Twitter users jump ship to Mastodon and Koo. What are these social media platforms?

Twitter users jump ship to Mastodon and Koo. What are these social media platforms?

Founded nearly six years ago, Mastodon has a look and feel that is similar to Twitter but it is different in more ways than one.

Ever since billionaire Elon Musk formally took over Twitter, a big chunk of its users have jumped ship to other social media platforms. Mastodon and Koo have been the two platforms that have benefitted immensely.

Reportedly, Mastodon, a decentralised, ad-free social networking platform has now amassed 655,000 users, with a monumental addition of 230,000 users taking place in the last few weeks alone.

Founded nearly six years ago, Mastodon has a look and feel that is similar to Twitter but it is different in more ways than one. Unlike other social media platforms, Mastodon is not owned by a single entity or a company. It is decentralised, meaning, one can create private networks using servers for different countries.

To get started with Mastodon, one has to visit Mastodon's Communities page and choose a community to join. Some instances allow anyone to join, while others require you to obtain an invitation to the server, which must be approved by an administrator.

However, one of the scathing criticism of Mastodon is that the moderators on the platform remove anyone who dares to show dissent against their ideology. The right-wingers have often accused the platform to be infiltrated by leftist moderators.

While Mastodon is the global alternative, the Indian variety of Twitter, named Koo, is once again making waves. The Indian social media company last week said it had crossed 50 million downloads. The company added that it had witnessed a significant uptick in the time spent and engagement on the app. It is currently available in 10 languages.

Like Twitter, Koo's logo is a bird, though yellow in colour. It allows users to use hashtags (#) or the "@" symbol for mentions. The app also allows users to 're-koo', Koo's version of a retweet and chat instead of a direct message.

Koo was founded by Aprameya Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidawatka, both MBA or business management, graduates. The duo are also the founders of Vokal, an audio-video knowledge-sharing platform similar to Quora.

Twitter users jump ship to Mastodon and Koo. What are these social media platforms?
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Ever since Musk suggested that Twitter will be charging $8 for the blue check verification mark - several users across the board expressed their concerns. While many were planning to leave the platform after Musk's takeover, the announcement of paid subscription appeared to be the final straw.

However, several reports have suggested that Musk has put the implementation of his paid subscription model on hold until after the US midterm elections.

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