Twitter has begun integrating podcasts into the platform as part of its newly redesigned Spaces tab.
It marks the first time the social media company has dipped its toes into podcasting. It is also a natural extension of Twitter’s social audio feature Spaces, which the platform launched in December 2020 to compete with pandemic lockdown darling Clubhouse.
Spaces’ redesign introduces personalized hubs that group audio content with themes or genres of listening, such as news, music, sports, and more. Twitter listeners will find the layout fairly familiar if they have used other podcast apps, and will be able to quickly access personalized selections of live and recorded Spaces.
A spokesperson for Twitter stated: “We know that some discussions need more than 280 characters, and bringing people closer to the ideas, content, and creators they know and love is core to Twitter no matter where the conversations take place.”
The spokesperson added that Twitter’s internal research indicated that 45% of Twitter users in the US also listen to podcasts monthly, and that the platform will leverage user data to “automatically suggest compelling podcasts to help people easily find and listen to the topic they want to hear more about”.
For example, if a Twitter user regularly interacts with content from Vox or The New York Times, they will likely see podcasts from those publications recommended to them in Spaces.
Users will be given some input over the algorithm that dictates recommendations, however, as they can give podcasts a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” to let Twitter know what content is more or less interesting to them.