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Axios Re:Cap
Katie Stanton on the rise of Clubhouse
Katie Stanton on the rise of Clubhouse

Katie Stanton on the rise of Clubhouse

Axios Re:CapGo to Podcast Page

Dan Primack, Katie Jacobs Stanton
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Feb 8, 2021
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Episode Transcript
Hi, I'm Dan primack and welcome to axios recap brought to you by Morgan Stanley. Today is Monday, February 8th. Tampa Bay is up Kansas City is down and we're focused on the next big thing in social media.
social media began with text Facebook status updates tweets LinkedIn job postings it then extended to photos and videos via sites like Instagram and Snapchat but the next social medium might be the original one voice late last winter just as the pandemic was really getting underway a new mobile app called Clubhouse appeared at first it was invite only reserved for Silicon Valley Elites, and it was audio only way it works is that a user would create a room focused on
Tickler topic and then invite a few other people to actively participate in the conversation everyone else in the room would listen although they had the ability to quote raise their hands at which point the moderator could either invite them to participate or ignore them and it's not just replicating Tech conferences or giving fantasy football advice on Christmas. For example, a 40-person cast used Clubhouse to debut a live version of The Lion King musical today Clubhouse is still invite only but the audience has
Added significantly it claimed two weeks ago to have two million weekly active users. And that was before high-profile Clubhouse discussions involving Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg Clubhouse. Also hid the real big Tech validation of being blocked in China and of being copied by Legacy social media companies like Twitter. So we want to go deeper into a clubhouse is why it matters and where it goes from here with power user Katie Stanton a former Twitter and Google executive who made an early investment Club House through her.
Capital firm Moxie Ventures that conversation in 15 seconds what could life after the pandemic look like now? What's next is the Morgan Stanley podcast that uncovers how people are adapting and finding new opportunities. Listen in as host scenario Clinton explores. What's next?
We are joined Now by Katie Jacobs Stanton the founder and general partner of moxie Ventures K. Let's start here. You are an investor in clubhouse. We should get that out of the way up front in general. What is missing from your perspective or was missing in the social media landscape that an audio platform like Clubhouse is filling.
I don't know if we knew that something was missing. But when we saw it when we heard it we knew we needed it if that makes sense.
I think Clubhouse launched out of really important time more than anything. So it's right at the beginning of the pandemic. There was so much uncertainty everyone was stuck at home and it kind of saw this need for human connection that all of a sudden you could kind of pop in at any time and have a conversation with people you knew people who were maybe one or two degrees away from you or somebody who is really smart on a particular subject like covid or vaccinations or how pandemics work and what is a panda
MC. So I think it just was something that connected all of us at a really important time
Kitty. There was a piece recently by Tech writer will Remus where he called Clubhouse the anti Twitter and his basic conceit was that on Twitter? No matter who starts a conversation anyone can get involved with it to a certain extent wears on clubhouse. The moderator has to agree to quote bring you up on stage and the vast majority of people cannot participate. Is that a good framing of clubhouse as the anti
That's interesting. This is the first time I've heard the expression anti Twitter the anti Twitter I can see they're obviously very different. You know one is audio one is written one is very like, you know public lots of people can engage the other one that you're almost forced to listen. And so I think that is, you know, just very different and you know, personally I love both products
audio obviously has been around for a while including a mobile phones and you and I are speaking on a podcast podcasting is taken off in the last couple years.
Is Clubhouse from your perspective the next iteration of podcasting or the next iteration of social media or
both? Yeah, I think it's a little bit of everything and I mean audio is the oldest social medium right? Like we've always been talking. We've always been listening. So I do think it's so fascinating that all of a sudden we have this massive audio app, like why didn't this exist before we had different versions of it, you know to your point that we had podcast and we had radio and all these other things, but but
Has just kind of and I brought together a lots of the best pieces of social conversations audio conversations live conversations again at a very important and unusual time
Clubhouse announced a couple of weeks ago maybe that they're going to start paying some creators, you know help folks who are organizing rooms monetize just like we've seen Instagram and Snapchat and another social media companies. Do you believe we are going to see kind of micro economies come out of Clubhouse and do you expect it?
