CHINA - 2023/02/15: In this photo illustration, the American social news aggregation, web content rating and discussion website, Reddit logo is seen displayed on a smartphone with an economic stock exchange index graph in the background.

Do you remember Clubhouse, the audio-based social media app that was basically Twitter Spaces before Twitter Spaces existed? Let me jog your memory: It was an app that flourished during the early days of the pandemic and allowed users to join different chats on different subjects as often as they like. And it was incredibly successful when it first launched, prompting other social media platforms to copy it a la Twitter Spaces, Facebook’s Audio Rooms, Spotify Greenroom, and Reddit Talk.

But after its initial popularity, the excitement around Clubhouse just didn’t stick. No one uses the social media platform and, of course, the duplicates pushed out by various other platforms didn’t all succeed either. As a result, Reddit announced that it will shut down its live audio chats on March 21, just two years after its launch.

In a post, the company said it wasn’t a lack of interest that led to the shuttering of the feature, but resourcing issues.

“Reddit’s goal is to become the de facto home for communities. Audio, like Talk, has a place in that. However, there’s significant work we need to do — like making Reddit simpler and building better subreddit infrastructure — before incorporating audio,” the company said. “Our original plan was to maintain Talk while we worked on this. Unfortunately, the 3rd party audio vendor we use for Talk is shutting down its service. In other words, the resources required to keep Talk live during this transition increased substantially.”

The social media giant said there are no plans to bring Talk or any other audio feature back in the future, but that users will be able to download any Talks that were hosted after Sept. 1, 2022, for a few months following the shutdown.

“We know this is not the update that you all were looking for,” Reddit said. “We strongly believe in the future efforts we’re working on and we would love to continue partnering with you all for potential future experiences for those open to it.”


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