An Open Letter to Medium about Mobile
Coffee, claps, and conundrums
One of my new morning pleasures is browsing Medium and sipping coffee.
Oh, I give The Guardian a once-over first so I’m current with headlines. I don’t even check my email after that, though. I open up Medium and go straight to the New to your Network section to check out writing by authors I’ve come to appreciate.
I look for people like Eric Griggs, Evelyn Jane Saungikar, Linda Caroll, Nature of the beat, alto, Jack Preston King, Darren Stehle, all my fellow writers at Th-Ink Queerly, and many, many more whom I’m leaving out and will feel perfectly terrible about later.
I love reading for about an hour while I wake up and prepare for my day. I like to expand my mind with new thoughts and ideas.
I also like to encourage the writers I’m enjoying.
Often, I can’t.
I enjoy Medium in the early morning on my phone. I’m not working in my office yet. I haven’t fired up my laptop. I don’t want it heavy in my lap.
I want to savor my coffee in a comfy recliner or as the weather warms, out in the morning sun on my porch.
And that spells trouble.
When I browse Medium with my Android phone, the odds that my claps for other writers will register or “stick” are not good.
Many times, I will clap for a story, only to come back later and find the claps are gone. I’m not alone. Others, like my friend Fred Shirley, also find this phenomenon frustrating. What’s most frustrating is that often I never realize that my supportive claps were not received.
I’ve brought the issue to Medium Support, and while the technician I interacted with was friendly, professional, and seemed like he wanted to be helpful, nothing ultimately got done.
I know that Eric Griggs has communicated some technical information to Medium that may be helpful.
I’d like to ask, though, Medium — Is this problem even on your radar?
It seems to me like it should be. If my stats are at all typical, half or so of all reads come from mobile devices.
It seems then that people using mobile devices to read, like I do, should be able to clap for articles we like without having to wonder if our applause really works, sure that some of it didn’t. It doesn’t seem like we ought to have to chain ourselves down to computers to be able to fully participate in the Medium reading and clapping experience.
It’s happened to me once that I know of already this morning. I’m sure it’s happened in other cases I don’t know about.
I’m brand new on Medium, so I really don’t know who to talk to about this to get action. Thus, my public post.
If anyone reading this knows how to kick the issue up the chain, I’d surely appreciate the help!