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FB, Twitter alert users to wear masks as Covid cases surge in US

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on July 03, 2020 Published on July 03, 2020

Social media giant Facebook said on Thursday that it will remind people to wear protective masks with constant notifications, Agence France Presse reported.

The decision comes as the US witnessed an outburst of the coronavirus cases, which has led to renewed fears of containing the novel virus.

Facebook said that it will notify users by sending them alerts at the top of the feeds on Facebook and Instagram. The feature will first roll out in the US with plans to expand in the future.

“With the rise in Covid-19 cases in the US, we’re putting an alert at the top of Facebook and Instagram to remind everyone to wear face coverings,” the company said in a statement.

Facebook will also include additional prevention tips and links to public health agencies in its Covid-19 Information Center.

Joining the movement, Twitter also appealed users to wear masks with a sarcastic message which referred to a long-standing demand from users for a tweet edit button.

“You can have an edit button when everyone wears a mask,” said a tweet from the official Twitter account, which was shared some 93,000 times within an hour.

The call for masks was made as the US sees people protesting over necessitating masks in public. Many Americans have rejected the idea of covering their face.

President Donald Trump, who has yet to be seen in public wearing a face mask during the crisis, said this week he would have “no problem” doing so under certain circumstances.

“If I were in a tight situation with people, I would absolutely,” Trump said in an interview with Fox Business, as many US states reported a surge in the number of cases.

Heath experts expressed alarm last month when Trump held a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, without mandating attendees to wear masks.

Eight members of his campaign staff working at the event tested positive for the virus.

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Published on July 03, 2020
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