Snapchat CEO says the app “is only for rich people”
An article from Insider.com said Snapchat has not lost any momentum since the adoption of Facebook and Instagram’s copycat features.
According to Insider.com, 81 percent of teens in the U.S. say they use Snapchat every month compared to 79 percent for Instagram.
Snapchat is attempting to attract older users. However, they may have recently lost connection with a particular group.
The popular app’s CEO Evan Spiegel is under fire because of a recent comment regarding future expansion of the application.
“I don’t want to expand into poor countries like India and Spain,” Spiegel allegedly said, according to a statement filed to the L.A. Superior Court.
Snap Inc., the parent company of the photo messaging app, has an open lawsuit launched by Anthony Pompliano, a former Snapchat employee.
Pompliano, who worked at the company for about three weeks, said that he raised these issues with senior managers, including Spiegel, who ignored him and later terminated his employment.
Pompliano alleges that the company “misled investors and advertisers about the app’s performance,” according to Fortune.com.
The suit entails Pompliano’s claim that Snapchat was providing investors and advertisers with inflated metrics and false claims about the company’s month-to- month user growth rate. The filing that was released revealed that there were multiple allegations, reports Variety.com. In the complaint, Pompliano said that Spiegel cut him off during a user growth meeting in 2015 to state that Snapchat “is only for rich people.”
Spiefel made the comment after Pompliano apparently suggested to expand the app to places such as India and Spain.
Snap contends that Pompliano, who the company has referred to as “a disgruntled employee fired for poor performance,” fabricated the allegations in the suit, according to Fortune.com.
The company’s legal team said Pompliano and his lawyers were “just making things up,” according to Variety. The day following the news of Spiegel’s disinterest in expanding to “poor countries” like India, the rating for the popular app dropped to a single star from an apparent five star on the App Store, according to TimesNow.tv.
According to the app info on App Store, the “Customer Ratings” of the current version of the app was “single star” (based on 6,099 ratings) and all versions rating was “one and half star” (based on 9,527 ratings).The rating for the app on Android Play Store was “four star” (based on 11,932,996 ratings).
Users did not appreciate the comment made by Spiegel. Dozens left scornful reviews of the app in Google Play and Apple’s App Store. Many took to social media to express their distaste for the CEO’s opinion and while app ratings dropped, the critics continued to lash out at Spiegel.
“@Snapchat General knowledge is very important. Tell #Spiegel that India ranks third in most number of billionaires after USA and China,” @Aashkey tweeted.
The app was also trolled on Twitter. #boycottsnapchat became the top-trending hashtag on Twitter overnight.
“Dear #Spiegel, CEO, #snapchat. We can make Pierce #Brosnan sell our Gutkha and you are calling us poor. #uninstallsnapchat #boycottsnapchat,” @ imdrankitshah tweeted.
“Dear #Spiegel the guy in picture spent 5 billion on his daughters wedding…in a poor country like India…so sorry you were not born here,” @UnRated_Indian tweeted.
“Obviously Snapchat is for everyone. It’s available worldwide to download for free,” a spokesperson said in a statement. “Those words were written by a disgruntled former employee. We are grateful for our Snapchat community in India and around the world.”
Snapchat has more than four million users in India. According to WorldBank.org in May 2016, 270 million Indians were deemed poor, which is 1 in 5. The poverty rate was 80 percent in rural areas.
Although numbers show that India has poverty, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel could have been more respectful to those in India because less fortunate people exist everywhere.