Really interesting points you make here and some I didn’t think about when I heard of the clap (the medium one not the other). Indeed the dichotomy of the claps seems to point to people writing niche stuff (is that so bad?) over the click baity things we would hope that medium would stay away from (assuming we think medium needs to be different than the rest of the nets, which I do). That they figured out the system to work this way makes sense to me. Otherwise we would have clap inflation and people not knowing how much exactly they should clap.
So, yeah, I’m a fan of weighting it person. Or handing a person a set amount of claps and saying distribute it as you want. Perhaps a way to supplement it would be a Reddit give gold (or cash) for pieces they truly love and want to support more.
That being said, I believe I read somewhere that it was more than claps that they’re considering in this algorithm. Maybe there’s some curation whereby a team decides what’s high quality. Who knows, maybe they’ve added some randomness to it. But whatever it is, if can’t be gamed I fail to see how that’s a bad thing.
Can improvements be made? Sure. I mainly write fiction and don’t see those getting much traction. I find that unfortunate, but that’s probably how readers operate so I still blame myself for not enticing them enough to read these stories of mine.
I also love Series and think it great for telling stories on a phone. Would like to have the ability to add them to the program.
Despite these qualms I have, I am pretty happy and hope to see more in the future.