WhatsApp announced on January 4, 2021 that it would share its users' data with its parent company, the giant Facebook. Following public outcry, these plans have been delayed for May, but they are far from canceled. Online sales site in Tunisia
In Zimbabwe, in 2017, WhatsApp accounted for 44% of global internet traffic, Facebook only 1%.
In Africa, Facebook is losing ground. Granted, it remains the most popular social network, but collectively Baidu, Twitter, Tumblr, and Qzone will overtake Facebook in active subscribers by the end of 2021.
The general public's disappointment was heard all over the world. On the African continent, the WhatsApp scam has caused mass migration to other social networks. According to ProPrivacy, Facebook's target with this maneuver is to collect users' phone numbers, but not only!
Device IDs, user location information, interaction information, metadata, and even WhatsApp Business user transactions.
As a result, Signal and Telegram, WhatsApp's competitors, saw their number of downloads increase explosively during the month of January. Statistics in Africa are yet to be released, but according to Sensor Tower they are approaching a 3600% increase for Signal alone! Telegram, on the other hand, has "only" doubled the number of users in Africa.
But the news is not good, although Facebook could be replaced as the most used social network in Africa, this is much less the case for WhatsApp as an app. It has clearly become an essential product for the African user.
Facebook is looking for a data monopoly in Africa, a digital colonization on a titanic scale.
No one should have to give up their right to privacy in order to exercise the right to freedom of expression. The WhatsApp scandal is not one of a kind when it comes to Facebook's attempts to strengthen its tyrannical grip on African internet user data. It is to believe that when Africans reach a tolerable threshold of Internet access and its benefits, Zuckerberg would want to own their data straight away.
In 2016, Facebook signed a contract with several Internet service providers in Africa, in countries with a total population of 635 million, to provide free access to the social network Facebook to referral customers. But unfortunately nothing is free. In return, Zuckerberg's company demanded full access to user data.
The offer was too attractive for the ISPs concerned, as they intended to sell the acquired access free of charge to users afterwards. But the contract with Facebook did not allow it. Users lost there, ISPs lost, and the only winner was Facebook.
This voracity has always characterized the American giant, but it is the user's responsibility to defend their right to privacy, and by dint of being heard, the African user will win. In addition, African youth no longer find Facebook attractive or useful. Less than 10% of African users aged 13 to 17 use the social network.