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Chinese video app Vskit thrills African youth, bolstering bilateral ties
Date : 2019-09
Chinese video app Vskit thrills African youth, bolstering bilateral ties

By Xinhua - Global Times Source:Xinhua-Global Times Published: 2019/9/4 17:43:40

Video app Vskit is addictive, and "I cannot stop using it," said Kenyan Claire Fenty, referring to a Chinese-developed app specializing in African, short-video sharing.    

The app, designed by Transsnet, is a joint venture between two Chinese tech giants and has attracted more than 12 million subscribers since its launch in 2018, most of whom are in sub-Saharan Africa.

Like many active, young users, Fenty said she uses Vskit for hours every day. "When there is a good location, there is enough light and I see something interesting," she said, "I want to upload to my Vskit at that time."    

According to the app's developer, the name is composed of "V," meaning video and victory, and "skit," meaning a short dramatic piece made by amateurs.    

Lin Minqi, Vskit's head of overseas business, said he believes an innate musical talent is widespread in Africa.    

"Many people here like to express themselves in front of the camera by singing and dancing, which is an ideal cultural foundation for creating short videos in Africa," he added.    

According to him, the company attaches great importance to "content localization," and has set up a creative team composed of local employees to localize the content of short videos.    

"Our team discusses interesting ways of short-video shooting, then we reinterpret them in local languages and perspectives, to finally produce interesting clips that are specific to the local taste," Lin added.    

The team's efforts have proven effective. 

"I like Vskit," Fenty said, "because it gives you a chance to showcase your creativity and you also get to learn from the people there."    

Kenhillary Owuor, a 24-year-old Vskit celebrity, said that Vskit is an amazing app because of a lot of things that it involves, like a range of ages and a range of talent.    

In recent years, cooperation between China and Africa has boomed, with an increasing number of Chinese companies setting up shop in Africa, bolstering people-to-people ties. 

African experts have said that platforms such as Vskit can not only help the Chinese to better understand African customs, but can give African culture an opportunity to shine around the world.    

"When I'm tired, I'll check comedy videos [on Vskit], which are good for entertainment and relaxing," Owuor said. "I think people should use Vskit."