Twitter Spaces have given Kenyans on Twitter something to look forward to every night. Log in to the social media network any evening and you will find spaces with as many as 200 or more people heartily engaging in spirited conversations.
Topics range from politics, entertainment, mental health, business and day to day life conversations.
Twitter describes Spaces as a “place to come together, built around the voices of the people using Twitter, your Twitter community.” The feature allows Twitter users to create a ‘room’ where other users can join for live audio conversations.
Each member is listed as either a “Speaker” or a “listener” depending on the roles. To speak, you simply send a request to the host and they will slot you in. The host starts, moderates and ends the conversations on their Space.
A twitter user, Bravin Yuri, has been hosting spaces for a while now. I was enchanted after tuning in to his live audio sessions and decided to get his opinion on the latest Twitter feature.
Yuri believes that Spaces has made it possible for more users to engage each other compared to the normal Twitter timeline.
“The Twitter Spaces have given people a way to discuss issues and connect. Most people barely engage with their followers/audience in conversations especially on Tweets due to either many notifications or less characters to explain themselves but with the Spaces they can discuss various issues in depth.” Yuri said.
The Spaces also make it possible to have a radio-like discussion where many can give their input. With the pandemic and people not being able to meet, it’s also a way to have several debates.
“If well adopted they can really do so much. From my Space I realized people need to talk but they just lack a platform to express themselves. The spaces have provided that platform. Some people also need to share their opinions without necessarily their faces being seen so their voices are heard without their actual faces being seen too.”
Visual platforms like Instagram require users to put in an extra effort to look the part before hosting a live session. Spaces is more seamless. On one of Yuri’s debates, some speakers were able to engage while driving and partaking in other activities.
Yuri said he also appreciates that a bigger number of the audience can respond directly.
“Unlike the other platforms where we have the live videos streaming and the audience is left to just respond in comments or join the live video chat one person at a time, the Spaces allow upto 10 speakers at a go creating a mode of discussion.”
Apart from Yuri, other Twitter users already making headway with their discussions on Spaces include @NjeriThorne, Boniface Mwangi among others. Spaces has allowed speakers from all walks of life to offer a diversity of opinions on various topics.
“I can say my Space has really given people so much hope since the feedback I get is overwhelming. Many people love the discussions Ranging from mental health to politics and I can say the future of Spaces is really great,” Yuri said.