From the unconventional and awe-inspiring to the hilarious and heartwarming, here’s a look at some of the most interesting photos, videos and stories that have our newsroom talking today. What’s capturing your attention, filling your inbox and cluttering your Facebook/Twitter feed? Tweet us the stories you’re talking about using #InstantIndex, or email us atABC.WorldNews@abc.com, and they could appear on “World News.”
Beyoncé Slammed for Sampling Shuttle Tragedy on New Album
Beyoncé has been labeled “insensitive” by some current and former NASA astronauts and their families for sampling audio from the space shuttle Challenger disaster for a love song off her newly released album. Now-retired NASA public affairs officer Steve Nesbitt’s voice is heard at the beginning of the video for Beyoncé’s new song “XO,” about a troubled relationship. The audio clip is short, lasting six seconds. Beyonce, in an exclusive statement to ABC News this morning, said, “My heart goes out to the families of those lost in the Challenger disaster. The song ‘XO’ was recorded with the sincerest intention to help heal those who have lost loved ones and to remind us that unexpected things happen, so love and appreciate every minute that you have with those who mean the most to you. The songwriters included the audio in tribute to the unselfish work of the Challenger crew with hope that they will never be forgotten.” But former and current NASA astronauts, employees and Challenger family members argue that using it in a pop song mocks the crew’s sacrifice and opens fresh wounds.
Prince William Returns to School
The Duke of Cambridge, 31, is undertaking a 10-week program in agricultural management at the University of Cambridge, Kensington Palace announced today. The executive education program that consists of seminars, lectures and meetings starts in early January and runs until mid-March. “The course has been designed to help provide the Duke with an understanding of contemporary issues affecting agricultural business and rural communities in the United Kingdom,” the palace said in a statement.