Arecanut Farmers Conferencing Online through Clubhouse App

Now, online audio conferencing is made easy with the Clubhouse Application. The user-friendly Clubhouse app allows huge virtual gatherings of up to 8,000 numbers to listen to speakers through their mobile phones. It has the option for speaking of multiple users at a time, as in the case of radio with phone-in from multiple lines.
Recently, the Android version of the software is launched in beta mode with which millions of users worldwide are testing it by installing and using it on their mobile phones. It can be downloaded and installed from the Google Play website – having Ms. Leah Lamarr woman icon.

Test experience

  • Excellent voice clarity
  • Multiple speakers enabled mode
  • Freedom to opt to listen and leaving quietly
  • Largest gathering capacity

Participants

On the Clubhouse beta platform there are a different category of participants:

  1. Hosts and Co-hosts
  2. Moderators
  3. Speakers
  4. Participants followed by the speakers
  5. Others

On the starting screen called Hallway, recently active rooms according to the interests set by the person will be displayed. Other than the events, which can be scheduled for a fixed date and time at which only it gets launched, one can open a room on the so-called Hallway itself, which will be temporary. When all the persons from the speakers leave, the room will also vanish from the Hallway.

The Clubhouse has two different areas known as ‘Clubs’ and ‘Rooms’. Rooms are conceptually within a club but are visible from the Hallway.
The starting screen (Hallway) has options to search, invite, schedule events by using the calendar, user settings, start room, etc. In a meeting room moderator can invite the audience to speak, mute speakers, make a speaker as a moderator, etc. On the bottom side of the panel, there is a ‘leave quietly’ button to quietly walk out of the room. Plus mark button (+) to ping and invite people to the room, hand raise icon to signal the moderator to allow a person from the audience to speak, as well as the mike button for a speaker to mute and unmute himself manually is also present.
Hosts can host events on their own units called ‘clubs’. They can have the required number of co-hosts. The hosts other than the beginners with a birthday cap can form clubs and host events under their clubs.
One can start an event by starting a room by setting a topic as publicly or socially limited to his followers or a closed conversation with a very limited audience.
Events can be scheduled using the calendar icon on the start screen. If you are a member of a club, you can schedule an event under that club. A club can be started fresh and an event can be scheduled in it.
Those who are speakers can speak freely by unmuting their mikes.
Listeners can enter and leave quietly any time and any number of times. They can press the hand-raise button and express their wish to speak. Moderator can bring them to the speaker panel by inviting them. Moderator can mute a speaker or send a speaker back to the audience also.
Users in the room can ping others in the Clubhouse or they can send messages to those outside by sharing the event link.

There is a ‘Backchannel’ messaging option which has a paper rocket shaped icon, which allows messaging between participants individually or in groups.

Recent Events of Arecanut Farmers

In the recent event held on 4th July 2021 at 5 PM IST, under the Payaswini Club, areanutt farmers discussed how to use the Clubhouse medium for their advantage. They have discussed various aspects of arecanut farming in brief and also requirement of such technology enabled gathering for their advantage. It will be of great use for new farmers and extension workers to communicate latest technologies in an interactive mode.

H. Muralikrishna hosted the event, co-hosted by Mr. Rajesh K. Dr. Shrikrishna Bhat spoke on spices intercropping under arecanut and given some insights to disease tolerant high yielding varieties. Dr. Saran Kumar Rizal from North Bengal, Mr. Sadashiva Balila, Mr. Ramesh, Mr. Prasad, Mrs. Shobha, Mr. Amar have spoke on various aspects of arecanut farming. Initial activity is to bring more arecanut farmers into the club.

The arecanut farmers club under the Payaswini club has planned discussions/ expert interactions. The purpose of the club is to bring tech-savvy farmers together in one medium. Arecanut farmers discuss current topics according to their preference for encouraging the community members each other. in the following topics:

Topics related t arecanut farming

Arecanut varieties

Diseases of arecanut

Pest infestation

Intercrops

Machinery

Forums for farmers

Market watch

Communication tools

Transportation means

Lifestyle needs

Financial plans

Educational avenues

Social status

Economic goods

Employment opportunities

Family values

Life of elderly

Weather and land

Govt plans

Social security

Health, etc.

In brief, arecanut farmers have opted to use the latest internet-based mobile phone communication technology for their farming school and for interactions. These latest happenings shows how eager are the farmers to use the technology for improving farming by adopting useful media tools.

Forthcoming Events

The next gathering will be on 11th July 2021 to discuss various arecanut disease and their control measures.

Payaswini group on Clubhouse can be followed by using this link: Click This to land in Payaswini Club.

The success of the interactions depends on the members themselves. Clubhouse platform doesn’t recognize the participants according to male or female, rich or poor, geographical or racial origin or caste and creed.

Well Behaved Participants

To make the events successful, the following points can be remembered by the participants:

  • Participants should be genuine persons with real digital photo images. In the profile bio, one should express his values briefly, so that others keep recognizing him/her.
  • They can get better communication if they are better connected through other social media and OTT platforms also.
  • Share Instagram and Twitter accounts.
  • Members follow the club, moderator and each other well.
  • Participate with a peaceful attitude.
  • Contribute to the success of the club intellectually and by bringing in a good audience.

Disadvantages

  • It consumes a good amount of data from the users.
  • When a person enters the room like a speaker, his mic remains on and either himself or the moderator has to unmute him.
  • It can have an only audio conversations. A texting facility or direct messaging option is not available.
  • If the person makes another person moderator, the second person can eliminate the first person from the room.
  • Any public can enter public meetings. They can ping and bring in any number of active people on Clubhouse.
  • If a moderator leaves the room, the speaker becomes moderator and continue according to his wish.

Interaction helps people to grow. So if used properly, Clubhouse can be a productivity tool for the farmers also. With its user interface, Clubhouse App seems to be user friendly for the common farmers. Most of the farmers in Whatsapp and Facebook use voice communication mode. In such a situation, the success of Clubhouse events will be more in Indian farming environment.

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