Kenyan Village With Limited Internet Takes to Twitter

An official from a small village has taken to the social network as a warning system for his neighbors.

By Sajid Farooq
|  Thursday, Feb 16, 2012  |  Updated 11:23 AM PDT
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A small Kenyan village has taken to the San Francisco-based Twitter.

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When Twitter chairman and co-founder Jack Dorsey sent his first tweet from the bison compound at Golden Gate Park to a few close friends, few cared.

He says he now realizes the world wasn't ready for his "I look at the Bison Paddock buffalo" in 2000.

Fast forward 12 years and the world is more than ready.

A small Kenyan village has taken to the micro-blogging site to protect its animals and homes from intruders.

A story was published in an Australian newspaper Thursday that told the story of an administrative chief named  Francis Kariuki in the Kenyan village of Lanet Umoja, who sends alerts to his fellow villagers via the San Francisco-based startup.

Kariuki said many people in his village can't afford smartphones or computers but he has taken to the social network to send alerts about missing children, harsh weather conditions or threats to livestock to the area's 28,000 villages.

He said villagers are able to access the tweets through shared Internet-connected phones or computers or as text messages that are forwarded to their standard phones.

This week he saved a neighbor from intruders when he sent a tweet at 4 a.m. that their house was being robbed.

Within minutes a group of villagers surrounded the home to defend it.

"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," Kariuki told the paper.

Twitter can't buy PR like this.
 

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