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article imageTopFinds: New Orleans Lies, 'Sexting' Teens, McCain Slams Coulter

By David Silverberg     Mar 13, 2009 in Internet
Investigating government neglect during Hurricane Katrina. Meghan McCain goes on the offensive against Ann Coulter. And why Britney Spears' genitals made headline news. These are the top stories gaining attention around the world.
You have to hand it to those hard-working Digital Journalists. With determined will and journalistic integrity, these reporters crafted stunning stories notable for their originality and accuracy.
Carol Forsloff presented the community with a poignant article on the real reason why the levees broke in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Her article acted almost as an introduction to her three-part series on this American disaster: "I have carefully sifted through the maze of government information, misinformation and just plain nonsense to want to paint an honest picture, I hope, of who did what and where to whom to cause one of the greatest of the nation's disasters." Carol won an enormous attention for her report, garnering 853 votes at last count. That might just be a record! Even more heartening is the outpouring of appreciation the article received from Louisiana residents who joined the site to comment. Make sure to read the comments to get an even clearer picture of what went wrong during Katrina and why the victims are hungry for justice.
Also deserving major congrats is Adriana Stuijt, who was the first Digital Journalist to report on the shooting at a German school. She was quick to explain what happened, who committed the crime and the reported dead and wounded. As a European, she had access to some media outlets we in the West can't watch. She was also able to provide some backstory about past German school shootings. Adriana is one of those top journalists who is always reliable and trustworthy. Well done!
Many other major stories are winning acclaim on, including:
Pastor Fred Winters Dead After Church Shooting In Illinois: It was the shot heard around the world. A horrifying story out of Illinois, KJ Mullins reported on a pastor being killed by a gunman during a church service. We learned a lot about Fred Winters and what kind of man he was before the shooting, adding some necessary context to this article.
58-year-old man plows into group selling Girl Scout cookies: As if the church shooting wasn't terrifying enough, how about a out-of-control driver crashing into Girl Scouts? That's the crux of a story from California, where a 58-year-old man pressed the gas pedal instead of the brake pedal. The driver wasn't arrested, but a news report said he was taken away in a police cruiser.
Meghan McCain  daughter of Republican senator John McCain
Meghan McCain, daughter of Republican senator John McCain
Meghan McCain Trounces Ann Coulter: In other Coulter news, John McCain's daughter Meghan has decided to attack the commentator, saying "I find her offensive, radical, insulting, and confusing all at the same time." But as Meghan acknowledges, the cult of Coulter will continue to throw their support behind the outspoken Republican.
Anti-evolution resolution introduced in Oklahoma House: "Not teaching evolution in zoology class, is comparable to not teaching arithmetic in maths class." That was one of the choice lines in Bart B. Van Bockstaele's article on legislation that opposes teaching evolution in a university zoology class. It's an eye-opener of a piece, but no word yet on whether the legislation is binding or will progress past the introduction stage. Nevertheless, it lit up the comment thread.
Teenager Listed as Sex Offender for E-mailing Nude Photos: Watch what you email. Carol Forsloff wrote about a teen categorized as a sex offender for emailing sexy pics of his ex-girlfriend to the masses. “Sexting” is now considered a crime in a number of jurisdictions, and is also considered one of the worst invented words of the past year.
Bill Maher vs. Ann Coulter: A Fight To the Death?: Recently we had Jon Stewart duke it out with CNBC's Jim Cramer, and now there's Bill Maher trading barbs with Conservative commentator Ann Coulter. At New York's Radio City Music Hall, Coulter and Maher debated politics and attacked each other's stringent views. An hilarious joke from Maher: "And who put two wars on a credit card? George Bush spent money like a pimp with a week to live.” Well worth the price of admission.
Who is Jonathan Krohn?: Short answer...a kid with an opinion. Long answer? The future of the Republican Party, as some observers are calling the 14-year-old author of the book Define Conservatism. In Bob Ewing's profile of this wunderkid, you don't want to miss the YouTube video of Krohn talking more eloquently than some news anchors. Do you think he'll stick to his Republican guns throughout college and beyond? Or it is just a passing fancy, like playing tag?
Helicopter Crashes into Atlantic Ocean: In Canada, a breaking-news story made headlines coast to coast -- a helicopter plummeted in the Atlantic Ocean near St. John's, resulting in 16 men to go missing. The search continues, the families are left in patient horror and will be there to update you on this heartbreaking story.
Britney Spears
Singer Britney Spears
Photo by EuPaparazzi
Spears' wardrobe malfunction exposes vagina to concert goers: Now to some lighter fare. Britney Spears uttered these priceless words to her concert audience, not realizing her mic was still on: "My p*ussy is hanging out." Thanks to the Interweb, her faux-pas was caught on tape and available for everyone to enjoy. Stay classy, Britney.
Talk Show Diva steps up and offers serious advice for Rihanna: Oprah Winfrey couldn't help but enter the Rihanna-Chris Brown fray, much like Dr. Phil enjoys having the octo-mom as his co-host. Oprah has stepped up to dish out some advice to Rihanna, saying "I don't care what his plea is; he will hit you again." Nikki Weingartner's excellent and thorough article not only reported on Oprah's comments but also updated readers on the fallout from the controversy, including sponsors jumping away from Chris Brown. We doubt this story will go away anytime soon.

TopFinds Awards

The honourees of this week's TopFinds Awards attracted impressive attention and widest readership. Digital Journal thanks the following Digital Journalists with Awards for their passion for covering the top issues of the day: Bart B. Van Bockstaele, M Dee Dubroff, KJ Mullins, Nikki Weingartner, Adriana Stuijt, Bob Ewing, Bob Ewing, and Carol Forsloff.
Hurricane Katrina
File photo: Hurricane Katrina was the worst of the 2005 hurricane season, hitting New Orleans the hardest. Katrina was also one of the top five deadliest hurricanes in U.S. history
Photo by au_tiger01 (CC BY 2.0)
The Top Comment of the Week is awarded to Stuart Lob for his illuminating words bookending Carol Forsloff's Katrina article. Stuart wrote about how the tragedy could strike anywhere in the U.S., how our false sense of security is easily manipulated by the federal government. "New Orleanians trusted the Federal government only to see it fail twice: first in the design and execution of levee systems, and second in mounting a timely response in the days and months following the breaches." Thanks for the comment, Stuart, and we look forward to more of your insight on other reports.
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