It is in November 2019 that the COVID-19 virus started his journey, in the Chinese city of Wuhan. Since then, this global pandemic has disrupted the world order and caused numerous tragic deaths, forcing governments and people to rethink fundamentally their way of doing things. Professional and personal lives had to be reinvented, taking into consideration these new living conditions and social distancing measures. Thus, some sectors and fields have changed in an unexpected way.
Concerning the digital, the COVID-19 has been a boon. Indeed, following the virus spreading, many applications, platforms and online services have emerged, allowing to some internet users to continue their professional lives, to stay in touch with their beloved ones, or to help the community.
Following the implementation of social distancing measures, digital has emerged as an effective method in order to stay connected with people. We will present some applications, which, during this quarantine period, allow us to continue to live an “almost” normal life.
A platform to help farmers in France
“Des bras pour ton assiette” (Some arms for your plate)
On March 26th, the French government decided to create an application to help farmers in need of staff. More than 240,000 volunteers have already registered.
Many sectors are struggling because of the quarantine imposed by governments worldwide. Therefore, many people want to help these sectors, including agriculture which is lacking of staff in order to harvest fruits and vegetables and for the plantation season.
The application, called: “Des bras pour ton assiette” (Some arms for your plate) allows people to register in the aim of helping farmers in these tasks and thus make the quarantine a little less harsh for their professional activity. If joining this program is on a voluntary basis, each volunteer can declare this work and contribute to its future pension.
Some French regions also created their own platform in order to help farmers, such as the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region. Indeed, “Plateforme Solidaire” (Solidarity Platform) enables to connect farmers and consumers so that consumers can order online directly from local producers.
Helping others to keep a social bond
The French app: “Réseau entourage” (Entourage network)
The association called “Réseau entourage”(Entourage Network in English) has been helping homeless people since 2012, aiming to create more social bond. Since the beginning of the quarantine, the association had to reinvent its activities, especially on three aspects:
- To inform the homeless who might be disoriented but also all the volunteers involved in the association. To do so, they are publishing a daily testimony from a homeless person explaining his way of living the quarantine.
- To keep a positive mindset and share activities online, the usual events can be found on the internet (coffee break, board games…)
- To maintain social bond with the homeless thanks to the association mobile application that allow contact with those who have a mobile phone. Some volunteers also formed small support groups for the others.
The above applications are useful to keep people connected despite the social distancing measures. However, other applications are used more than ever, such as the famous WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Skype, TikTok…But also some slightly more original applications have emerged and became popular in no time.
Applications to keep you entertained
If the quarantine has made difficult your movie nights with family and friends, do not panic, Netflix Party is here to save you. Google Chrome Netflix Party extension allows several people to watch a movie simultaneously on Netflix. Indeed, the extension allows people to synchronize the movie timing and to open a chat window in order to comment the last elimination of a candidate from The Circle.
Friday nights were your weekly karaoke moment with friends? Keep calm and download Smule. Smule application was already famous before the quarantine, allowing karaoke fans and enthusiastic singers to stay in touch with their beloved ones (or to make contact with strangers) through music. Do not wait any longer and take your headphones before being able to find back the way to the real karaoke microphones.
Plato: Find Fun
Chess, Uno or Werewolf… Board games have always been precious allies to overcome boredom and could be even more important during this quarantine period in which loneliness can take too much space. Nevertheless, much board games need several players and if you live alone or are sharing a place with people more spectators than gamers, the Plato application is there to save you. Plato is very easy to use and completely free. After having downloaded the application and created a username, you should be able to meet your favorite opponents and play one of the 40 games available on the platform.
Digital, an invisible bond that (re)unites
In crisis time, everyone’s habits are disrupted, innovative solutions and original alternatives are created to allow everyone to live as normally as possible. Out of sight, close to mind: thanks to numerous applications, social bond between people can be maintained. Digital is often accused of building barriers and establishing distance between human beings. Who has never accused a screen for the distant behavior of a teenager more focused on a video game than on a family talk? Who has never complained of a young child already “glued so early to its tablet games”?
During this quarantine period, digital cocks a snook to all these clichés by being the key to maintain social bond.An article by cecile.bayle, Allan Grosdemange and clemence.moreaupascal