19 March 2020 | News
While people need to spend time apart, WhatsApp will continue to provide a simple, reliable, and secure way for people to communicate
WhatsApp has announced the launch of two initiatives in support of the global fight against the Coronavirus pandemic: the global launch of the WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub in partnership with the World Health Organization, UNICEF, and UNDP, and a $1m donation to the Poynter Institute's International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN).
The WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub will provide simple, actionable guidance for health workers, educators, community leaders, nonprofits, local governments and local businesses that rely on WhatsApp to communicate. The site also offers general tips and resources for users around the world to reduce the spread of rumors and connect with accurate health information.
While people need to spend time apart, WhatsApp will continue to provide a simple, reliable, and secure way for people to communicate. These recommendations provide quick guidance on how small groups can make the most of WhatsApp features, and will be distributed by UNDP to those coordinating local efforts.
In addition, WhatsApp is working with the WHO and UNICEF to provide messaging hotlines for people around the world to use directly. These hotlines will provide reliable information and will be listed on the WhatsApp Coronavirus Information Hub.
WhatsApp’s $1m grant to the IFCN will support fact-checking for the #CoronaVirusFacts Alliance, which spans more than 100 local organizations in at least 45 countries. Over the last year, WhatsApp has worked to bring over a dozen fact-checking organizations directly onto WhatsApp so they can crowdsource and report on rumors that may be circulating on various messaging services including WhatsApp or SMS. The grant will support training to use the advanced features within WhatsApp Business, including the WhatsApp Business API. Expanding the presence of these IFCN certified fact-checking organizations will help ensure local communities are aware and responding to potential harmful rumors.