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    Makers

    HomeWerk - @nathansvirsky-1427

    Document360 - @aakhilkarthikkeyanv-1456

    Wondder - @joannabienko-1432

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      Congrats @sigurdseteklev @kevinsimons-476 @gajus @devan-95 🙌

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        Thanks very much!

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        Makers:

        Gator - @atbaker

        PentryForms - @alexanderkalashnikov-1425

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          Late last year, Deutsche Bank had suggested 5% privilege tax for remote workers since they harm the economy by not using enough public infrastructure. And just weeks later, announced permanent WFH twice a week for their employees 🤷‍♂️

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            "Privilege tax?!?!?" For public infrastructure? They mean for trains (rail) and buses? Or the capital expenditure of bridges and roads? 👂Bad take IMO

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            Congrats on the launch Sigurd 👏

            I will also add a blurb about it in the newsletter :)

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              Thank you! That means a lot, Hrishikesh!

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                Makers:

                Skyrocket Your Team - @mayritiido-1281

                Bluescape - @vanessa-1156

                Hostman - @alena-1342

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                  Hybrid may not be the best way forward but it's at least a positive step. I heard Amazon is also considering permanent hybrid and they have been consistently sharing surveys internally to assess how employees feel about working remotely & their preferences post Covid.

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                    Well said, Hrishikesh.

                    Came across a blog by Darren about the considerations for going hybrid remote. Would be helpful for the community :)

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                      Thanks so much for the shoutout! 🙌

                      We've just enrolled in Stripe Climate for another initiative of ours (https://econub.com) and closed our first sales ever! 🎉 We made it be more like "Buy me a coffee" sort of thing, and already got 21 coffees over 2 days.

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                      Nice post Akash. This reminds me of the .nil? method in rails.

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                        There's also this Business Insider article that says Spotify will pay everyone SF & NY-based salaries, which is huge if true. Implementing global pay for 5000+ employees would be the first-of-its-kind move! Stark contradiction to the likes of Twitter & Facebook who have upfront said they will cut pay if you relocate from SF or NY.

                        Although the original article/announcement has no mention of this.

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                          Makers:

                          Mentalist - @thomasskyttegaardhansen-1264

                          Bergamot - @barbara-1258

                          Ricotta - @ajeya-1294

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                            Hi Shahul!

                            It's so funny, I was actually thinking the same when I woke up this morning. 

                            I tried Clubhouse yesterday for the first time and, as a curious newbie, I kept on browsing the rooms and didn't really put much effort into one conversation. 

                            My first thoughts : 

                            - Experience can be a bit overwhelming (especially when you use it as I did... so I'll try to be more focused and engaged in one conversation next time)

                            - Being in most of the rooms feel like listening to a Podcast, but I know that other people are listening as well, plus I have this "live show" feeling

                            - I feel the same vibe as any other social media: same discussions, influencers popping out, and a lot of people teaching you how to improve your "Clubhouse" presence

                            - I want to express myself, have a conversation (otherwise I'll just play a podcast). Forums feel more equitable in this sense because everyone can write something and read what the others say. We're not obliged to listen to the loudest voice or the guest star. We don't have to take the entire stage to make our voice heard.

                            Why not create my own room and invite my friends? But I can do a WhatsApp Signal call. At least I won't be tempted to browse what other discussions are happening and I can be present with them. What about inviting my team? Well, it's exactly the use that we have of our Whereby video room when we have our camera switched off. We can pop in the room anytime and see who's there. 

                            - Using Clubhouse to engage with users as Gumroad does. Sure, it's an easier way than getting in a Zoom event. And you can tune in any time, even if you didn't see the LinkedIn post or read the email telling about the event: just check Clubhouse and find that there is a Gumroad conversation on. But what happens when every brand comes on Clubhouse? How will we cut through the noise? 

                            So my feelings are a bit mixed about Clubhouse and its potential to revolutionize. I'm very curious to hear read what others think here. 

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                              Thanks for this, Sophia. I have only followed the popular media on what the Clubhouse experience is all about. So, this is quite enlightening and aligns with what I thought some of the problems might be.

                              Invite-only maybe sorts the problem around the quality of conversations. But how the conversations will be more inclusive is yet to be seen. Otherwise, as you say, it might just become a more fancy podcast.

                              Any thoughts on how you would try to express yourself in the next conversation you want to be part of?

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                                For general conversations? I don't know yet...

                                But I found a practical use case for Clubhouse that solves a huge and unanswered problem: practicing foreign languages. 

                                I've been in this field (instructing/learning languages) for over a decade and the ability to practice with someone else without the friction of going to a polyglot café or setting up a tandem is one of the major problems that keep people not practicing and improving their language skills.

