Saturday, 19 October 2019 10:22

Kik gets new owners, ads Featured

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Kik gets new owners, ads Kik logo

Embattled social media platform, Kik, has found reprieve with a new owner announced in a post on Kik.com. 

The platform had originally been slated for closure on 29 October, 2019.

The new owner, MediaLab owns a number of other internet brands including Whisper and Datpiff. But with 300 million users, Kik will be, by far, the largest addition to their stable.

MediaLab leaders describe themselves as "a team of technologists, product managers, designers, and community builders who geek out over building cool stuff for large scale audiences."

The MediaLab post lauds Kik's efforts for creating a connected and shared experience amongst people regardless of geography or time zone, remarking that the Kik community is reminiscent of the promise of early internet years.

"Whether it be a passion for an obscure manga or your favorite football team, Kik has shown an incredible ability to provide a platform for new friendships to be forged through your mobile phone. As a group of non conformists ourselves, we resonate with the kik ethos and felt this was a community we wanted to help continue."

The post cites plans to make the Kik app faster with larger groups sizes, eradicate spam bots, unwanted messages and also inactive admins.

The video chat capability will be discontinued along with the third party bots platform. But RageBot - used in many groups to weed out spam and bots - will be retained.

Controversially, although probably inevitably, MediaLab plans to introduce ads to the app; someone has to pay for all that bandwidth. The post promises that ads will not be intrusive, however and should not take away from Kik's value to its users.

It will be interesting to see how an app that is used by many for its anonymity juggles user expectations around data privacy.

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