Telegram Channels are a powerful tool for broadcasting your messages to unlimited audiences. Since 2015, media organizations and public figures have been using them to reach readers, voters and fans – especially in countries where freedom of speech is limited.
Recently, we noticed a new type of channel gaining popularity: those created by Ministries of Health from around the world. India, Malaysia, Israel and many other countries now send news updates, warnings and tips via Telegram.
To help users distinguish trustworthy sources from fake news, we're launching a streamlined verification process today.
If you have verified accounts on other social media services, simply contact our new @VerifyBot to get a verification badge for your channel, group or bot.
Information is the most powerful weapon in the fight for global health – at least until we get a vaccine. To do our part, we've been sending notifications to all users in countries that have official channels with updates about the virus, offering them to join.
We invite all health officials to collaborate on keeping people informed. If you work for your country's Ministry of Health and would like to promote its channel, please verify it first using @VerifyBot, then contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To make sure users find accurate and relevant information about the pandemic in their region, we've created a special channel which shows up as the top result for all coronavirus-related keywords in Search. It contains a list of official news sources by country:
Telegram Channels are good for massive one-way broadcasts, but if you're looking for more interactive ways to inform people, try groups or bots.
Telegram Groups can have up to 200,000 members each and offer powerful tools for maintaining order. For example, doctors from the Indian state of Karnataka are using this public group to answer questions from users.
Telegram Bots are third-party apps that you can interact with right from your chat list. You talk to them using buttons – and they reply with messages and media of all kinds. Bots are extremely flexible and can be used for anything from providing information to integrating with other web services.
For example, check out @QuizBot which can create and run quizzes like this one.
We couldn't do anything about the shortage of masks in the real world, but our artists found a way to squeeze an inexhaustible supply into your app.
You can apply masks from this set to any pictures you send using Telegram's Photo Editor. Whether to raise awareness, maintain digital hygiene, or simply to hide your nose is up to you.
Stay home. Wash your hands. Be safe. And stay tuned for our next updates!
April 3, 2020,
The Telegram Team