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Year in review: The top social media stories of 2020 – Global News

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The year 2020 brought what seemed like a year’s worth of news headlines each week. From wildfires sweeping Australia to protests marching through cities across the globe, and then a global pandemic brought life as we knew it to a halt.

While it’s one thing for news editors to decide which stories make it onto a year-end list based on news value and impact, it’s a complete different list when readers decide which ones were worth the click.

This is that list: the standout stories as decided by YOU — determined by most comments, interactions and shares on Global News’ social media accounts

January — World Juniors: Canada wins gold against Russia


Click to play video 'Team Canada arrives home to heroes welcome after gold medal win at world juniors'



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Team Canada arrives home to heroes welcome after gold medal win at world juniors


Team Canada arrives home to heroes welcome after gold medal win at world juniors – Jan 6, 2020

In January, Team Canada won their first medal for hockey in Europe since winning gold at the Czech Republic World Juniors in 2008.

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The championship saw Akil Thomas score with 3:58 left in the third period, leading the team to a victory in a moment that will be remembered in Canadian hockey history.

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February — Koala enjoys belly scratch

February saw devastating wildfires sweeping across much of Australia. The video below shows a koala living his best recovery life at a wildlife park on Kangaroo Island while getting a belly rub from an Australian Defence Force officer.

The Global News audience seemed to be happy to know that the injured koalas were being well cared for, with the video racking up a whopping 1.3 million views. 

One Twitter user went so far as to tweet that they wished that they had this job.

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Due to the blazes, tens of thousands of koalas were taken to wildlife centres with severe burns, some having lost their entire families.

It is estimated that nearly half of Australia’s koala population perished in the wildfires.

Watch the video of these injured marsupials being shown love by army officials.

March — Spring breakers defy coronavirus fears to party 


Click to play video 'Miami spring breakers vow to keep partying amid pandemic'



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Miami spring breakers vow to keep partying amid pandemic


Miami spring breakers vow to keep partying amid pandemic – Mar 19, 2020

Spring break festivities had officially been cancelled in Miami, Fla., but that didn’t stop hordes of 20-somethings from flocking to the city’s beaches anyway, defying all lockdown measures that had been put in place to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

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“If I get corona, I get corona,” said one spring breaker. “I’m not going to let it stop me from partying.”

It is also believed that this is where the term ‘covidiot’ was born.

One Facebook user was so distraught that he left the comment pictured below on a Global News post regarding the incident.

Read more:
‘Like, we’re here’: Spring breakers defy coronavirus fears to party

April — Trump asks medical supply firm 3M to stop selling N95 respirators to Canada

On April 3, U.S. based company 3M said it had been asked by the Trump administration not to supply N95 respirators to Canada amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

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At the time, demand for personal protective equipment — gloves, gowns, face shields and the all-important N95 masks — had been soaring around the world as overtaxed doctors, nurses and hospitals struggled to manage the spikes they were seeing in coronavirus cases while also protecting themselves from infection.

The company said the move raised “humanitarian” concerns.


Click to play video 'Coronavirus around the world: April 3, 2020'



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Coronavirus around the world: April 3, 2020


Coronavirus around the world: April 3, 2020

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May — Huge owl hatches chicks outside man’s window, now the brood watches TV with him

A Eurasian eagle owl, Europe’s biggest owl, made a nest outside Belgian Jos Baart’s home. After her three chicks hatched, they started watching TV with him.


A Eurasian eagle owl, Europe’s biggest owl, made a nest outside Belgian Jos Baart’s home. After her three chicks hatched, they started watching TV with him.


@VroegeVogels/Twitter

At first, a Belgian man thought the noise coming from his outdoor planter was pesky pigeons. Turns out, it was Europe’s largest owl — four of them.

The Eurasian eagle owl, one of the world’s largest owls, set up camp in the man’s third story planter and since the mother owl’s three gigantic chicks hatched, they had taken to watching TV through the window with their new landlord.

The above post was interacted with 43, 000 times on Facebook alone and the story garnered over 95,000 interactions across all social media platforms.

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Guinness World Records recognizes the species (also known as Bubo bubo) as the largest owl in the world, with a wingspan of more than 1.5 metres.

They have no natural predators and a long lifespan of 20 years in the wild, but can live up to 60 years in captivity.

June — ‘Never seen anything like it’: Bear cub spotted in Alberta with unique white head

News of a Calgary family spotting an extremely rare grizzly bear cub on a road trip brought people scrambling to Global News’ social pages.

The story caused a strong online reaction, with the initial Facebook post reaching nearly 4 million people, and racking up 101,000 interactions.

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A majority of the comments on the post were people desperately hoping that this majestic woodland creature would be kept safe from hunters.

Catch a glimpse of the white-headed grizzly in the video below.


Click to play video 'Calgary family snaps picture of white-headed bear cub'



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Calgary family snaps picture of white-headed bear cub


Calgary family snaps picture of white-headed bear cub – Jun 15, 2020

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July — Rare white grizzly bear captured on camera in B.C. park 

Just like in June, July belonged to the bears.

