Tweeter? They Hardly Knew 'Er.
Tweeter is an electronics company that filed for bankruptcy in 2007. Twitter is the social media site that was valued at $17 billion for its initial public offering [source: Blodget]. If you find yourself getting them confused, let's hope it's in everyday conversation, and not when you're buying shares of the stock.
That's what exactly what happened in early October when Twitter was set to make its public debut on the stock exchange. Apparently, some investors got so excited for Twitter's pending arrival that they saw "Tweeter" and went for it. The stock price rose more than 1,000 percent, as it went from under a penny a share to 15 cents a share in one day. More than 11.7 million shares of the firm were traded Oct. 4. Keep in mind that the day they discussed filing for bankruptcy, about 13.1 million shares were traded [source: Mikolajczak].
Alas, if you did accidentally invest in Tweeter, you probably were disappointed to see that, within a few days, Tweeter stock symbol -- TWTRQ -- was changed to THEGQ to combat confusion. (That Q indicates bankruptcy proceedings.) And with that, the stock nosedived back to less than a cent per share [source: Schaefer].
How can 2013 be topped for weird news? Will Rob Ford recommit himself to politics or start dabbling in hallucinogenics? Will I buy stock in football players based solely on the merits of their touchdown dances? Will we see another alligator in Baggage Claim 3, or will we have to settle for an apparition of Hugo Chavez? Only Lesus knows for sure.
Author's Note: 10 Weirdest News Stories of 2013
In a year that brought us headlines like the Edward Snowden scandal, the attack on a mall in Kenya, the Boston Marathon bombing and a horrific typhoon in the Philippines, it's nice to remember that there were some news stories worth laughing over.
- Armstrong, James. "'I was very, very inebriated': Video shows Rob Ford in apparent rage." Global News. Nov. 7, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://globalnews.ca/news/952684/new-video-surfaces-of-rob-ford-in-apparent-rage/
- Arnold, Carrie. "New Law of Urination." National Geographic. Oct. 23, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://newswatch.nationalgeographic.com/2013/10/23/new-law-of-urination-mammals-take-21-seconds-to-pee/
- Associated Press. "Images show woman on Chicago train with alligator." ABC News. Nov. 13, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://abcnews.go.com/Weird/wireStory/images-show-woman-chicago-train-alligator-20874286
- BBC. "Toronto mayor Rob Ford loses more powers." BBC. Nov. 19, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-24990650
- BBC. "Vatican pulls papal medal which misspelt name of Jesus." BBC. Oct. 11, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-24489512
- Blodget, Henry. "If you think Twitter's IPO price is silly, you don't get it." Business Insider. Nov. 6, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.businessinsider.com/what-is-twitter-worth-2013-11
- Carrero, Jacquellena. "Acting president Maduro says Hugo Chaves appeared to him as a little bird." NBC. April 3, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://nbclatino.com/2013/04/03/acting-president-maduro-says-hugo-chavez-appeared-to-him-as-a-little-bird/
- Cawthorne, Andrew. "Venezuelan leader says workers see Chavez apparition at building site." Reuters. Oct. 31, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/31/us-venezuela-maduro-idUSBRE99U0Z420131031
- Ellison, Jake. "Seattle Police hand out Doritos." Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Aug. 17, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://blog.seattlepi.com/marijuana/2013/08/17/seattle-police-hand-out-doritos-at-hempfest-opening-saturday/
- Ferro, Shaunacy. "How fast does an elephant pee?" Popular Science. Oct. 18, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.popsci.com/article/science/how-fast-does-elephant-pee
- Guinness World Records. "Recapping Guinness World Records Day 2013." Nov. 14, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com/news/2013/11/recapping-guinness-world-records-day-2013-52859/
- Hornby, Catherine. "Vatican withdraws medals that misspelled 'Jesus.' Reuters. Oct. 16, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/10/16/oukoe-uk-pope-medals-idUKBRE99A0IJ20131016
- Kim, Susanna. "Fantex postpones Arian Foster IPO after injury." ABC News. Nov. 13, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/business/2013/11/fantex-postpones-arian-foster-ipo-after-injury/
- Lattman, Peter and Eder, Steve. "If you like a star athlete, now you can buy a share." The New York Times. Oct. 17, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/10/17/want-a-piece-of-a-star-athlete-now-you-really-can-buy-one/
- Mikolajczak, Chuck. "Tweeter Home shares explode on apparent Twitter mix-up." Reuters. Oct. 4, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/04/us-tweeterhome-twitter-idUSBRE9930P220131004
- Mungin, Lateef. "Officials: This woman may know why alligator was found at Chicago's O'Hare." CNN. Nov. 13, 2013. (Dec. 3, 2013) http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/13/us/chicago-alligator-airport/
- Ohlheiser, Abby. "Rob Ford scandal had its weirdest day yet." The Wire. Nov. 14, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.thewire.com/global/2013/11/rob-ford-says-hell-get-help-sue-his-staff-and-stay-mayor/71611/
- Schaefer, Steve. "Tweeter stock gets new symbol after Twitter mix-up, plunges back to a penny." Forbes. Oct. 8, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.forbes.com/sites/steveschaefer/2013/10/08/after-twitter-driven-pop-tweeter-stock-flops-with-new-ticker-symbol/
- Than, Ker. "Is the Abominable Snowman a bear?" National Geographic. Oct. 21, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/10/131021-yeti-abominable-snowman-bigfoot-polar-bear-cryptozoology/
- Visser, Josh; Alcoba, Natalie and Kuitenbrouwer, Peter. "Rob Ford: 'Yes, I have smoked crack cocaine.'" National Post. Nov. 5, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/11/05/doug-ford-calls-on-police-chief-to-step-down-accuses-him-on-conspiracy-against-torontos-mayor/
- Waldroup, Regina. "Alligator Found Inside O'Hare Airport." NBC Chicago. Nov. 13, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://www.nbcchicago.com/traffic/transit/Alligator-Found-Inside-OHare-Airport-230379011.html
- Young, Bob. "Seattle cops to deal Doritos and information at Hempfest." Seattle Times. Aug. 14, 2013. (Nov. 20, 2013) http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2021614151_hempfestdoritosxml.html
Sociologist Arthur B. Shostak thinks stories of hope hold a critical place amid the teachings of the Holocaust. HowStuffWorks talked to Shostak to learn more.