Another day in quarantine and you’re on social media. Like most of us, you’re probably looking out for what’s new or developments to the COVID-19 situation. Well, we can applaud Twitter and Facebook for trying to keep us informed with the right information.
“Teams are hard at work to make sure all the services run smoothly. This is clearly a time when people want to stay connected,” “We want to make sure we do our part to alleviate loneliness.” Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said while updating reporters on the company’s efforts.
Twitter and Facebook Efforts
With more and more people visiting the sites, Facebook has had to take some steps to enhance their provision of factual information. The company donated KES 100 million to the International Fact-Checking Network to expand the presence of local fact-checkers and curb misinformation on WhatsApp.
Facebook is also rolling out an information centre. It will be displayed at the top of news feeds at the social network. The hub will display content from public health experts and academics encouraging ways to reduce coronavirus risk. This includes taking social-distancing seriously, according to Zuckerberg.
The outbreak has made social media services such as Twitter vital for a broader population than usual. Twitter said on Monday total monetizable daily active users (mDAU) jumped 23% to 164 million quarter-to-date, driven by the conversation around COVID-19, as well as ongoing product improvements.
“We’re seeing a meaningful increase in people using Twitter,” Jack Dorsey said.
The company said it expects first-quarter revenue to be down slightly on a year-over-year basis. It had earlier estimated revenue to be between KES 82.5 Billion and KES 88.5 Billion, an 8.6% rise from a year earlier at the midpoint.
It, unfortunately, affects ad sales.
“The COVID-19 impact began in Asia, and as it unfolded into a global pandemic, it has impacted Twitter’s advertising revenue globally more significantly in the last few weeks,” Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal said in a statement.
Some companies are hesitant to advertise alongside coronavirus discussions for fear of associating their brands with a sensitive topic.
Kenyans on Facebook and Twitter
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Kenyans are now heavily relying on social media for news and reports about COVID-19. Trends are hitting up to 30,000 tweets per topic per day and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Now that most people are at home, they have more time to tweet and retweet stories they have come across. For example, the President announced the introduction of the Loon project and not too many people were happy about it. Many are raising their complaints about this and other matters on Twitter and Facebook.
Most companies are also responding more to complaints and suggestions more on social media. This could be because they are also working from home. They are also spending time on these platforms communicating with their families and friends, watching videos and laughing at memes.
I can’t quite imagine what we would be doing if this happened 10 years ago…