Major news outlets are currently featuring a story that is not only uplifting and emotionally gripping but has achieved the status as one of the most watched Web events, ever. The mesmerizing live footage of a camera-equipped capsule being lowered half a mile into the bowels of the earth to assist in the rescue of 33 Chilean miners was the product of current advancement in technology and an amicable Chilean government. It is certainly remarkable to have the news world showcase a human emotion story that unites all of humanity, regardless of race, political affiliations and nationality.
Chileans and others across the world from places as distant as London and Japan to locations in Washington and Georgia erupted with cheers and exuberant applause after watching the dramatic live feed of the rescue unfold on television and the web. It is a global event that has attracted concern and extensive vocal support from various institutions ranging from Pope Benedict XVI to the Spanish Parliament. Many viewers watched the story late into the night, riveted to their television screens, because they were able to empathize with the suffering and pain the miners’ families were undergoing despite the thousands of miles separating them from the event. Live media coverage has effectively shrunk the world down into our television flatscreens. It has built a global community that feels a lot more like a friendly neighborhood stroll as opposed to walking through a hostile downtown ghetto on a cold, winter night.
To a college kid, this event may seem like a speck in his or her life, but it is a monumental one for the global community.
Critics may charge the media for over-covering this event, but they fail to realize the benefits of this media spectacle. For once, the world forgets that 11 people have just been killed by suspected U.S. missiles. For once, the world could shrug off the troubles that continually plague it, even for just a moment. For once, the world feels like it is united.
The rescue truly was a global effort. After all, the video equipment used was from Japan, the rescue cable was from Germany while the drill rig came from two companies in Pennsylvania. If this doesn’t get you excited about global partnership, nothing will. Either way, let’s hope the leaders of every nation learned a valuable lesson on the benefits of collaboration versus the detrimental effects of solely pursuing one’s self-interests.
Web Editor Jason Pan for the editorial board.