Besides encouraging all Twitter employees globally to work from home if they’re able due to coronavirus, Twitter is stepping up its internal and external efforts to build partnerships, protect the public conversation, help people find authoritative health information, raise relief funds, and contribute pro bono advertising support to ensure people are getting the right message, from the right source.
Twitter has already shared travel, event and visitor restrictions for its employees, and is encouraging its employees globally to work from home. Working from home will be mandatory for employees based in our Hong Kong, Japan, and South Korea offices due in part to government restrictions.
Launched six days before the official designation of the virus in January, Twitter continues to expand its dedicated search prompt feature to ensure that when users come to the service for information about Covid-19, they are met with credible, authoritative content . Twitter has been monitoring the conversation on the service to make sure keywords — including common misspellings — also generate the search prompt.
In each country where Twitter has launched the initiative, the company has partnered with the national public health agency or the World Health Organization (@WHO) directly. The proactive search prompt is in place with official local partnerships in nearly 50 countries around the world, with countries in the Middle East and North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa going live by the end of this week.
In addition, Twitter's global Trust & Safety team is continuing its zero-tolerance approach to platform manipulation and any other attempts to abuse the company's service at this critical juncture. At present, Twitter says it is not seeing significant coordinated platform manipulation efforts around these issues.
Twitter says it will halt any attempt by advertisers to opportunistically use the Covid-19 outbreak to target inappropriate ads. Government entities that want to disseminate public health information will be permitted to promote ads on Covid-19.
In addition, Twitter is committing Ads for Good credits to nonprofit organizations to ensure they can build campaigns to fact-check and get reputable health information to the widest possible audiences. For example, as part of the International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN/@factchecknet), Twitter has supported the Spanish organization @maldita_es and @malditobulo, which focuses on mitigating the impact of disinformation on public discourse through fact-checking and data journalism techniques. In Asia, Twitter has partnered with the Taiwan Fact Checking Center (@taiwantfc), which has been using Twitter to connect with IFCN fact checkers around the world via #CoronavirusFacts.
Twitter's data is being used in research every day and the company's researchers hub is publicly available. Twitter welcomes applications for the use of Twitter data to support research on Covid-19. Twitter will also explore further #DataForGood partnerships to assess how its data products can enhance academic and NGO understanding of public health emergencies now and into the future.
Twitter has also set up a dedicated internal Covid-19 campaign page through its employee donation matching program to support humanitarian response and relief efforts around the world. Any Twitter employee can donate to relevant nonprofit organizations, and Twitter will match donations up to $2,000 per employee.