What’s Happening: The open publishing platform, Medium, has been growing exponentially since its launch in 2012. Millions of people daily read the unique, thought-provoking stories published on Medium, and its growth has enabled it to implement Medium Membership, a subscription model that allows readers to access unlimited stories, ad-free, for $5 per month. Medium is now funding more content, commissioning stories from seasoned journalists, and introducing several new publications.
Why It Matters:
The open publishing format of Medium creates an equal playing ground for anyone with a perspective to share — and this content is available for anyone around the world to read for free. The best of these articles are curated and distributed to millions of readers each month. Medium’s in-house editorial team also commissions stories from celebrated writers and journalists, as well as discovering and promoting new voices. As readership and membership subscriptions grow, Medium is able to fund new digital magazines such as OneZero and Human Parts, with more in the works.
On March 18, Medium announced a plan to significantly expand its partner relationships and issued a call for publishers and editors to create new publications on the platform. Medium will help fund and distribute these digital properties, which will offer stories under the partner’s own brand as well as part of the Medium bundle. This includes both licensed and original content. The benefit to the publisher partner is greater exposure to the massive Medium audience, and the fact that readers can see stories from publications in their feeds and email — even if they don’t follow that publication.
There are currently several thousand publications on Medium. Their publication feature set includes back-end editorial controls, newsletters, stats, and other things found in most content management systems. With the mission in mind of helping people understand the world more deeply and find worthwhile ideas they can apply in their lives, Medium is looking for quality publications that can do these things across all areas of knowledge and human experience. This includes looking for good writing, as well as information quality and insightfulness. Specific niches are also a goal of these additional publications.
Revenues will be shared based on readership, with a minimum guarantee in some cases to lessen the risk for publishers. Medium is looking for long-term, sustainable partnerships with an initial contract of three to 12 months.
The Bottom Line:
“Our philosophy is that, in an incredibly crowded and noisy media environment, it makes sense to join forces with others who are aligned,” Medium staff published in a statement. “While the publishing world is moving to paywalls, there is likely to be a relatively small limit on the number of subscriptions most consumers will tolerate. By working together, we can offer people far more flexibility and value, which will get and keep them subscribing.”
Interested publishers can apply here.