What is Medium and Why Should I Care? #blogging #journalism

August 27, 2013

in Blogging, COP's Communities of Practice

Screen Shot 2013-08-27 at 12.08.03 PM

Ok. I have no idea. Now perhaps a few months back I saw my first “Medium” post. Then a little later I read Phil Wolff’s great post on Personal Clouds. I asked him about it and curious put my name down to write a post too. I had to wait – don’t know why (beta?).  I certainly wasn’t sure of the benefits other than it might give a post I write more visibility or perhaps reach another audience when / if the invite was confirmed.  A few weeks ago I received an invite to write.

Over the weekend I knew what I wanted my first post on Medium to be about. It’s not on a subject I’d normaly write about. I’d been writing it in wordpress so when the time came I simply copied and pasted it into Medium. This didn’t really help me experience the “blogging” editor side of medium.  I did a share to ask for “comment” and suggestions before publishing although other than the link there seemed to be no real instructions. I published my post this morning.

We all know what a medium is. It’s a third party or element that helps share some message. The problem is I don’t know how it is helping to share my message or really likely to engage with me. In fact The Atlantic provides a pretty good summary. As I’m not paid to write for Medium my post “Indian Women — No Right to Say No!” takes apparently 7 minutes to read. I don’t know if 4 minutes is better, or 11 minutes. This is apparently what the founders believe. I understand stories. I understand the need for an editor. I also know some stories are time-bound and mine is an in the moment piece. In their “welcome” statement the founders outline 1, a nice blog editor (yes it is maybe), 2, the ability to get editorial input. Maybe I don’t understand this or how long one should wait. I gave it 12 hours and received no input outside those I sent it to personally. I do note at the end of posts I do see links to a post which I presume suggests I edit. Lastly 3, apparently I will find my audience. Maybe – but only if there are millions more people here.

I liken Medium to some of the early content creation / editing engines. Memepool and I think “Scoop” was the name of another platform although 10years ago. All I really remember is writing articles and getting ripped to shreds and publishing control really was elsewhere. For now I can’t see a real benefit for writing for Medium. I’d be better off writing for a more established online publication. Example Gigaom or just sticking to my blog.

  • I agree Stuart. I got my invite a while back and haven’t seen a reason to write yet. Like you I struggle to see how Medium is different other than a slight smugness that is putting me off!

  • “Smugness” like that description. Be nice if I could even see who writes posts.

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