WhatsApp University Gets a New Professor!

The WHO has joined hands with the Facebook-owned company to bring reliable updates on the social tool

 

At a time when the world is grappling with the misinformation campaigns circulating over social media and possible means to arrest the trend, WhatsApp has gone ahead and tied up with the World Health Organization (WHO) to provide reliance data around the coronavirus pandemic that’s spread across much of the world.

The free-to-use WHO Health Alert chatbot service is currently available across the world and is designed to prevent the spread of fake news and rumours around COVID-19, officials of the WHO claim while suggesting that users simply sign up for the service and refrain from forwarding unsubstantiated reports around the disease.

The service, developed jointly by WhatsApp and WHO will provide prompt, reliable and official information 24 hours a day worldwide with the alert service focusing on important topics that include:

  • Protecting oneself and family from the infection
  • Travel advice during the pandemic
  • Data about the infection across the world
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Debunking coronavirus myths

Signing up for the service is relatively simple. All that a smartphone user has to do is save the number +41 79 893 1892 on the contact list. Thereafter, open WhatsApp and send the word “Hi” in the message. This starts off with a series of prompts and once done provides a daily update with the latest information.

The service is launching initially in English and should be available in Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish soon. There is however no information about the data becoming available in Hindi or other Indian languages though such a service would be of immense help to the government in tackling fake news.

WHO officials say that the service, which is also available at the WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub, would be provided to governments across the world to help decision makers by providing the latest numbers and situation reports. To get information on WhatsApp, users have to send the right emojis to receive the data.

Looks like Facebook is now hell-bent on getting a makeover on its fake news peddling persona that began with the last US Presidential elections and appears all set to continue this time round too.


TAGS: WhatsApp, WHO, coronovirus, Mobile Alerts, statistics, Reports