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COVID-19 Updates for Newspapers

ANA staff remains on remote-work status

Due to the concerns surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak, the staff of Arizona Newspapers Association will remain working remotely pending guidelines from the Arizona governor, State Health Department and CDC . Staff will aim to avoid undue interruption in our operations and interactions with members and clients.

We made this page to keep you up to date on news and events affecting our members, the newspaper industry and the news media community due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Make sure to scroll down for resources and announcements as new information is be added as we follow national and local updates.

We are committed to continue our support and communications with ANA Members as they serve their communities and support their families. If you need to contact any staff member, please email us.

Tim Thomas
Arizona Newspapers Association
Executive Director
(602) 261-7655, x102

America’s Newspapers and E&P launch coronavirus information site for news industry
America’s Newspapers and Editor & Publisher
Aiming to help newspapers and other news organizations navigate the coronavirus public health crisis, America’s Newspapers and Editor & Publisher have launched Media Virus Watch as an online source for the latest COVID-19 information.

State Press Association Roundup: Updates and inspiration
America’s Newspapers and Media Virus Watch want to highlight columns, insights and inspiration from state press associations from across the country.  What resources are you able to share to benefit newspapers nationwide?  Email cdurham@newspapers.org.

RJI: One-stop webpage with COVID-19 resources
Reynolds Journalism Institute
The tips, tools and advice about journalism and COVID-19 have been plentiful. And that’s a great thing. But because they’re flying around the internet in emails, newsletters and blog posts, it can sometimes be hard to find what you’re looking for. The Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute can help. A one-stop webpage has been created that includes an index of articles, tips, tools and advice all collated by Dorothy Carner, Missouri School of Journalism head librarian, and Sandy Schiefer, the Journalism Research and Digital Access Librarian at the Columbia Missourian Library.

Crisis coverage visuals
Flourish Studio & Airtable
Newsrooms can freely embed the polished COVID-19 mobile-friendly data visualizations at Flourish Studio. Or use Flourish Stories to create an elegant series of linked data visualizations that can be embedded into your site in a new kind of narrative data presentation. Journalists can also draw on or embed data from Airtable’s collection of COVID-19 resources and projects, like volunteer coordination efforts and a national free food data collection.

AP Stylebook tips on the coronavirus
Associated Press
To help with coverage of the new coronavirus disease, called COVID-19, The Associated Press has prepared a guide based on the AP Stylebook and common usage in AP stories.

Fighting the Infodemic: The #CoronaVirusFacts Alliance
Led by the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) at the Poynter Institute, the #CoronaVirusFacts / #DatosCoronaVirus Alliance unites more than 100 fact-checkers around the world in publishing, sharing and translating facts surrounding the novel coronavirus.
The coronavirus is the story of our lifetime. Here are resources, training and funding to help your newsroom tell it
Poynter is collecting live coronavirus coverage training opportunities, if you have them, you can share them here. We’re updating this list daily.

Journalists’ guide to HIPAA during the COVID-19 health crisis
Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press
RCFP analyzes HIPAA’s ‘Privacy Rule’ to help journalists gain access to important health information during the COVID-19 pandemic. We have published a legal resource for journalists and public officials that addresses court access, public records, open meetings, and government emergency powers.

Your legal rights: How to respond if police or health officials challenge coronavirus reporting
National Press Club Journalism Institute
Q&A with Mickey H. Osterreicher, the general counsel for the National Press Photographers Association, who has been dispensing advice from the start of the outbreak.

Epidemiological models: 10 things journalists covering coronavirus research should know
Journalist’s Resource
When researchers study the transmission of an infectious disease such as COVID-19 or want to make predictions about how it might impact people in the future, they create epidemiological models.
These models can be computer simulations or other mathematical representations of the virus and its impacts. Government officials and public health leaders rely on them to make decisions affecting public health. That’s why journalists covering the new coronavirus need a basic understanding of what epidemiological models can and cannot do and how to explain the knowledge they reveal.

