Protecting and supporting journalists during COVID-19

This post was originally published on Twitter’s blog, here.

By Vijaya Gadde

All around the world, we’ve seen our service connecting people with the authoritative health information they need to protect themselves and their loved ones. That work can only be successful if people have access to the news and information they need.

Right now, every journalist is a COVID-19 journalist. From the stories of healthcare workers on the frontlines, to analysis of the real human and economic cost of the pandemic, reporters around the world are still writing, still exposing themselves to harm, still giving us the facts. Journalism is core to our service and we have a deep and enduring responsibility to protect that work. This week we’re contributing to two critical organizations that are working tirelessly to uphold the fundamental values of a free press during this pandemic.

We’re donating one million dollars evenly distributed between the Committee to Protect Journalists and the International Women’s Media Foundation. These funds will be used to ensure these organizations can continue their work in the face of new economic strains and to directly support journalists. Their shared efforts to advocate for the rights of vulnerable reporters and to guarantee an equal share of voice for women in the industry has never been more relevant or important.

“We are grateful for Twitter’s generous support. Our efforts at CPJ are focused on ensuring that journalists around the world have the information and resources they need to cover the COVID-19 pandemic safely. And we are pushing back against governments that are censoring the news, and restricting the work of the press. We need timely, accurate information flowing within countries and across borders so that political leaders, health policy experts, and the public at large can make informed decisions at this critical moment.” — Joel Simon, Executive Director, Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).

“Right now, there is a great need to support our community of journalists covering, and dealing with, this global pandemic. Based on our decades of work with journalists who operate in dangerous and difficult environments, the IWMF understands the critical role that safety and security plays in the industry. Thanks to the incredible support of Twitter, the IWMF will be able to address the needs of our community of journalists more deeply and robustly. By supporting journalists from diverse communities, together we can support the most representative news possible in this evolving time.” — Elisa Lees Muñoz, Executive Director, International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF).

COVID-19 has been with us for months but the power of the virus is now being felt on all corners of the globe. We’re witnessing real-time public conversation on an issue that connects us all on a core human level and our purpose has never been stronger. We will continue to work with our partners as the crisis evolves and are grateful for their journalistic leadership and commitment to the power of the pen.

For more, please follow @TwitterForGood@pressfreedom, and @IWMF.