There is no other speed in digital than full throttle, and so the first year has come and gone in a flash at The Huffington Post Canada. This week, we’re excited to mark our first birthday.
Behind the scenes, HuffPost Canada has been a hectic workplace. We’ve expanded to nine sections, launched Le Huffington Post Quebec and we have plans for editions in British Columbia and Alberta. The pace never ends as we charge forward.
Over the past year, we’ve been proud that our social news gathering has garnered new readers. We love having conversations with you and from watching our community grow, both in our comments and on social networks, you’re enjoying it too.
We’re proud of the work we’ve done, from covering the NDP convention to seeing how our Mind the Gap series resonated and how our readers in Quebec wanted to talk about and share our stories about the student protests. The social initiatives (such as #citizenstyle) we’ve launched in our Living and Style sections have just been fun to watch unfold. In just our first year, we’re proud to have won a reporting award from the Canadian Association of Journalists for our labour coverage.
In our newsrooms in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, we have a group of passionate, talented and hard-working journalists. My favourite moment of the past year was to play a small part in building this team that does all the awesome work you see every day before and after our first birthday.
We have here some of our favourite front page splashes and best moments from our staff.
Kenny Yum, Managing Editor
SEE ALSO: OUR FAVOURITE BLOGS OF THE YEAR
We asked HuffPost Canada editors and reporters for their favourite moments and highlights of the year. A selection of responses:
There are too many to count! I've been lucky enough to play a part in all the launches, from HuffPost Canada to Living to Style to HuffPost Quebec (and a small role in HuffPost Travel). There's nothing like seeing everyone's hard work come to life and watching the public respond to it. That, and meeting Arianna of course. --Lisa Yeung, lifestyle managing editor
It’s been a year of so many highlights, but two stand out for me. The first was MP Charlie Angus’ blog on Attawapiskat. It was an opinion piece with a video and a few strong images on a topic that had, until that moment, barely registered in the mainstream media. Suddenly the blog was being socially shared by the thousands. You could see the power of the HuffPost platform in action as it gave voice to thousands of digitally plugged-in Canadians who cared about what was happening to this First Nation community in Ontario. That’s all it took to make Attawapiskat a national story that no one in Ottawa could ignore.
The other highlight for me has been our daily interaction with our readers. It’s a rare and special thing in the news media business to feel like you have a close relationship with your audience. At HuffPost, our readers are equal partners in what we do and it’s such a pleasure to experience the news with them. Be it the emails we exchange with readers who flag corrections in our stories, to our witty Twitter following, to our fantastic Facebook debaters, it’s been a privilege getting to know them. --Brodie Fenlon, senior news editor and "Day 1" veteran
HuffPost Canada Style launched in December, so the site's relatively new, but we've crammed a ton into only a few months of life. We've covered everything from Toronto Fashion Week to awards shows -- we've even highlighted the style of people and politicians at the NDP convention. We've also been at the forefront of breaking style news, being the first news source to reveal Bell Media cancelled the long-time show Fashion Television. We've even established popular franchises, including "Put To The Test" and "Minute 16." From engaging the public with the interactive #CitizenStyle feature to discussing fashion trends on Keek, Facebook and Twitter, we're engaging Canada's style audience in a fresh new way. --Sarah Kelsey, style editor
Top one so far has to be being the last news organization left in the room at the NDP convention, working away while CTV News packed up loudly beside us. --Michael Bolen, politics editor
Working for The Huffington Post means I'm given opportunities I wouldn't have with other organizations -- like being one of only three media outlets allowed to interview Lance Armstrong when he was in Toronto (not to mention letting the interview run for 15 minutes longer than allotted) and having a candid Q&A with biographer Sally Bedell Smith before any other outlet.
It is both inspiring and fun to work at a company that takes work and play equally seriously -- the #snowballfight and #myspring were great ways to show how news organizations can use social media for engagement without always being about the stories, and give us a chance to have a great time with our readers. --Rebecca Zamon, living editor
Certainly the proudest moment for HuffPost Canada Business had to be Rachel Mendleson winning the award for labour reporting at the Canadian Association of Journalists Awards.
