Every day, we keep readers up to date on current events and important cultural happenings with “slices”—the short articles that update in a stream on our homepage. It’s a constant mix of hard-hitting news to entertainment rumors to funny videos.
As we wrap up 2014, we decided to look back at the most-viewed slices this year. The result is an interesting insight into the stories and viral trends that shaped this year.
U.K. retail chain Sainsbury’s moving commercial was more like a beautiful short film than a traditional commercial. It showed the Christmas truce of 1914, when soldiers on both sides of World War I took a break from fighting, climbed out of their trenches and played soccer and sang together. The message is simple, but powerful: Christmas is for sharing.
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge took over the internet for several months this year, with everyone from Bill Gates to Sir Patrick Stewart finding new creative ways to take the plunge to raise money for ALS research. Office star John Krasinski took a different approach: opting to surprise his wife, Emily Blunt, with the challenge instead of dousing himself. The results are hilarious.
Mark Driscoll was in headlines a lot this year. It all started with accusations of plagiarism and bullying, which resulted in a letter of apology from the controversial pastor. In August, Driscoll announced he was taking a six-week leave of absence from his role at Mars Hill Church in Seattle after being removed from the Acts 29 network. But in October, he announced he was stepping down for good.
Years after we thought we’d heard the last of the Boy Who Lived, J.K. Rowling released a brand new short story with a glimpse at a 34-year-old Harry Potter on the Harry Potter fansite Pottermore—and the Internet had a minor meltdown.
Sure, personality profiles have their flaws, but they still provide some useful insights. This infograph from Business Insider showed the top five careers for each one of the Myers-Briggs personality types.
Communion. Devotionals. Africa mission trips. Modesty. YouTube comedians Tripp and Tyler’s parody ad for a Christian dating website hilariously played on a lot of popular church culture themes.
Shortly after pastor Mark Driscoll’s resignation, Mars Hill Church announced it would be selling its church properties, firing its existing staff and dissolving the bands between the 13 churches that made up its network. It was a surprising and sad end to the Mark Driscoll saga.
A CalTech student set out to find the link between average SAT scores and favorite bands. The results might surprise you.
Between plagiarizing his apology for plagiarizing, doing performance art pieces and getting arrested (a few times), Shia LaBeouf is a hard person to pin down. But in a fascinating Q&A with Interview Magazine, LaBeouf claimed he had become a Christian during his time filming Fury.
The Islamic militant group known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has forced millions of Iraqis to flee their homes, publicly executed Western journalists and generally caused a lot of terror in the Middle East and abroad. Of all the organizations banding together to fight the group, perhaps the most unlikely is a group of dutch bikers known as No Surrender. Several members of the group have gone to Iraq to help back up those fighting ISIS on the ground. It’s no wonder our slice about the group was our biggest of the year.
Dargan is a former RELEVANT editor turned freelancer. Find her online at darganthompson.com or follow her extremely random train of thought on Twitter @darganthompson.