About halfway through 2020 a new “Social Media” App called Clubhouse launched on the quiet.
When I say on the “quiet”, I mean it was launched for a few close friends to use to start with.
Well those close friends decided to open it up in a “minimal” kind of way.
And it’s starting to get traction.
How Do You Join Clubhouse?
First of all, Clubhouse is a Mobile App.
Basically, you have to be invited to use it by somebody who is ALREADY on it.
UPDATE: I’ve since discovered since first writing this blog post, that if you have the Clubhouse App on an Android, you DON’T need an invite. It seems an invite is only required for Iphone users.
I’m lead to believe by somebody with more knowledge about Clubhouse than I do, that the Android & Iphone platforms are on their own eco-systems within clubhouse.
So if you’re on an iPhone, you need a clubhouse invite…from someone.
If you’re on an Android, you don’t and you can waltz straight in.
hmmmmm, weird set up.
What Is The Clubhouse App For Social Media?
As I’ve already pointed out, Clubhouse is a Social media app that you download to your phone, it works on Iphones and allegedly Android devices.
It is NOT web based. (at the time of writing this blog post).
You’ll also need to provide your Mobile Number too.
For iPhone devices, you’d get it from the App Store.
For Android you’d get it from the Google Play Store.
Word of warning, there are 2 Apps, both with the same name.
One of them is a productivity app, that ISN’T the one you want.
To be clear, this is the one you want, at the time of writing this blog post, it looks like this:
I’m an iPhone user, so I can only confirm it definitely works for iPhone, although I’ve seen a few people say it works possibly better for Android devices.
I found this from their website:
“Clubhouse is a new type of network based on voice. When you open the app you can see “rooms” full of people talking—all open so you can hop in and out, exploring different conversations. You enter each room as an audience member, but if you want to talk you just raise your hand, and the speakers can choose to invite you up.”
That sounds to me like a place you go to talk to your friends WITHOUT actually meeting your friends to er, talk to them.
Are you lost yet?
Who Is Clubhouse For?
While they haven’t explicitly outright named Facebook and Twitter users, (arguably their biggest target audience) they have, though, said this, again directly from the Clubhouse website…
“We are building Clubhouse for everyone and working to make it available to the world as quickly as possible.”
I can’t see Facebook or Twitter and certainly not Reddit quaking in their boots anytime soon, because the biggest advantages those 2 platforms have is they are text & picture based.
In other words, they don’t require your voice in order to use it.
More specifically, if you’d rather type than talk then Clubhouse isn’t for you and that’s most of Facebook’s users and definitely Twitter and Reddit users aswell.
It seems to me this app will repel 1 core set of people that Twitter and Facebook serve very well:
Introverts. It’s NOT for Introverts.
The introvert user group are definitely Twitter’s user base due to the relative anonymity it gives, and also to a certain extent Facebook.
Being an introvert is fair enough and the problem with the clubhouse App is that because it’s NOT text based and it displays your real name and your voice means that, well, introverts won’t actually use it because they’re, well…introverts.
And if you have an Alter-Ego (pen name)…nope, you actually can’t use that either, because your name is tied to your phone.
In fact, the more I think about Clubhouse and it’s core philosophy, the more I can see a whole smattering of legal and social issues with the Clubhouse App in it’s current BETA state.
tldr: if you don’t want your name out there, …oh, and with possible strangers listening to your real-time conversations with other users, then it probably isn’t really going to be for you.
And let’s be honest here, even if you’re the most extroverted outgoing party type, this is going to be a pretty eery experience at best.
Remember, this is Social media, what you put out to the world is there to STAY.
Anybody could record what you say, I know that in the Clubhouse terms and conditions this is prohibited and against their TOS, but let’s be real for a minute…
ANYBODY can record you without your knowledge and post it precisely anywhere they like in a few clicks.
And by the time Clubhouse find out, it’s already after the fact.
Like I say, the more I think about Clubhouse, the more it repels me.
Remember, your privacy, in today’s world, is a commodity and you should treat it with utmost seriousness.
So there’s that.
So if all this still doesn’t bother then I can only assume you’re the ultra sociable type of person… now correct me if I’m wrong, but wouldn’t you rather speak to your friend face to face rather than through an app?
I get the popularity of whatsapp and facebook and twitter etc..but those things are text based and they can’t be ear-wigged by complete strangers.
From a social perspective, Clubhouse is voice based and so I can’t really see the point of it.
I read this excerpt, also from their website:
“Over the past three months on Clubhouse, people have shared their joy and dismay about Supreme Court decisions, their feelings of anger and helplessness over the murder of George Floyd, and their struggles navigating the challenges of home and work during COVID-19.”
That suggest’s it also has a political angle aswell.
It sounds to me like a parler type of place where the left and right can go to shout at each other.
Will Clubhouse take off?
If you ask me, no.
The fact it’s entirely voice based is going to deter too many people, specifically Facebook and Twitter users, for this to truly take off.
But it’s early days and that remains to be seen and I may end up with egg on my face after writing this post.
What we can agree on, is that Clubhouse are a new Social media platform that are definitely one to watch!