Twitter is launching a Spaces accelerator program to pay live audio creators

Twitter announced on Tuesday that it plans to support Twitter Spaces creators through a new three-month accelerator program called the Twitter Spaces Spark Program. Twitter’s plans follow a similar creator three-month program that Clubhouse launched in March 2021.

The Spark Program is designed to “discover and reward” around 150 Spaces creators with technical, financial, and marketing support, Twitter says. For anyone who applies and gets in, that includes a stipend of $2,500 per month, $500 in monthly ad credits to spend promoting your Spaces on Twitter, early access to new Twitter features, support from Twitter’s official social media handles, and “opportunities for prioritized in-app discoverability for well-performing Spaces.”

To be eligible for the program, you need to meet the following criteria (Twitter has a more extensive explanation on its site):

Be 18 years or older
Have 5,000 or more “active followers”
Be located in the US (at least for Twitter’s first phase of the program)
Commit to hosting a minimum of two Spaces per week

Twitter is offering a slightly different package of perks compared to Clubhouse’s Creator First program from earlier this year. Creator First focused on connecting live audio creators with brands for sponsorships and building their audiences. For shows that were part of the Clubhouse’s “Pilot Season,” it included $5,000 per month — a bit more than Twitter’s offering — and access to new equipment.

Reporting from The Verge’s senior reporter Ashley Carman suggests the actual results of Clubhouse’s first accelerator program were a mixed bag. Creators loved the community Clubhouse has helped foster but found that the company couldn’t keep up its end of the bargain to connect shows and creators with advertising and sponsorships capable of supporting them after the program ended.

Twitter’s accelerator seems to be avoiding that “what comes after” question, at least for now. That’s somewhat understandable; it’s a hard problem to solve! But it also leaves creators with the same amount of uncertainty about jumping into another new opportunity from a social media company. A familiar place to be, but not exactly a comfortable one.

Applications for the Twitter Spaces Spark Program are open until October 22nd, 2021.