For me as business editor, I am particularly proud of Mind The Gap, the series on income inequality from which Rachel's award-winning article came.
Through Mind The Gap, HuffPost has delved deeper into income inequality issues in Canada than any major media source has in recent memory.
Not to mention, the series has been a great way to have fun, both for us in the newsroom and for our readers. Aside from hard-hitting investigations into economic segregation, we've also spotlighted the crazy things rich people are spending money on, including the most expensive houses for sale in the country; we've reported on how social status changes your genes' expression; and discovered that rich people are likelier to cheat than the poor.
And the best part of all? Knowing that this was only our first year, and it's all only just begun! --Dan Tencer, business editor
Working on not one, but two breaking stories at our Christmas party. --Ron Nurwisah, news editor and community manager
Nothing beats when a front page splash sends chills up your spine. Some splashes can seem perfunctory or rushed, but others have a perfect play on words or imagery that puts the emotion in a story right in the reader's face. That's something that other sites just can't (or won't) do. The only experience that comes close to it is when a blogger hits one out of the park -- I'm often in awe of the talent that has appeared on the left rail since day one. --Jacqueline Delange, associate editor
Even though I started as a newbie grad and intern, I had the chance to write some of the most exciting and researched stories for the Huffington Post Canada. When we launched Living in September, I wrote a story about women leadership failing in Canada. In fall, we also wrote a feature on skin bleaching -- an issue that I've been passionate about for years. Covering Fashion Week, having tea with Oprah's crew and interviewing the Survivorman are some of my favourite highlights. --Arti Patel, associate living editor
My proudest moment at HuffPost was winning the Canadian Association of Journalists' inaugural labour reporting award. I was really nervous throughout the awards ceremony and my acceptance speech (I still don't really know was I said!) but having so many coworkers there was amazing. We had by far the most fun table and I will never forget how psyched everyone was to win, and how quickly they got the word out on Twitter and our site. The fact that so many more folks came out to celebrate after the gala is a testament to the awesomeness that is our team. --Rachel Mendelson, business reporter
Layton's Shadow Cabinet
Workers' Lotto Win
Phone Hacking Scandal
Toronto Mayor Skips Pride Parade
Royal Visit, Day 1
Stanley Cup Final
Soon After The Stanley Cup Final
Early Next Morning
Dunderdale Takes Newfoundland And Labrador
Debt Ceiling Crisis
Gaddafi's Last Day
Remembrance Day 2011
MP's F-Bomb Tweet
Income Gap Series Launch
Canadian Forces Name Change
Taliban Hotel Assault
Women In Leadership
RIM Job Cuts
Canada Withdraws From Kyoto
University of King's College Collaboration With The Huffington Post Canada
Trudeau Triumphs Over Brazeau
Tory Budget Moves On Despite Attempted Delays
Solar Flare Watch 2012
International Women's Day 2012
Internet Rejects Vic Toew's Online Surveillance Bill
Love On Parliament Hil
The Conservative's Copyright Bill
Statistics Canada Data
NDP Support Dips In Quebec
Welcome, Huffington Post Quebec
Sun Media Immigration Scandal
RIM Marketing #Fail
A Dead End For The Keystone XL Pipeline
Elections Canada Changes Rules For Voting Result
The Truth About Climate Change And Canada
Tax Payers Footing The Bill
The Loss Of Layton
Citizen Style #1
A Question Of Beauty
Citizen Style @ Toronto Fashion Week
The State Of Canadian Content
How To Build A Green Economy
Jenna Talackova And The Miss Universe Canada Pageant
The Miss Universe Canada pageant usually attracts some news every year, but 2012's contest featured something more than women in gowns and swimsuits. Organizers booted contestant <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/03/24/transgender-miss-universe_n_1377147.html" target="_hplink">Jenna Talackova</a> when they discovered she was born a male, inspiring her fight for the right to compete with her peers.
