Medium, well —
18 September 2019
When I posted, I wasn’t thinking of the bit of writing I point to in August as a self-prompt to get to looking into what’s gone on with Medium, but it’s been that, to a degree, this week. A little catch-up on the fortunes of that high-profile tech venture is overdue for me, anyhow.
The item itself, I should say, wasn’t written with the idea of another or wider audience than anything I put up on this site gets. (I haven’t circulated it, beyond asking a couple of friends who won’t see the post here to give a read.) But it wasn’t written for here, either, on the other hand. And Medium, plainly enough, is designed as a setting for stuff of this general kind. To my eye, at least, it fits pretty well over there.
The Medium folks naturally want to encourage a more earnest spirit of self-publishing than I’m inclined to in this. It’d seem that that’s especially so since the determination that the self-publisher is the customer around which everything in their business model should revolve, not all that long ago. This shift or narrowing in the company’s orientation is something I was aware of but really might’ve been paying better attention to than till now I have.
If you have anything to suggest reading or listening to on the subject, please do, below. I’ve found Nieman’s May 2018 report a helpful starting place, and I’ve listened to Hacker Noon’s pod-ramble, likewise from that spring, about Medium’s being so great until, whoa dude, it wasn’t.
A little bit tangentially, let me mention another interview recorded around the same time, not concerned with Medium directly, but covering a lot of the same ground that discussion around social media, micropublishing trends, and Ev Williams’ dreams of a better internet tends to occupy — with Ernie Smith, who made his name on Tumblr and whose current project, Tedium, isn’t on Medium anymore, by Simon Owens (whose Business of Content is, yet).