Ukrainians.co — a social network bearing a striking resemblance to popular Russian social media site VKontakte, which has been banned in Ukraine — is set to close, just three months after its launch.
Alexandra Strumchinskaya, a co-founder of Ukrainians.co, announced the closure of the project on her Facebook page on Monday.
“This is the situation: my voice is not enough to continue the project. The management of the development company (the co-founders of the network) have not only refused to develop it themselves, but have also rejected the possibility of transferring it to any other party that could help me fulfill what you were promised,” she explained to users in a video statement.
Ukrainian-language social media site Ukrainians.co appeared in June after two of Ukraine’s most popular social networking sites, VKontakte and Odnoklassniki, started to be blocked in the country after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed an order imposing sweeping sanctions on Russia on 15 May, including the Mail.ru Group which owns the two platforms.
The controversial order also demands that Ukrainian internet providers block all Yandex services, including its search engine and antivirus programmes DrWeb and Kaspersky Lab.
Yandex, VKontakte and Odnoklassniki were internet leaders in Ukraine in terms of daily audience figures, with the Ukrainian market the second largest after Russia for VKontakte, which is often dubbed the “Russian Facebook”.
Source: Afisha Daily (in Russian)