The Top Stories of 2015



A look back at the defining stories that grabbed our attention this year and made us look more closely at the world around us.


Korean Cars Take the Top Spot in J.D. Power’s Quality Rankings


photo; Hyundai concept car


What made people curious: In an amazing reversal of fortune — and reputation — Korean automakers like Hyundai and KIA leap-frogged German and Japanese automakers in earning the top spot in J.D. Power’s Initial Quality Report. Not only that, but J.D. Power found that it wasn’t even close, citing the gap in quality between the Korean brands and everyone else as “the widest margin ever.” The times they are a changin.’


The World’s Top Employers for New Grads

Business & Finance

photo; college student on campus


What made people curious: As the cost of college education skyrockets, people are very much concerned with the actual value a college education brings in return and how it correlates to success in the job market.


Lamar Odom Comes Out of His Coma


photo; lamar odom

image via David Shankbone

What made people curious: What began as a scary situation for former NBA champion/ reality star, who was discovered unresponsive at a Nevada brothel,  ended happily when Odom woke up and spoke to estranged wife Khloe Kardashian. The whole story played out like a surreal episode of “Khloe & Lamar.”

“10 Ways to Soothe a Sore Throat”


photo; cold medication


What made people curious: A worse than usual flu season?

Paris, je t’aime


photo; children drawing the French flag in chalk


What made people curious: After the attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo early in the year, Paris became a new catalyst for the discussion on the advance of extremism throughout the world. And then came an even more horrible shock. On November 13, 2015 a series of suicide bombings and mass shootings in Paris and the neighboring suburb of Saint-Denis left 130 people dead and dozens more wounded. As the world threw its heartfelt support behind France, it also anxiously awaited more details on how its leaders would respond.


The Rise of Fantasy Sports


photo; pool player hovering over a pool table


What made people curious: The gamification of sports fandom officially entered the mainstream in 2015. From DraftKings vs. Fantasy Duel to Bracketology during March Madness, sports fans have increasingly gone from idle spectators to active participants in the vast economy of the sports world. In the process, they have become avatars for the 21st century consumer who is empowered to participate in – not just consume– media. If we were voting for Time’s Person of the Year, “The Sports Fan” would be a finalist.


The Ashley Madison Scandal


photo; a couple looking at their smartphones in bed


What made people curious: Not the Apple Watch, not the launch of Windows 10, but the Ashley Madison hack was the top tech story that had people hooked. Technicality, you say? Interest in the attack that led to exposure of 37 million users’ details had as much to do with concern over our collective cyber-security as it did an ‘ole fashioned sex scandal, and the changing nature of relationships in digital age.

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