This issue of NECSUS has been compiled, if not written, during the COVID-19 pandemic which has produced a shock across various existential domains: personal, social, political, economic, public health — the list goes on. Some of us may already have settled into new habits and routines that make this situation livable; yet a sense of loss is undeniable and, for many, lasting. As researchers, we are only beginning to engage with the fallout of COVID-19 and think of ways to build more just societies. NECSUS is determined to contribute to this task by publishing research committed to social and environmental justice, and to the enquiry into the role of media in shaping a (post-)pandemic imagination. Given how recent these developments are, this issue cannot yet fully address the impact and durability of the changes brought about by the emergence of the novel coronavirus. But the research presented here opens avenues for thinking and rethinking the relation between culture, society and our media environment in the aftermath of the unfolding crisis — from the special section dedicated to the theme #Intelligence, to the Features articles, and the reviews about transformational (media-based) politics.