Flippant Stories that Grabbed our Attention in 2015

As we returned to the office this morning after the festive break conversation turned to those random news stories that for one reason or another provoked our interest. Here’s a selection of some of our favourites…

#TheDress of 2015

Was it blue and black or white and gold? That is the question that divided the internet this year.

The striped optical illusion dress took the internet by storm in February sparking fierce debate over whether it was blue and black or gold and white. But did you know where it all started from? No, me neither!  It was first posted on Tumblr by Caitlin McNeill, a 21-year-old from Scotland, after she sent the picture to friends and they all saw different colours.

#TheDress became an internet sensation, trending worldwide on Twitter as debate went global.  Celebrities joined in too, with stars including Kim Kardashian tweeting that she sees white and gold, while husband Kanye sees blue and black.

The dress was made by Roman Originals and is in fact blue and black…but which colours did you see?


Bearded Doppelganger

It is said that we all have seven people across the world that look exactly like us – or so popular websites such as www.twinstrangers.com would have us believe.

For me one of the most completely irreverent but fun stories was when Neil Thomas Douglas, a photographer from Glasgow, boarded a Ryan Air flight and sat next to someone that looked uncannily like him.  Selfies ensued and so did coverage in all of the nationals creating quite a social buzz about the validity of the thought that there is indeed at least one other person in the world that looks just like you.


“Call me Caitlyn”

Every year brings with it a whole host of Kardashian filled news stories, that’s a given, but not even the most avid fans saw that Caitlyn Jenner Diane Sawyer interview and subsequent Vanity Fair shoot coming! This was my highlight of 2015 for three reasons. Firstly, even the most sceptical person cannot deny the admiration of strength that comes from any person of stature having the courage to be open about their sexuality, and inspire others likewise.

Secondly as a PR professional, I can’t help but also give props to a very carefully considered and sensitive media approach. Shrouded by a lot of secrecy and rumours, sure, but actually the end result was a coming out that Caitlyn Jenner completely controlled ownership of, telling the story in her own words.

And finally, the sheer beauty of content in the Vanity Fair July issue, inside and out. As an avid collector of historic overseas magazines, this was utterly worth three months in the making.



“A theme park whose big theme is — theme parks should have bigger themes.”

The “bemusement park”, a creation of British graffiti artist, Banksy, opened for five weeks in Weston-Super-Mare this summer and what a novel concept it was! The satirical take on a theme park included moody attendants, a decrepit castle and an orca rising out of a toilet to jump through a hoop.

The exhibition was out of the ordinary for Banksy, who is mostly known for graffiti works that pop up in unexpected urban locales.

The pop-up event included works from 60 other artists; a forceful media relations and PR campaigns for the pop-up event.


Two BIG TV blunders

For me, live TV blunders have been memorable this year…for all of the wrong reasons.  Firstly who could forget Olly Murs’ prematurely revealing which act would be leaving the X Factor competition?  After getting in a muddle following the judge’s verdict, Olly’s face said it all, producing a brilliant ‘Sorry Simon’ social meme.

And then we were gifted more recently with #MissUniverse2015 after a mistake by presenter, Steve Harvey saw Miss Colombia wrongly named the competition winner… Her short lived celebration, Steve’s obvious horror at his mistake, and Miss Philippines eventually claiming her prize made for a wonderful evening, actually days, of social quip and commentary.


A Princess Was Born!

Everyone loves babies and a Royal baby, well, the Nation went mad for the arrival of Princess Charlotte Elizabeth (great name) Diana! But with this modern day princess the news was issued in the 21st century way, her arrival was announced on The Royal Highnesses’ official website and across all Royal social media channels.

Naturally the internet went mad, peaking at 4.2k tweets per minute using the hashtag Royal Baby. However we were all pleased to see that tradition was still upheld later that day – with a bulletin placed on an easel at Buckingham Palace.


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