Tag Archives: Podcasts

Behind Clubhouse’s Meteoric Rise: User Obsession and Timing

Everyone at once seems to be talking about Clubhouse, the 11 month old social media app that has attracted the likes of Elon Musk, along with a $1 billion valuation. I found myself wondering, why is this app so popular?

The basic architecture seems pretty simple: Zoom without the video, plus the ability to see which discussions are happening now. But this seemingly simple product has grown from zero to 10 million users at warp speed.

The timing of the launch, along with the user obsession of Clubhouse’s founders, seems to have driven this incredible growth.

Clubhouse launched in April 2020, just weeks after the lockdowns began. What better time to debut an app that connects people? And Clubhouse connected us in a live, personal, and serendipitous way. Unlike Twitter or Instagram, you never knew who would show up. These chance interactions were precisely what we were missing while stuck in our houses.

…Hoover said he believed the ephemerality makes the app special. “It better reflects how we communicate in the real world and encourages a more authentic conversation,” he said.

More from Wired:

Clubhouse arrived at a perfect moment. It delivered spontaneous conversations and chance meetings to people stuck at home.

Clubhouse’s founders have also eagerly sought feedback from day one:

Every Sunday, thousands of Clubhousers attend a town hall with the app’s two cofounders, Paul Davison and Rohan Seth.

This strikes me as brilliant and perhaps comes from their history of having built social products before, some of which didn’t make it.

Since I use Android rather than iOS, I actually haven’t tried Clubhouse yet, but I look forward to checking out their forthcoming Android app.

What do you like or dislike about Clubhouse? Let us know in the comments below!

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I Listened to Sammy “The Bull” Gravano’s New Podcast

It’s awesome! Sammy “The Bull” Gravano, Gambino crime family underboss turned government witness, released the first episode of his new podcast today. It’s called “Our Thing” and you can see it here.

I found it very engaging. The style is spare and fast-paced. The first episode covers the planning of a hit on Genovese family boss Vincent “The Chin” Gigante and also Gravano’s later arrest and cooperation with the federal government.

This episode includes interviews with both Gravano and the FBI agents who caught him, so you get a reality check on what could have otherwise been a self-serving narrative.

I found the sound effects really enhanced the story, which is rare in podcasts, where I find they generally detract. Give it a listen! The next episode in this series, which took two years to develop, should come out in the first days of 2021.

The Only Health Podcast That Makes Me Laugh Too

Lee Syatt may not be famous (yet), but he’s a hilarious comedian. Unfortunately, he’s also well over 300 pounds at 5’4″. Lately, I’ve been enjoying his new podcast What Was I Thinking?, where he is detailing his efforts to get in shape.

I find myself laughing hysterically walking down the street as people distance themselves from me for reasons far beyond COVID. If you’d like to do the same, check out his podcast and also his new Patreon, where Lee works with his brother (who happens to be a noted personal trainer) to get healthy.

As someone who once had many of the same problems as Lee, I wish I’d have had this show when I was losing weight!