Twitter and Clubhouse are locked in a battle to dominate a new form of audio social networking that feels equal parts podcast, industry convention, and conference call.
It’s routine for social media firms to copy popular features on rivals, the most famous examples involving Instagram copying elements of Snap and efforts by both YouTube and Instagram to copy ByteDance’s TikTok. Where Twitter + Facebook’s Clubhouse clone will lead is anyone’s guess.
For the uninitiated, the format has people gather in virtual “rooms” where a convening moderator sets a topic and invites people to speak. No new form of social media has been as promising since Snapchat debuted Stories in 2013. And like Stories, there’s a case to be made that the primary beneficiary will not be the originator.
Clubhouse, which pioneered this format, has built something special, no doubt. The discussions in its rooms feel timely, entertaining, and sometimes a bit edgy. Being in a room with celebrities and industry icons, even if you’re not a speaker, creates a feeling of shared presence that’s flat out electric. So it’s no wonder that Clubhouse invites are going for $125 on eBay.