The ‘Safety Check’ tool launched by Facebook in 2014 is one of the most prominent tools which enables us to instantly confirm if our close friends or family are safe during natural disasters or any other unexpected crisis. This feature allowed numeruous people who were unable to contact each other during Chennai floods, and Nepal earthquakes to confirm whether their loved ones are safe or not.
Though this tool has evolved to become important for communicating your well-being, Facebook had to face backlash for sending these safety check notification to users in the U.S and UK during the recent Lahore blasts. This created mass panic since the notification didn’t sepecify the location of the bombing. Also, people have to wait for Facebook to turn on notifications a while after the incident has occured.
Thus, to curb such happenings in the future, Facebook is today outsourcing the task of turning on safety check for any particular incident to the community closest to the disaster. The notification will now be activated by us and not the social media behemoth. This community based notification check, which began showing up in June, will enable to make the process faster. Facebook explains the same as under:
When a lot of people post about an incident from the affected area, they may be asked if they’re safe. Once marked safe, a person can then invite friends to do the same.
In addition, the social media behmoth is also introducing a new feature which will enable users affected by a crisis to get “help they need to stay safe and rebuild.” Called Community Help, the company describes it as a one-stop shop where people can give and get help for things like shelter, food and supplies.This is especially important for those who’re stuck in a flood, typhoon, forest fires among others to seek help from those willing to lend a hand in the time of atrocity.
A very important step towards stepping up the community efforts on the platform. What are your thoughts? Any comments!