Our Top 10 Stories Of 2020 - Stab Mag

Our Top 10 Stories Of 2020

These are the headlines you clicked on most.

style // Jan 2, 2021
Words by Brendan Buckley
Reading Time: 4 minutes

When the Fwd started, I tried to adhere to a formula. 

The first three stories were supposed to be Stab’s three most viewed stories of the week. As time went by, I began to feel that those stories often did not represent the best or most interesting things that happened in surfing that week. The Fwd slowly morphed into a long-winded note on whatever I happened to be thinking about followed by Stab stories I’d choose on a whim. 

It will likely keep evolving. 

But now, as 2020 comes to a close, I think it’d be fun to revisit that original idea and unveil Stab’s most viewed stories of the year. In my mind, most of them do a great job of explaining why Stab Premium exists — if clicks were our goal, this is what we’d have to focus on. Premium allows us to create quality pieces for people who care rather than rely on your mom clicking on a story from Facebook. 

Speaking of Premium, if you opted for the free month (thanks Vans) and don’t want to commit, now is the time to opt out. Don’t do that, though. We’ve got plenty of good stuff coming. 

Until then, let us review.

Australians Stranded

#10: 12 Australians Are Stranded On An Indonesian Surf Charter After Sumba Closed Its Ports

Of course, we have to start with a good old fashioned COVID article. I’d like to think that these guys set off light bulbs in other people’s brains, thus inspiring a handful of surfers to catastrophically spend a few months stranded at surf resorts with empty firing waves out front. Oh, humanity.

French Surfer Assaulted

#9: French Surfer Assaulted (Perhaps Sexually) By Angry Freesurfer During QS Event

This was the only story on this list that I didn’t remember — which is funny, because it’s my favorite. This is what surfing is all about, and a testament to how it brings us all together as a tribe. 

Mormon Surfer

#8: He Can’t Surf For Two Years After This Video Goes Live 

If the last story was funny, this one is proper hilarious. B and C grade pro surfers around the world would do anything to have their edit get more clicks on Stab than anyone else’s. You know what they haven’t thought of, though? Becoming a Mormon missionary and abandoning surfing for two years. That is, apparently, what moves the needle in this day and age. 

Electric Acid

#7: Watch: Noa Deane’s Electric Acid Surfboard Test In Its Entirety

Remember when we finally released it for free? Well guess what — it’s not anymore! Click here to watch it on Stab Premium.


#6: Insiders Speak Out On The Hurley Sale And Its Global Repercussions

Remember when the entire surf industry was in a state of irreparable collapse? Idk maybe it still is. But this story was a xx of the joyous times.

Costa Rica Surf Ban

#5: Shots Fired: Costa Rican Pro Arrested For Surfing, Kelly Slater Inadvertently Comes To His Defense

There were many highly-clicked Coronavirus stories this year. This story faced some harsh competition, specifically in the form of that chick from Spain getting arrested by a hazmat suit guy for surfing after testing positive for COVID. However, at the end of the day, this one undoubtedly deserves its place as the champion of them all. 

Derek Ho

#4: World Champ And Pipeline Master Derek Ho Is In Critical Condition

This year, we also lost Michael Tomson, John Shimooka and many other surfers around the world. While this list is mostly about poking fun, this story is a good prompt to take a moment and honor those we lost. Get a few waves for them next time you paddle out.

Fisher's Wedding

#3: World’s Wealthiest Ex-C-Grade Pro Surfer Gets Extravagantly Hitched In Bali

For my money, this is a huge underdog coming in at #3 for the year. It’s interesting, for sure, but that interesting? I’m not sure. Call me simple but I’d prefer to watch Fisher harass 2010’s Top 44 at Lowers instead

Michel Bourez Shark Attack

#2: Michel Bourez Attacked By Shark (Twice!) While Foiling, Lives To Tell The Tale

Shark stories are almost always a lock for taking out the top spot in any given week. But you have to go above and beyond to beat all the other shark stories and claim the shark story of the year title. This one should serve as an example for all the shark stories to come.

John John Florence

#1: John Florence No Longer Rides For Hurley

This is it. Number one. We, collectively, care more about what sticker John John puts on his nose than anything else.

Probably time to put down the phone or close the laptop and go surfing. 

Happy new year.


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