A rare white grizzly bear sighting in British Columbia captured the attention of people across Canada.

The video below has been viewed over 650,000 times across Global News’ associated Facebook pages alone.

Turns out, the bear, named Nakoda by locals, has been seen before in Yoho and Banff national parks, but not very often.

Parks Canada has previously said the bear is not albino, but actually a natural colour phase variation that makes it white.

Read more:
Rare white grizzly bear captured on camera in B.C. park

August — Onion recall expands across Canada; 17 hospitalizations linked to salmonella

One of the stories in August that had the Global News audience talking the most was about onions. Yes, onions.

In August, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency expanded a recall put in place on July 30 of onions from the United States that that were linked to 17 salmonella hospitalizations in Canada.

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While the initial recall was only for red onions, the company soon added yellow, white and sweet yellow onions distributed by the company, Thomson International.

The Global News Facebook page erupted shortly after the story being posted, with 315,000 people clicking to read the story, and nearly 50,000 likes and comments left on the post.

At the time there were a total of 120 cases of salmonella in Canada linked to the onions, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada. The impacted provinces were British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Prince Edward Island.

In the U.S., federal health officials said nearly 400 people in more than 30 states had reported cases of salmonella linked to onions.

Read more:
Avoid all onions with unclear origins amid growing salmonella outbreak: warning

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Click to play video 'Onion salmonella outbreak expands'



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Onion salmonella outbreak expands


Onion salmonella outbreak expands – Aug 22, 2020

September — Three-month-old snow leopard cub makes her public debut at the Brookfield Zoo

We seem to get the hint that the Global News audience loves animal content.

The social post earning the highest engagement for the month of September was that of baby snow leopard bonding with her mother at the Brookfield Zoo in Illinois.

Views came in by the hundreds of thousands, and 70,000 Facebook users dropped a heart or a thumbs-up on the video. After watching the video, users rushed to the comment section to share just how cute they thought the baby snow leopard was.

Watch the heartwarming video below.

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October — Man mauled by black leopard after paying for ‘full contact experience’

Dwight Turner, a 50-year-old man from Florida just wanted to get-up-close and personal with some big wildcats.

Turner forked over $150 to “play with it, rub its belly and take pictures,” according to reports by local station WPLG. The cat enthusiast got a lot closer with the big cat when it charged Turner, and took “took his head in its mouth,” said his attorney.

Michael Poggi, owner of Poggi’s Animal House in Davie, Fla., is shown with a black leopard at his zoo in Davie, Fla.


Michael Poggi, owner of Poggi’s Animal House in Davie, Fla., is shown with a black leopard at his zoo in Davie, Fla.


Michael Poggi/YouTube

Over 750,000 people clicked the link to the story when Global News shared the story to Facebook to see what the outcome of this story was.

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The result was the leopard ripping off part of the victim’s scalp and tearing his ear in half, requiring multiple surgeries, officials said.

Turner did make a full recovery, and the owner was due to appear in court Dec. 2, as he was unauthorized to allow full-contact experiences.

November — Uncommon bills will lose legal tender status in 2021. Is your collection worthless?

If you are a collector of old Canadian currency, this one is for you.


Click to play video 'Uncommon Canadian bank notes to lose legal tender status in 2021'



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Uncommon Canadian bank notes to lose legal tender status in 2021


Uncommon Canadian bank notes to lose legal tender status in 2021 – Nov 22, 2020

Are you in possession of an extremely rare $500 or $1,000 bill? The Bank of Canada sent out a reminder in November that these bills, along with the $1, $2, and $25 would no longer hold legal tender status.

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Sharing this story to Global News Facebook resulted in nearly 700,000 people clicking on the post to read the story, and a futher 43,000 interacting with the post.

The top commenter on the post was quick to point out that yes, while these bills do lose legal tender status, you can still bring the bill to your bank and have it exchanged for legal currency, according to the Bank of Canada.

Rare currency collectors were quick to jump in however, saying that some of these bills are highly-sought after, with some cases of the $500 being sold for more than $50,000 at auctions.

Read more:
Government to phase out $1,000 bill and several older banknotes as legal tender

December- An emotional Manitoba premier got emotional when discussing a question he was asked about why he “likes to be hated so much.” 

The premier of Manitoba made an emotional appearance on camera, pleading with residents to heed provincial health orders over the Christmas holidays.

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“I will do what I believe is right, and right now we need to save lives,” Pallister said as he imposed an almost full-lockdown of his province early December.

Maybe because of how rare it is to see leaders convey emotion on camera, people flooded the Global News social media pages, earning the video the highest-engaging post for the month of December.

Nearly one million people viewed the video posted to the main Global News Facebook page, with almost 70,000 people interacting with the post.


Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Pallister delivers emotional plea to Manitobans not to gather during Christmas'



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Coronavirus: Pallister delivers emotional plea to Manitobans not to gather during Christmas


Coronavirus: Pallister delivers emotional plea to Manitobans not to gather during Christmas – Dec 3, 2020

The premier’s words resounded with one Nova Scotian, whose comment became the most-liked on the post.

