Friday, October 24, 2014

Facebook Safety Check: Giving Peace at your Fingertips

Safety Check Carousel

Filipinos are known for posting Facebook status updates of what they do from time to time. Through Facebook, people can easily contact their families by messaging, comments, and what not. It is also where people advertise or spread news about someone who is in need, danger, or just looking for something or someone. Would it be amazing to inform your family and friends that you're safe when you're in the middle of a a natural calamity or disaster in just a click?

Released last October 15, 2014, Facebook have added a feature that would be useful for most of us, not only Filipinos, but all people around the globe. The 2011 earthquake and tsunami happened in Japan opened the eyes and minds of the Japanese engineers to build an application that would be a perfect use in major disasters. It was heartbreaking enough to know that technology had not made a little difference to help those who were in trouble.

During a major disaster, Safety Check will help you:
  • Let friends and family know you’re safe
  • Check on others in the affected area
  • Mark your friends as safe
So, here's how it works:

When the tool is activated after a natural disaster and if you’re in the affected area, you’ll receive a Facebook notification asking if you’re safe.

Facebook will determine your location by looking at the city you have listed in your profile, your last location if you've opted in to the Nearby Friends product, and the city where you are using the internet.


If they get your location wrong, you can mark that you’re outside the affected area.

If you’re safe, you can select “I’m Safe” and a notification and News Feed story will be generated with your update. Your friends can also mark you as safe.

Safety Check

If you have friends in the area of a natural disaster and the tool has been activated, you will receive a notification about those friends that have marked themselves as safe. Clicking on this notification will take you to the Safety Check bookmark that will show you a list of their updates.

According to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO, the application will start from natural disasters, down to more types of emergencies as time passes. Here are some of the comments on this update on Zuckerberg's status regarding the update.

Here are some of my feedback regarding the application:
  • Since Facebook can be used once you have an internet connection, what if the disaster destroyed even your 3G or wifi? How can you use the application? Can't it be activated offline as long as your location is known?
  • It would be great if there would be an emergency button or shortcut on Facebook app that you can click once you're in danger - it will let your close friends and family know that you're in trouble.
  • Awesome application, though it would be more awesome to have it even in little emergencies like robbery, or threats.

My rating:

Maybe when Zuckerberg decides to have the application updated or available offline, I'll give it a five.

What do you think of Facebook's new feature? Share it to us via comments!

Disclaimer: All photos and video are grabbed from Introducing Safety Check, Facebook Newsroom's feature article.


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  1. It's a step in the right direction and hopefully they make an app wherein it can be accessed even offline in dangerous situations.

  2. i haven't read about this FB update til now. will have to go check it out. thanks!

  3. Nice apps. But the disadvantage is if you have no connection and no battery.

  4. This looks like a great app. Will download it and explore. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Nice one facebook :) although there's still room for improvement, at least meron

  6. This is a great tool! I will check it out and inform my family members as well.


  7. Ooh, I didn't know about this tool! I'm beginning to like it ngayon pa lang as I think it would be really useful when disaster strikes! There are disadvantages, but doesn't everything?

  8. Wow, this is the best app I've seen. Very helpful, especially for young ones ;)

  9. Nice application. Great thing you posted it here. :)

  10. Very useful. But I didn't know about this app. 24/7 pa naman akong naka FB. Waahh.. Thanks for sharing! :)

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