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An Open Letter from Africa to TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter

An Open Letter from Africa to TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter

We call on you to immediately reform your monetization systems to incorporate African nations on equal footing. We demand you cease all censorship and deplatforming of African creators unless they violate globally recognized hate speech or harassment standards.

We write to you today with great passion and concern about how your platforms are fundamentally disadvantaging and muzzling African content creators. As major tech giants with user bases spanning the globe, you have a responsibility to treat all creators fairly and equitably, regardless of their geographic location. Yet your actions demonstrate a clear bias against Africans.

First, your monetization systems and policies overtly discriminate against African creators. TikTok has excluded African countries from its Creator Fund that compensates top creators. Instagram has not enabled its "Send Gifts" revenue stream for any African nations. YouTube's monetization rules have made it extremely difficult for African creators to earn. This biased monetization shuts the door on African creators trying to earn a livelihood from their creativity and contributions on your platforms. Many burn out and fall into depression.

Secondly, you actively censor African voices who dare critique multinational corporations or foreign governments. You package it as a violation of community guidelines. Despite publicly championing free speech, you have repeatedly pulled down, demonetized, or banned African creators for making completely legal critiques. This modern-day book burning silences vital African perspectives from being heard. Your platforms become unchallenged corporate bullhorns, rather than open public squares.

Let's be clear - Africa accounts for millions upon millions of your users. Much of your explosive user growth and associated profits stems from the African continent. Africans deserve far better treatment than being exploited as a captive monetization base for you while being denied true monetization opportunities themselves.

It is a moral failure that your platforms hinder the social and economic mobility of a whole continent's creators and storytellers. Every day you propagate these injustices, you are actively impoverishing the African content ecosystem and muzzling vital African discourse.

We call on you to immediately reform your monetization systems to incorporate African nations on equal footing. We demand you cease all censorship and deplatforming of African creators unless they violate globally recognized hate speech or harassment standards. Fundamentally, you must embrace African creators as equal stakeholders and contributors on your platforms.

Do not squander this opportunity to get on the right side of history. Show that you stand for something greater than extracting profits from Africa while suppressing African voices and creativity. The time has come to elevate African creators to the equitable pedestals they deserve and demand. We await your actions. 

It has become imperative for pro-Africa angels investors and software engineers to devote billions towards the creation of pan-African, African-owned social media platforms. Platforms built without the institutionalized biases that are rampant in many of existing social media platforms.  
DJ Bwakali
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