In Nigeria, the Indian app Koo tries to take over from Twitter after the blockade

In Nigeria, the Indian app Koo tries to take over from Twitter after the blockade

In Nigeria

The Nigerian government has already moved to this application, which in India is also trying to supplant Twitter

(photo: Pavlo Gonchar / Sopa Images / LightRocket via Getty Images) After the indefinite blocking of Twitter in Nigeria, the Indian microblogging app Koo is proposing itself as a replacement for the much more famous American platform, even with some push from above.

On June 2, Twitter deleted a tweet from the Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari, which appeared to threaten violence against its political opponents, particularly secessionist groups. Two days later, the government suspended Twitter, which has 40 million users in Nigeria and was widely used by journalists and officials as well as by companies. The decision led some local telecommunications companies to block access to the platform.

According to reports from the tech news site, Rest of the world, Koo moved quickly after this blockade. Within days, the app was available on the Apple and Google app stores in Nigeria and job postings for people who spoke the local language had been posted on LinkedIn. President Buhari opened an account on Koo less than a week after he stopped Twitter and so did other members of the government.

Koo was launched in March 2020 by Indian entrepreneur Aprameya Radhakrishna, attracting in no time 25 million users in the country. In the first phase, the app allowed you to receive a voice response to questions posed on the platform, then transforming itself into a version more similar to Twitter, in which people can also express themselves, as well as search for answers.

Koo initially focused on local language users, rather than English speakers, focusing on a strongly Indian identity. Later, Koo added the English-language feature, likely to replace Twitter as it ran into trouble with New Delhi authorities trying to crack down on dissent even with stricter social media rules.

The Indian application, has indeed positioned itself as a popular alternative to Twitter by the government, but favoring the local language and zealously respecting the regulations set by the authorities has made it the preferred platform of the right and Hindu nationalists .

That in Nigeria is Koo's first international expansion, but despite the noise generated, there are still no numbers to support the fact that it has already found a sizeable user base, even among pro-government ones. In Nigeria, the possible catchment area for the app is immense but its limited global reach makes it difficult to think that Koo will become the alternative to Twitter for the communication of the same government.

While the Nigerian executive has started using Koo in fact, he also started to use Facebook and Instagram more actively and the popular local platforms Nairaland and Opera News, after the Twitter ban, writes Rest of the world again.

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