Crisis and opportunity with Abe Streep for the July 2016 issue of WIRED magazine. This story looks at the complex relationship between non profit companies, virtual reality and new visual story telling during the height of the refugee crisis unfolding on the Greek Island of Lesvos.
The third boat, a gray Zodiac, found them. It’s manned by two young men—one an out-of-work Greek, the other a Norwegian bored with his stultifying Oslo desk job. Neither of them possesses an organizational affiliation. Despite the fact that hundreds of thousands of migrants and asylum seekers have come through Lesbos in the past year, as of my visit on December 18, neither Frontex nor the Greek coast guard has established much of a presence. Instead, the job of offering aid falls largely to international volunteers who have flocked to the island. A throng of them, their experience ranging from extensive to none, waits onshore with reflective survival blankets. The emergencies director of Human Rights Watch is here, as is a fashion model from Manhattan who brought perfume samples for the refugees. As the Zodiac approaches the dock, the Norwegian hurls himself into the water and ties the boat up to a mooring.