BBC uses WhatsApp to fight the Ebola virus

whatsapp-virusThe popular instant messaging service WhatsApp has been chosen by the BBC as a platform for a new public information service regarding the spread of the Ebola virus, addressed especially to mobile users zone of Africa most affected by the infection. BBC will leverage WhatsApp to supply the information service at zero cost, rather than sustain the (high) cost of sending traditional SMS.

To register for the service, which is completely free of charge, simply send a text message with WhatsApp ‘JOIN’ to the number +44 7702 348 651 (you need to first add the number to the phone book). To unsubscribe simply send a message with the text ‘ STOP ‘ to the same number. Information messages (up to a maximum of 3 per day) will be posted in English and French. One of the main issue of this service is that many people in Africa still do not have smartphone or recent mobile phones that can run whatsapp App. If you still don’t have a compatible smartphone try to use the alternative windows or the java version of whatsapp as explained here. More information about the BBC whatsapp service in the following video.

BBC WhatsApp Ebola News Service

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