I read a Nigerian boasting on twitter that there were more internet activities going on around in Nigerian computers and mobile devices than there are British users. I almost joined the numerous people on his TL and other creeps who comment on anything ‘Nigeria’ but stopped my aching fingers and rough palms (probably due to typing, or maybe farming) from coming to contact mid-air just in time. It is not enough to be internet-active, you have to be an internet activist.
Where the former generally applies to any and all activity online ranging from facebooking, to googling how Manchester is still ranking sixth or maybe ‘how to naturally grow my hair ten inches in two months’ (yeah! fat chance) to downloading ‘free gaming apps’ that can make professional gamers tear up in frustration or a very interesting search on how to become a successful ‘yahoo yahoo big boy’ without being caught, endless list really which yields basically three things; waste of time, money and resources, the latter is all these and more, more being key.
Being an internet activist means contributing to the internet almost as much as you gain, and gaining better than you receive. Many of my brothers do not even care to know on whether there are opportunities for them on net. As long as there facebook is running and they can find search results on ‘how to make Amala with rice powder’ no matter how unnecessarily irrelevant that is, they are happy and the internet has served it’s purpose. That was exactly why my hands stopped mid-air actually, we don’t utilize that rating! Why be one of the highest net users without being one of the highest earners from it? I reject that in the name of the web! So here, the internet is not an oracle to be prodded for answers without actually gaining something from it, though to be fair we have some badass tech-savvy money-driven internet activists like Bamidele Onibalusi of Writersincharge.com for seriously impressive and money fetching blog revolutions.
There is Nasir Abdulqadir Yammama of Verdant App, a mobile farmers guide to agricultural boom for Africans, he cam do anything creative technology, (Currently in Forbes 2017 list of 30 under 30, now ain’t that something?) . Some marketers on social media sites take full advantage and make serious cash, and some heroes in the world of web and software development but a strikingly frightening majority do not seem to see beyond entertainment on social media apps.
A lot of Nigerians and to a large extent Africans think the internet exists basically for one or a multiple of these reasons, and I couldn’t agree less.Here are some 8 things the average Nigerian does on the net to explain that high ranking on the internet-active charts and some productive suggestions:
1, Facebook – And I know none of you can argue! Facebook has become a second home to an average smartphone user, wether or not his network service is strong enough to load the images and posts on time. We post everything, from our travel plans to the death of family members. We spend so much time on facebook scrolling past ads and marketing pages without actually realising they might be our opportunity to financial freedom. Yes! Money can be made on Facebook while still having fun. I have highlighted how in my article How to make money on facebook and still enjoy it! .
2, Google- ‘Google, the great Oracle. I have come to you this greyish day, past the morning roosters and wilting farmlands seeking guidance, show me the way, tell me how to have more followers on twitter, my Chiefdom’. Such a self-limiting mindset. The amount of educative and financial aid materials to be found cannot be over-emphasised though it will only be fair to point out that some of us actually take advantage of it, we basically Google-home school ourselves, and properly learn how to take the net bull by the horns and make some real money, through back-bursting hardwork of course, many usually go there for the recipes and natural ways to bleach tips and as of recent, memes and GIF’s many of which are admittedly funny- the humour of Nigerians is top quality.
3, Twitter and Instagram- These two are together because they are kindred, one being better than the other depending on wether we prefer more pictures, or more news. While having followers on twitter and Instagram is needed depending on your venture, usually for online marketers to increase client-base, it is NOT the priority. The main thing is to have followers as customers that make you profit. So yes, it should not be all gossip and jamming, do some money jazzing too!. You can always look up how to make money using social media.
4, Games- The I store /play store wasn’t created mainly for you to download games Brother! No really it wasn’t. Just go check those monetized mobile game applications, they are being downloaded, that means people are making money, which means you too can do it if you have the skills and talent, which means you too can make money, which means I can stop talking now and move on to the next one.
5, Blogs- Aunty Linda Ikeji I have reached you. Blogs are not only fashion or gossip based. You knew that already? Oh!. Some years ago, 2006 to be precise, a 25 year old Nigerian woman started blogging in a cyber cafe as a hobby (Be honest, how many of you know that Blogs existed in Nigeria eleven years ago?). Today, she is hands-down the higgest paid entrepreneurial blogger in Nigeria. How? Even though Miss Ikeji’s blog is pre-dominantly an entertainment based one, and has been tagged a controversial blog by some and rightfully so. How she and many others made it? Read Why we need more Linda Ikeji’s in Nigeria.
6, Ebooks and magazine – Honestly I’m just including the magazine to give us a more diversified outlook but we mainly concentrate on Ebooks, Enovels to be precise. While the discovery of Ebooks especially the free ones is a milestone to the average African who like me has an unquenchable fire for reading, it could drag us away from the classical paperback which needs to be purchased. But unsurprisingly, given our literary and intellectual record, Ebooks do substantially more good than harm as long as you know where to get them. I have written them in my article, Free African Ebooks and where to get them. And what is more, you can write some pretty good Ebooks in your field of expertise and earn some decent money too. I did. Refer to I made money writing in Nigeria to see how. You may not even have to make it an E-book.
7, Shopping – While shopping online is at it’s easiest, just load the site, get your card and voila! It is still more than just a shopping site. Most sites like Amazon and E-bay also make provisions for sellers. You can be a seller too. Just get your product wether original or second hand, upload it with all necessary information and sell!. So by all means buy…and sell.
8, Emails – How many Nigerians of the younger generation know how to use a post office? A few I must say, I excluded which is not totally something of pride seeing as we use our Emails for mostly facebook notifications and occasionally job / scholarship quest(If you choose to ignore the indecipherable spam and fraud messages). If you are among the class of people who use Emails for job and scholarship hunting, I say you are right. Just add marketing, networking and subscribing to this blog, SheWritesAfrica to your list and you are good to go!.