Digital contact tracing and the coronavirus pandemic: 5 studies to know
Governments around the world, including in the U.S., are turning to digital contact tracing to speed up the process. Some digital contact tracing applications that epidemiologists and software engineers have developed alert users in near real-time if they have come into contact with someone who has COVID-19. The two primary purposes of using digital contact tracing are case management and proximity tracking, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Coronavirus Resources for Newsroom
Knight-Cronkite News LAB
Coronavirus is a fast-moving and challenging story for every newsroom. The Knight-Cronkite News Lab has curated some of the most useful resources we’ve found across the web. We hope these will help you serve and inform your communities while keeping your teams safe and supported as well.

CPJ Safety Advisory: Digital security during the COVID-19 pandemic
Committee to Protect Journalists
Journalists who are reporting on the spread of COVID-19 are also at risk of being exposed to malware and scams as criminals target people with misinformation and sophisticated phishing campaigns linked to the virus.
These are more of a threat to journalists working without tech support, or using personal devices that have not been secured; personal information could also be at risk if devices in the home are exposed to malware. Read about it.

Short Guide to Reporting Security During a Pandemic
Working with such sources presents a particular challenge in the case of the current pandemic, when most journalists are being forced to conduct all of their work remotely. While these health precautions are crucial, journalists unused to an all-digital reporting process may be unwittingly putting themselves, their sources, and their work at risk in other ways. Read more.

Free content, tools and funding to help your newsroom cover the coronavirus from API
American Press Institute
As newsrooms work flat-out to cover the biggest story of our time, API is highlighting some of the free tools and grant funding that are being developed to supplement newsrooms’ existing resources around coronavirus coverage.

Journalism emergency funds around the world
World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers
The list includes local, national and international funding options, with links to apply.

Funding opportunities to support coronavirus coverage
As publishers deal with this new reality, opportunities for funding and the use of tools for free or reduced cost have emerged. We’ve collected some of these here, and we’ll continue to update the list.

Working from home in the age of pandemic
Reynolds Journalism Institute
In a normal week, many of us might work from home for a day or an afternoon or an evening. In a normal week, many of our colleagues are full-time remote or the company itself is entirely distributed around town or around the globe. Normal.

But this was not a normal week, nor will be next week or the week after. And working remotely in a normal week is a different proposition than working from home in the midst of a global pandemic. So, let’s accept that the usual tips and tricks will only go so far in this situation.

The Newsroom Guide to COVID-19
Nieman Lab
The goal of this document is to help newsroom managers provide clear, useful guidance to their reporters and editors during a period in which we lack official institutional direction on how best to respond to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Searchable PDF format with jump-to Table of Contents.

Making distributed newsrooms the ‘new normal’
Fathm | News Lab | Media Consultancy | Agency
Even after the coronavirus pandemic is over, it is unlikely that newsrooms will fully return to the way things were. The media consulting company Fathm put together a free guide to harnessing the benefits of distributed work and avoiding its common pitfalls.

The guide is divided into six modules: managing distributed teams, workflows and structures, editorial, training, audience engagement, and technology and tools.

Coronavirus, SARS and Flu Resources
Society of Professional Journalists
Journalists Toolbox – Links to a robust list of organizations, data, and resources.

Find COVID-19 response related legislation from across country
Open States
The free resource pulls in legislation, so journalists can easily track and monitor legislation in one spot, which is particularly helpful to those having to report on multiple states, says James Turk, founder and principal architect for Open States.

User Guide: Pulse Research COVID-19 Impact Shopping Survey
Pulse Research & News Media Alliance
This is by no means a complete list, yet here are our strong suggestions to leverage this intelligence now.
You’ll find both general sales ideas, as well as specific suggestions. Don’t forget within the 26,000+ nationwide sample there are multiple regions and 16 states (and counting) with their own subset. “Counting” because the survey launched on March 12, 2020 and remains live!

Free marketing campaign promoting subscriptions
America’s Newspapers
“The surging traffic to local newspaper websites during this coronavirus crisis shows that communities depend on newspapers for accurate and trustworthy information,” America’s Newspapers CEO Dean Ridings said. These PSAs are available to any newspaper free of charge, and in a variety of print and digital formats and sizes. The print ads include space for the name or logo of the newspaper publishing them. Registration is required.

