A ‘social audio’ app built to democratise mentorship has launched in the UK.
Wisdom, founded by Dayo Akinrinade, is described as an inclusive space where diverse people come together to have conversations that matter.
The platform is also now live in the US, Australia, and Canada.
Drop-in social audio could transform social networking because it takes interactions and conversations back to their roots, and is the antithesis of the heavily filtered nature of today’s visual-led apps.
However, unlike social audio applications such as Clubhouse, Wisdom is designed from the ground up to promote conversations that matter: conversations of substance on a topic of importance.
Members can chat live with experts in dozens of topics from parenting, fitness and dating to startups, mental health and beauty. They can listen live or playback the recordings on their own time.
When a mentor starts a talk, others can queue up to ask questions. A timer keeps the conversation moving so no one guest can monopolise the conversation, making sure all voices are heard.
“I founded Wisdom to democratise access to mentorship. During my time at OneTech, London’s largest diversity in startups programme, I noticed that diverse individuals from underrepresented groups lack access to mentoring,” said Akinrinade.
“I also personally experienced how impossible it is to use platforms like LinkedIn for mentoring. The inboxes of experts are inundated with ‘pick your brain’ requests which end up ignored, unless the request is via a warm introduction, which is itself a crystallisation of systemic inequality.”
Connecting with others in a meaningful way has been proven to make people happier, with deep conversations with strangers more enjoyable than small talk.
Wisdom aims to cultivate this, with thousands of people already signed up as mentors, making it the largest platform for mentorship in the world. These experts will be able to use Wisdom to share their knowledge, interact directly with their audience and give back while getting on the ground floor of the next big social audio community.
Inspired by Tiktok, Wisdom is powered by a deep-learning neural network trained to get listeners to the conversations that matter most to them from the moment they open the app.
These algorithms continually gather data including how a user interacts and reacts to a talk, while audio and text transformer models extract the topics being discussed and the sentiment. The more members use and interact with Wisdom, the more tailored the recommendations are.
Everyone who talks on Wisdom can earn its creator-only virtual currency Mentorcoin, which can be exchanged for gift cards redeemable at the likes of Amazon and Starbucks, or donated to charities.
Free to members, as part of its mission to democratise mentorship, Wisdom will also empower its mentors through monetisation tools so they can grow their own businesses. Monetisation features will be added to Wisdom later this year.
Akinrinade added: “Consider that Masterclass has no more than hundreds of experts on its platform and does not allow deep interactions and is not free. With Wisdom, we are building something very different.
“Ultimately what we are building with Wisdom is a new social graph – the Mentor Graph. This is not a messy ‘talk graph’ of anyone on any topic but a social graph of the people who can help jumpstart a career, or change a life for the better.
“People today hunger for conversations that matter. We believe Wisdom is the platform where these conversations can live.”
The Wisdom app is now available for download for iPhone, with Android to follow.