As The Edition and its team of journalists celebrate yet another year of bringing news, information and entertainment to digital screens, we invite readers to peruse through our experiences and get to know the people behind this news, raw and unedited.
Despite its rather young existence, the content that The Edition has and continues to offer its readers, demonstrates a variety and depth of content far beyond its age.
The Edition has been a trustworthy source of news across two presidencies, provided live updates on a Presidential Election and a Parliamentary Election, crafted pieces on all manner of socio-economic issues, written stories about ordinary people from diverse backgrounds, interviewed leaders from within the country all the way to the UN, broke stories about social justice, worked to bring numerous environmental issues to the forefront, reported from the northernmost atolls to the southernmost tip of Maldives - twice.
Most recently, audiences have witnessed The Edition’s newsroom covering the ongoing global pandemic, doing their best to push the envelope and attain answers.
And we are just getting started.
As The Edition celebrates yet another year together, we invited members of our newsroom both past and present, to share a few words. Each journalist chose a word that to them best embodies The Edition, describing their experience in our newsroom, and sharing key moments from their personal journey as a journalist in Maldives. Without further adieu!
"It was nothing but pure luck to receive a chance to immerse myself in work which aligns so closely with almost-forgotten ambitions and talents, in an environment that operates on values I genuinely believe, with such a colourful and competent newsroom".
Having joined The Edition force after completing a 3-month internship, Malsa - this (peer-declared) 'tornado' of doom with a cotton candy centre, has since grown into one of our biggest stars; fierce warrior armed with a pen but an undeniably - though deny it she will - sweet presence in the newsroom.
"The word family rings quite true when it comes to describing the fundamental atmosphere in which The Edition operates on."
"Based on love, appreciation and a shared desire to push those around us to greater heights, working with this family has truly inspired me to become a better writer, better human and to further contribute to bettering society."
Being Edition's first-ever Intern to Journalist, it is with pride and joy that we observe the leaps and bounds Aiham since the days of his initial writing prompts. Now a fully-fledged journalist with high-flying interviews and live broadcasts under his belt, this fearless journalist is set to take the media world by storm and how!
"Wherever I go, or wherever someone might go in their life and career, I know for a fact that we'll always be family, in one way or the other."
"To me, The Edition has always been synonymous with purpose. Even with the first step I took into the office, I knew I had stumbled on to something special that I will treasure forever, no matter where life may take me in the future. The work I do in this newsroom has given me so many reasons to be better, as a journalist, a creative, a person, a coworker and a friend. It has been the rock that I clung to as monstrous waves crashed onto the shore of life. It has been a constant that has rooted me more firmly to reality than ever before."
Shahudha is a bit of a 's-hero' herself, reporting about the pandemic all the way from India. Eventually, creativity won over crisis - typical of this strong survivor. Shaadu - as we know her - is an artist, poet and journalist, but above all, a born storyteller - one that should be and is, treasured.
"The Edition has inspired me in many ways, taught me many things, presented me with so many wonderful opportunities and led me to some of the best people I have had the privilege of meeting. I am proud to be a part of this extra-ordinary team every day."
There is unanimous consensus among our newsroom, publishing house and even with our followers - that we would not be where we are without our amazing videographer and editor, Amany.
"A modern workplace where there is no fear of judgment from either colleagues or management, for being different or having different opinions".
"That allowed me to open my mind to new ideas and unleash my creativity".
Gifted with a unique ability to interpret the world around us, Amany crafted interviews and videos that captured the spirit of Maldives with originality and flair. Just a few minutes notice, and she's ready to travel anywhere, to cover any story - a true artist, journalist and creative soul.
"To work in any capacity as a journalist requires- nay, demands- you to take off your proverbial blindfold. As a journalist it is your duty to inform, and a mandatory requisite for your duty is to become informed".
"That said, you will find no better place than with The Edition team for you to nurture your understanding of the happenings around the world and in Maldives. The endless support, insight and wisdom from all the kind faces of the team are invaluable for a journalist to find his footing."
Raif is currently miles and miles away in another continent, and every team member would agree, he is sorely missed by all. Not just a stellar human being, Raif writes prose like one destined to do so. And perhaps after University, he will finally decide it is, and return to us!
