Just a thought. We have so many tools for, essentially, ranking content.
We vote on Reddit, like on facebook, plus one on Google. We pretend this stuff is (relatively) new, but aren't they all just non-passive hit counters? Maybe a return to the beginnings would be nice. But, simply loading a page isn't enough.
My proposal: the Read Counter.
At the end of a page, the Read Counter would trigger simply by scrolling into view. It would be a rough measurement of traffic, and as a simple bonus would avoid counting people who opened the page but don't seem to have actually read the content.
Simple, but useful. Passive, but meaningful.