TPM’s 11-person editorial staff can’t be everywhere, all the time. In reality, we rarely spend time physically outside of New York or Washington, D.C. to bring you the news.
That’s where you all come in. Readers have always played a crucial role in how we do what we do, whether it’s tipping us off to important stories that might be lingering in our blindspots or offering yourselves up as expert sources to our reporters, we rely on your smarts to keep us informed.
While it’s not rare for a TPM reader to play a role larger than just content digestion here, it is rarer for us to ask you to do our job for us. Over the course of the last several weeks, since we began writing about COVID-19 (weeks before the White House could even cobble together a coronavirus task force, mind you), we’ve asked you to be our eyes and ears on the ground. We’ve asked you to give us an unvarnished look at what’s happening in your corner of the world — insight that might help inform our reporting on this unfolding, invisible crisis. And you delivered.
We started publishing some of your emails straight in our Editors Blog, which prompted even more reports — from corners of local hospitals to the epicenter of global hotspots to socially distanced social gatherings in Midwestern cul-de-sacs. We sorted through hundreds of TPM reader emails, full of observations that have helped us not only report on the unfolding crisis, but they’ve also created a uniquely cohesive timeline of day-to-day COVID-19 developments.
We’re going to keep updating this over the weeks and months ahead, so keep the emails coming.