Jon Allsop at The Columbia Journalism Review

Public-health restrictions, including newsroom closures, have imposed limitations on the practice of reporting, and—along with the worsening economic picture—cast fresh doubt on some news organizations’ financial viability. The US media is not alone in facing such problems; as with the virus itself, these challenges are global, but subject to important local variation.

Through the noise—and despite the forced closure of major newsrooms—journalists in Italy have kept plugging away; as Nick Squires, Rome correspondent for the Telegraphtold Press Gazette recently, “The only people who seem to be working more than before are journalists and doctors.” Last week, officials ruled that newsstands are an essential service, and so can stay open through the lockdown. Still, restrictions on nonessential movement have made reporting harder than it is normally; as Alessio Perrone, a freelancer based in Milan, told me last week, “Some go-to places are not options anymore because they’re empty now.” Increasingly, some newspapers—L’Eco di Bergamo, for instance—are filling their pages with obituaries.