A Global Journalism Emergency Relief Fund for local news
Local news is a vital resource for keeping people and communities connected in the best of times. Today, it plays an even greater function in reporting on local lockdowns or shelter at home orders, school and park closures, and data about how COVID-19 is affecting daily life. But that role is being challenged as the news industry deals with job cuts, furloughs and cutbacks as a result of the economic downturn prompted by COVID-19. The Google News Initiative wants to help by launching a Journalism Emergency Relief Fund to deliver urgent aid to thousands of small, medium and local news publishers globally.

Raleigh News & Observer shares its playbook on grant writing in journalism
Better News
Here’s an idea to steal and adapt: You have great reporting and writing skills. Use them to get grants and other funding for your newsroom.
Q&A format.

From Wickenburg Sun
Publisher, Jeanie Hankins, shares several templates that her sales reps are using to help businesses get the word out as to reduced hours, delivery service, etc.

Free icons for coronavirus awareness
Together with kind contributors, Iconfinder is giving away more than 200 free vector icons related to hygiene and awareness about the virus spread. The icons can be used for hand-washing instructions, hygiene recommendations, and other initiatives fighting the virus spread. Feel free to add them to signs, posters, flyers, and similar.

Protect Freedom of the Press
The Free Speech Center
From longtime First Amendment champion Ken Paulson a new free press public awareness campaign tailored to these unprecedented times. There also is a free speech campaign focused toward July 4. Both campaigns are available to everyone courtesy of The Free Speech Center at Middle Tennessee State University.

NTVB Media provides ‘What to Watch’ to newspapers for free
NTVB Media will provide a weekly roundup of television viewing recommendations to newspapers at no charge until at least May 31.
Curated by NTVB’s television critics and editors, What to Watch includes daily viewing suggestions from Sundays to Saturdays, with versions provided in Eastern and Pacific tune-in times. What to Watch also includes movie recommendations.

Guidance, resources, funding and grants for visual journalists
World Press Photo
We are all in this together. We will continue supporting the conditions that make visual journalism possible and sharing the work of visual journalists to a global audience. The need for visual journalism we can trust has never been greater. Check out their resource page.

National Press Photographers Association
Supporting and advocating for you and the work you do is the core mission of our organization and we will continue exploring ways we can continue to be there for you into the future. Visit their website for links and resources.

Need financial support? Talk to your community about the cost of your journalism.
Trusting News
At Trusting News, here are four things we know about people’s perceptions of money in journalism and some recommendations on how to address them.

Small news orgs – How to survive COVID-19
Local Media Association
LMA has launches the COVID-19 Local News Fund
The COVID-19 Local News Fund
is a program administered by the Local Media Foundation (LMF), a 501(c)(3) organization affiliated with the Local Media Association. The purpose of the program is to increase coverage of COVID-19 issues in local communities. This allows independent and family-owned news organizations to solicit tax-deductible community donations to support and increase their coverage of the crisis.

LMA Resources for local media dealing with coronavirus crisis
Check their resource page regularly for curated articles with helpful offerings for local media companies including community coverage ideas, resources for journalists, free offerings from vendor R&D partners, and more.

COVID-19 Resources for Grantees and Small Local Newsrooms
Democracy Fund
Democracy Fund has been compiling a running list of COVID-19 resources for grantees, partners, small news organizations, and others and wanted to share more publically with the field.

This is a living document compiled primarily by consultant David Plotz, with a focus on operation resources. We are vetting information to the best of our abilities, but every organization has different contexts, insurance coverage, and operational situations. This is meant to be a guide to help navigate the many resources now being shared but please vet specific tips with your own organizations and teams.

Legacy is here to help with emergency obit updates, remote funeral participation and more
Newspapers, funeral homes, and the communities they serve are already feeling the economic impacts of the COVID-19 epidemic. Legacy’s full-service platform has deployed significant resources and fast-tracked critical new products to support our newspaper partners with emergency obituary updates, consumer-focused end-of-life resources, and remote funeral participation.

Office of the Governor Doug Ducey
Stay current with the governor’s office and COVID-19 updates, programs and newsroom releases.

Arizona Department of Health Services
– Get the latest information about Arizona’s response.
Letter for employers to distribute to employees on how to protect yourself from viral and bacterial illnesses.

