A new way to chat with your favorite writers and creators
Try Chat now in the Substack iOS app
Today we are launching Chat, a new space where subscribers can join conversations with the writers and creators you love most.
We are rolling this feature out gradually to writers and creators on Substack. You will see the Chat tab in your iOS app when publications you subscribe to turn it on.
Chat is a community space reimagined specifically for writers and creators—it’s like having a private social network with your favorite writer and fellow subscribers who, like you, sincerely appreciate their work.
Why we built Chat
As the quality of writing on Substack has blossomed and comments sections lit up with intelligent discussions, subscriber communities began to take shape. Some enterprising writers have taken matters into their own hands, hacking together integrations with Discord, Slack, and Telegram to cultivate communities of supporters.
For the last few months, our product teams have been working closely with a small group of writers to address this problem. The result is a simple-to-use space where writers can have more frequent conversations with the people who appreciate their work most. These are just the early days for Chat and all of Substack’s social features. There’s lots more to come!
Here are a few examples of how writers, podcasters, illustrators, journalists, comics creators and more are using Chat:
Sports journalist Joe Posnanski welcomed subscribers to chat by proclaiming, “Hey, it's like JoeBlogs Twitter!” and “Elon Musk isn't the only guy who can run a Social Media company.” To kickoff the space, Joe hosted live chats from Game 3 of the World Series from the field.
Hunter Harris uses her subscriber chat to bring readers together around more niche pop culture topics. “I’m always trying to think of ways to reach Hung Up readers with a greater level of specificity without stomping into your inbox to talk about something that’s not of interest to most of us.”
After receiving ongoing calls from subscribers for more community building efforts, comics writers 3 Worlds / 3 Moons use Chat casually as a place to speak with superfans “away from the noise of social media.” They’ve gathered subscribers for viewing parties of iconic movies like Alien, share early glimpses of new work, and hosted AMAs.
This Substack Reads publication will also be using Chat. Stop by our first thread and say hi:
Thank you to all of the writers who helped us test and build Chat: Bill Bishop, Wendy MacNaughton, Terrell Johnson, Elle Griffin, Haley Nahman, Marc Stein, Leslie Stephens, Bernard Hickey, Tic Toc Trading, Snowball.xyz, Hunter Harris, Darryl Cooper, 3 Worlds / 3 Moons, Jessica Reed Krauss, and The Isolation Journals. We couldn’t have built Chat without you.