                                I think the fact that is only audio can reduce the stress of people that are shy and don't like to feel exposed when they struggle with a language. 

                                I don't know how you can create easily breakout rooms from a discussion room in Clubhouse, but if so, I have tons of ideas on how to facilitate language practicing sessions. 

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                                  Hmm, that's a specific use case I hadn't thought of.

                                  I was thinking of it from a social media platform perspective where today I get to participate in text conversations when I want to, but in an audio conversation, I wouldn't know when to jump in and also if I have lost any context if I join in a bit late & so on.

                                  So, was interested to know how Clubhouse tackles such natural drawbacks.

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                                    I definitely agree. If you join late, it gets difficult to catch up with what has been said and run the risk of repeating or not making the conversation go forward. Maybe a transcript feature that highlights the main points would help? 

                                     

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                                Great points Sophia. I haven't used the app as much but from what I understand it seems to be a fusion of an events platform and a social network. So questioning on why you should be using Clubhouse vs say Zoom, Whereby or a podcast platform is well placed, just that Clubhouse seems to be aiming to combine all of those experiences.

                                To be honest though, I was quite lost on what I should be doing on the app when I joined. As you said, I am using other platforms already to cover all use-cases & don't have much complaints around it. Maybe I will explore it a little more and reshare my experience.

                                Also, I believe the point of having only one person speak, asking others to request to speak & of course the invite-only conditions is to filter the quality of conversations on the platform from the word go. For networks like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, content moderation of any form has always been an after-thought. So I feel that's going to positively impact the app in the future.

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                                  You're right, Hrishikesh, they did a good job of thinking about moderation from the beginning (though, I'm not so sure that it was for moderation or to create an exclusivity feeling that urges a lot of people to seek an invite, maybe both).

                                  Do you think the invite-only process will be effective much longer? 

                                  I'm not sure about that. Also, I can invite whoever I want. So if a troll comes in, he/she invites all his/her troll friends.

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                                    True, I think they will still need to moderate/regulate content but the problem would hopefully at a much smaller magnitude compared to the ones we see right now. They also have a number-verification process, right? (I don't remember exactly if I entered my phone number when I signed up). So that's an additional verification.

                                    Also, as you said, all of this is still possible when there a couple of million users but what happens when they want to reach a billion users & whether they will relax these restrictions.

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                                  Great points Sophia! 

                                  I agree with a few of your points! 

                                  I just joined Clubhouse a couple of days agao (thanks to one of my friend accepting my invite):

                                  - I was quite overwhelmed by the UI. Definitely does feel quite similar to other social media platforms.

                                  - Unavailability to Android users and being invite only is definitely quite restricting. I am not sure how it can replace Zoom entirely, especially with so many other features that Zoom/ MS Teams/ Google Meet video calls offer, screen share as one of the most used features of these calls. 

                                  - While being audio only maybe a sigh of relief for people who stress out on video calls, I believe Clubhouse at best can be a replacement for Happy hour/ Team Bonding meetings where people can be their true selves! 
                                  Audio has it's own charm when its come to increase personal connections.

                                   

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                                    I agree with you with the charm of audio! 

                                    I've been back to clubhouse since my last post and my thoughts have evolved a bit, though I still don't see its use case for team's communication: 

                                    - It is indeed easier to join a talk from someone you want to learn from, than joining a webinar (no need to wonder whether your camera should be on and no need to turn on the computer for people that don't have the zoom app)

                                    - it's much easier to express yourself in a room that has less than 15 people. Moderators actually invite you to. I also found that the discussions I joined in small rooms were deeper. 

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                                  Hey Prerak,

                                  True, the ability to travel the world while you work is almost like a superpower.

                                  We actually have travel buffs & nomads in the community who are part of an established company:

                                  - Steph (@stephsmith-11) worked for Toptal & is currently part of Hustle.

                                  - Frederick (@dinoscool3) works at Blockonomics.

                                  - Thomas (@thomcarter-983) works at ProcessStreet.

                                  - Ben (@Ben) works at Doist.

                                  It would be great to hear their thoughts on this - how easy or tough it is to be part of a company and travel frequently (vs. of course freelancing that is most times considered as the natural choice for digital nomads).

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                                    I want to preface what I'm about to say by saying that Google's culture of caring for employees and maintaining a 'Googly' helped me when I was an intern struggling with medical complications that required me to work remotely at times.

                                    It was lovely to enjoy the amenities and partake in the Googly ecosystem they had set up while still being able to work from home and be productive with my team. I'm sure I wasn't the first case, and many employees regularly traveled, so Googlers were very productive even when not in the same office.

                                    ========

                                    Not every Googler was there because of the perks, but some definitely were. Some of them were there for the money, some for the challenge.

