It seems that you can find Elon Musk involved in everything these days. And where Elon Musk is concerned, you can expect a lot of noise. So after he showed up in a Clubhouse room this week, Musk brought the app a lot of attention. So here is what you need to know about Clubhouse, an exclusive, invite-only chat app.
What is Clubhouse?
Clubhouse is an app that allows you to listen to other people's conversations with their consent. The way I view it, it's like a live radio show or podcast. You may also be allowed to participate in the conversation (you will be permitted when Borderpolar joins Clubhouse to talk about blogging and tech).
At its core, Clubhouse is an audio-only chat app where you only show your profile picture, and from then on, your voice takes over.
Where can you get Clubhouse?
Clubhouse is available on iPhone only so that you can get it on Apple's App Store. You can then listen to Clubhouse conversations on your phone. You can also use it on iPad, but its user interface is not optimized for iPadOS to not look good. Clubhouse is not available on Android at the moment, there is an Android app under development, but Clubhouse is not ready to support such a large user base yet worldwide. So, for now, you need a user of the “ecosystem” to be granted the opportunity to join. The only website the company has is joinclubhouse.com, which will redirect you to the Apple App Store.
Is Clubhouse invitation-only?
At the moment, Clubhouse is an exclusive, invitation-only service. You will need an invitation from an existing user to sign up for it. Every new user can invite two other people, but they can send more invitations as they use the app more and more. Clubhouse has had some issues already with hate speech and abuse, so it had to institute community moderation guidelines in October. It made a common mistake — believing it could trust users not to be to remain civil. It did not last.
You have to give Clubhouse your phone number and your real name (in theory). You can register the eventual username you want for the service before you even get an invite. The person inviting you needs your phone number. You’ll get a link texted to you, telling you to visit joinclubhouse.com/app and sign in with that number.
You can link your Twitter account to Clubhouse if you don’t want to set up a profile from scratch; it’ll even pull in your existing Twitter profile pic. Clubhouse also pushes you to link your contacts in the name of making it easier to find people to follow. Once you’re logged in, you can verify an email address with the service so that you can have an account recovery method.
The current limit is 5,000 people per Clubhouse room — which Musk busted through, of course. Users in that room started live-streaming the conversation on YouTube, which is a smart workaround for making a record of what’s said, but other than that, Clubhouse does not record any conversations. I don't know why you should care since you are talking in a publicly open chat room anyway, so privacy is dead. You can raise your hand virtually – in a Zoom-like fashion – as a listener and whether you will be allowed is for the room managers to decide.
As in most social media, you will find all kinds of fruits, but since this one has several celebrities, expect many influencer stuff. Otherwise, you can expect various topics from casual conversations, world affairs, and finance like Gamestonk and whatever you desire (or want to avoid like crazy).
So what is it overall?
If Zoom met with Podcasts and gave birth to a blind and publicly open Twitch, you would get Clubhouse. With a bit of Snapchat's “delete it after we are done” style. That's Clubhouse, and it could be the new social media thing. It sounds a bit entitled at the moment, but we usually get used to it.