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Poll: what was your favourite Twitter spat of 2012?

As Twitter releases a tranche of data looking at the trends and top tweets of the year, we've got an alternative list. What was your favourite spat?

Mental health academic warns of reality TV 'threat to British psyche'

Reality television’s obsession with the “emotional meltdown of losers” is damaging the British psyche – creating a society in which we revel in seeing people hacked to pieces, a leading mental health academic has warned.

George Clooney joins Barack Obama to discuss the situation in Darfur, April 2006

George Clooney, Lady Gaga, Jay-Z: how much do celebrity political endorsements matter?

The wonks over at the Daily Beast have produced a fascinating quantified rundown of how much celebrity supporters are contributing to this Presidential race, which is close to neck-a-neck as polling day approaches.

US Election Diary: TV preacher blames Sandy on gay rights

Who's to blame for Hurricane Sandy? Why, Obama and Romney, of course! So says the TV evangelist John McTernan, who calls the storm God's response to the fact that "both candidates are pro-homosexual and behind the homosexual agenda". It's difficult to know what's weirder: his understanding of meteorology, or his grasp of the Romney-Ryan social platform.

US Election Diary: TV star and electoral virgin makes voting sexy

Barack Obama called Mitt Romney a bulls****er and Joe Biden asked parents of a slain Marine when it was that their son acquired billiard balls for testicles.

Ann Romney will be speaking on Thursday

'Mitt-igator' Ann Romney on a mission to sell her husband to the masses

On paper, the most important speech of the Republican convention will be delivered by Mitt Romney on Thursday, as he accepts the party's presidential nomination. But the one that could make the most difference of all comes tonight. And it won't be delivered by a politician – at least not a professional politician.

Album: Karine Polwart, Traces (Hegri Music)

The Traces of the title are the memories and marks that bind a people to a place, whether it's the "black hills" so fatally glimpsed in "Tears For Lot's Wife", or the "minarets of industry" of the petrochemical plant at Grangemouth in "Tinsel Show".

Internet-based TV service ready for unveiling at last

YouView, the long-awaited internet-based television service which is intended to be the next generation of Freeview, will finally be launched by Lord Sugar next week.

The unfortunate spelling mistake in Mitt Romney's smartphone app

Mitt Romney hits the magic number, but his smartphone app fails crucial spelling test

Mitt Romney gratefully completed the long recalibration of his presidential campaign yesterday to focus fire exclusively on Barack Obama after primary voting in Texas on Tuesday pushed him past the magic number of 1,114 delegates he needed to clinch the Republican nomination.

Mitt Romney finally set to hit the magic number

Mitt Romney was poised to clinch the Republican presidential nomination after yesterday's Texas primary, a largely uncontested poll that will formalise the former Massachusetts Governor's status as President Barack Obama's challenger in the election in November.

General Aladeen, played by Sacha Baron Cohen, will grace our cinema screens this week in The Dictator

General alert: From Staines to Wadiya, I is da man!

North African despot General Aladeen hates the West and is just weeks away from acquiring weapons-grade plutonium. No laughing matter - unless you're a Sacha Baron Cohen fan

Terence Blacker: A guide to the 11¾ things to do before you're 50 (and I should know)

Some advice for the outdoor types at the National Trust

Jenna Talackova (right) was born male

Pageant expels sex-change finalist

Beach shots depict her as a curvaceous beauty queen. But 23-year-old Jenna Talackova was born male and that has led organisers to disqualify her as a finalist in the 61st Miss Universe Canada pageant.

James Moore: Beware, The Apprentice can be very addictive

Outlook: It might seem strange now, but business leaders sometimes used to complain about being excluded from popular culture. It was felt that bright and talented young people shunned their blandishments in favour of the professions because business was seen as, well, a bit grubby and best left in a ghetto.

Simon Kelner: A rare view of the patron saint of modern Brit art

As a founding father of modern advertising, Charles Saatchi clearly knows a thing or two about image. He understands how to influence public perception, and how to get a message across powerfully and effectively.

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Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea