Opinions, Tech

I sat in on a Clubhouse chatroom and here’s how it went

I was surprised to say the least.

words by: Alee Kwong
Feb 24, 2021

I recently got an invitation to download and use Clubhouse from my roommate and to be honest with you, I am still trying to navigate this new social networking app. My roommate has been ushering me into chatrooms and I have no clue how she is finding the most obscure subject topics from a homepage feed that is built very blandly.

 

The first Clubhouse chatroom I listened in on was about the death of Glossier. The speakers were all part of the beauty/skincare industry and ranged from bloggers, graphic designers, to people involved in brand marketing and strategy. It felt like a very formal place to be considering this was my first chatroom on Clubhouse. The speakers all worked for different brands and had all admitted to being on the Glossier bandwagon as a consumer. The entire chatroom session lasted for about an hour and was surprisingly organized considering there were about 12 speakers. They had broken up the session into three parts and had conversation resets to keep newcomers to the chatroom onboard with everything they had already covered and were currently covering. While I initially got “stuffy speaker panel” vibes, I was pleasantly surprised when they encouraged involvement from the audience at the end. The involvement wasn’t your classic Q&A either, no, it was them asking the chatroom audience a question and creating a discussion between the audience and the speakers.

 

This casual, lowkey interaction with the audience really got me thinking about the effectiveness Clubhouse has when it comes to connecting people in a way that breaks down the “influencer wall” that Instagram and TikTok have. Hearing the speakers talk directly to individuals was refreshing and in a way humanized them. While people can speak directly to their audience when they go live on Instagram or TikTok, there’s something that seems more personal about being in a chatroom talking about one subject and bouncing ideas off one another about said subject. Also, these chatrooms aren’t used to facilitate fan interactions (yet) and have been primarily about sharing ideas and thoughts.

 

I might be speaking too soon considering you still need an invitation to be a part of Clubhouse, so interactions are a little more intimate. But, I do have some hope in this app changing the landscape of social media and changing the way we connect with people.

 

Photo via EdSurge