This month marks our 10th anniversary on Medium and our 15th anniversary as a design publication. Here are a couple things that have been working for us.
We’re not accepting AI-generated text.
We’re not accepting stories that could have been easily written by an AI. We encourage authors to balance factual (wikipedia-like) information with their own personal insights, anecdotes, and personality.
We’re not hiring freelance writers on fiverr to keep our feeds full, either.
We’re not succumbing to clickbait-y titles with hyperbolic claims or that withhold important information about the story just to get the click.
We’re not publishing “5 quick tips” or “10 errors you might be making”. We encourage our authors to move away from those types of stories.
We love and respect stories focused on the what (e.g. what someone did). We think stories focused on the how are more helpful for readers. And that stories focused on the why can change one’s career.
We don’t allow stories that write about any topic that doesn’t give credit to other authors who have written about that topic before. When the writer doesn’t offer additional resources, a newcomer to the industry might think that was the person who came up with all the ideas and methods in the story. We are not in the business of erasing design history.
We’re not publishing stories by writers who are furious. There’s too much hatred in the world already. We’d rather take a more balanced approach and provide multiple perspectives to a topic.
We’re not publishing stories by companies. Or by people whose primary motivation is to promote their companies, products, or services.
We don’t really care whether our writers want to put their stories behind a paywall or not. We respect everyone’s priorities and financial contexts, knowing some writers depend on the money they make on Medium.
We’re depriotizing stories about “how to get started in UX”—in fact, we created a whole publication focused on designers who are starting now. The UX Collective is a publication for senior designers who are interested in broader ideas and transformations happening in our industry.
We don’t publish reviews of a product’s UX without a deeper analysis; we don’t publish destructive feedback.
We don’t republish stories from other places on the web without a canonical link.
We ask authors to add a clear disclaimer if they add links to affiliate programs to their story.
We encourage authors to give credit to images and illustrations, even when the asset is free or under a Creative Commons license.
We don’t ask for claps or likes. Great content sells itself.
We’re not measuring our success by number of views. We encourage our authors to do the same.
We allow authors to break these rules 1% of the time. Perfection is boring.
We revisit these rules every year.
It’s been working ok for the last 15 years.
Thank you for reading.