Now that 2012 firmly in the rear view, it’s high time for a little New Year’s retrospection to see what readers love most about us.
These are the top 10 most-read Press stories from last year, as voted by readers, based on the best metric known to journalism—the number of clicks each story got on our website over the past 12 months.
Some are predictable. Others make you wonder. Add them all up and it’s a list that reveals much about our readership’s interests and offers a trip down news memory lane.
10. LI Doctors Among 98 Arrested in Drug Raid: Long Island’s deadly prescription drug abuse epidemic continued to spiral out of control last year as authorities cracked down on dealers and the physicians accused of supplying them with black market pain pills. And still they’ve just scratched the surface.
9. Septic County: Remember how Suffolk County is slowly poisoning its own drinking and surface waters through its septic systems because most of the county lacks sewers? Yea, that’s still a monumental problem.
8. 100 Sickened, 1 Arrested at Nassau Coliseum: Right before Sandy, 100 intoxicated teens were hospitalized during a rave at the coliseum. And a helicopter pilot was arrested for landing near the chaotic scene for some reason. Unconfirmed rumors of up to seven people dying are likely what made this story so popular.
7. Amityville Horror: Second Gun Found? It’s been nearly 40 years since Ronald DeFeo murdered his family, but one filmmaker is among those who believe he didn’t act alone. The new evidence? A handle of a handgun found in the canal behind the house last year.
6. 4 LI High Schools Among Top 100 in US: It seems readers like good news, too. This one came when U.S. News & World Report ranked high schools in Rockville Centre, Jericho, Commack and Locust Valley among the nation’s best.
5. Paper Tiger: Newsday, once a flagship daily, has become a shell of its former after being bought by monopolistic Cablevision, the horrific cable company everyone hates. Its staff revealed to us the depth of their despair over the changes since the takeover.
4. Suffolk Authorities Dispel Serial Killer Suspect Rumors: Armchair detectives solved the Long Island Serial Killer case and broadcast their suspect’s name on the Internet. Except it turns out they were wrong, anyone can post anything to the Internet regardless of validity and the real detectives had to take the rare move to publicly stamp out false rumors.
3. Identifying Princess Doe: Thirty years after a teenage girl believed to be from Long Island was found dead of a brutal murder in a New Jersey cemetery, investigators continue their quest for justice for the unidentified victim.
2. Ripple Effect: While Suffolk has leaching septic tanks poisoning the aquifers that our drinking water comes from, residents of Bethpage and surrounding areas have carcinogenic toxic plumes from the region’s military industrial past to thank for death from the faucets.
1. Sandy: Anyone really surprised that the storm of the century topped this list? Although the homepage for all our coverage was most-clicked, if we listed every Sandy story separately, it would have taken up most of the top 10.