State of Arizona – Resources for the Public
Committed to making sure Arizonans have access to the resources they need as we work to get our state through the COVID-19 outbreak. We’re in this together.

For more information about COVID-19 in English or Spanish, dial 2-1-1.
If you need public assistance, email publicassistance@az.gov.

Arizona newspapers: Public Notices statutes, message from ANA executive director
In Arizona, if a newspaper postpones it’s print publication and moves to digital for an any period of time, the Arizona statues are clear that any such postponement could disqualify a newspaper from publishing public notices. It’s imperative to continue publication of your notices as required by law.

Media groups call on Congress to support local news, local media amid coronavirus crisis
In its summary document, the organizations specifically call for Congress to ensure the ability of local media to seek relief under the Paycheck Protection Program and to fund federal advertising spending on local media through directing current U.S. government advertising campaigns to local news and media outlets, and providing the Department of Health and Human Services, the Small Business Administration and other relevant agencies with an additional $5-10 billion for direct funding for local media advertising that would be evenly distributed to local media in communities of all sizes. More information.

Ask Your Members of Congress to Support the Local News and Emergency Information Act of 2020
News Media Alliance – May 18, 2020
The Alliance applauds the Senators and Representatives for their leadership in gathering bipartisan support for this SBA affiliation waiver for news publishers and looks forward to more news publishers being eligible to apply for these loans, which will allow them to continue bringing critical news and information to their local communities.
Please ask your Member of Congress to co-sponsor the Local News and Emergency Information Act of 2020
Please continue to run editorials about the importance of relief for local news during the pandemic, including allowing news publishers to benefit from emergency aid funneled through the CARES Act.  Download suggested talking points for an editorial.

Statement: Alliance applauds inclusion of SBA waiver for news publishers in fourth stimulus
News Media Alliance – May 12, 2020
The Alliance is pleased to report that the latest stimulus package, introduced by U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, includes support for local news in the form of an affiliation waiver allowing more news publishers to apply for Small Business Administration (SBA) loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The Speaker’s proposal includes a waiver for news publishers to apply for PPP loans as individual, independent entities, despite ownership by companies with other small news publishers or non-news businesses, allowing more publishers to qualify for the vital loans. Read about it.

Payroll Protection Program
SBA Releases Long-Awaited PPP Forgiveness Application and Instructions

The National Law Review
Monday, May 18, 2020
On May 15, the SBA and Treasury released the long-awaited PPP loan forgiveness application and related guidance, providing much-needed clarity and ending weeks of speculation about how borrowers will obtain loan forgiveness. The application and instructions confirm that if a borrower used at least 75% of the loan proceeds on eligible payroll costs, no more than 25% on eligible non-payroll costs, and maintained staffing and salary levels, the PPP loan may be forgiven in full. The application further confirms the forgiveness amount will be reduced correspondingly by a failure to follow these requirements.
The application and instructions provide step-by-step directions for borrowers to calculate their eligible forgiveness amounts. Additionally, they provide new guidance and points of clarification. Read about it.

PPP update: What if laid off employees decline to return?
This week, new guidance has been issued on what happens if an employer tries to return a laid-off or furloughed employee to his or her old job and the employee decides not to come back. 

Newspapers are lining up for the Payroll Protection Program loans. Regulations covering this forgivable loan program are coming into focus. Here is an issued brief answering common questions.

Small Business Administration and Treasury Departments update their FAQs about the Payroll Protection Program
Several questions that have arisen for newspapers are covered again:
1. Publishers may not include their independent contractors in their payroll calculations. These contractors must apply as separate businesses.
2. The portion of an employer’s share of FICA contributions is NOT included in payroll cost calculations, but the employee’s share IS included.
See the current government FAQs here

Paid Sick Leave Regulations under COVID-19
The Department of Labor has released new regulations explaining how new paid sick leave requirements for small businesses will operate. The regulations include the first explanation for how businesses with fewer than 50 employees may exempt themselves from the requirement. Here is an issued brief.

Periodical Postal Permits and Public Notices
Continue to visit the NNA Postal Information page for all things postal in the newspaper industry.

The United States Postal Service has advised the National Newspaper Association (NNA) that Periodical permits will not be revoked if a newspaper has to suspend a print issue during coronavirus quarantines.

