A very important feature of Facebook, Safety Check basically lets you tell friends and family that you’re safe during an emergency situation or natural disaster.
Facebook safety check is now in the hands of users
Feature was previously controlled by the company itself but now the power is in the hands of the users. However, the social media giant said on Thursday that, Facebook is no longer manually activating its crisis response tool. Instead, it will rely on its 1.2 billion daily visitors to help automatically launch Safety Check.
When in the hands of the company, if any natural disaster occurred in a specific area, Facebook would monitor and confirm from some verified accounts about the disaster. It would then send messages to the locals manually to verify if they are OK or not.
Now, if enough users are posting about the incident in a specific area, Safety Check will automatically be activated. It will then directly ask the people in that area whether they are safe or not.
Criticism received by Facebook over its act
At the same time, Facebook received a great amount of criticism for failing to activate Safety Check in some parts of the world. Safety Check was activated for the Paris Attacks last November, but not the day before for suicide bombings in Beirut. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg responded at the time by saying the company would activate Safety Check more widely.
“We care about all people equally, and we will work hard to help people suffering in as many of these situations as we can,” he wrote in a November 2015 post.
In the past two years, Facebook turned on Safety Check 39 times. Compare that to 335 dangerous events flagged by its community-based Safety Check tool since the company began testing it in June.
However, since the tool is now in the hands of the community, the problem is solved as it will automatically be activated against the posts by users.