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article imageTopFinds: Texting for $25,000, Bernie Madoff's Curtain Call

By David Silverberg     Jul 3, 2009 in Internet
How Spain is coping with the recession. The teen who won a $25,000 texting competition. Woody Allen talks musicals. These are the top stories gaining attention around the world.
Keeping up with all the news stories on can be rewarding, especially if your tastes vary from arts to tech to politics. Digital Journalists were on top of the major stories making news, while also penning some more playful pieces.
The recession is hitting every country hard, but how are some nations coping? Alethea Borgman interviewed several individuals from Spain to learn how the country is recovering. She told us about reinvestments in bars and restaurants, explaining what special ingredients can give restaurants a good economic kick. A comprehensive and well-written piece, definitely worth your time.
KJ Mullins deserves double-congrats for working diligently on two articles requiring extra effort: she reported on a sudden streetcar collision in Toronto, even documenting the accident with fantastic photos. KJ also attended the texting competition covered by media outlets across Canada, offering readers a variety of pics and a detailed look at who won the $25,000 prize. We look forward to more Special Reports, KJ.
For those in the Great White North, Canada Day was a day of celebrations and fireworks. Two Digital Journalists covered the events in their communities -- Stephanie Dearing enlightened us to Guelph's Riverside Park and the fun programming for adults and kids alike; and Bob Ewing took us across the country to Campbellton, New Brunswick, writing on the history of the city as well as the oh-so-delicious-looking cake emblazoned with the Canadian flag.
People at the Canada Day Petting Zoo
People at the Canada day petting zoo.
Stephanie Dearing
Have you ever wondered what Woody Allen is doing now? If so, you'll want to read Earl Dittman's great interview with the iconic filmmaker. Annie Hall: The Musical could be coming to a stage near you, but the article dives deeper into Allen's ideas on film critics, Larry David and the Oscars.
Many other stories are popular on, including:
1,500 Inmates in Philippine Jail Pay Tribute to Michael Jackson: The love for the King of Pop continues to steamroll (as do the news reports). Take this quirky story on tourists flocking to a Philippines jail to see the artistic inmates dancing to Jackson's Thriller. Definitely worth a read and don't forget to see the YouTube video.
Yemenia airliner crashes with 154 people aboard: Plane crashes continue to crop up in the news, such as this story about the Yemenia Airbus killing all people on board save for a small girl. Michael Cosgrove gave us the complete picture on this accident, and included poignant quotes from transport ministers to better flesh out the event.
Did Michael Jackson Have a Primary Sleep Disorder?: Everyone wants to know what afflicted Michael Jackson. Digital Journalist Carol Forsloff investigates one well-trod angle: sleep disorders. She delves into MJ's alleged sleeping problem, and then broadens the scope to tell us about the harmful effects of insomnia. Great report, Carol.
Alabama Continues Its Vibrator Ban in Praise of Decency: The headline alone was enough to catch our eye. Evidently, Alabama is banning vibrators and other sexual contraptions. But the article also looked beyond the obvious and reported on decency in other facets of life, such as arts and entertainment.
Reporters spar with Gibbs in White House Briefing Room: Sorry, White House, you're not above reproach. Washington reporters are taking aim at the White House press coordinators for being secretive about several issues, such as pre-approving questions for a town hall press conference. Veteran reporter Helen Thomas event went so far as to say the White House "ought to be hanging their heads in shame.”
Bernard Madoff Receives Sentence of 150 Years: It's more of a statement than a sentence: Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff will be behind bars for 150 years, even though he likely won't live for another 20 years. Chris Dade reported on the reaction to the sentence, writing "The sentence was greeted with applause by the victims, many of whom were in tears and embracing each other for comfort."
A casino in Moscow
The Starship Titanic casino in Moscow
Photo by StaneStane
Russian Government Shuts Down Casino Industry: Turning to another part of the world, Russia wants to close casinos and other gambling houses in an anti-vice ruling handed down by Vladimir Putin. Thousands of jobs are at stake. Is this a wise move in the midst of a global recession?
Is There a Secret Water Table Hidden on Mars?: It might not be a sign of extraterrestrial life, but scientists claim they may have found a "hidden water table beneath [Mars'] rocky crust", according to M Dee Dubroff. Comment of the week goes to Alethea Borgman who said on this story: "A report that arouses a great deal of curiosity M Dee, if they have water, they might have plants, which means they may have grapes and juniper berries, which means, yes, gin and wine! Well worth the trip to Mars!"
Gene Simmons on Idol finalist: 'He killed his career': For some reason, the former KISS frontman is speaking out about Adam Lambert, the American Idol finalist who admitted he is gay. Simmons think it's a career-killing move but then added, "I hope he becomes the next Beatles and proves me wrong." Is he just looking for a podium to preach his perspectives?
Rape Law: Canadian Diplomats Knew of Afghan Law Before it Passed: As Mark Kersten reported, Canadian politicians supposedly knew of a rape law that passed in Afghanistan, allowing husbands to rape their wives. The politicos are denying the claim, but documents obtained by the New Democratic Party show some officials did know of the law before it became hot news. In this scenarios, it's always difficult to find out who is trying to save face.

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: David James Young, Chris Dade, Earl Dittman, Stephanie Dearing, Matthew Moran, Leo Reyes, Andrew Moran, Sandy Sand, Michael Cosgrove, KJ Mullins, Alethea Borgman, M Dee Dubroff, Mark Kersten, and Carol Forsloff.
The Top Blog Post of the Week is awarded to Christopher Szabo for his up-close photos of racing cars. Different cars represented bygone eras, and Christopher nicely illustrated the article with photos of various cars zipping along the track. Our personal fave? The Ferrari 312P. What a beaut!
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