“Right now, every journalist is a COVID-19 journalist,” Twitter’s legal and policy lead Vijaya Gadde wrote in a statement Tuesday. “Journalism is core to our service and we have a deep and enduring responsibility to protect that work.”
Twitter’s $1 million gift “will be used to ensure these organizations can continue their work in the face of new economic strains and to directly support journalists,” Gadde said.
Committee to Protect Journalists executive director Joel Simon said in a statement the organization was grateful for Twitter’s support and added, “our efforts 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.”
The San Francisco-based social media firm isn’t the only company to engage in pandemic-fueled philanthropy over the last month. Earlier in March, Microsoft and Amazon, which have offices in the Seattle area, donated $1 million each to nonprofit The Seattle Fund’s COVID-19 response fund Tuesday. The fund is launching with a $2.5 million effort to provide grants to organizations that assist at-risk Washingtonians who are uninsured or unable to take paid sick leave, such as temporary workers.
And last week, SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk answered New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s call for extra respirators, and said he would leverage his companies’ factory lines to produce more. Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook also pledged $15 million to “lessen the economic and community impacts of the pandemic.”
“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,” the Foundation’s executive director Elisa Lees Muñoz wrote in a statement. “By supporting journalists from diverse communities, together we can support the most representative news possible in this evolving time,” Lees Muñoz added.