Telum Talks To… Wang Hao-Yu, Reporter, Formosa TV

Wang Hao-Yu has been a Reporter at Formosa TV for seven years, mainly covering social affairs. He has been to hospitals and the airport recently for bringing the up-to-date information to the public during the COVID-19 crisis. We spoke with Hao-Yu to learn more about the changes in his work as a Reporter and Part-time Anchor.

Please note this video is in Mandarin. The key takeaways are below: 

Taiwan News
News from Taiwan currently revolves around the COVID-19 outbreak. Take social news as an example, there are reports of theft and disputes regarding pandemic supplies like face masks.

Journalists WFH
Although members of the public mostly work from home during this critical period, it is difficult for journalists to follow this rule. Although the pandemic has escalated, reporters have to do on-site interviews regardless of the risks of exposure and infection. Over the last month, Hao-Yu visited hospitals with confirmed COVID-19 cases, as well as the airport, and came into close contact with Taiwanese citizens who had returned from European countries that recorded a high number of cases.

Special Arrangement of Formosa TV
To cope with the pandemic, Formosa TV's journalists are required to have their temperature taken before entering the workplace. Staff’s temperature is taken once on each floor of the Formosa TV building. The staff are also accessible to disinfecting alcohol at many spots when needed. Besides, news anchors are now provided with their makeup tools, with their name specified on each tool. Moreover, they go to their office in split teams to avoid congregating during office hours. Interview rooms are now located on two separate floors and are allocated to separate different lines of journalists, to hopefully reduce face-to-face contact. For example, the politics and social affairs news desks uses the rooms on the fifth floor, while the lifestyle and financial desks use the ones on the fourth floor.

Feature stories on COVID-19
Formosa TV has published feature stories relating to the pandemic, such as the changes in Taiwan public sentiment on governmental efforts to combat the COVID-19 since the SARS outbreak in 2003. It has also released a feature story on Chen Shih-Chung, Head of the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) of Taiwan, who has earned public recognition for his epidemic control measures. The time slots in the overall TV program schedule have remained unchanged, but they arrange news broadcasts around the time of the CECC press conferences. Their busy schedules of the journalists leave them unable to meet many of their colleagues as much as they used to.

Cooperation with PRs
Hao-Yu does not normally work with people in the business sector but will interview the public relations departments of some public institutions, including those of the police and court units. Their PR will provide some epidemic-related material for coverage, to clarify what measures have been put in place by the court in response, for instance. They may offer self-recorded videos of such content, which can be utilised on TV broadcast while keeping human contact to a minimum.

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