At The Octant’s first General Meeting of the semester, I posed this question to the team: WHY do we do what we do? My answer came in the form of Cherian George’s words in Freedom of the Press. He wrote, “Journalism matters because it helps people learn about their surroundings and form opinions, and this is important because a society where people collectively determine their future is a better society than one where people don’t count.”
As Editor-in-Chief this semester, this is my dream: I hope The Octant won’t simply tell you what you already know, or coerce you into thinking in a particular way with biased reporting. Instead, I want every issue of The Octant to help you learn more about our surroundings and form opinions.
By now, you may have noticed our name change. This was a unanimous decision made by all members of Panopt at the end of last semester. But what does this new name mean? Firstly, an octant is a navigation instrument that was integral in opening up the seas to explorers and creating a more interconnected world. As we expand and discuss different issues, we hope to bring different parts of the world in conversation with each other.
Secondly, the octant is the first instrument widely accepted for its ability to measure an angle without being affected by external movement. This symbolizes our commitment to uphold press freedom and our mission statement—to be an autonomous student-run publication dedicated to critical discourse and free speech.
This semester promises to be an exciting one. I hope you look forward to each issue as we strive to deliver breaking news, investigative articles,opinionated pieces, and more. Here’s to a great semester!