The Associated Press had the very cool idea of allowing Facebook users to weigh in on its annual “Top Stories” list this year. When AP-member editors release their top ten picks for the year’s most important stories in a couple of weeks, the public’s list will be released, too.
The differences will be interesting.
“Important” can be defined in many different ways. And I suspect that newspaper editors’ definitions are different than the general population’s.
Is “important” the news that makes the greatest impact (health care reform) or news that garners the greatest interest (balloon boy)? Is it news that makes waves today (swine flu) or that will revolutionize the future (same-sex marriage)? Is it the news that makes history (Ted Kennedy) or that makes conversation (Bernard Madoff)?
All of those questions made it difficult for me to pick my top ten. How do you define “important” when it comes to news? And what’s your vote for the year’s most important stories?