Debunking the Myths of Medium’s “Curation Jail” and the Meaninglessness of Reader Claps
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I need to be careful, you see. I don’t want to end up in “Curation Jail.”
Okay, I’m being wise. Sometimes, the old-school Brooklyn sensibilities come to the fore and sarcasm reigns. Truth is, Medium’s “Curation Jail” is real as a concept … but it may not be what you think and further, you can escape.
Also, as it regards Medium’s latest alteration in their earnings system … walk with me.
Let’s discuss “Curation Jail” first.
The finest article I’ve read on the matter was written by Ninja Writers’ Shaunta Grimes. See here:
What to do If You're in Curation Jail on Medium
Here's what my plan would be, if I was stuck in the 'high volume' loop. When I first started writing on Medium - it was…
Few have expressed this concern, and its resolutions, better.
I would like to add some additional points, veering towards the importance of not relying on any one form of promotion for your work:
- I received over 10,000 views for the following article, which was not curated:
His Name Was Daniel
He Could Have Been My Son. He died in a gunfight with cops following a high-speed car chase. I will not blame myself any…
The feedback I received for this most personal of stories was gratifying, and most of all my remembrance of Daniel, a former special needs student of mine, balanced the deluge of local news reports following his death. I’ve donated money in his name, and received permission to post the story.
What this continues to show me is honest personal stories are meaningful to readers.
- Continue to promote your work on your social media, including group pages.
- Be interactive. If you do not read, and comment on, the work of others, why should they read and comment on your work?
- Write for your life.
Writing For Your Life
Catching up financially when you are exceedingly behind, with no paid projects on the horizon, is the writer's worst…
Now let’s be real. The last point is not so simple. An article from a Medium writer is literally starting at $0.00. The above article supposes a scenario where you write three articles daily for three months. Will that happen? Maybe, maybe not. The idea, though, is to strive for the highest number of quality articles you can post in a day. Everyone has time constraints. But … the reality of this platform is you will receive back what you put into it. You want to be paid? Work your ass off. You want to be known for your work and increase readership with no real care for money?
Regardless, you can do this.
Improving how we calculate writer earnings
From the start, our goal with the Medium Partner Program has been to reward the quality stories that resonate with…
Emma Smith of Medium posted this on October 22, 2019. I greatly appreciate this article, as algorithmic methods of determining pay — in any endeavor — is frequently a head-scratching ordeal.
But here’s what I’ve noticed:
- I have posted articles with views in the thousands, and an average readership time of minutes per article, that have received less claps than articles with hundreds of views. Which articles have consistently earned me more money? The latter - with many less views and even less time spent on reading, but with a higher percentage of claps. Still.
- To piggyback on the above point, I have also had — rarely, but I’ve had them — articles with less than one hundred hits but a higher percentage of views to reads … that have earned far more than any of the others.
The point being is that while time spent reading an article is what appears to be receiving the most attention from writers of late, it is not the be-all and end-all and appears widely misunderstood.
It is certainly a major part of being rewarded financially, but it is not the whole shebang.
And so, all that said, to the moral of this story: Stop the excuses and keep writing.
Attainment of your goals will catch up to your efforts in due time.
But you need to do the work.
Thank you for reading.
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