Facebook recently released its most shared articles of 2011. The list of 40 is quite revealing -- showing that some of the biggest news stories are just that -- big and impacting -- but much of what people care about the most online and via social media is a bit more cult-like, and off the so-called beaten news path.

For instance, many among Facebook's 800 million users were interested in a dog mourning the death of a Navy SEAL killed in Afghanistan than they were in stories about troops being pulled out of Afghanistan. Anyway, here is the list from Facebook of its 40 most shared articles of 2011:

1. Satellite Photos of Japan, Before and After the Quake and Tsunami (New York Times) 

2. What teachers really want to tell parents (CNN) 

3. No, your zodiac sign hasn't changed (CNN) 

4. Parents, don't dress your girls like tramps (CNN) 

5. (video) - Father Daughter Dance Medley (Yahoo)

6. At funeral, dog mourns the death of Navy SEAL killed in Afghanistan (Yahoo)

7. You'll freak when you see the new Facebook (CNN) 

8. Dog in Japan stays by the side of ailing friend in the rubble (Yahoo) 

9. Giant crocodile captured alive in Philippines (Yahoo)

10. New Zodiac Sign Dates: Ophiuchus The 13th Sign? (The Huffington Post) 

11. Parents keep child's gender under wraps (Yahoo)

12. How to Talk to Little Girls (The Huffington Post) 

13. Stop Coddling the Super-Rich (New York Times) 

14. Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior (Wall Street Journal) 

15. (video) - Twin Baby Boys Have A Conversation! (Yahoo) 

16. Man robs bank to get medical care in jail (Yahoo) 

17. Why You're Not Married (The Huffington Post) 

18. A Sister's Eulogy for Steve Jobs (New York Times)

19. Ryan Dunn Dead: 'Jackass' Star Dies In Car Crash (The Huffington Post) 

20. Scientists warn California could be struck by winter 'superstorm' (Yahoo) 

21. Notes From a Dragon Mom (New York Times) 

22. A Message to Women From a Man: You Are Not Crazy (The Huffington Post) 

23. Obama's and Bush's effects on the deficit in one graph (Washington Post)

24. Penn State, my final loss of faith (Washington Post) 

25. Golden-Voiced Homeless Man Captivates Internet (Yahoo) 

26. The most typical face on the planet (Yahoo) 

27. Widespread destruction from Japan earthquake, tsunamis  (CNN) 

28. Permissive parents: Curb your brats (CNN) 

29. A father's day wish: Dads, wake the hell up!(CNN)

30. (video) - Laughing Baby Loves Ripping Paper! (Yahoo) 

31. Epic Cover Letter: How To Get Hired For Your Dream Job (PICTURE) (The Huffington Post) 

32. New Zodiac sign dates: Don't switch horoscopes yet (Washington Post) 

33. Things Babies Born in 2011 Will Never Know (Yahoo: Money Talk News)

34. The Psychology of Revenge: Why We Should Stop Celebrating Osama Bin Laden's Death (The Huffington Post) 

35. (photo gallery) - 'Where Children Sleep' (New York Times) 

36. Quake moved Japan coast 8 feet, shifted Earth's axis (CNN)

37. Steve Jobs, Apple founder, dies (CNN)

38. China's latest craze: dyeing pets to look like other wild animals (CNN)

39. Grant Hill's Response to Jalen Rose (New York Times) 

40. Steve Jobs's Patents (New York Times)