Today’s web is very different from what it was 8 years ago. We’ve said it several times: publishing and consuming content are new frontiers for most of the web giants like Facebook, Google or Apple. We consume the web from mobile devices, we discover content on silo-ed social networks and, more importantly, the base metaphor for the web is shifting from “space” to “time”. Superfeedr, the open web’s leading feed API and PubSubHubbub hub has been an independent player for 8 years. Superfeedr exists in order to enable people to exchange information on the web more freely and easily. Today, we’re excited to announce Superfeedr has been acquired by Medium. In many ways, it’s a very natural fit: Medium wants to create the best place to publish, distribute and consume content on the web. Together, we are hoping to keep Medium the company a leader in good industry practices, and Medium the network a place where this conversation can gain even more traction.
I consider myself a member of the open web community and very friendly with the goals of the IndieWeb community. I too wish for a world where web giants have less power and where the user is in control of more of their data. Yet, I now work for a large (the largest?) publishing platform. It is not often easy to reconcile, but one thing that I can tell you for a fact is that your data is, on average, safer on large hosting provider than it is on your small indie site.
I’d be curious to see more concrete numbers on these statistics, though I suspect that for “mature” sites, it may actually be the case. Some of the small, middling platforms however… The other side of the coin though is that when airplanes do crash, the death toll is seemingly large, and this is also the case with major silos.
While he mentions personal sites disappearing, it’s typically something that the site owner can often at least make a conscious choice to do and they can also mothball the data for later use. With a silo death, they really have no choice and often can’t get any data at all.
This just goes to point out that we need better solutions for both openness and longevity. How much of what I write on line will survive the next 500+ years? More or less than what Copernicus or Newton wrote? (Of course, who will care is an entirely different question…)
I hope that perhaps Medium opens up in the future to do some of the functionality that he mentions.
Where we’re going Though we’ve been working on this set of problems since the beginning, this year Medium took a big step toward a new solution. Our subscription strategy is based on a simple idea: By charging readers directly, we can make the experience and the content better, which creates a no-brainer proposition for anyone who values their time. By eschewing ads, we remove conflicts between serving our readers and serving those paying the bills. And while many publishers are looking towards subscriptions as an alternative to the deleterious effects of ads (a move we support for everyone), Medium is the only “open paywall” for thoughtful content on the internet. Which means, we tap into the ideas and expertise of thousands of the smartest minds on the planet — many of whom made Medium what it is today — to bring fresh perspectives to Medium members. And starting today, anyone can enroll in our Partner Program and earn money based on the depth and value they provide to members, not the fleeting attention they deliver to advertisers. Along with that, we add stories from the world’s best publishers and seamlessly combine it all in an ad-free, personalized experience. The end goal is to offer the world’s best source for important stories and ideas.
Dave Winer isn’t optimistic about the recent Medium changes: We're in the long tail of the demise of Medium. They'll try this, and something else, and then another thing, each with a smaller probability of making a difference, until they turn it off. This has been the concern with Medium since the...
Originally posted at: http://www.manton.org/2017/08/medium-stumbling-forward.html
When people click a URL and see that it’s a Medium site, their reaction should be “Oh, good, a Medium site — this will be nice to read.” Right now it’s gotten to the point where when people realize an article is on Medium, they think, “Oh, crap, it’s on Medium.”
Medium started 2017 on uncertain footing, laying off a third of its staff in January after admitting that its ad-based business model was not working.
I worked at Twitter for about six years. In that time, the service grew from zero people to hundreds of millions of people. Jack was the…
I’ve written a few things on Medium (not paid) because I liked the experience of their writing tools, their statistics, and their reach. I think two of the three items I wrote became featured and had several thousand reads. It’s a wonderful way to write and a wonderful place to post.
But it’s not mine. It’s theirs.
You can use someone else’s software, but still have your own “platform”, if you’re hosting it from a domain name you control and are able to easily take your content and traffic with you to another tool or host at any time. You don’t need to go full-Stallman and build your own blogging engine from scratch on a Linux box in your closet — a Tumblr, Squarespace, or WordPress blog is perfectly fine if you use your own domain name and can export your data easily.
Not alone and not unread, but the ground underfoot ain’t steady. An instance of Homo economicus wouldn’t be doing this — no payday looming. So I guess I’m not one of those. But hey, whenever I can steal an hour I can send the world whatever words and pictures occupy my mind and laptop. Which, all these years later, still feels like immense privilege.
Controlling my data is important to me. It’s also important that my students (and the faculty that I support) have the ability to control their own...
A prescient article written last fall before the news that Medium was downsizing significantly this week.
Paragraph commenting, or annotations is not exactly new. Readers have been scribbling in the margins of books, magazines and uni assignments for years. The online world has been slow to adopt this approach which is perhaps why Medium caused a stir and no shortage of admiring looks when it went the annotation route. Well, admire forlornly no more because I'm going to show you how to add paragraph commenting to your WordPress site. There are existing annotation solutions for WordPress but they are generally theme dependent, or in the case of CommentPress actually provide a theme.
This has some great advice and code for potentially adding marginalia.