How American Tech Giants Are Stepping In To Help Nepal | KUOW News and Information

How American Tech Giants Are Stepping In To Help Nepal

Apr 28, 2015
Originally published on April 28, 2015 12:24 pm

If you’ve spent any time on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter in recent days, you will likely have noticed special attention given to the massive earthquake in Nepal on Saturday that left more then 5,000 people dead.

That attention goes beyond the phenomenon of global communications. Facebook and Google are making it easier for survivors to be identified, while Apple and PayPal are streamlining the donation process.

Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson speaks with Kurt Wagner of Re/code for a look at how each tech firm is stepping in, and why.

  • Apple has re-launched its partnership with the American Red Cross, enabling one-click donations through iTunes.
  • PayPal is also streamlining the donation process, with a similar one-click system that funds various organizations like UNICEF and Oxfam.
  • Facebook users have been notifying their friends and family of their safety status using the company’s “Safety Check” feature which uses location data to check if you are in the disaster zone and prompt you to send out a push notification marking you as safe.
  • Google is offering a similar service called “Person Finder.” A user can mark him or herself as safe, but also post questions to see if someone else has seen their loved one. More info here.
  • Microsoft announced free Skype calls to landlines and mobile phones in Nepal. Likewise, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have waived fees for calls and text messages sent by users in Nepal.


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