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How the World Watched the First Week of the 2014 Winter Olympics

If you've ever wondered what the most popular Winter Olympics sport is, here are a couple maps you might find interesting. Researchers at Facebook pulled together some data from their users to see what sports are the most popular around the world.

According to the social network, more than 24 million people discussed the Olympics on Facebook during the first week of the Games. They generated a combined 48 million posts, comments, and like. Using that information, Facebook generated two maps — one is of all of Earth, the other is focused on Europe — that look at which one of 13 Winter Olympics sports people were talking about.

Click on the image to see the full-size map

The first week of the Games was heavy on figure skating. So it's not surprising to see a lot of people talking about that sport. What's crazy, though, is just how widespread interest in it is. The US, Canada, and Russia, sure. But then you have countries like Brazil, Colombia, Peru, South Africa, Uzbekistan, and Turkey also showing a ton of interest.

Also cool to note: Check out Argentina. Seems like there are quite a few curling fans in South America! And the two countries talking the most about snowboarding? Japan and Britain.

Speaking of the United Kingdom, let's look at Europe.

Click on the image to see the full-size map

Clearly, the continent was swept by biathlon-mania. But then there are these pockets of interest in ski jumping along the Mediterranean, the luge in Greece, Macedonia, Albania, and Kosovo, and speed skating in Denmark. The only country in Europe with hockey on its mind was Sweden. (Hockey was the big sport in India, too.)

And then there are those wacky curling countries, in this case Portugal and Iceland. Good to see the sport getting some love outside its native Canada!

Now that the men's hockey tournament has begun, this map is sure to look a lot different next week. But you tell us: What sports have you been following during these Winter Olympics? Let us know in the comments section below!

Maps courtesy Facebook

winter olympics facebook maps
winter olympics facebook maps