I know this is going to sound a bit weird, specially since I did do a story which has been read as a complaint/rant about Medium, but I really do like Medium. I like the potential, and I can kind of see how it wants me to use it. I am still not IT, but I pride myself on being fast to figure out how I’m expected to use a program.
I’m going to take my rant/complaint getting attention as a good sign. That people on Medium want to build more community than they have right now. And maybe people are a little confused on how to do this. I have a plan. It’s going to take a little time and it’s going to take a little work but I will get there. And I thought I would share my plan because you might want to try it. Or maybe you have some ideas of your own and we can brain storm. Disclaimer here, this is in no way the one way to use Medium. It’s a way. My way.
First I’m going to take some time, let’s call it 2 months, to do something that goes against the conventional wisdom of the interwebs. I’m going to read the comments. All of them, not just the recommended by the author comments. Stories too of course, but the comments are really key. Because in the comments I’m going to find people who have 3 things; a desire to interact, interesting and/or surprising points of view and common human decency (by that I mean the ability to remain civil in a place as vile as online comments) When I find someone who fits those criteria (these are subjective of course) I will check out this person’s profile. What sort of thing are they recommending, what sort of thing are they writing, is this something I want to see? If yes, then and only then will I click ‘follow’.
Once I have a good amount of people I follow, I am going to be removing tags I follow. The tags ‘inspiration’ ‘innovation’ and ‘self-improvement’ seem to be most responsible for floating crap-pieces up my feed and those will be the first to go. The aim here is to follow only a hand full of tags, the ones I really do care a lot about. Instead of following a tag I am only mildly interested in, I will search out one or more publications that publish stories tagged with those tags I am mildly interested in. The publications will go through the same sort of filtering I did for the people I follow.
By this time, I will be relying completely on individuals and not on the masses to fill up my feed. Either by writing stories themselves or by recommending stories to me. I am convinced I will get to know the people here much better. I even think in this way, I will discover many more interesting people because they caught the eye of someone who caught my eye. And I hope that by this time the only listicle to grace my Medium page is a extraordinary noteworthy listicle.
Oh, one little thing, this will only work if you keep Medium on “home” and not on “Top Story”. Top story is what is popular. Justin Bieber is popular. I avoid him, too.