Canada's Defence Minister Ties The Knot
Peter MacKay, voted the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/26/sexiest-mps-hill-times-ottawa-canada_n_1456080.html#s909604" target="_hplink">second sexiest male Member of Parliament</a>, made headlines in January <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/01/04/peter-mackay-wedding-afshin-jam_n_1184840.html" target="_hplink">when he married Nazanin Afshin-Jam</a> in a private, civil ceremony.
Imagine winning the lottery. Now imagine <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/11/03/barry-deley-global-bc-sports-lottery-video_n_1074024.html" target="_hplink">winning the lottery while you're on live TV</a>. Global BC sports anchor Barry Deley was caught by surprise when he won the B.C. Children's Hospital Dream Lottery.
The Kissing Couple
While Vancouver's 2011 Stanley Cup dream burned in a flurry of flames, a different sort of passion spilled into the streets. A photographer captured the kissing couple, later <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/06/17/scott-jones-and-alex-thom_n_878910.html" target="_hplink">identified as Scott Jones and Alex Thomas</a>, and the image went viral.
Mitchell Wilson's Death
An 11-year-old Ontario boy with muscular dystrophy, Mitchell Wilson, became a victim of assault at school and his subsequent suicide shone a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/09/29/mitchell-wilson-suicide-disabled-bullying_n_987070.html" target="_hplink">spotlight on bullying in Canada's schools</a>. <br> <em>Are you in crisis? Need help? In Canada, find links and numbers to <a href="http://www.casp-acps.ca/crisiscentres.asp">24-hour suicide crisis lines in your province here.</a></em>
The 10 Most Expensive Houses In Canada
If you thought Canada was big, just wait until you see the price tags on the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/02/27/canada-most-expensive-houses_n_1304230.html" target="_hplink">10 most expensive homes across the country</a>.
Top Detoxifying Foods
Our top list of detoxifying foods (including beetroot and dandelions) was a big hit. Wondering what the others are? <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/09/01/top-ten-detoxifying-foods_n_933388.html" target="_hplink">Read the post to find out</a>.
March marked Nutrition Month in Canada, so the HuffPost Canada Living team decided to serve up something fresh by debunking <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/03/01/nutrition-month-2012_n_1310751.html" target="_hplink">25 common food myths</a>. If you ever wanted proof that it's OK to snack late at night, this article is for you.
Russell Williams: 'Great White Shark'
An <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/david-a-gibb/colonel-russell-williams_b_989205.html" target="_hplink">exclusive excerpt</a> from David A. Gibb's <em>Camouflaged Killer</em> detailed how Russell Williams, a former commander of Canada's largest military airfield, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/david-a-gibb/colonel-russell-williams_b_989205.html" target="_hplink">methodically carried out his crimes</a>. An expert described him as the "great white shark" of sexual predators.
The 2012 Vancouver Auto Show
Hollywood celebrities may be no strangers to the camera, but neither are these cars. <a href="http://ca.autoblog.com/2012/04/04/vancouver-auto-show-2012-gallery-includes-some-impressive-hardwa/" target="_hplink">The 92nd Vancouver Auto Show</a> graced Canada's West Coast with some impressive-looking machines, and even featured a few cars used in Hollywood blockbusters, like <em>Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen</em>.
Awkward Engagement Photos
A picture is worth a thousand words, but after taking a gander <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-bender/awkward-engagment-photos_b_1416567.html#s870269&title=Engagement_Man" target="_hplink">at these photos</a> you'll probably have only two: "Um, really?"
Kienan Hebert and his family saw a happy ending to a kidnapping ordeal when the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/09/11/three-year-old-kienan-hebert-found-safe_n_957264.html" target="_hplink">abducted three-year-old was returned unharmed</a>. Randall Hopley, pictured, pleaded guilty to abduction of a person under 14, kidnapping, and break and enter with the intent to commit an offence.
Conjoined Twins Separated
The before-and-after pictures of the Gaboura twins were stunning, and so was their <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/09/18/uk-surgeons-beat-the-odds_n_968882.html" target="_hplink">survival story</a>. The Sudanese twins were born with the tops of their heads joined together. Doctors separated them in a series of risky operations at a London children's hospital in September.
