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Tyler Cowen

Clubhouse Might Be the Nicest Place on the Internet

Can a social-media platform actually help restore peaceful discourse and civility online?

Just another Clubhouse celebrity.

Just another Clubhouse celebrity.

Photographer: Liesa Johannssen-Koppitz/Bloomberg

In the technology world, this may be remembered as the month when Clubhouse started to matter. Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg made appearances on the service. For a short time, Chinese-language discussions dealt with the Xinjiang issue in a frank and open manner, attracting wide public attention.

If you don’t already know, Clubhouse is a year-old social media service consisting of virtual “rooms” where people can talk to each other — by voice. That may not sound impressive, but many users swear by it, seeing it as a communications platform that could help restore peaceful discourse and civility rather than exacerbate tensions. I think of Clubhouse, which I joined last summer, as somewhere between talk radio and a dinner party.