Even as Twitter’s Chief Twit Elon Musk has set in motion massive changes, sacking employees and talking of levying a $8 charge for ‘verified’ handles, Indian microblogging site Koo is opportunistically flying into its rival’s nest. Koo has started a campaign on Twitter, making itself prominently visible to verified handles, and offering them a better deal on its platform.
“Download Koo, apply for eminence verification and get your account verified for free now,” said Koo. It is not just Koo, other alternative microblogging sites such as Mastodon, too, are trying to woo Twitter users post Musk’s acquisition and the dramatic developments.
“Given what’s happening at Twitter where users will be charged for features that we provide for free, there’s a good opportunity for us to make Koo available to the English speaking world as well,” said Mayank Bidawatka, Co-Founder of Koo, known for its multilingual user base. With users in over 200 countries, Koo sees a global appeal for the site. “It’s time to let users know that they now have a strong alternative to existing micro-blogs,” he said. Significantly, Koo has just crossed 50 million downloads and is aggressively gunning for 100 million. Asked whether sacked Twitter employees have approached them for jobs, he said: “Yes. Many of them have.” Taking a dig at Elon Musk, he said it was not fair to charge the users for basic rights like proving their identity on the Internet. “Companies need to find more creative ways of making money rather than charging users for basic rights. We believe in a world where users are empowered to speak their mind and have access to the best that the internet offers, without having to pay for it,” he said.
Koo, which is focussing on Indian languages, has 7,500 ‘eminent personalities’ using the platform to reach out to their followers. Meanwhile, Mastodon, too, is upping its game trying to get Tweeples to migrate, and getting help from several quarters.“Project mushroom is working on automating the process of migrating your twitter account to Mastodon, including support for finding all of your followers. It automatically notifies your followers on how to follow you in an easy step-by-step process,” said Eric Holthaus, Founder of Project Mushroom, in a tweet. The Hindu BusinessLine