According the NNA, “Technically, a change in publication frequency requires a change in the permit. But during this emergency, USPS says a letter to the postmaster of the entry office advising USPS of the newspaper’s revised publication plans will be sufficient. The letter should be updated as plans change.” 

COVID-19 Stimulus Updates Affecting the News Media Industry
News Media Alliance (NMA)
We have provided links to Alliance and other third-party resources that provide useful information for news publishers about the Stimulus Package, CARES Act, small business loans and more. Please check back regularly – we will continue to update this page with more resources, as they become available, that may be helpful to news publishers.

#AloneTogether Ad PSAs – Ad Council
NMA has partnered with the Ad Council to provide print and digital PSAs for newspapers’ use to help raise awareness about the importance of practicing social distancing during the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.

NMA CEO: We’re Here to Serve You During the COVID-19 Pandemic
The Alliance is here to serve you in the best way we can, and we are working to provide accurate and real-time information.

Safety of Delivered Newspapers
The World Health Organization addresses the safety of packages and commercial goods in the following Q & A. The second to last question in this link: https://www.who.int/newsroom/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses explains the low risk of commercial products as a vector for the virus. According to the WHO, the likelihood of an infected person contaminating commercial goods is low and the risk of catching the virus that causes COVID-19 from a package that has been moved, traveled, and exposed to different conditions and temperature is also low.

RELATED: World Health Organization and industry experts confirm newspapers remain safe to handle
Society of Editors
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has confirmed that the receipt of newspapers carries no real risk of catching the Covid-19 virus.

The WHO has stated that the likelihood of an infected person contaminating commercial goods is low, and therefore the risk of contracting the Covid-19 virus through receipt of a newspaper is infinitely small.

America’s Newspapers
Webinar materials (dealing with COVID-19 pandemic)
Download the webinar recordings, PowerPoints and key takeaways:

Local News Media
COVID-19 and local shopping impact: Findings from Pulse Research consumer survey – LMA
Tuesday, May 26, 2020 | 3 PM ET
Cost: FREE
In just one month, more than 26,000 newspaper readers and website visitors in all 50 states responded to the Pulse Research #COVID19 Shopping Impact survey. The results are very encouraging for local businesses and, therefore, local media. In this webinar, Sammy Papert will share recommendations on how to use this survey to get back some of your revenue and position yourself for post-COVID times. Not only will the session be spellbinding and illuminating, but all attendees will receive their current shopping data, a user’s guide and even access to a custom presentation and management platform that will be invaluable in these virtual times.
Information and registration

Industry Outlook and a Path to the “New Normal” for Local News – LMA
Thu, May 28, 2020 | 10 – 11 AM MST
Cost: FREE
In the midst of dramatic disruption, how can publishers navigate the crisis at hand while also preparing for a sustainable future? Join FTI Consulting Managing Director Pete Doucette for this timely webinar, which will help attendees understand critical trends and address key questions, including:
– FTI Consulting’s latest revenue forecast for the local news industry
– How do publishers best navigate the three phases of the pandemic?
– Lockdown
– Transition
– New Normal
– The print runway has been reduced. How do publishers increase their digital readiness?
– What does the future business model look like for local news publishers?
Information and registration

Online Media Campus
Self-Care For Journalists
Thursday, June 11, 2020 | 10 – 11 AM MT
Cost: $35
Creating balance and maintaining your emotional and physical wellness is as important as ever for journalists. We discuss some ideas on how to create that balance to best take care of yourself. We’ll also discuss how to create a healthy work environment for employees.
Information and registration

List of podcasts produced by E&P on COVID-19 topics affecting the news media industry. 

E&P Launches New Webinar Series for Local Business Owners
A localized, 45-minute webinar presented to your local business community
Editor&Publisher crafted a 45-minute online broadcast designed as an outreach, covering essential information on why and how to market in tough economic times. The webinar is hosted by E&P publisher Mike Blinder, a leading industry media expert.

Crisis Marketing Resources
In response to the coronavirus crisis, we are offering resources to help tell the story of what happens when companies maintain their marketing and advertising during difficult times. The resources include ongoing research and insights, webinars, video messages, and downloadable slide decks.