                                    For me, what Google probably needs to do is define a vision that their employees can get behind so that there's a source of sustainable energy beyond the paycheck and perks.

                                    The paychecks and parks weren't enough for me, which is why I decided to leave Google. 

                                    My not-for-profit Grey Software started in the pandemic with no donations or physical infrastructure, so I had to rely on selling the vision of an open-source future and the fulfillment from attempting challenging problems and learning new technologies.

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                                      Great points Arsala.

                                      ...many employees regularly traveled

                                      You mean they were working while traveling?

                                      Of course as you pointed out, people were equally productive working from home or elsewhere. Which effectively means the transition to remote for tech companies like Google should be much simpler. It's just how keen they are to do so.

                                      But you're right, it first starts with defining a vision for all employees that's beyond salary & perks. I am sure this must already be the case to an extent. On top of this, those perks should also not be restricted just to office premises - there can be really creative ways of offering great perks to remote employees.

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                                        > there can be really creative ways of offering great perks to remote employees.

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                                      To me, this is indicative of why more companies and organizations should be rethinking the roles incentives and perks play in their corporate cultures. In the well-documented case of Google, so many of their (in)famous perks are hardcoded to their campus and offices - designed to ultimately get people to stay longer, work more. But this isn't as effective or motivating when people are working from home and more people are starting to open up to increased with remote working arrangements.

                                      Certainly there are challenges to transitioning (I can't even imagine the scale for a massive enterprise like Google). But maybe it's more strategic for Google to reconsider its culture? 🤷

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                                        I think it's going to be really tricky for them especially since they are planning to experiment the hybrid model. Whether their original in-office perks remain & for whom will be interesting to see.

                                        You're right, I think they should reconsider all of their incentives & how they want to structure it moving forward.

                                        Although I think the major issue they are talking about is the additional costs incurred in preparing their offices to let employees return to office safely. Plus their inability to maintain service uptime & filter problematic content across platforms. But all of this is purely got to do with the pandemic situation and the forced/sudden remoteness.

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                                          I guess my interpretation of this article (which to be fair doesn't really provide much insight) was that, Google's corporate culture, which has significantly been defined by its quirky campus and offerings, is suddenly a golden liability because of the forced and prolonged WFH situation.

                                          The way I see it, the additional costs to be incurred are consequences of how G's campuses and offices are designed and built to be both physically and psychologically considered as "perks." My assumption is that these compound the financial costs that go into preparing the offices to enable people to come back safely - if they keep certain items, they'll have to adjust them for safety; if they elminate/stop certain items, they suddenly have a ton of sunk costs; etc.

                                          Or maybe I'm just reading too much into this? 😅

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                                            I think that pretty much sums up their golden dilemma right now. How do they get people back safely, offer all those previous perks to some & yet not let it cost a bomb.

                                            Maybe it's easier to get rid of certain things e.g multiple on-campus cafeterias, play areas etc. Either ways, it's going to be a cost upfront.

                                            Anyway this is what happens when you plan everything assuming a default way of working (in-office) and those assumptions are turned upside down overnight 🤷‍♂️

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                                          Thanks buddy... 😊 

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                                          Ah, this is by far the top news of the week & I am sure you must be super happy when you saw this! 😎

                                          There's also speculation that Apple will be next to buy Bitcoin and offer it as part of Apple Pay. People are predicting this will cause another surge of 20-25%.

                                          Although I highly doubt there's any basis for this at all. Anything you read along these lines?

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                                            Ha, I do like when the Bitcoin price goes up. But honestly I'd rather see more direct main street, mainstream acceptance of crypto ("direct" because indirectly many retail investors in companies like Tesla and Square are now Bitcoin investors too 😆). I know in our case we've been seeing signifcant jumps in MRR since November, and so my primary hope is that news like this will inspire more SMEs and startups to start engaging with crypto in practical and value-adding ways 🤞

                                            Re: Apple & bitcoin, crypto twitter is definitely buzzing with such sentiments right now. It'd certainly mesh well with Apple's commitment to user privacy and their increasingly large presence in fintech. Having said that, it's always been in the public that Musk has an interest in crypto; and to my knowledge (not that I'm an insider in anyway 😂), this hasn't openly been the case with any big Apple execs.

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                                            Looks really neat & clean Dharmen. Are you planning to write a follow-up post on how you went about building this?

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                                              I haven't thought about it yet, but I think i can write one post on the same... 😊 

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                                              Makers:

                                              Bored- @sanketnadhani-1238

                                              MyLenio - @martincapeletto-1254

                                              Rymotely - @ahmedfallatah-1252

                                              Hyperinbox for Teams- @christopherchae-628

                                              Wrils - @george-1251

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                                                Great line of remote products this week. Congrats on being featured 💯