Owning your content and Medium
Since I have been writing on my own I’ve published everything to Medium. My personal blog, tech stuff and also posts that Ive started writing about my daughter and her life with a disability. When I first decided to do this, Medium was fresh and new, with a growing reputation of the place to be. I loved that they had control about how things looked, not only because I didn’t have to work on maintaining and managing a theme for the site, but also because everything looked the same.
It was a place I went to read things, and so did many many other people. Open the app and there was a wealth of available content that was relevant to what you like. Medium expanded my reach to people that had no idea about my website, but perhaps read the same sort of things as I produce. I let their trusty algorithm serve up my posts to people it felt would read it. A win on all sides whichever way you looked at it.
Yet another platform
Yet over the last few months Medium has changed a lot. It is no longer the hipster place where people write their thoughts to the world. It is dominated by publishers and producers that have been ‘sold’ the platform as the place they need to come to. Big brands are publishing solely to Medium and it became yet another controlled platform like so many that have come before. Medium is now in many ways the adult version of Tumblr.
Due to the move, the Medium app has become confusing with far too many topics that I don’t care about and have no intention of reading. It has been pushing posts at me from months ago that have no relevance, and if its is doing that to me it is doing that to everyone. My post viewers fell, and more and more them came from my social networks anyway as apposed to linked from the Medium app or Emails.
Own your content
This in itself is not an issue, it is mildly annoying as this was one of the reasons I moved all of my Wordpress in the first place, but a huge deal. However the deal breaker was a recent post by Medium announcing their change in business model. Under the banner “Renewing Medium’s Focus” it announced that their current approach wasn’t working, but they didn’t really know what it was going to pivot to.
This brings home the stark realisation that unless you own and control all of your content, you are stuck if they change what they want to do. This is the same for TV networks, blogging platforms and social networks. If one day they change, or even stop completely you are lost and everything is gone. If you once made enough money to live selling ads on Medium, and they stop doing it — you’re done for.
I have been toying with the idea of moving back to Wordpress, for a while now so this and the recent episode of Connected Podcast has made my decision. Not because Medium have done anything drastic, yet. It seems some publishers are sticking with Medium for now, but I want to take back some control.
Im building the website as week speak so should be up and running in the next week. Until then, keep reading.