Clubhouse: you haven’t created an account yet, but the app already knows who you are


Ten months after it launched in the United States, the social network Clubhouse has jumped into the spotlight in recent weeks. Driven by figures like Elon Musk or Mark Zuckerberg, the app more than doubled its number of users in the first half of February. There are already more than 8 million, according to data from App Annie.

If you still don’t know the Clubhouse, this is a social network that privileges the voice. There are no comments, private messages, photos (other than profile), videos or memes. Users come together in rooms (private or public) that are divided between speakers and audience. One of the great compliments that can be given to you is that it has the potential to put you listening or talking to some of the people you most admire, and can be seen as a hybrid between the radio and the podcast format.

There are, however, some details that make the expression of this social network not yet gigantic. First, it is still only available for iOS. This means that if you don’t have an iPhone or iPad, you can’t install it. On the other hand, you can only enter if you are invited by a friend who is already registered.

Clubhouse knows your name and phone number if you have friends registered on the app

And that is where the social network enters each user with a contact. That’s why when you register on the social network it does the same as services like WhatsApp or Telegram do. Ask for access to your contacts, so that you can invite whoever you want.

It is at that moment that, even if you have not yet created an account on this social network, if one of your contacts is there, it already knows who you are. This is because you already have what we can freely call a “ghost profile”, with your name and phone number.

Clubhouse sort your contacts by the number of friends they already have on the social network

As you can see in the example above from my list of contacts at the Clubhouse, the app uses data crossing so that I can know from the list of my contacts how many already have friends on the social network and what the number is. Another detail is that, in a way, your contacts cannot access the app silently.

As soon as one of the contacts on your list enters the Clubhouse for the first time, you will receive a notification that the member has joined and be encouraged to create a welcome room. Again, it is important to reiterate that this type of practice already happens in other services. See the example of Signal that sends a notification when one of your contacts also registers on the app (although it can be disabled).

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