SINGAPORE (Apr 3): On the morning of April 2, inspectors from the Ministry of Manpower conducted a rare spot check of the premises of The Edge Singapore. They took some pictures — not of our messy piles of newspapers and documents, but of a sign stuck on our meeting room door that says “no more than four persons in this room at all times”.

This unusual visit is triggered by the unusual times we live in now.

With more than 900,000 (and rising) people across the globe now infected by the Covid-19 virus, news organisations like ours have — more than ever — a huge responsibility to provide accurate, objective and reliable information. We also have a duty to counter fake news, which is often available free, and with far more titillating headlines than ours. Having felt the brunt of declining advertising revenue for years, the media industry has turned to paywalls and paid subscriptions to make ends meet. But the results have been mixed.

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