An advertising will be a piece of that or will this all be direct from Creator to
Consumer? Yeah. I mean, I don't know exactly all the monetization plans. So I'm speaking on behalf of Katie and not the company but but I've heard Paul and some of the club has Town Halls talk about that and I love this idea. I think it's exactly right. I think he's learning from you know, some of the mistakes that other networks have made in the past by not rewarding creators. So I think the idea of making putting the Creator's
in terms of the power the tools and ultimately the monetization is a great idea doing that as early as possible and so I think we'll see a lot of interesting use cases and it'll evolve and it'll change and I'll figure out what works and what doesn't work but I think this model is really fascinating I think it's going to be really important to a lot of
creators is that the future social media there was a clubhouse room on Saturday night and Marc Andreessen was on there and part and he talked about how from his perspective the internet
creative economy has changed right from the original internet where there was no money at all because there was no money at all to advertising and now he use it kind of as a direct to Consumer model and that advertising was a detour so whether that be potentially Clubhouse or only fans or sub stack or things like that could you foresee advertising being in clubhouse or do you think it just jumps right over that which is the podcasting
model of course yeah I mean my guess is that it jumps right over it I mean because you don't necessarily need it I mean and the idea that your
Being the creators of content. I mean like sub stack may be doing and like others may be doing podcasters like you're probably doing I hope there's a really great add in this podcast by the way.
They're it. They are a great sponsor. Thank you Morgan Stanley.
So yeah, I mean, I think it's a great model. It's a scalable model and it's something that's going to you know work as a company goes Global right? As you know, we're seeing lots of different types of people from around the world joining the conversations finding those relevant types of creators and monetizing and
And rewarding them for creating that content is going to be a great way to scale the
business when Clubhouse launch and still actually, but when it launches a relatively small number of people who were able to access it kind of in its initial beta mostly kind of techies. Basically Silicon Valley folks its continued to expand. I know they're now millions of people on the platform, but it remains invite-only was the invitation model, which actually reminds me a little bit of Facebook in the early days when it was only on a couple different college campuses and expanded. Was that a smart marketing strategy in other words create scarcity, or was it just a bye.
Product of the fact that they weren't going to be able to scale that fast and it would have crashed if they had just opened the
floodgates maybe a little bit of both but you know, I think it's brilliant. I mean the idea that you get this personal invitation to come to this party online and I think what's also brilliant about it is that you get this notification when the person that you've invited has joined and so you're like, well, I just avoid it invited Dan to you know Clubhouse. He just joined I'm going to come in and say hi and then you and I are in this room and
maybe someone else who may know you also joins us room and we actually walk through the product and it's like if you go to a party, right you don't know anybody and all of a sudden, you know, someone sees you and they introduce you to other people that's a very warm and inviting experience. So, I think it's really brilliant. I'm actually shocked that no one has actually done it before and so I think it's been a really elegant way to build community build understanding of the product and help us scale.
One of the criticism particularly recent criticisms of
Has been that if I as a clubhouse user decide to block you Katie you now cannot access any of the conversations. I'm in even if I'm not the primary moderator. I might be like a tertiary or you know, the 10th person on the call that was created in part to prevent harassment, but it's also being viewed by some as exclusionary your thoughts.
I haven't been part of that before. So thankfully I haven't been obnoxious enough that someone's blocked me. So I haven't experienced that.