"The nature of a house depends on its foundations. With such a team behind your back, The Edition is a place any hopeful journalist can call home."
"Every so often, when you join a new classroom or start a new job, you notice the tiniest details about everyone around you. The first thing I noticed about working at The Edition is the people. From the day I began work to the last day before my untimely departure I noticed everyone going out of their way to make me feel comfortable. There was a sense of belonging in the air and I think this is what, to me, makes the newspaper special. What comes down to words begins with these cheerful dialogues and positive attitude in the newsroom. I was fortunate to see this every day at work."
Now on the road to becoming a lawyer, Aman left us too soon, right as we were getting used to having another efficient, enthusiastic team player. In hiring Aman however, we learnt a valuable lesson in snapping up the most talented, passionate Maldivians we can find, whatever their background may be, as soon as we come across them!
"To me, an amateur journalist it was hard to even tell between my immediate boss and colleagues because that distinction was merely on paper. Rae captains this ship with incredible passion, one that’s hard to miss, and one that I believe sweeps down to everyone single one of us in the newsroom. If anything made my time at The Edition it was undeniably the people radiating good vibes, full of passion and warm. Wishing everyone at the office a very happy anniversary."
"There were the troublemakers, the darlings, and of course; mother hen to keep us all in check. After the second week, I had almost forgotten what life was like without my team. But it's hard to forget the music we played, the food we shared, and the work we stressed over together."
A self-published poet in her own right, Nishdha is The Edition's youngest team member to date. However, she is a force to be reckoned with, inspiring creativity and drive that we didn't even know we were missing.
"The Edition is a great online platform to keep up with the local news and creative features. As an intern, my experience at the office was great as I was working with an energetic young community with fresh perspectives. Translating information allowed me to broaden my knowledge of Dhivehi language as I was learning new words every day. It took me some time to adapt to the style of writing newspaper articles, nonetheless, it was a great learning experience."
This sports enthusiast taught us much about this realm that was never before considered. A breath of fresh air, always armed with a kind word, his presence is missed in our newsroom.
"The upcoming generation in the Maldives are very much dwelled in the English language. Hence, the Edition provides a very important platform for the locals as well as the foreign readers to keep up with the most trusted news source in the Maldives."
"Hurly-Burly is a busy activity and Hurluberlu is French for scatterbrained. While Halloo-Balloo is old Scottish for 'great noise', Hullaballoo describes a commotion. Khalbali suggests 'an uproar' in Hindi, and Khalli-Walli is Arabic for 'leave-it-be'. Yet the Dhivehi variation Halaboli wins best-description, to signal the chaotic newsroom of The Edition."
Even surrounded by wordsmiths, it is difficult for anyone to hold a candle to the artistry that Lujine breathes to life. A maestro of many talents, he is one person we cannot do content meetings without - muse to us all, if you will.
"When I think of Edition, the word cherished comes to mind. The work, the team, the memories, all are cherished and so close to my heart."
"Over two years of being with this team gave me the privilege of witnessing with birth and growth of Edition till today. I must say, its been nothing short of remarkable, our journey and how far we have come. Not to mention how much personal and professional growth I attained from being a part of Edition."
Nafaahath is most often credited with being the life force of our newsroom - we are already anxious about not having her for a 3-month maternal hiatus, but grudgingly must accept that her birth-baby needs her more! Lively and vivacious, this talented writer balances ethics and empathy with enviable ease.
"The hardest part of working during this pandemic is working alone from home, Being able to shout out a random word and hearing an eco of responses to it, spontaneous laughter, bursting into old Disney classic songs with the team, random food at workdays are so dearly missed. And most importantly, unlike last year, our anniversary celebrations will have limited to a virtual one"
"Heres wishing for a glorious future for the Edition, and a chance to soon be able to celebrate our baby turning two!"
"Thirteen years ago, when I last worked for Haveeru, there existed a scarcity of English language writers. Now, thirteen years later, when I worked for one month during November 2018 as interim editor for The Edition, the scene had changed."
Hilath graced The Edition for a brief period to help out with Editors being offsite and attending training programmes. We are proud to have worked with this iconic writer and wish him all the best always.
"There were interns and they were quite professional and I hardly had to copyedit any articles they submitted."
