COVID-19: How IPI members face the challenge

Covering the COVID-19 pandemic reminds us all how important our journalism is – for us and for the communities we serve. Editors, publishers and journalists in each of our town, cities and countries are rising to the challenge of telling this most global of stories in a way that matters for our own community. Some of our colleagues have started sharing their experiences which you can read below.

Resources to support quality journalism and defend the free flow of news during the coronavirus pandemic

IPI COVID-19 Toolbox
IPI COVID-19 Tracker
Advocacy work

 Kaya Heyse

Deputy Chief Editor

Medyascope, Turkey

The first few days of the outbreak were muddled with uncertainty. The virus didn’t have a name yet – “a mysterious virus” was the name opted for by our editors. Soon it became clear that it was serious and would start dominating the agenda. Read the full testimonial here.

Karim Waheed

Editor, Digital

The Daily Star, Bangladesh

Since The Daily Star was already in the process of integrating its digital and print versions, heavy investments were made on infrastructure, which in turn made the process of setting up the remote newsroom possible within days. Read the full testimonial here.

Kavita Bundelkhandi


Khabar Lahariya, India

As reporters who have worked in media-barren regions of rural north India for 18 years, we have been covering the everyday lives of the poor and marginalized. Health crises are not new to us. Read the full testimonial here.

Chen Ying-Che

Assistant to the President

United Daily News, Taiwan

To talk about the COVID-19 epidemic and news coverage in Taiwan, it is important to understand the relationship between mainland China and Taiwan first. During the Chinese New Year, many Taiwanese who work, live and study in mainland China come back to Taiwan for the most important family event of the year, the New Year’s Eve dinner on January 24th. Read the full testimonial here.

Riyad Mathew

Chief associate editor

Malayala Manorama, India

Most sources refuse to meet in person, affecting the quality of information. Sources have not been as forthcoming over the phone as they are were in one-on-one meetings. Photographers, especially, have been hamstrung by the restrictions. Read the full testimonial here.

Stephen Gitagama


Nation Media Group, Kenya

As a media company that operates in four countries, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, we are facing multiple challenges. The first and foremost challenge for us is to keep our staff safe and healthy. Read the full testimonial here.

Zaffar Abbas


Dawn, Pakistan

Like in most other news organisations across the globe, we at Dawn in Pakistan are also faced with a very different and difficult challenge, with safety being of prime concern. Yet, we all remain committed to informing the people, and are doing our best to remain ahead of others in disseminating news and views on COVID-19 and other matters, both through our web portal and newspaper. Read the full testimonial here.

Virginia Pérez-Alonso

Editor-in-Chief, Spain

 As Spain enters into a complete lockdown after weeks in strict confinement, it is important to think, filter and cover the crisis responsibly amidst the avalanche of news and data. We need to keep the focus on the most vulnerable groups and the dramatic impact on the public health system.

Ken Woosuk Choi

Editor of Future Planning Desk

The Chosun Ilbo, South Korea

At Chosun Ilbo, the management has imposed strict guidelines for reporters. Newsgathering is done over telephone. Staff have been asked to remain at home and only go out to buy groceries and other essentials. Read the full testimonial here.

Hiroshi Komatsu


The Mainichi Shimbun, Japan

I think there are three challenges for journalists to cover the Coronavirus.

First, we are not able to have an enough access to those who are infected or the hot spot where the “overshoot” occurred like Wuhan in China, mainly because we take the safety of journalists into consideration. Consequently, it is hard to understand the entire structure of this pandemic. Read the full testimonial here.