And that is a wrap of our social coverage for the 2020 year. We wish all of you the best for 2021 on behalf of Global News. We look forward to your interactions on our social posts in the new year!

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© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Indonesia to deport Russian social media star who held party – Delta-Optimist

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DENPASAR, Indonesia — A Russian social media celebrity was being deported from Indonesia on Sunday after he held a party at a luxury hotel on the resort island of Bali attended by more than 50 people despite coronavirus restrictions.

The party held on Jan. 11 violated health protocols put in place to fight the spread of the virus, said Jamaruli Manihuruk, chief of the Bali regional office for the Ministry of Law and Human Rights.

Sergei Kosenko, who has more than 4.9 million followers on his Instagram account, arrived in Indonesia in October on a tourist visa.

Immigration officials in Bali decided to examine Kosenko’s activities after he posted to social media a video of him driving a motorcycle with a female passenger on the back off a pier into the sea in December. The stunt was condemned by many Indonesians as reckless and a potentially hazardous to the environment.

Manihuruk said the immigration investigation found Kosenko took part in activities that violated his tourist visa, such as promoting companies and products.

After the announcement of his deportation, Kosenko told reporters at the immigration office in Bali that he was sorry.

“I love Bali. I am sorry and I apologize,” Kosenko said.

The deportation comes just days after Indonesia deported an American woman who had been living on Bali over her viral tweets that celebrated the island as a low-cost, “queer-friendly” place for foreigners to live. Her posts were considered to have “disseminated information disturbing to the public,” which was the basis for her deportation.

Indonesia has temporarily restricted foreigners from coming to the country since Jan. 1 to control the spread of COVID-19, and public activities have been restricted on Java and Bali islands.

Bali regional office for the Ministry of Law and Human Rights recorded 162 foreigners have been deported from Bali in 2020 and 2021. Most of them are being deported for violating the visit visa.

Firdia Lisnawati, The Associated Press

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China rescues first person from Shandong gold mine: state media – The Guardian

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By Dominique Patton

BEIJING (Reuters) – Chinese rescuers pulled 11 gold miners to safety on Sunday, 14 days after they were trapped by an underground explosion, state broadcaster CCTV reported.

Footage showed the first miner to be rescued, a black blindfold across his eyes, being lifted out of a mine shaft in the morning.

The miner was extremely weak, CCTV said on its Weibo site. Rescue workers wrapped the barely responsive man in a blanket before taking him to hospital by ambulance.

Over the next few hours, 10 miners from a different section of the mine, who had been receiving food and supplies from rescue workers last week, were brought out in batches.

One was injured but several of the others were shown walking, supported by rescue workers and wearing black cloth over their eyes, before leaving the site in ambulances.

Twenty-two workers were trapped about 600 metres (2,000 feet) underground in the Hushan mine by the Jan. 10 blast in Qixia, a major gold-producing region under the administration of Yantai in coastal Shandong province.

One miner has died.

Officials said on Thursday it could take another two weeks to clear “severe blockages” before they could drill shafts to reach the group of 10 who had been receiving supplies of food from the rescue team.

State media said earlier however that the more than 600 rescuers on site were hoping to reach the men in the mine’s fifth section on Sunday.

The men were said to be in good physical condition and had been receiving normal food since Saturday, after several days of living off nutrient solutions, according to Xinhua.

Interactive graphic of mine rescue: https://graphics.reuters.com/CHINA-ACCIDENT/MINE/xklvylmnbpg/index.html

Graphic: Explosion in a gold mine in northern China’s Shandong province https://graphics.reuters.com/CHINA-ACCIDENT/MINE/yxmpjynakvr/CHINA-MINE.jpg

(Reporting by Dominique Patton; Editing by Tom Hogue, Robert Birsel and Wiliam Mallard)

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China rescues first person from Shandong gold mine: state media – TheChronicleHerald.ca

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BEIJING (Reuters) – A gold miner was rescued in northern China on Sunday morning and rushed to hospital for treatment, state broadcaster CCTV reported, with footage showing the exhausted miner, a black blindfold across his eyes, being lifted out of a mine shaft.

The miner was “extremely weak”, CCTV said on its Weibo site. Rescue workers wrapped the barely responsive man – who had been trapped 14 days after a mine explosion – in a blanket before taking him away in an ambulance.

Twenty-two workers were trapped in the Hushan mine by the Jan. 10 blast in Qixia, a major gold-producing region under the administration of Yantai in coastal Shandong province.

One miner has died and 11 have not been in contact with rescue teams, according to a Xinhua report from last week.

The rescued miner was found in a different section of the mine from a group of 10 men who have been receiving supplies of food. Officials said on Thursday it could take another two weeks to clear “severe blockages” before they could drill shafts to reach the 10 men.

The People’s Daily reported on its news app, however, that rescuers were hoping to reach the 10 men in the mine’s 5th section on Sunday, citing the military.

Graphic: Explosion in a gold mine in northern China’s Shandong province https://graphics.reuters.com/CHINA-ACCIDENT/MINE/yxmpjynakvr/CHINA-MINE.jpg

(Reporting by Dominique Patton; Editing by Tom Hogue)

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