What Are Arabs Talking About On Clubhouse?

Published February 23rd, 2021 - 07:11 GMT
What Are Arabs Talking About On Clubhouse?
The audio-chat app has quickly attracted followers from all over the world, including Arabs. (Twitter: @ALGARNI_kh2017)

No social media network has triggered such great interest amongst people in a long time like Clubhouse. The invitation-only platform allows users to communicate through audio conversations, at a time when millions of people are limiting their physical contact with the outside world. This has equally been interesting for Arabic-speaking users, but what are they talking about?

Despite the easy format of the application providing users with the chance to create theme-focused rooms to discuss their different interests and express their views on various topics, many people voiced out their frustration with the fact that the increasingly popular app is only available for users of IOS, which means excluding millions of Android users, which has in turn inspired many internet jokes about this new "tech-classism."

Yet, the app has been growing in the number of users globally, including the Middle East region, where hundreds of rooms have emerged with different discussion topics, many of which have been political, social, or focused on self-development and individual interests.

Translation: "Since freedom of speech is limited in Saudi; especially when it comes to religion and politics, the country's clubhouse topics are mostly social such as Hijab. Women's right to work and how it's affecting men. Child marriages. Extreme competition amongst sports fans. A story of an entrepreneur who has brought coffee from Guatemala..."

Translation: "There is a clubhouse room about Shawerma and I listened to everyone in it."

Some social media users have noted that Arabic-Clubhouse rooms have featured the same topics people tend to argue about in person, which has sometimes reflected issues that have been deemed controversial especially when it comes to social issues, such as polygamy, anti-feminist sentiments, and others.

Translation: "I am in a clubhouse room that is discussing polygamy and it's getting very angry"

Translation: "A number of men have created a clubhouse room called (Would you marry a divorced woman or a feminist?"

Meanwhile, a number of Arabic-speaking rooms have been dedicated to discussions over topics that are not easily discussed in-person in Arab societies, such as the LGBTQ+ community.

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