Some time back, a popular Kenyan blogger, Cyprian Nyakundi was suspended by Twitter over violating Twitter rules. The controversial blogger posted some photos and this led to his Twitter account getting suspended by the social network.
This suspension led to a huge furore on Twitter where we saw two opposing factions arguing in favour or not in favour of Twitter lifting the suspension of his account.
These ones were in favour of Twitter lifting the suspension on Nyakundi
If you are a tweep and the suspension of #Nyakundi is not bothering you in any way then something is seriously wrong in your head. You can't just live happily in a place where your neighbours are exterminated one by one. #BringBackNyakundi
— Duncan Makori 🇰🇪 (@EngnrDan) July 31, 2018
Shocked that Nyakundi is suspended. We must not stifle freedom of speech. #BringBackNyakundi
— Ahmed Mohamed (@Asmali77) July 31, 2018
— odhiamboRoyalty (@RoyaltyOdhiambo) July 30, 2018
And these ones were not in favour of Twitter lifting the suspension ban
— Clark Meritei (@ClarkMeritei) July 31, 2018
Hehe Nyakundi minions feel so entitled. Ati boycott twitter until his account is reinstated. Please twitter was still there while he was in meru university fighting for classroom chairs.
— Mbare Ya Ndurika (@wakariowa) July 31, 2018
There are really people that think Nyakundi is the only reason Kenyans use Twitter. Really people that think everyone will boycott the app because of his suspension. Very big madness.
— tropkosssssssss. (@SookieMurage) July 31, 2018
That suspension started a whole new movement where Kenyans started imploring each other to move to a relatively new social network called Gab.
The social network even acknowledged the spike in sign ups by Kenyans. “This week we have a huge wave of Kenyans joining Gab because of censorship from Twitter. This is a global problem and the people are tired of it,” they said in the tweet. Apparently over 5000 Kenyans joined Gab after the furore.
5,000+ Kenyans Join Gab After Influential Blogger Was Banned By Twitter https://t.co/XhqQXkceCS
— Gab.ai (@getongab) July 31, 2018
So what is this this social network that Kenyans are signing up for en masse? Well Gab is a social network based in the US that was launched 2 years ago as an alternative to Twitter.
It does share a lot of characteristics that we see on Twitter like a reply button, repost button, quote button, a profile and the posts are called ‘gabs’. A Twitter user would find it easy to familiarize themselves with Gab due to the similarities with Twitter and that is why it is an easy way for people to move away from Twitter.
However Gab differs from Twitter by having no ads and imploring people to go Pro which as several benefits like getting verified, creating groups, saving posts, creating lists, going live and even making money. Going Pro means you pay $6 a month to enjoy the above features and this could be enticing to some.
Gab is liked for its ‘free speech’ policy and thanks to this, its user base has grown to 465,000 users as of three months ago. This is the primary reason some Kenyans on Twitter have decided to move over to Gab and we have to wait and see whether they will form a large community in the social network.
Gab has reported that over 10,000 Kenyans have joined Gab. The headline has been changed to fit the new information.