Love or hate it, social media is here to stay. But it’s not all bad news, wedged between your friends’ trivial status updates and spam, there’s a new Facebook feature that is helping to keep loved ones connected during worldwide disasters.
First used at the time of the Nepal earthquake, Facebook’s Safety Check feature was designed as a helpful tool people can use when major disasters strike. Based on the fact that in these times people turn to social media platforms, namely Facebook, to check on loved ones and get updates, Safety Check is a simple and easy way to say you’re safe and check on others.
It allows you to let friends and family know you’re OK, check on others in the affected area or even mark your friends as safe. You will also receive a notification when you mark yourself as safe, and only your friends will see the status of your safety and the comments you share.
So how does it work? Facebook activates the Safety Check tool after a natural disaster and if you’re in the affected area, you’ll receive a notification asking if you’re safe. Your location is determined by the city you have listed in your profile, your last location on Facebook and the city where you’re connecting to the internet. If the location is wrong you can mark that you’re outside the affected area, if you’re safe you can select an ‘I’m safe’ option or your friends can mark you as safe.
A great use of social media to help loved ones stay connected, make sure you share this innovative feature with those you care about.
What do you think of this new tool from Facebook? Should social media be used more to help with travellers’ safety?