Usually, writing is a lonely endeavor. Yet it is 11:00 p.m., and I am working on drafting my next novel with my friends. Every day, seven people from six different time zones meet with me for Pomodoro style sprints. Yes, you read that correctly. It is close to midnight, and I am writing with my friends. Repeat. I am in my pajamas and bunny slippers, getting words to paper because I have friends checking on my progress. This scenario is just one of the ways people are using the newest form of social media: the Clubhouse app.
When I leave the room with my friends, I’ll pop into a room where someone is sharing a live reading of folktales. In the morning, I can go into a room and hear a motivational discussion or a brainstorming session for podcasters, and the list goes on.
What is Clubhouse? The easiest way to describe it is Clubhouse is an open door Zoom chat without the camera. This means not having to fuss with the over the top clothing and makeup. You only interact with your voice.
When you sign up for the app, you check off a list of interests. Based on those interests and friends you have in the app, rooms that might be of interest are on your home screen. It’s as easy as pressing on the title, and you have entered a room.
The room has moderators and an audience. The moderators discuss a topic and open the floor to the audience for questions. I am shy and don’t raise my hand to speak, but that hasn’t interfered with my experience. By listening to questions, I hadn’t thought to ask. I’ve learned: ways to make my Instagram profile more engaging, the newest Pinterest rollouts, how to spot social media predators, and ways to present myself more confidently and professionally. That was just in the past three days.
This would also be a good time to specify that Clubhouse differs from podcasts and the other social media outlets because it lives. So the discussions are authentic. There are functions in the app to remove someone from conversations if they are misbehaving, making the atmosphere a safer place to discuss topics.
The next question is how does one gain access to this great resource. For the time being, the app is only available to Apple products, and access to the features is by invitation only. However, there have been mentions of it eventually opening to Android. If you download the app and submit a request to join, the app finds friends and asks if they want to invite the new person into the fold.
So, if you have an Apple device, like hearing or participating in live conversations about any topic you can think of, Clubhouse is something you’ll want to try.