Emergency appeal for journalism and media support in response to the COVID-19 crisis

IAWRT joins organizations supporting this call to action

Global Forum for Media Development and other groups launch appeal on World Press Freedom Day.

To mark World Press Freedom Day on 3 May, more than 165 journalism support, media development, and press freedom organisations and networks are making an emergency appeal for action, support and assistance to journalism organisations and independent media during the COVID-19 crisis.

Millions of people around the world are looking for reliable, fact-based journalism that can help them navigate the biggest shared challenge of our lifetime.

But at this crucial moment, independent media are facing an unprecedented existential challenge. With the perfect storm of disinformation and misinformation, repression of critical voices in many countries, and disruption caused by the COVID-19 crisis, the situation facing journalism and news media is dire. Revenues for these institutions are collapsing, and funding is decreasing just when we need it most.

The consequences will be felt globally, but the information crisis and the health crisis is certain to be most acute in resource-poor communities.

In response to these huge challenges we – the press freedom, media development, and journalism support communities – launch this ‘Emergency Appeal for Journalism and Media Support calling for bold and robust action from six groups: governments; journalism and media development donors and funders; journalism and media organisations; technology, telecommunication companies, and Internet intermediaries; advertisers; and audiences.

The Emergency Appeal for Journalism and Media Support was launched as a collaborative effort by the Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD), the International Civil Society Organization on the Safety of Journalists Coalition (ICSO SoJ Coalition), and numerous GFMD members, partners, and affiliate networks.

The statement is a call to action to governments; journalism and media development donors and funders; journalism and media organisations; technology, telecommunication companies, and Internet intermediaries; advertisers, and all those who rely on journalism and news media to stay informed in this unprecedentedly challenging time.

Read the full text of the appeal and the list of signatories here.