At hand but I don't know. I mean I think like it's good that Clubhouse reacted to bad behavior very quickly and they developed a zero-tolerance policy very quickly because these things can get out of hand as we've seen on other platforms and networks. So I see like how it can be a really lousy experience as well. Like what if you got block for just like, you know saying something kind of casual so it's one of those things that can be abused but look the product is less than a year old. I think they have maybe less than 10.
employees they have a lot to learn a lot to build a lot to do a lot of tests to experiment with so you know it's don't let perfect be the enemy of the good is often the case for early stage company so I think they'll continue to iterate make it a better experience
you and I were talking before we started taping the last time we had spoken probably was when we actually physically saw each other at an industry event pre-pandemic outside of La you talked about how you think Clubhouse one of the reasons it took off the way it did was because we're all stuck at home and we weren't out
cocktail parties and dinners Etc once that world comes back is that a problem for Clubhouse if those conditions aren't there and we can see each other in real life again
I don't think it's a problem I think that the way that we communicate will continue to shift maybe it's the case will be on clubhouse less maybe it's the case that people will be on it more you know I remember in the early days of Clubhouse I had terrible insomnia I was just very stressed out about a lot of things and to this day I have a bunch of friends we call ourselves
Insomniacs club and like I know when I'm up from 2:00 to 4:00 a.m. I'll see my friend Shane Mack because he's always there too. So I feel like these things will ship will go through, you know, different types of human behavior and scenarios over time. And you know, maybe the time were on clubhouse is different. Maybe, you know, we're on their last more it'll change but I don't think it's going to be a
problem. Okay last question. I'll go back to your Twitter experience. So they have launched a rival of sorts called spaces Facebook hasn't announced a rival yet, but I don't think there's ever been a good.
Social media idea that Facebook hasn't tried to copy at some point. Do you believe that kind of the Legacy social media companies can compete with Clubhouse maybe even beat it at its own game,
you know imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I personally don't think that the bigger companies can actually also offer a social experience that is compelling as compelling as Clubhouse. It is just a very native comfortable behavior on
You know, you know Clubhouse for example started to add stories. It would be a disaster. So I don't think the world needs like so many of these different types of experiences. So I think Club has has a really great shot at it
Katie Stanton who you can follow on clubhouse if you're in there at Katie, thank you so much for joining
us. Thanks for having me.
Dan Morgan Stanley is our sponsor of today's episode. But as always sponsors don't dictate editorial content Morgan Stanley's new podcast now,
Now what's next explores the possibilities hopes and triumphs of people trying to adapt to and look beyond the pandemic were facing join host. Scenario Clinton as he talks one-on-one with chefs entrepreneurs healthcare workers and even an astronaut who are all rethinking age-old assumptions for themselves and their communities search for now. What's next wherever you listen to podcasts.
Welcome back. What we're watching. Today is Tesla which announced that its bought 1.5 billion dollars worth of bitcoin and that it will begin accepting the cryptocurrency as payment for its cars solar panels and other products making it the first automaker to do so why it matters for Bitcoin holders is that the price soared more than 14% on the news topping $43,000 as of this taping why it matters for Tesla other than the fact that it holds
Bitcoin is that the amount represents over 5% of its cash on hand and raises new questions about eccentric CEO Elon Musk who spent the last few weeks encouraging his Twitter followers to buy cryptocurrencies even adding the hashtag Bitcoin to his Twitter bio. We're also continuing to watch Fallout from last Friday's news that Global Consulting giant McKinsey agreed to pay nearly five hundred and seventy five million dollars to settle allegations by 49 states over its work with opioids make
Her Purdue Pharmaceuticals in short Mackenzie was accused of helping to advise Purdue on how to quote turbocharged sales of the drug. And while it didn't actually make the opioids or Market them mackynzie's settlement does reflect how giving paid advice can also fall? Well a foul of the law and finally we are watching or lean Peterson in Idaho woman who recently won $200,000 on a lottery ticket, which is pretty good but not as good as what happened the next day. She went into a different store.
Bought another lottery ticket and won $300,000. What are the odds? Well, according to Idaho lottery officials one in two hundred and eighty two point five million and we're done big. Thanks for listening and to my producers Tim shovers Naomi shaven. Have a great national kite-flying day and we'll be back tomorrow with another axius recap.