If you have a Facebook page, you might start to see Amber Alerts popping up in your news feed in the near future.
TIME reports that Facebook will begin publishing Amber Alerts on the news feeds of its users.
This type of strategic move will effectively turn the social media platform into an effective tool for finding missing children. How so? Because of the 140 million people in the United States alone that use Facebook on a daily basis.
Posting the Amber Alerts online through the social media profiles is a by-product of the partnership established between the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the popular social media site.
According to the report issued by the Wall Street Journal, the Amber Alerts will appear within the second slot of the feed with a photo of the child in addition to pertinent details about the corresponding case.
Emily Vacher, the head of global safety and policy for Facebook, stated that the inspiration for the new Amber Alerts program came from a trend that many Facebook users have already been following.
“Someone in their community goes missing and they share that information with friends and family.”
To help in the search of missing children, many Facebook users have already posted pictures as well as updates in the past. The new Facebook Amber Alerts program will simply take this existing trend to a whole new level.
John Ryan, chief executive and president of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, admits that he is optimistic about the Facebook Amber Alerts initiative primarily because of its potential exposure.
Out of the 140 million people that access Facebook every day, 121 million of them access the site through their mobile devices. This means that people will be able to see the Amber Alerts throughout the day – even when they are nowhere near a computer.
“It’s the closest thing to real time that we can hope for.”
Users will not have to worry about push notifications being sent out, because it has already been confirmed that Facebook will not be sending them. Neither will the social graph be used to alert users. Notices will generally be sent out for 24 hours only.
Push notifications will not be sent through Facebook for this new initiative. As of right now, the Facebook Amber Alerts system will simply use either their home location or current geographical location to determine whether or not a notification is necessary.
[Image Credit: Wall Street Journal & Norebbo]