Famous people's deaths, per Wikipedia data
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• The list below includes the 30 most-backlinked Wikipedia pages for people who died each year since 1900, excluding people with biographies in fewer than 20 Wikipedia language-editions or fewer than 20 backlinks on English-language Wikipedia. In some years, fewer than 30 biographies qualified. The list is based on data from Wikidata (number of Wikipedia language editions and dates of death, as of Dec. 29, 2016; wikidata.org) and Wikipedia (backlink count, via the "article_backlinkcount_enwiki.sql.gz" file at http://dispenser.homenet.org/~dispenser/dumps/, last updated Dec. 12, 2016). It is possible that they contain errors and/or are missing notable deaths.

Please take these numbers with a Wikipedia-shaped grain of salt. The number of backlinks a page receives, for example, may reflect Wikipedia editors' obsessions more than the subject's "true" notoriety (if there can be said to be such a thing). Backlinks also appear to be correlated with recency; for that reason, those numbers are chiefly useful for comparing within years, rather than between years.

• Compiled on Dec. 29, 2016, by Jeremy Singer-Vine / BuzzFeed News. For context, see https://www.buzzfeed.com/katiehasty/song-ends-melody-lingers-in-2016
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YearBacklink rankWikipedia titleDate of deathEnglish-language Wikipedia backlinksNumber of Wikipedia language editions
3
20161David Bowie2016-01-105526117
4
20162Prince (musician)2016-04-21351381
5
20163Fidel Castro2016-11-252871169
6
20164George Michael2016-12-25238162
7
20165Muhammad Ali2016-06-032201160
8
20166Antonin Scalia2016-02-13183240
9
20167Leonard Cohen2016-11-07168493
10
20168Merle Haggard2016-04-06146330
11
20169Pierre Boulez2016-01-05136149
12
201610Shimon Peres2016-09-281331104
13
201611George Martin2016-03-08122647
14
201612Arnold Palmer2016-09-25110431
15
201613Andrzej Wajda2016-10-0996161
16
201614Leon Russell2016-11-1388028
17
201615Umberto Eco2016-02-19860124
18
201616Bhumibol Adulyadej2016-10-1384188
19
201617John Glenn2016-12-0883169
20
201618Johan Cruyff2016-03-2481498
21
201619Debbie Reynolds2016-12-2880541
22
201620Edward Albee2016-09-1679948
23
201621Nancy Reagan2016-03-0675383
24
201622Janet Reno2016-11-0774825
25
201623Nate Thurmond2016-07-1667022
26
201624Terry Wogan2016-01-3166724
27
201625Peter Maxwell Davies2016-03-1466126
28
201626Elie Wiesel2016-07-0265583
29
201627Walter Kohn2016-04-1965445
30
201628James Cronin2016-08-2564655
31
201629Alan Rickman2016-01-1461072
32
201630Hilary Putnam2016-03-1360945
33
20151B.B. King2015-05-14156884
34
20152Yogi Berra2015-09-22130845
35
20153Natalie Cole2015-12-31127439
36
20154James Horner2015-06-22110749
37
20155Christopher Lee2015-06-07108899
38
20156Terry Pratchett2015-03-12105877
39
20157Moses Malone2015-09-1393236
40
20158Abdullah of Saudi Arabia2015-01-2386996
41
20159Roddy Piper2015-07-3186428
42
201510A. P. J. Abdul Kalam2015-07-2785477
43
201511Dolph Schayes2015-12-1084523
44
201512Clark Terry2015-02-2183922
45
201513Leonard Nimoy2015-02-2781367
46
201514Yoichiro Nambu2015-07-0579252
47
201515Charles H. Townes2015-01-2776862
48
201516Otto Carius2015-01-2475525
49
201517Dusty Rhodes (wrestler)2015-06-1174224
50
201518Allen Toussaint2015-11-0973020
51
201519Ornette Coleman2015-06-1172843
52
201520Lee Kuan Yew2015-03-23715100
53
201521Malcolm Fraser2015-03-2066542
54
201522Fred Thompson2015-11-2265938
55
201523Günter Grass2015-04-13644116
56
201524Denis Healey2015-10-0362823
57
201525Omar Sharif2015-07-1060475
58
201526Mario Cuomo2015-01-0159834
59
201526Lemmy2015-12-2859860
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201528Howard Kendall2015-10-1758821
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201529Charles Kennedy2015-06-0157826
62
201530Maureen O'Hara2015-10-2456045
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20141Robin Williams2014-08-111977150
64
20142Mickey Rooney2014-04-06127154
65
20143Joe Cocker2014-12-22126375
66
20144Richard Attenborough2014-08-24121267
67
20145Pete Seeger2014-01-27118780
68
20146Lauren Bacall2014-08-12118673
69
20147Ariel Sharon2014-01-111137106
70
20148Alfredo Di Stéfano2014-07-07103767
71
20149Philip Seymour Hoffman2014-02-02101187
72
201410Shirley Temple2014-02-1094171
73
201411Maya Angelou2014-05-2889176
74
201412Gary Becker2014-05-0388855
75
201413Gough Whitlam2014-10-2188546
76
201414Mike Nichols2014-11-1988347
77
201415James Garner2014-07-1987145
78
201416Joan Rivers2014-09-0481273
79
201417Eli Wallach2014-06-2480653
80
201418Jack Brabham2014-05-1973348
81
201419Bob Hoskins2014-04-2969478
82
201420Gabriel García Márquez2014-04-17692167
83
201421Ruby Dee2014-06-1168127
84
201422Khushwant Singh2014-03-2067524
85
201423Eusébio2014-01-0566981
86
201424B. K. S. Iyengar2014-08-2064333
87
201425Tony Benn2014-03-1463031
88
201426Bobby Womack2014-06-2762122
89
201427Jack Bruce2014-10-2561435
90
201428Ian Paisley2014-09-1260940
91
201429Luis Aragonés2014-02-0160748
92
201430Charlie Haden2014-07-1159025
93
20131Roger Ebert2013-04-04493385
94
20132Margaret Thatcher2013-04-084037168
95
20133Nelson Mandela2013-12-053315236
96
20134Lou Reed2013-10-27207866
97
20135George Jones2013-04-26192629
98
20136Hugo Chávez2013-03-051244166
99
20137Peter O'Toole2013-12-14110293
100
20138Seamus Heaney2013-08-30107580
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