayer era.

And an honorary mention to Alistair Dabbs for debunking the tech pundits’ predictions of hot topics for 2016 that he made way back in January. They look pretty spot on 12 months later. We may as well run it all over again, just changing the year.

Our colleague Lester Haines' untimely death shocked many readers; do take the time to read a fitting tribute to his many adventures.

So here’s the Top 20 Reg Stories of 2016 by the number of comments they generated. Thanks for all your amazing contributions, readers – as a Reg veteran, I know it’s one of the highlights of the job. Happy New Year. ®

No. Story Comments Author
1 Mud sticks: Microsoft, Windows 10
and reputational damage
509 Andrew
2 Lester Haines: RIP 440 TeamReg
3 Free Windows 10 upgrade: Time is
running out - Should you do it?
393 Tim
4 Three non-obvious reasons to Vote
Leave on the 23rd
384 Andrew
5 PM resigns as Britain votes to leave EU 378 Andrew
6 Ad-blocker blocking websites face legal
peril at hands of privacy bods
347 Iain
7= BBC detector vans are back to spy on
your home Wi-Fi – if you can believe it
346 Chris
7= Brexit may not mean Brexit at all: UK.gov
loses Article 50 lawsuit
346 Gareth
9 Microsoft's Windows 10 nagware goes
FULL SCREEN in final push
341 Shaun
10 Prominent Brit law firm instructed to block
Brexit Article 50 trigger
327 Gavin
11 New UK trade deals would not compensate
for loss of single market membership
323 OutLaw
12 Trump's plan: Tariffs on electronics, ban on
skilled tech migrants, turn off the internet
323 Simon
13 Wannabe Prime Minister Andrea Leadsom
thinks all websites should be rated –
just like movies
305 Kieren
14 Windows 10 will now automatically download
and install on PCs
323 Iain
15 Microsoft herds biz users to Windows 10
by denying support for Win 7 and 8 on
new CPUs
301 Richard
16 Flying Spaghetti Monster is not God,
rules mortal judge
299 Simon
17 'Windows 10 nagware: You can't click X.
Make a date OR ELSE'
298 Gavin
18 No escape: Microsoft injects 'Get
Windows 10' nagware into biz PCs
293 Chris
19 UK's new Snoopers' Charter just
passed an encryption backdoor law
by the backdoor
280 Kieren
20 Five technologies you shouldn't bother
looking out for in 2016
279 Dabbsy

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