16.03 2020 13:25h

Facebook is Giving Local Authorities Access its "Local Alerts" tool

The social network is working hard to stop the spread of fake news
Facebook, Coronavirus, Covid-19, Local alerts, Facebook local alerts

When something goes wrong, social media is often the first we go for instant updates and news.

A few years ago, Facebook rolled out Local Alerts with the purpose of helping share accurate information at the community level during times of crisis.

With the abundance of fake news surrounding COVID-19 (a.k.a. coronavirus) the social networking is continuing its support by giving local authorities access to one of its most important tools.

According to Social Media Today ". . . Facebook has also now announced that it will give more local authorities access to its Local Alerts tool, in order to help them distribute relevant updates and info among their communities."
This means relevant authorities at the community level can send through Notifications, which can help to “. . . disseminate key updates within specific regions.”

Facebook recently stated in a blog post that it’s supporting the global public health community’s work to keep people safe and informed via their that platform.

“Since the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a public health emergency in January, we’ve taken several steps including:

• Limiting misinformation and harmful content about COVID-19

• Connecting people to accurate information and helpful resources like the WHO and local health ministries

• Prohibiting ads intended to create panic or imply that certain products guarantee a cure or prevent people from contracting the coronavirus

• Temporarily banning ads and commerce listings selling medical face masks

• Giving the WHO as many free ads as they need for their coronavirus response along with other in-kind support”

Despite “Local Alerts” only being available to communities across the United States, it's a step in the right direction when it comes to combating coronavirus hysteria and fake news (which we all know there is an abundance of on social media.) Stateside netizens can keep their eyes on their Facebook notifications, if they're looking for up-to-date alerts relating to the current public health crisis within their respective communities. 

What are you thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.

Photo credit: Shutterstock.

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