Before switching those blogs to Medium, I had been trying them out on self-hosted Ghost instances. I really liked the ideas behind Ghost -- I've created dozen+ websites using Wordpress and I was happy to see a fresh take.
Ghost was under rapid development though, and compared to Wordpress' ginormous ecosystem around themes, plugins and update-workflows, Ghost was still in it's infancy. As an example, here's the script I was running in a cronjob to keep my Ghost instances up-to-date:
#!/bin/bash sudo service pm2-init.sh stop pushd ghosts rm -f *zip wget https://ghost.org/zip/ghost-latest.zip for g in dig blog do pushd $g rm -rf core node_modules unzip -uo ../ghost-latest.zip npm install --production popd done popd sudo service pm2-init.sh start
Meanwhile, Medium went through some radical changes as well, most of which I wasn't a fan of:
- Laid off 1/3 of the workforce in the name of renewed focus. Those impacted included a dear friend.
- Medium introduced claps as a way of incentivizing content creators. There have been plenty of passionate opinions on claps, nothing new for me to add.
- Changed their logo. Again. Unclear if this was a slam dunk.
- Started charging $75 (one-time payment) for custom domains. No big deal, but it's all about alignment. More on this later.
Overall, while I'm cautiously optimistic about Medium's attempt to incentivize content creation, it's clear that Medium is not prioritizing ad-hoc writers who don't care about monetization. Which is a totally fine strategy for them to pursue.
And so here I am, back to Ghost. Of course, I'm not ghosting Medium in any real sense (I didn't even know what "ghosting" meant until a year ago when this excellent Wired article came out) -- I'm still reading a lot of great content on Medium, every day.