Elon Musk taking over Twitter sent some people looking for alternatives such as Mastodon and Hive. In Brazil, however, many are more inclined towards India-based social network Koo. But just a week after launching in the South American market, Koo is already facing moderation and security issues.
The Bengaluru-based startup claims to have already racked up over a million downloads in Brazil. Analytics firm Sensor Tower backs up this claim, saying the app saw 973,000 installs from the App Store and Play Store between November 14 and November 20. Sensor Tower charts for the App Store and Play Store indicate that Koo was the top app in the country over the period. .
However, many users can join the platform to participate in a prank. Koo sounds like a word in Portuguese that means asshole. So there are a lot of back-related jokes on Twitter and Koo with even brands like Razer gaming company participate. Koo also acknowledged the joke and explained that it simply meant “the sound of that cute yellow bird.”
Over the past few days, Koo has added native support for Portuguese to the app and worked with integration brands like Burger King.
Hours after launch, Koo users in Brazil problems encountered access the site. The social network also had bugs like users not being able to see his followers.
Koo is also facing moderation and security issues after launching in Brazil. Hackers took over popular influencer Felipe Neto’s Koo account for a while. attackers job that they warned users of the social network’s lack of security. The company Explain on his Twitter account in Portuguese that he “relaxed our security in the last 2 hours to resolve the OTP issue” and that all user data is safe.
In a separate space thread, Neto said, that the social network founder reached out to him and resolved the account takeover issue within minutes. He is currently one of the most popular Brazilian accounts on the platform with over 500,000 followers.
Additionally, local media pointed out that many users have already created fake profiles posing as politicians like former President Jair Bolsonaro. The report notes that users created profiles in the name of right-wing activist Carla Zambelli, who was banned from all social media platforms. Koo’s handles on Twitter are unverified, so it’s easy to come across a fake account with thousands of followers and mistake it for an official one.
The platform also seems to be struggling with moderation issues. Several tweet suggested that Koo is full of child sexual abuse material (CSAM). In some tweets, Koo said he is actively block these accounts. Below the laws of the countryCSAM is a crime and violators may face penalties.
We asked Koo several questions related to the issues mentioned above, and we’ll update the story if we get back to you.
Koo supported by Tiger Global, which was launched in India in 2020, gained popularity amid a rift between the Indian government and Twitter at that time. Several organizations and leaders from central and state governments have started making public announcements on the platform. In November, the company said it had passed the 50 million download mark but did not specify the number of active users on the social network. According to Sensor Tower, data an industry executive shared with TechCrunch, Koo has 2.5 million monthly active users worldwide.
While the company considers itself a free speech platformhe was accused of favor Indian government and censorship speech. Although its founder maintains that the platform has an apolitical stance, he was assimilated with many right-wing social networks like Speaking.
Recent developments on Twitter have prompted people to search for other platforms. But as these services get an initial boost from the chaos on Twitter, they will need to come up with better location and moderation policies to be relevant in the long run.