Twitter is opening up its Clubhouse-style audio feature to a lot more people. Any Twitter user with 600 followers or more is now eligible to host the audio-only rooms as the company looks to broaden the reach of Spaces.
The company began testing the feature in December, and has been slowly expanding it to more users. But while any users can join and listen in to the rooms, only a small number of users have been able to start their own conversations. Twitter said that it’s limiting access to users with 600 followers or more because those accounts are more “likely to have a good experience” due to the size of their following.
“Before bringing the ability to create a Space to everyone, we’re focused on learning more, making it easier to discover Spaces, and helping people enjoy them with a great audience,” Twitter wrote in a blog post.
Additionally, Twitter plans to allow some users to experiment with ticketed spaces “in the coming months.” Hosts will be able to decide how much to charge for access to their rooms, as well as how many tickets will be available. The company said hosts will “earn the majority” of revenue from tickets, but didn’t provide details. The move will be one of Twitter’s first — but not last — forays into monetization features for creators on its platform. The company is also working on super follows, a feature that will allow users to charge for access to exclusive content on the platform, and in-app tipping.
Ticketed Spaces: we’re working on a way for hosts to be rewarded for the experiences they create and for listeners to have exclusive access to the convos they care about most. soon, we’ll test ticketed Spaces with a small group where hosts can set ticket prices and quantity pic.twitter.com/uHxxvmo3wC— Spaces (@TwitterSpaces) May 3, 2021
That Twitter is beginning these efforts with Spaces shows just how important “social audio” has become as companies increasingly try to compete with Clubhouse, which popularized the “social audio” format over the last year. Clubhouse is still invitation-only, and recently introduced its own monetization feature. Facebook also recently previewed a number of audio-only features, and now allows Instagram users to broadcast audio-only live streams. Reddit and LinkedIn have also said they are working on new audio features.
Besides ticketing, Twitter is also adding scheduling and co-hosting features to Spaces. Both features are similar to capabilities of Clubhouse, where multiple people can manage who has speaking privileges in a given room. The company will also introduce new accessibility features, including the ability to pause and edit live captions in Spaces.