Medium, a Story of Frustration
My thoughts on the new Medium . . . web-version.
The New Profile Page
- All short pieces that are behind a monetized pay-wall are now freely available. That doesn’t make cents. . .
Even though the new payout formula has resulted in a 90% reduction in payment for me and a lot of other writers, taking that last bit away is frustrating. . .
2. Followers are now a number and I can no longer see who they are. . .
3. I can’t see who I’m following. . . Oh, wait, there’s a workaround or two. . . You can go to “Customize your interests” in the drop-down menu or type in https://medium.com/me/following/people
4. I can no longer access the pieces I’ve liked and go back to those pieces if I want to share them, or re-read them. . .
5. I can no longer see anyone else’s replies. That was useful to help determine if someone was a troll. . . I can only access my replies by looking at my stories which includes everything, not just stories. . .
6. I can’t see what my friends have clapped for. . . Following someone else’s reading trail is a nice shortcut to great writing. . .
7. I can’t see if someone is still on the platform — reading but not writing. . .
8. I can’t see if someone has a legitimate follower base or if they’ve gamed it by following everyone on the site. . .
9. The profile page doesn’t list the publication I edit/own.
10. The profile pages don’t seem to display your notifications right now. . .
The Front Page
- The Icon, is that really a logo? What does it say? Am I waiting for an image to load? Is this the Three Dot site? Oh, it’s an ellipse? I have a B.A. in Philosophy, not marketing, however, I think it’s more like Medium has de-branded than rebranded and I don’t know why they’d do that when Medium is fantastic and lends some credibility to every piece written on the platform.
- The Medium text looks smooshed. It’s no longer bold. . .
- Why take away the top navigation bar? What purpose does offering less navigation options offer?
- The topics tags now have the same position the old tags had. . . Tags were better. . . Why? I could get very customized reading that way and it was easier to find new pieces and new writers. . . If I wanted to read the top pieces written about rain or roses, I could. I could also read the latest pieces on those tags. The alternative now is to do a search and that takes more steps. . .
- I don’t like to be told what to read, I want to choose. This is why I’ve never been a huge fan of topics over tags. . . It’s why I don’t want to read the first article at a publication, or the second, or third. . . I want to scan the menu and make my own selection. This “beta format” frustrates me. . .
- The writers I follow gallery doesn’t change and I can’t customize it. Also, the network of writers I follow section doesn’t include everyone I follow. . . It has never felt like it includes more than thirty writers. . .
- Trending stories displayed on the top of the page returns us to the situation where popular articles become more popular and quality articles are missed. . . Also, I almost never want to read what everyone is reading. . .
- I’m not surprised or delighted by new finds. . . In the older Medium days, the side rail display of Editors’ picks offered the thrill of seeing unusual pieces that often included writer friends or even sometimes me. . . Now I only see things that don’t interest me, lifehackers mostly and the subtitles have been wiped away, what’s up with that?
- What happened to audio? Remember when you used to display audio stories on the homepage?
In no particular order. . .
- I know you tried to promote fiction and poetry, I still love you for that. . . Have you given up? Can you stick with it? Put it back on the front page again? I think a lot of people would like a little escape. . .
- Payments. . . Okay, I’m really happy that some writers are making over 40K a month, or at least one a month is. But it feels a little like society — too much inequity. . . Spread the wealth around, even if it’s only pennies. . .
- I like white space, but it seems like a missed opportunity that you’re giving us so much of it on the home page where you could be highlighting off-beat things instead of another article that has been SEO’d and optimized to increase scroll thru. . .
- Why is it so hard to find new publications under customize your interests?
- Why didn’t you love tags as much as I did?
- Why are there no social media sharing links on the articles? That’s rather unhelpful. . .
- I’ve tried to stop using ellipses but your new logo, well. . .
I still love you Medium.
I hope these are just growing pains we’re experiencing. Maybe it’s Mercury Retrograde, I don’t know. . . Did you consult the stars before you relaunched? (No, I’m not serious, but did you consult a focus group?)
I love that you’ve given me a place to write and connect with people. I love that anyone can write here. I have learned a lot and grown as a writer sharing my work here and I owe that to this platform.
Thank you Medium. . .