Worldwide is a term that can apply to many things, depending on who you ask. (media word play.) Typically, however, a worldwide term is used to describe a whole collection of nations. In most cases, this means that the term applies to the whole world, but it may also mean that it applies only to a region of the world or to a set of nations. Generally, however, it is assumed that worldwide applies to the entire planet.
Some might question how something as broad and encompassing as “the entire earth” can actually be described as a worldwide term. Many would think that the definition of worldwide encompasses a very large area, stretching from the entire surface of the earth up to the moon’s orbit. However, technically, this is not what the term refers to.
When you define a worldwide phrase, you are actually defining a set of national languages, from French to German, English to Japanese, and so on. While a worldwide audience can generally be assumed, there are many who disagree. The United Nations, for instance, has proposed an amendment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that would extend the ban on discrimination based on nationality or ethnicity to the worldwide stage.
The United Nations proposal states that, if a nation so chooses, it can add “human rights” or “universal values” to its list of worldwide goals. If this proposal were adopted, the United States could add the word “human” to its list of universally accepted human rights, instead of “world” or “Earth.” It is very hard to envision the United Nations adopting such an amendment, because it does not recognize the word “world” as having universal meaning. But this doesn’t mean that worldwide isn’t a real thing. Rather, the problem is with how terminology is used.
A better term would be “Globally Human.” This term recognizes the fact that all people, regardless of nationality or ethnicity, belong to the same global community. It also recognizes that the term should be limited to the world, rather than the universe. In other words, the phrase should incorporate the entire globe.
A better phrase might be “Globally Human: Human rights for the entire world.” This phrase acknowledges that human rights are universal and apply to all people, regardless of race or religion. As the Universal Declaration goes on to say, “Every citizen of a nation has the right to respect for the rights of other citizens also…” (Universal Declaration, Article 15). Again, limiting the term to the globe does not make sense, because the idea of the Universal Declaration goes beyond the Earth.