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This is known by most Facebook App Developers.

What makes up the number shown on my Like button? http://developers.facebook.com/docs/reference/plugins/like/

The number shown is the sum of:

The number of likes of this URL. The number of shares of this URL (this includes copy/pasting a link back to Facebook). The number of likes and comments on stories on Facebook about this URL. The number of inbox messages containing this URL as an attachment.

From the API you can actually get a breakdown of that number into those component numbers.

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