I love the affordances that exist on Medium. The side comments. The cleverness built in to replies. Something as nominally small-bore as highlighting, which is done so well in Medium. In point of fact, the affordances are perhaps more of a draw than Medium itself.
The self-similarity of the community can be wearying, here, however. On the other hand, I have found no community elsewhere that is endlessly interesting, either, even when I get complete control of who I follow and what to read and respond to. So much depends, it seems, on who shows up in the first place, and how their relationships fall out.
So, as usual, talking about platform and community leads me, like a boomerang, right back to me: my goals, desires, and needs, as a participant. As a node in the graph. As yet another tiny star in a grand, swirling nebula.
It is through other people that we are made human. And in a connected world, the most important decision is who to follow.
Dream about it, think it through, do it right. — Michael Thomas
How to follow them — the medium and the platform — is a much bigger consideration, then, than what car to drive, what knives to chop your vegetables with, or even the glasses you look through to see the world.
The way that we follow — the how — is as critical a part of our understanding and grounding in that world as are the subjects we discuss, the words we use, and the actions, ultimately, that we take.
We depend on the platform like the earth we walk on, the cities we live in, the air that we breathe.
Dear Medium, please keep that in mind. Dream about it, think it through, do it right.