The image messaging and multimedia mobile application Snapchat is facing a very tough time in Central Asia region. After an alleged statement released from Snapchat’s CEO Evan Spiegel, thousands of India users, who were active on this mobile application, have uninstalled the application from the android and ios mobile phones and currently #BoycottSnapchat has over 24,000 tweets.
A former Snapchat employee has alleged that Snapchat’s CEO Evan Spiegel was earlier disinterested to expand the company’s multi-billion dollar business to poor countries like India and Spain. The former Snapchat employee, Anthony Pompliano, was quoted by Variety alleging that the company’s chief executive officer once told him that their popular image messaging application is only meant for rich people.
“The app is only for rich people. I don’t want to expand into poor countries like India and Spain,” Mr. Spiegel reportedly told Mr. Pompliano.
Following the release of the above-mentioned statement, thousands of Snapchat users from India has uninstalled the application and showed their disdain on the application’s page. A few of the reviews follow.
“First of all, I didn’t even want to give any freakin’ star to this app. Evan(CEO of Snapchat) shows how stupid he is by saying this. I bet 3/4th of his company is run by Indian employees. If he didn’t want to expand it to poor countries then why is this app free? Why didn’t he put any charges on it? And his app is only running because of the millions of people in India use it and doing a favor for his company. This craze of Snapchat is going down for sure now in India. He will then understand how his low mentality thinking cost him a loss of million making him a millionaire from a billionaire. I hence delete my Snapchat and won’t be using it ever in my lifetime for insulting my country and showing the ugly side of this entrepreneur. Worst App ever.”
Another user went on to suggest that even though India’s economy is not as booming as America’s, but the Asian country is rich in culture and values and “in India not everyone comes from a family like the Kardashians but not all are poor. Plus India is the second largest country in the world, if all the Indian users uninstalled your app then you’ll be the one poor, not us. So please think before you speak. Your own words and actions can land you in trouble.”
There is another reviewer who actually took the road of sarcasm to show his disdain towards the company. The user, pjtango, wrote on the iTunes store that as soon as he installed the application on his phone, it directly went on into his bank account and checked how much money he has.
“Today it sent a message to my bank asking them to close my account because I’m an Indian and really poor by birth,” he further added.
Headquartered in Los Angeles, California, Snap Inc., the parent company of Snapchat raised a whopping $3.4 billion through an IPO. Despite the backlash and the net loss rising to a total of 38 percent in 2016, the IPO helped the company to secure a market valuation of $24 billion. Anthony Pompliano has filed a lawsuit in a U.S. court citing that Snapchat inflated user data and “misinformed about key metrics.”
As of now, Snapchat’s attorney has released a statement via Variety citing that their former employee does not know anything about the company’s metric. However, #BoycottSnapchat is still very much trending.
“The simple fact is that he (Mr. Pompliano) knows nothing about Snap’s current metric. He and his lawyers are — not to put too fine a point on matters — just making things up.”
According to YourStory, the app is said to have 4 million users in India as of last year, and the number will have definitely grown since then. Given the recent updates from Facebook and Whatsapp that have features similar to Snapchat, it can be tough competition for the company to get more Indian users in the coming time.
After facing a lot of media backlash, Snapchat’s spokesperson told in a statement to CNN that their mobile application is for everyone and one should not just believe the nonsense some of their former employees are spreading.
Those words were written by a disgruntled former employee. We are grateful for our Snapchat community in India and around the world,” the spokesperson added.
[Featured Image by Carl Court/Getty Images]