Our natural resources are finite and our global population is rising. There’s no disputing the real challenge that this presents to us as a human community. Oftentimes, our world settles disputes about limited resources through conflict.
As a journalist, I’ve spent a significant chunk of my career covering conflict around the world. I’ve seen how societies are brutally shredded – and how it often takes generations to fully recover.
In order to manage our very real global challenges, we need to be able to collaborate as a single human community. Yet, nationally and culturally driven narratives in journalism produce a fragmented image of our world, hindering our ability to see that, in spite of our differences, we share a core that profoundly outweighs them.
To understand that collaboration is in our own best interests, we need to recognize the reality of our global interdependence.
Journalism has a role to play in that. Uniquely tasked with helping us interpret the world around us - in real time as events unfold - journalism has the power and the responsibility to shape our narrative about our world, its events and our role in them. Journalism can affect the global public discourse by telling the story differently, and by doing so, shifting our perspective.
I founded Orb to demonstrate that interdependence and foster our sense of membership in that one human community. Orb delivers journalism to a global audience that unifies us around our human story. Orb seeks to reveal the stake we each have in a core set of global issues, and help us see those interconnections more clearly.
To deliver stories that foster that sense of one community, we are re-engineering the story creation process by folding together the classic principles of quality journalism and leveraging the digital tools available. Specifically, Orb fuses massive data analysis, public participation and professional, on-the-ground reporting to tell compelling, accessible stories designed to resonate with a diverse global audience.
Orb covers eight core topics – things that touch each individual every day, whether we think about it or not: Food, Water, Energy, Health, Education, Environment, Trade and Governance.
Producing relevant, high-quality stories is not enough. There’s a tremendous opportunity in the fact that journalism can reach a vast and varied global audience through digital distribution – and more people are gaining access every day – but journalism has to reach towards them.
Orb delivers highly accessible digital stories that reach this audience in several ways: each story is produced in text-only, audio-only and multimedia formats, in the worlds’ most widely spoken languages and for consumption on the most widely used digital devices.
In this way, Orb’s stories can empower the global public with quality, reliable information that informs our daily decisions while revealing that each individual has a critical role in our collective future. Just like the duck and the hare in the image above, once you see the world as a connected whole, you can’t “unsee” it!
It’s early days at Orb - check out Orb’s very first story, released earlier this month - and we are learning how to make journalism work better for you, our audience.
We hope you’ll come along with Orb on this journey.
We’re building a community - a vibrant subset of the global public - who can help us understand, interpret and reveal the world we live in. If this idea interests you, we heartily invite you to join the Orb community.
It’s time to tell our story. The human story.