As the Coronavirus panic was rising in the Philippines, Puma Podcast decided to calmly lay out the facts and steer away from sensationalism and hysteria.

Take a deep breath and listen to the corona facts!

“With a podcast the engagement is much more personal. It’s a warmer medium. It sets us apart from the trolling culture, it insulates us from the paranoia, the anger and the overall culture of fake news” 

Roby Alampay

ceo and host, Puma Podcast



Since the start of the quarantine in the Philippines, the production team at Puma Podcast was transformed into a newsroom focused on the narratives, stories, and personal experiences of citizens, leaving “breaking news” to other outlets.

During the Corona crisis, Puma Podcast have had 16,000 listeners on podcasts related to the Coronavirus. In only two weeks, Puma Podcast had 365% more engagement on their social media platforms than they had generated over the previous three months.


As part of their coronavirus coverage, Puma Podcast decided to run a series of short, low-tech podcasts titled the COVID Diaries featuring interviews with doctors, people who’ve been positively diagnosed with the coronavirus, urban poor, volunteers, relatives of fatalities, and people who are trying to just get by.

crisis highlights need for information

A lack of reliable information in the Philippines

“In the Philippines, Covid-19 information to the public has been hampered by the government’s lack of information strategy in the Philippines resulting in confusing, uncoordinated messages from various government officials. The main issue has therefore not been suppression or deceit, but rather a more defensive stance from the part of the government in its communication. Instead, a palpable mobilization of troll armies has been visible in the online information sphere – perceived by the public as government-sponsored, -sanctioned, or at the very least -enabled with the primary objective of defending and rationalising potential failings of government action related to the virus and less so, instigating attacks on legitimate media.”

Carl Javier

COO, Puma Podcast

“With podcasts, the engagement is much more personal. It’s a warmer medium than others. It sets us apart from the trolling culture, it insulates us from the paranoia, the anger and the overall culture of fake news that exists on social media”

Roby Alampay

CeO and host, Puma Podcast


2. April 2020



Across the world, Covid-19 is re-awakening people to the vital role that independent media plays in their societies. 

From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, many independent media outlets are seeing their audiences grow as people realise they need quality information to navigate the crisis. 



In countries plagued by disinformation, our partner organisations are exploring new ways to inform and connect with their audiences. They’re preventing panic, slowing the spread of the disease, amplifying the voices of those affected, and helping mitigate the social and economic costs for the people and societies in which they work.