A group of 35 women, brought together by a new social media platform named coto, had their first physical meet-up. Coto helps women build communities for social causes and expand their businesses.
HYDERABAD: Coto, which stands for ‘coming together,’ is a web3-based social community platform designed exclusively for women. Its primary aim is to foster transparent and decentralised communication, creating a safe and supportive environment while facilitating the development of a robust social network.
Presently, the platform boasts an impressive user base of over two lakh women, actively engaging in sharing thoughts, opinions, and inquiries, as well as passionately participating in various social causes to effect meaningful change.
Eve World Platform Pte Ltd is the owner of this application, founded in 2021 by media professionals Tarun Katial, Aparna Acharekar, and Rajneel Kumar. The platform offers an array of avenues for women to form communities and interact with one another, the most prominent being the ‘City Ambassador Program.’ In this initiative, women from a particular city unite to establish teams and dedicate themselves to addressing crucial social issues while raising awareness about the causes they champion.
Notably, Hyderabad has witnessed the formation of two such teams: Hyderabad Hitech Angels and Twin City Queens. Hyderabad Hitech Angels, spearheaded by Pratima Jaidev, a filmmaker and entrepreneur, along with Radhika C, Clinical Development & Operations professional, is committed to combating gender disparity with a specific focus on the wage gap between men and women and sexual harassment of women. On the other hand, Twin City Queens, led by Radhika T, a digital content creator and Adeline Reddy, an entrepreneur, with a focus on mental health issues, is equally dedicated to advocating for mental well-being and its associated concerns.
“We try to create a conversation around the issues that we have taken up on the app. This app has helped me overcome my own fears. Standing up against bullies was not as big of a problem for me as speaking in front of a camera was and I was able to overcome it,” said Pratima.
“I love to express myself, I use the app to showcase my work. What attracted me to coto was its exclusivity to it being a women-only social media app. It has a facial-recognition feature that pops up at any time to ensure that only women are using the app,” said Radhika C while talking about what made her join coto. “I am at a point where I feel I need to give back to the community and the city where I grew up in and together with my long-time friend Pratima, I have been involved in using my skills to create more awareness and guidance for women on the platform,” she added.
The Hyderabadi users of the platform were able to come together and meet each other recently for the first time since its establishment in 2021. To foster a comfortable and congenial atmosphere, an ice-breaking activity was thoughtfully arranged, guided by Shilpa Shukla, a psychologist and art therapist, which involved an engaging block printing experience. The event was graced by the presence of actor and anchor, Shilpa Chakravarthy, who is an enthusiastic user of the app and administers a community called ‘No Fakes No Filters.’
“Being an actor, we do come across several people who troll you on social media. A single picture posted by me on social media platforms garners such rude and mean comments at times that I feel I might as well not post anything,” said Shilpa. “However, on coto, I feel safe and sort of have a mindset that since it’s all women, the trolling would be comparatively less,” she added.
The event concluded on an enlightening note, as Sangeetha R, a Certified Financial Planner, imparted valuable tips and tricks of financial management to the attendees, empowering them further in their personal and professional endeavours. “There are two simple concepts, YOLO and FIRE. One stands for ‘You Only Live Once’ and the other is ‘Financial Independence and Retire Early’. In order to bring these two together, you need a certified financial planner. It is a myth that only rich people need financial planning. Anyone who is earning and wants to have a secure future, needs to take care of their finances,” said Sangeetha.