Social Media News: How Facebook is Changing Disaster Relief

It’s no secret that in the past few weeks, the United States has been bombarded by natural disasters from sea to storming sea. With hurricanes and wildfires left and right, those who have loved ones states away are feeling a sense of urgency to check in and make sure their loved ones living in troubled areas are safe. Anyone who has waited out a bad storm knows that there is no time to reply to every message the pops up on Facebook when there are so many precautionary tasks at hand in order to stay safe. Luckily, Facebook has recognized society’s need for an outlet where those who are in the face of danger can assure everyone they know the status of their well-being with the click of a button. This week in social media news: how Facebook is changing disaster relief.
Facebook Crisis Hub–the new Facebook feature that can be found in the drop-down menu of every personal account–enhances the way we learn about disasters, speeds up the rate at which we receive updates, and provides an outlet for those in the face of danger to mark themselves as ‘safe’ for all of Facebook to see. Tools such as safety check, community help and fundraising all contribute to the Hub’s potential to bring the world together when those who are struggling need support the most.
Any Facebook user can click into the Crisis Hub, scroll through the news regarding current disasters. They can also type a specific name to learn the status of an individual’s safety, look through a list of their ‘friends’ who qualify for a region that is in distress or contribute to helping the crisis through donation and learning what others are doing to help. Zuckerberg released a statement (via Facebook post,  naturally) regarding the inspiration behind the Hub’s creation:
“Over the past weeks we’ve seen many disasters and we’ve seen our community come together to help each other… We think this is important infrastructure for helping to keep our global community safe.”
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I’m Paul, and I’m most content when I’m creating content. I also have a penchant for words that are spelled the same but have different meanings and pronunciations. Vincent Van Gogh allegedly said the best way to know God is to love many things. I try to do that – I love books, movies, sports, music, people, furry critters that don’t bite me, and a lot in between – oh, and I almost forgot long walks on the beach under moonlit skies while listening to Wu-Tang Clan!

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