Let’s get one thing straight: this is not the usual introductory editorial. Too often we’ve read opening statements that aimed high and were soon cut down to size by reality.
When I was asked to become the editor of the East magazine site, my first thought was neither to the wage nor the prestige. My first thought went out to the readers, whose fundamental role is so often violated by the monstrous machinery that is constantly spewing forth information into the world, no wonder it’s called the Press. Readers who are systematically ignored but who, in these times when finding one’s bearings is no mean feat and guarantees are at a premium, have a need to be informed. They must be given the tools to understand the complexities of the world, without hidden agendas or power games.
What drives man to look for new ways forward? Our willingness to adapt, that always comes to the fore. Or our yearning for something new, that often makes life worth living. The goal is ultimately not important, what is important is setting forth to try and make one’s dreams come true. That’s what drives us to undertake this voyage, fearlessly while shrugging off any daily stress. The very thought of broadcasting information once again, of letting our voices from the world speak out, is most powerful adrenaline rush possible. Describing a process, in a world so obsessed by facts, is the first step. Understanding social dynamics, and behaviour, that Internet has completely turned on its head, is essential if we are to head fearlessly into a future where nothing seems certain, but that we can help make safe. All too often we hear talk of the future, of ideas, of innovation. But the greatest innovation possible can only come from us. We shape our own destiny. We can live and describe a world that keeps changing.
Setting off into the unknown does require a little courage. To leave, to go beyond, to put oneself to the test, to overcome trials that we may think are too tough. But then, once we’ve grown up, we’ll be able to look back and perhaps feel we have more reason for satisfaction than others. Going along with one’s passions is never bad. If you’re lucky, you’ll have lived a great adventure. If it doesn’t work out, so what: consistency is a virtue few can afford. Be led or accept leadership? Which is to be preferred? It depends what you have in mind.
Changing can be scary. The everyday routine is reassuring, safe, it can make you feel good about yourself . But it is also so utterly boring that only the weak at heart can truly believe they can survive caged in by a daily routine. No. That’s not what human beings yearn for. Change, whether pursued alone or as a couple or as a team, is the most powerful emotion out there. You just have to acknowledge it and accept it. That’s why, now and then, it’s best to let passion overcome reason.And that’s all too true in the world of journalism. Embracing this new normality is a way of finding new challenges. The only way to find a new life.
East magazine is celebrating its 10th birthday in 2014 and has already managed to carve out its own space, vying with competitors of much longer standing. It has the advantage of a forward looking approach, of wanting to discuss what others don’t, of never forgetting where it came from. Perhaps the Eurozone crises has revealed the darker side of the differences between the member states and perhaps the United States have never been so tentative in their foreign affairs decision making. It could be that finding a new balance for the production systems fostered by western style progresswill be a long process and could easily take decades and that the geopolitical strife in the Middle East will never be resolved. One can say anything one likes, and it reverse. But actually describing what’s going on is a different matter.
That’s what we mean to do here. Are we out of our minds? I don’t think so. Our body, heart and mind are imbued with the same spirit as George Mallory, when in the Twenties of last century he decided to climb Everest and a journalist asked him why: “Why climb Everest”. Easy. Because it’s there.