Below is the letter we will send to the executives of major news publications:
Demand The Los Angeles Times drop its paywall and provide complete COVID-19 coverage for Black people.
Updated (3/18/2020): The Los Angeles Times is withholding life-saving COVID-19 (also known as Coronavirus) information behind a subscription paywall and this unjust practice must be stopped. On Sunday, a Los Angeles Times headline read “LA County reports 54 cases; state total climbs to 288” yet only paying members can access this article because it is hidden behind a subscription paywall.
The Los Angeles Times is putting Black, low-income, and marginalized communities in direct harm of being susceptible to misinformation or potential bodily harm, while hindering coordinated efforts to inform, quarantine, and eradicate this virus by not making valuable public health information accessible.
SIGN THE PETITION: Demand The Los Angeles Times drops its subscription paywall and allow all people access to comprehensive Coronavirus new coverage.
Potentially life-saving information should be available to everyone, even if they cannot pay.
In the face of this deadly public health threat, and the World Health Organization designated pandemic, major news publications should allow full access to critical public health reporting on COVID-19 (also know as Coronavirus) without paywall blocks. It is a moral imperative to provide comprehensive public education about the illness, how it spreads, and best safety practices. As a public service, major news outlets should provide complete, accurate, and responsible information regarding COVID-19 to all.
Demand news outlets drop their paywalls and provide complete COVID-19 coverage for all people.
Here is the Petition:
Dear Publication Executive,
I’m writing on behalf of Color Of Change, the nation’s largest online racial justice organization, which has more than 1.7 million members. We are asking for your publication to follow the lead of The Los Angeles Times and remove the subscription paywall currently in place for all COVID-19 content. As a public service, your news outlet should provide complete, accurate, and responsible information regarding COVID-19 to all - even if they cannot pay.
The COVID-19 virus has illuminated the varying ways in which socio-economic barriers directly affect the health and quality of life of those who are underprivileged, underpaid, and underrepresented. The implications for these communities in the face of this public health threat are broad, and information at this time is a major preventative tool that should be available free of charge.
As the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 continue to rise, along with the spread of misinformation, access to complete and comprehensive reporting on this public health crisis can have critical influence on the health of individuals and communities. It is a moral imperative to support the protection of all people by ensuring that life saving information is not hidden behind a paywall.
News publications are no stranger to pivoting in the face of a changing media landscape, having successfully survived the major transition from print to digital, and we trust that you will also pivot to allow public access to critical public health reporting on COVID-19 without paywall blocks.