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Chinese flock to freewheeling US chat app Clubhouse

Audio-based social-media platform becomes free-speech haven for mainland users

The Clubhouse app had two million users globally as of Jan. 24. While the company did not break out users by region, it said the app has been growing quickly in Asia. (Photo by Yuki Kohara) 

HONG KONG -- On a recent weekday evening, Selina, a writer from mainland China who works overseas, entered an online chat room titled "The Politically Incorrect Group" on the new social media app Clubhouse.

She ended up spending five hours in the Chinese-language chat room discussing topics ranging from political systems in general to human rights in China with hundreds of people from Hong Kong, Taiwan as well as on the mainland.

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