Will and Kate's Crazy Canadian Adventure
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge landed in Canada <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/07/03/william-and-kate-in-canad_n_889435.html?ref=royal-visit-canada-2011" target="_hplink">to much fanfare</a>. They hit Ottawa for Canada Day, went to the East Coast, toured <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/07/06/william-and-kate-in-slave-lake-alberta_n_891139.html" target="_hplink">Slave Lake</a> and stopped by the Calgary Stampede. Through it all, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/royal-visit-canada-2011" target="_hplink">Canadians ate it up</a>.
Face In Tumour
One of our most popular stories was about doctors at Queen's University who spotted a shocking <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/11/02/face-in-tumour-testicular_n_1071037.html" target="_hplink">image in a tumour</a>: a face. Our readers helped us by contributing their own <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/11/03/jesus-face-photos_n_1073353.html" target="_hplink">surprising images</a>.
MP Charlie Angus wrote a blog about the plight of Attawapiskat First Nation, titled "<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/charlie-angus/attawapiskat-emergency_b_1104370.html" target="_hplink">What if They Declared an Emergency and No One Came?</a>" <br> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/charlie-angus/attawapiskat-emergency_b_1104370.html" target="_hplink">He wrote</a>: "What we are witnessing is the inevitable result of chronic under-funding, poor bureaucratic planning and a discriminatory black hole that has allowed First Nations people to be left behind as the rest of the country moves forward." <br> The story resonated with thousands of Canadians, making this one of our most widely shared stories of the year.
The 2012 Academy Awards Red Carpet
What generates more discussion: Oscar winners or what Oscar winners are wearing? This year the cameras were definitely <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/26/oscars-2012-red-carpet_n_1302744.html?ir=Canada+Style" target="_hplink">focused on what Hollywood wore</a>... and what Angelina Jolie's leg had going on.
Where Are Your Pants, Kourtney?
While most celebrities make headlines for their gorgeous gowns and stunning taste in style, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/03/15/kourtney-kardashian-pantless_n_1348834.html" target="_hplink">Kourtney Kardashian</a> made the news by ditching all fashion formalities -- pants included.
The 2012 Grammy Awards
Between the Grammys and the Oscars, February marked a busy month for celebrities. Readers were busy as well, as they clicked through <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/08/grammy-awards-2012-red-carpet_n_1262475.html?ir=Canada+Style" target="_hplink">tons of red carpet coverage</a>.
The Death Of Emy Brochu
Emy Brochu died after her car collided with a tractor-trailer truck in Quebec in January, but the big story that followed didn't focus on her death so much as <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/03/13/emy-brochu-texting-mathieu-fortin_n_1343200.html" target="_hplink">what happened afterwards</a>. Mathieu Fortin, Brochu's boyfriend, released the last series of texts he received from Brochu prior to her accident in an effort to remind the public about the dangers of distracted drivers.
The shocking bombing and shooting spree at two separate locations in Norway <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/07/22/oslo-bombing-massive-blast-norway_n_906683.html#undefined" target="_hplink">left dozens dead</a> and a nation reeling.
Conde Nast's Best New Hotels of 2012
Year after year, Conde Nast releases its coveted Gold List; a collection of the world's finest hotels, restaurants and cruise lines. However, there hasn't been much movement in the rankings over the last few years, so HuffPost Canada Travel decided to try something different and focused on<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/23/conde-nasts-best-new-hote_n_1446301.html" target="_hplink"> the best new hotels of 2012</a>. Can you guess which Canadian hotels made the list?
The 10 Dirtiest Foods We Eat
While Canada has a relatively squeaky clean food system, the odd bad apple can sneak through and ruin someone's day. <a href="http://WalletPop.ca" target="_hplink">WalletPop.ca</a> did some digging and got the <a href="http://www.ww.walletpop.ca/blog/2011/01/23/top-10-dirtiest-foods/" target="_hplink">dirt on the dirtiest foods</a> you may be eating.