During a crisis, the absence of reliable information breeds distrust and frustration.

The same tendency can be seen among journalists assigned to cover the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, where disputes over restrictive privacy rights and disjointed data aggregation have spurred harsh exchanges between reporters and city officials about the capital's handling of the COVID-19 epidemic.

The tensions came to a head in mid-April, around the time nosocomial infections began disrupting hospitals and the capital was shifting its focus toward contact-tracing and cluster-chasing.