The social media is in a state of uproar. The cause? Allegations made by a former Snapchat employee, in which he claims that founder and CEO Evan Spiegel once said that his app was only for rich people, and that he wasn’t particularly keen on expanding it to countries like India and Spain. The fallout was pretty predictable and disgruntled Indians are uninstalling the app left and right and giving it poor ratings in the Play Store. Ridiculously enough, some of them are even uninstalling Snapdeal’s application.
A few days ago, American Magazine Variety published an article in which a quote allegedly from Snapchat founder Evan Spiegel, was highlighted. The quote had Spiegel say that he was not particularly keen on expanding the app to poor countries. The statement was actually made in context to a lawsuit filed by former employee Anthony Pompliano, in which he claimed that the company was falsifying its growth metrics.
After Pompliano’s complaints were made public, several media publications latched on to a statement in which he claims to have heard Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel remark that he didn’t want to focus on poor countries, naming India in the process.
Well, such a juicy piece of news was obviously too much to resist and various media houses started publishing it in distorted ways, without even bothering to check if Spiegel had actually uttered these words. The result? One, Snapchat has garnered quite a bit of hate over the weekend and #uninstallSnapchat is trending on various Social Media Platforms. Two, people are falling over themselves in posting hate for Snapchat and its founder, all over the Internet.
However, in a case of mistaken identity, reports are emerging according to which many people are actually uninstalling Snapdeal‘s app and leaving poor reviews on its app Store page. Yup, it is actually happening. The statements left by quite a lot of people actually mention Snapchat, but they are still uninstalling Snapdeal. Wow!
Snapdeal is well aware of the matter. However, there isn’t exactly much it can do in a situation like this. Founder Kunal Bahl even tweeted about the matter:
@thetanmay Thanks bud. Ppl asking us to make a statement that @snapdeal is not @snapchat was possibly the last thing I thought I would ever need to do.
— Kunal Bahl (@1kunalbahl) April 16, 2017
This is the second time that Snapdeal is the unwitting victim of an affair it has no association with. The last time people went on a rampage against its app, was when its brand ambassador Amir Khan made a statement about the growing intolerance in the country. People who had somehow reached the conclusion that Amir Khan’s statements were endorsed by Snapdeal went on to uninstall the app and incite others to do the same. This time around though, the company is being affected because of a similar name.
This turn of events is actually surprising, more so since it comes after Snapchat clearly refuted the allegations made against it.
This is ridiculous. Obviously, Snapchat is for everyone! It’s available worldwide to download for free. Those words were written by a disgruntled former employee. We are grateful for our Snapchat community in India and around the world.
Quite a lot of damage has already been done but it is time to bring some logic to the table. Anyone with even a basic know how about the app industry knows India’s importance. With a rapidly growing Internet and smartphone population, the country figures near the top of the list for most internet based companies. True, Snapchat doesn’t have as much clout here as say Facebook or Instagram. But that is because the app was initially iOS only and the Indian masses primarily rely on Android.
But that just equates to more opportunities for Snap in the country. And you can bet that as CEO of a trendsetting company, Evan Spiegel is well aware of the fact. So, it is up to us as responsible netizens, to investigate the matter thoroughly before posting about it on social media platforms or uninstalling applications. And maybe pay greater attention to the name of the app we are actually uninstalling as well.
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