"As a journalist, I love the fact that I am constantly wondering. It’s the kind of feeling that makes you constantly curious and thoughtful, thinking about issues in different perspectives and often asking unasked questions. People who get most media publicity seldom represent the majority opinion, so every day is an opportunity to speak for those underrepresented."
Though one of our newest members, the wealth of knowledge and experience Ali brought to the table, has served to teach the team more than we could've hoped for in very little time - that too with the kindest smile.
"However, it hasn't stopped me from also wondering about the lack of space for free expression and the long road ahead for the fourth estate. Brutal crimes against journalists and writers remain unsolved despite the recent democratic gains."
"One might say that ‘grit’ is a requirement for a journalist. Surely it takes great strength of character to fulfil the staggering duties that come with this career; to disseminate information, raise the silenced voices, bring a ray of light amid darker times, and above all, achieve this with integrity, morality and due diligence. I’m not certain if I had grit when I first entered this field, a choice made out of unbridled love for writing and a dash of desperation. Facing a career I believed myself ill-prepared for, with the exception of the one talent I had to offer as my saving grace, I was a shaking ‘green’ sapling."
"Looking back, I believe my metamorphosis into a full-fledged journalist began just months before May 15, 2018, when I became part of the small ambitious team that would roll out ‘The Edition’. Amid the preparations to launch this online news, I truly began to get ahold of not only the ropes but develop my personal understanding of what it means to serve the nation with the special voice this position accords me. With this team, I began to step forward whereas before, I would have hesitated; I pushed myself to cross that intimidating border between my comfort zones and the unknown; and I learnt to persevere, despite how challenging or daunting a task might prove to be."
From Journalist to Senior Journalist and now Assistant Editor, across Haveeru, Mihaaru to The Edition, Shaahunaz aka Arvy is without a doubt our biggest success story, embodying the best traits of this company along with her own remarkable essence. Truly, someone to watch out for in this field.
"Where once I would have wanted to sigh and give up, this field, and namely The Edition, taught me to grit my teeth and keep forging ahead".
"It has been an incredible, challenging, joyous, tenacious two years with a team that has become peers, friends and a support system all bundled into one. There is still more to learn and more fears to overcome - but were it not for them and these experiences, I might not have grown past that frightened little sapling of a journalist I started out as."
"I don't think any of our journalists would have pegged me as having chosen this word. Particularly given my less than jovial editing approach, much of the time. But, in a nutshell; this is how I feel every time I stumble upon a new writer, someone brimming with talent and passion - and I have been so lucky to come across this many".
"This is what felt like - to launch a new platform that allowed us to share these spectacular home-grown talents with the whole world. And this is how I continue to feel, ecstatic in the knowledge that a new generation of journalists have found their voice and are empowered by it."
"Every time our newsroom raises concern on a controversial issue, the defiance in the eyes as they uncover injustice, that moment when the student becomes the teacher and they teach me something new."
"Each instance during which they choose to cast aside social or inherited stigma and taboo in favour of speaking up about what is right, every minute they spend outside the scope of their just to fight the good fight."
"With no shortage of pride to accompany it, I feel an inescapable, unshakeable sense of - Euphoria. A feeling that I cannot temper with the usual jaded scrutiny I reserve for work and all matters professional".
"And it is how I hope our readers feel, knowing that there are so many fresh voices steeled and committed to speaking for them, elevating principles worth valuing while also holding that which falls short, accountable."
"Euphoria. I believe that's what it's like to glimpse a better tomorrow".
"I've always held on to the dream of a quality English newspaper that would do well in Maldives. Just had to persevere and find the right team... Took about 15 years to get it right. At The Edition, I’m blessed to have unearthed an ideal team; one that balances all the elements of idealism, foresight, intrigue, instinct and drive, all of which I consider integral to news."
Having worked for many a leader, it is not lightly that we declare Vaail as being the best sort of publisher to work for, one that grants his editorial and newsroom with the independence and freedom that most journalists can only imagine. We are always thankful for his insight and guidance, and it is our great privilege to help make his dream a lasting reality.
"I would also like to thank Ali Rafeeq and Hilath Rasheed, who worked in this avenue for over 20 years and laid the foundation for our existence today. And to find it a success brings immense happiness. Nothing more satisfying than when dreams come true."