Libertatem Magazine

Snapchat Fiasco: When Patriotism Sees No Reason

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snapchatIndia is responsible for a roundabout 200m Facebook users and a fair about 4m Snapchat users which can by no means be construed to be taken as an insignificant number. Having been said that, Evan Spiegel, the CEO of Snapchat feels that India is too poor a country to even think about expanding his business into. Obviously, such a statement would not go unattended or unwelcomed by the Indian set of onlookers. There is a lot more and deep to this snapchat story than what we have been reading about in the headlines. Or should rather say, depending upon how you look onto it.

Hailing over the controversy that a few days back glimmered on the internet marking Evan Spiegel’s trite comment that of calling India a “poor country”, a lot many people, ran enthusiastically high on patriotic fervor and subsequently decided to show their resentment by igniting rants and by storming the internet with hashtags on twitter such as #UninstallSnapchat and #BoycottSnapchat. This social networking anger and the wrath everywhere throughout the week sprang from the remarks Spiegel is alleged to have made.  As reported by Variety, an ex-representative Anthony Pompliano amid a private meeting in the year 2015 brought to the notice of Evan, snapchat’s dull performance and execution in Spain and India by asserting that the application was not getting the desired results and is not taking off well overseas. He further recommended how Snapchat ought to consider the deep-rooted mobile and internet based web of people in India so as to catalyze growth. The suggestion seemed unappealing to the then 25 years old lad and so he was cut halfway by the CEO.

The allegedly tagged elitist statement by Evan saw the light of the day when Pompliano’s claim against the gross neglect and incorrect portrayal of numbers by the company was put on show to the public by the way of releasing a copy of the suit online.


The truth be said. We Indians love to express our outrage against anything that disturbs our façade of patriotism by resorting to a numerous of very influencing activities like bringing down the ratings of an application on Google Play Store and by uninstalling the applications. It is to be noted that this isn’t the first instance when the country has witnessed such a slacktivism. History is in itself able to testify that Snapdeal earlier had to bear the heft of a similar fury. Flipkart is another brand that was forced to bear such a shock, to the point that brought about a drop in its rating to a 1 star after it was viewed as going opposed to the idea of net neutrality for which Airtel was at that point already suffering.

Affected by the ongoing deluge of resentment, the parent company Snap Inc. stepped out and tagged Pompliano as a “disgruntled employee fired for poor performance who filed the lawsuit out of thirst for publicity.” While they came to the rescue and out rightly denied any such remark by Spiegel, the reactions did not cease. A storm of Facebook and Twitter posts and 1 star ratings on Play Store and Apple’s App Store highlight numerous people voicing out their resentment.


The most crucial tangent that is still ignored by many is that there is no direct statement made by Evans. He never made the alleged statement that India is a poor nation [Sources: Topyaps, NASDAQ, IndianExpress, BeingIndian, Hindustan Times, YourStory, Dailymail UK]. All of this is a boiled-up stock of the broth that started to cook in a document of suit filed by a displeased employee. This most recent shock could be really unfair to the company and have serious setbacks.


I am likewise unable to figure out why we Indians feel so outraged about a mobile application that doesn’t consider India as a good or profitable market? How can in any stretch of imagination a CEO’s asserted remark/statement shake the pillars of our pride? I haven’t seen Spanish individuals flooding the online networking (Facebook or Twitter) with bolsters about highlighting their dissatisfaction in this regard. Is it accurate to say that they are offending and uninstalling Snapchat?


As a result of such acts of the people from time to time, I am sorry to say but tragically India is gaining a notorious kind of a reputation on the web. The reputation thus gained is that Indians are easily provoked or triggered. Say some cockeyed words in regards to India on the internet and Indians will get activated. This has gone up to the extent that they are so blindfolded by their rage that other applications with similar phonetics get hammered. Snapdeal, unfortunately, was mistaken for Snapchat and fell prey to the ongoing ire.


So ludicrous are the Indians over this infamous statement made by the CEO, that they are subjecting Snapdeal to the fate of uninstallations and poor ratings on the Play store as well as the app store. I am sure the word “Snap” is causing a great distress to Snapdeal. Is this some sort of a deliberate numbness on the part of the people or is it that they are unable to chalk out the distinction between the two? Dreading over a comment that a CEO perhaps made in a private meeting while discussing about his business plans and strategy, demonstrates that there is some kind of a serious issue with the people of the country.

I think that it’s difficult for me as a citizen of this nation to gulp that India as a country has such low self-regard that we are so easily provoked by a comment, and then go set up to brawl. I am certain that history would repeat itself and like previous instances, the present blow against Snapchat will have no dependable effect and will be temporary. Everybody nowadays is too effortlessly affronted and provoked and the Snapchat debacle demonstrates that this certainly is true.

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