Project description

Many Australians felt the country was extremely late to tackle the question of legalising same-sex marriage. In 2017, after a long debate, same-sex people were given the right to marry, after a national postal vote on the subject.The ABC News Interactive Digital Storytelling team felt it was important to put this development into a global context, by looking at the state of gay rights around the world.The story starts out by examining which countries have already legalised same-sex marriage, and what mechanisms they used to make the change (parliament, court, etc.).It then segues into more complex territory, outlining the state of gay rights in the rest of the world — including highlighting countries where homosexual sex acts remain illegal, and where they are punishable by death.

What makes this project innovative?

Noteworthy design and development characteristics of the story include:* The piece was designed with a mobile-first mindset. We want to ensure that our ever-expanding mobile audience is presented with the same quality of experience as those on larger devices.* We’ve designed the ‘scrollytelling’ experience to be best-practice by maintaining the natural movement of text and always keeping a scrolling element visible on screen to avoid the sense of scrolljacking.* The visual components are very clean and simple, as the key goal was clarity. We removed any unnecessary design distractions and used whitespace liberally to let the content speak for itself.* Colour contrasts are all W3C AA compliant. Colours are bright and fresh and are optimised to ensure clarity for our readers with various forms of colour blindness.

What was the impact of your project? How did you measure it?

The story was well received by our audience, and shared widely across Facebook & Twitter.

Source and methodology

We reported on the global state of same-sex marriage and laws around homosexual relationships a year ago, and with the renewed national interest in the topic, as well as our advances in storytelling technology, we were prompted to bring everything up to date. An immense amount of research went into the original story, so we had to perform a lot of follow-up fact checking.

Technologies Used

The main technology used was JavaScript, leveraging D3 for the persistent visual component.The story was built on top of our own custom-built storytelling template, "Odyssey", which enhances the ABC News reading experience with clear typography, rich visuals, layered text & media, and allows producers to define 'scrollytelling' hooks.

Project members

Paul CrossleyBen SpraggonNathan HoadMatt Martino


Project owner administration

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