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Take A Bow, Ad Wizards: 10 Best Commercials Of 2012

As we did last year, we’re taking a look at the year’s 10 best commercials, and rather than rely on my own opinions of what’s best, we look to the best guys in the business, AdWeek, who ranked their ten favorites of 2012. I won’t disagree with the ten ads they chose, but I would argue that they’re in the wrong order. In fact, 10 and 8 should probably be numbers one and two, respectively. As the ten best go, however, 2012 was light on the comedy, and heavy on the inspirational angle, as one would expect in an Olympic year. Check out AdWeek’s 10 Best Commercials of 2012, and if you want full details and credits on the ads, check out Adweek’s list.

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The 10 Most Anticipated Films of 2013

In a world of 24-hour news cycles, where 90 percent of cable news airtime is devoted to a presidential election a year and a half away, and where marketing flacks start hyping their studio’s films before casting has even finished, I thought we’d go ahead and get a jump on the slate of movies scheduled for the year after the presidential election. Yes, it’s two years away, but if 2012 is indeed the end of the planet, I’d hate to imagine that these ten tiny films aren’t afforded enough online print. It’s never too early to get excited about movies that haven’t even begun filming, is it? Let the hype rain down, and if we can get this train rolling, maybe we can hit the backlash point by the mid-point of 2012, so once they are finally released, we’ve turned the corner to the backlash’s backlash.

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The Best/Worst Typos, Mistakes, and Correrctions of 2012

Typos! We love them, we love to hate them. They make us laugh, they make us cry. They come in many shapes and sizes. And so do those corrections—not always typo-related—added to many a newspaper article when it turns out things weren't written exactly as they should be. It happens to the best of us (fortunately we have the Twitter typo police hanging around to alert us to our embarrassing mistakes). But without those mistakes, wouldn't online (and especially print) life be just a wee bit more boring? So, which were the best—most amusing, most mortifying, funniest, most cringeworthy, and most interesting—mistakes of the year? Herewith, our favorites.

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The 20 Biggest Brand Fails of 2012

Judging by the traffic trends on this blog, it seems the only thing more enjoyable than a brilliant, uplifting, inspirational marketing success is a horrible, embarrassing, cringe-worthy marketing blunder—otherwise known as the big brand fail. Every year there's plenty of them—the accidental tweet, the offensive billboard, the Photoshop disaster, the just-plain-tasteless ad. At the link below, we've compiled 20 of the most notable brand fails from 2012—a nice dose of ad-enfreude to fill your evil rubbernecking hearts with joy. Just be glad it wasn't you. And try to learn a lesson from the Harvey Nichols model above and refrain from pissing yourself with laughter. It's not a good look.

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These Are The Biggest PR Disasters Of 2012

From corporate social fails to "pink slime" scandals to Apple launching a widely hated mapping feature, 2012 was filled with epic PR disasters. While many of the public relations nightmares were due to typical company failings, others were unique to the digital era. All it takes is a single employee's bad tweet — like a Burger King staffer standing in a tub of lettuce — to send corporate headquarters into damage control mode. In July, a Burger King employee thought that it would be a fun idea to post pictures on 4Chan of him standing (shoes on) in two large tubs of lettuce. The caption read: "This is the lettuce you eat at Burger King." Within minutes, other 4Chan members tracked down the culprit.

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9 Stocks Hammered in 2012

The New Year is almost here, and executives at some U.S. companies are glad 2012 is over. These are the firms that went off the rails, leading to large share-price losses. For this story, we looked at the nine biggest share-price losers among U.S.-based companies with market values of at least $2 billion as of Dec. 28, using data from Fidelity.com. These companies had share-price drops of 44 percent to 78 percent.

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5 Things to Do Before Dec. 31 to Reap Tax Benefits

Your holiday schedule may already be hectic, especially for those who are caring for their parents during this special time of year. Tax season isn't far away, though, and by squeezing in some time to take these steps during the holidays, the savings could be an extra gift to you in 2013. Making contributions to 401(k) or spending all the money in your flexible spending account are common steps to reduce a tax bill, but here's five more last-minute deductions and steps caregivers can take before the New Year countdown begins.

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The Year's 20 Weirdest Stories From Florida, America's Weirdest State

At the intersection of the absurd, the unbelievable, the SMH and the WTF you’ll find Florida. It might be the water, it might be the humidity, it might be the hurricanes or the constant threat of death by gator, but chances are, if you are reading about some really cray cray s**t, there is a strong likelihood it took place in Florida. Welcome to the Sunshine State, a place where fantastical things happen with clockwork regularity, and where weird is a way of life. Above are a selection of images that encapsulates the magical strangeness of 27th state, the best of the Year in Florida.

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Top 5 Political Stories Of 2012

The hard-fought presidential election dominated headlines for much of 2012 but there were some other political stories that also caught the nation’s attention. Here’s Politico’s Deputy White House Editor Edward Isaac-Dovere’s picks for the biggest political stories of the year.

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The Top 12 Tech Stories of 2012

In the tech world, 2012 was the year of the reboot. Older, established tech companies such as Microsoft, Yahoo and Nintendo all tried to restart their brands with bold new products and fresh blood in the executive suites. Facebook struggled with its new life as a publicly traded company, and Instagram, the photo-sharing network it acquired in April, was dragged along for the ride. There were inspiring stories, such as the Internet coming together to protest anti-piracy legislation. And there was darker news, like the Israeli military live-tweeting its strikes against Gaza. And as always, the world's dominant and most closely watched tech company was all over the news. Apple did a little bit of everything in 2012, from hit new products (the iPad Mini) to high-profile failures (Apple Maps) to some old-fashioned courtroom drama in its patent war with Samsung.

read: The Top 12 Tech Stories of 2012