African village chief uses Twitter to fight crime and save the day.
Chief Francis Kariuki’s Twitter account is so famous around his village, even thieves follow his tweets.
Many of us use Twitter to talk about random, sometimes mundane things going on in our daily lives. But a Kenyan village chief uses the micro-blogging site for something far more important than telling people what he had for lunch — Chief Francis Kariuki actually uses Twitter to fight crime.
Kariuki’s Twitter account is rather bare — he hasn’t tweaked it or even changed his icon. He also around a thousand followers, but based on past events, it’s pretty obvious that many of his village’s 28,000 residents follow his updates on the site. In fact, his Twitter account is so famous, even criminals monitor it.
Once when a group of thieves broke into a house of a school teacher, Chief Kariuchi merely had to tweet about it for his people to gather around the house and prevent the thieves from being able to escape. He also regularly posts updates about lost animals like the red cow in the tweet below that was later found tied to a pole after he announced its theft.
A red cow stolen at around 7 PM this evening from around Kamurunyu Primary school. If seen report to chief.
Aside from using Twitter to fight crime and save the day, the chief also treats is as a sort of a digital bulletin board for his village. He regularly posts words of encouragement as well as job openings and seminars. “Twitter has helped save time and money. I no longer have to write letters or print posters which take time to distribute and are expensive,” he says.
Unlike many of us who update Twitter online, Kariuiki texts his tweets. The people in his village also subscribe to his updates using a third-party text-based Twitter app on their cell phones, because most of them cannot afford smartphones. In the near future, the chief plans to use the micro-blogging site to promote peace all over Kenya as the country nears its presidential election slated to take place later this year.
And then there were 1 Billion:
Twitter hits 500,000,000 accounts, set to hit one billion in 2013
Only 300 million or so tweet exclusively about Justin Bieber.
Congratulations to microblogging website Twitter: Today, the rapidly growing social media platform registered its 500 millionth user. Since its launch in 2006, Twitter has experienced explosive growth in part due, in part, to its being embraced by tweet-happy high profile members such as Lady Gaga andPresident Obama. At its current rate of growth, Twitter will have one billion users sometime next year.
Though Twitter’s milestone may sound impressive, it’s important to note that only about 1 in every 4 Twitter accounts are active. And social networking king Facebook has about the same number of people— half a billion — active on its site every day.