Medium sucks for your readers. Stop using it.

Update 9/23: I’ve been meaning to update this for a while. Medium has finally gotten rid of nearly all the gripes I’ve had with it, and has really grown into a usable platform for people in my industry. I still strongly advocate for self-hosted blogs, but Medium definitely has its strengths (given its reach and functionality as a platform). I’ll keep the rest of this post up for reference, however. Thanks, Medium, for listening to your potential users!

A controversial post in the web world, but not one that hasn’t been said before by others, Medium really does suck for your readers, and you should definitely stop using it.

For those of you who don’t know, Medium is a blogging platform.. Essentially. It does a little more, but we’re talking about it from the perspective of (some) of your readers.

If someone happens upon a medium post, they are typically accosted on multiple fronts. Medium has popups. A fixed-position bar across the bottom telling you you’ve got to sign up, or subscribe to the author’s posts. Worst of all, though.. Is the paywall.

It isn’t a true paywall, since it isn’t actually REQUIRING you to pay, but register. Still, after so many articles, you’ll probably encounter an annoying fade-out to white of the content and another encouragement to sign up for free in order to read the rest of the article.

That. Is. Absurd.

I encounter most of my medium articles when reading content about the web design/dev industry.. By writers who should, in theory, be able to utilize a CMS (or even BUILD THEIR OWN) for a blog outside of Medium.

You may be saying that it isn’t a big deal to register for free, but it is.

I’m SICK of giving out my email to register for crap. I’m sick of having to sign in using Google/Facebook, create yet another account somewhere (let’s hope it doesn’t get compromised, and doesn’t store passwords improperly). I’m sick of the regular emails telling me “buy/read/consume this” from countless places who think what they have is the best, and I should drop everything to soak it in.

I came there for the one article that I found elsewhere. Through search. Through a news aggregation service. Through a social post.

I don’t want to read everything you’ve posted. Hell, I may realize that I don’t even want to finish reading the article I came to!

You may say that Medium provides a way for content creators to get noticed.

Sure, I bet it does, but do you know what content creators used to do to get noticed?

SEO, social, or just plain writing something good enough to be read and shared via a coworker/friend/lover/pet.

This isn’t a “the old times were the best times” post; I understand wanting to simplify gaining reach for your work, but Medium is a shitty platform to do it on for your readership, and you’re missing out on readers by using it.

If you work in the web industry, get a real blog, please.