Women’s social networking app Peanut adds live audio rooms – TechCrunch


The women’s social networking mobile app, Peanut, today becomes the latest technology company to integrate audio into its product following the success of Clubhouse. Peanut, which started out with an emphasis on motherhood, has grown over the years to support women at all stages of life, including pregnancy, marriage, and even menopause. He sees his voice chat feature, which he calls “Pods,” as a way for the women in his app to make better connections in a more supportive and secure environment than what other platforms can provide. .

The pandemic, of course, likely sparked some interest in audio social media, as people who were stuck at home found it to help fill the void that in-person networks and social events once did. However, voice chat social media leader Clubhouse has since seen its model transform into what is now just a go-to feature for companies like Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, LinkedIn, Discord and others. .

Like many Clubhouse clones to date, Peanut’s Pods offer the basics, including an audience of muted listeners who ‘practically raise their hands’ to speak, emoji reactions, and hosts who can moderate conversations and invite people over. to talk, among other things. The company, for now, performs its own in-house moderation on audio modules, to ensure that conversations do not violate company terms. Over time, it plans to expand to include other moderators. (The company pays more than two dozen moderators to help them run the rest of their app, but the team hadn’t been trained in audio just a few days ago. They now have received the training, we understand.)

While there are similarities to Clubhouse in its design, which Peanut says will set its audio experience apart from the rest of the pack, is where these conversations take place – on a network designed for women, built in. a concern for security and trust. It is also a network where weight hunting is not the reason people participate.

Traditional social media is often based on how many likes you have, how many followers you have, or whether you’re verified with a blue check, says Michelle Kennedy, founder of Peanut.

“It’s all sort of based on status and popularity,” she says. “What we’ve only seen on Peanut is this’ care economy ‘where women really support each other. It really never was about’ I have an X number of ‘followers. “We don’t even have that concept. It’s always been about,” I need support; I have this question; I’m alone or looking for a friend;’ or whatever, ”Kennedy adds.

In Peanut Pods, the company says it will continue to enforce safety standards that make women feel comfortable with social media. This focus in particular might appeal to some of the women, and especially women of color, who have been harassed on other voice networking platforms.

“The only thing I would say is that we are a community and we have standards,” Kennedy notes. “When you have standards and you let everyone know what those standards are, it’s very clear. You have the right to give your opinion, but what you are not allowed to do is listed here… Here are the things that we expect from you as a user and we will reward you if you do and if you don’t don’t, we’re gonna ask you to leave, ”she said.

Freedom of speech is not Peanut’s goal, she adds.

“We have standards and we ask you to comply with them,” Kennedy says.

Over time, Peanut plans to use the audio feature to help connect women with people with specific expertise, like lactation consultants for new mothers or fertility doctors, for example. But these won’t be positioned as conferences where listeners are held hostage while a speaker buzzes endlessly. In fact, Peanut’s design does away with the Clubhouse “stage” concept to give everyone equal status whether they speak or not.

In the app, users will be able to find interesting discussions based on the topics they are already following – and, most importantly, they can avoid seeing other topics by muting them.

The Pods feature is rolling out to the Peanut app starting today, where it will reach the company’s over 2 million users. It will be free to use, like all Peanut, although the company is considering eventually launching a freemium model with some paid products later.

Update, 4/27/21, 3:40 p.m. ET: The article has been updated to note that moderators have now received training on pods.


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