Yes, Medium your email felt like a big F*** you to your writers.
I got the following email from Medium. If you've read any of my recent articles I quit being a paid member because of all the issues I was seeing on this platform. One major one was that you get fewer reads and therefore less money. Since I quit I still get paid but I just don't read much anymore because I'm a free member — and also, the quality of the articles was rapidly deteriorating except for the few writers that I liked. Still — given all of that, I was thinking that maybe when I've earned $50 I might think of joining again for another year.
B.U.T. — this email message turned me off so much, I'll write this article, and probably disappear again from Medium for a period of time.
Thinking about our goals for the year ahead, a big one for us is continuing to make Medium a better place for writers like you. And that starts with listening to your story and understanding your needs.
As part of that effort, we wanted to invite you to consider joining an online research study we’re running, where we’ll be looking to learn about things like your approach towards writing, your hopes for the future, and your experiences sharing writing on Medium and elsewhere.
Below is some information about what the research study entails.
Dates: 4/15/21 to 4/27/21
Format: Online survey run by a third-party research company
Length: 15–20 minutes
Incentive: $5.00 Amazon Gift Card
Eligibility: This study is restricted to writers based in the United States
If you’re interested in participating, copy and paste the link in your web browser: [link removed by author]
We recommend filling it out as soon as possible as space is limited and fills up quickly.
Please note you’ll receive an incentive only if you are selected and fully complete the questionnaire. Expect an email within 4–6 weeks to deliver the incentive.
Thank you and take care.
Medium Creators Team
Hmmmm — if I'm reading this correctly you want me to fill out a form to see if I am selected to answer a 15 to 20-minute questionnaire.
And GEE — IF I'm selected and fill out the entire questionnaire, I get a five-dollar Amazon gift card — WOW I can hardly contain myself — five whole dollars!
You somehow keep saying you want to make this a better place for your writers. From what I have read and from what I understand, many of us have suggested to you how you could do that. You don't listen. I must admit that after my complaints about the bots that you had they do not show up much anymore — but there are other writers who post nothing but ads for junk and they do keep showing up. [SIGH]
I don't write much for you anymore because it was not worth the little money I made. But I laughed because I'll probably make more than five dollars writing this and it feels a lot better than trying to answer questions that have been answered before.
And you did not even have to pay us five dollars in an Amazon card to get that information. Many of us provided it to you in our articles.
You have enough IT staff to set up an algorithm to see what people write about you and see the suggestions that they have made.
Many have sent suggestions to you directly and not gotten answers. As I said in my previous articles [like the one below] this started, at least for me, last year when you made changes to your views, reads, and whatever else you did that caused a decrease in reads and therefore income.
I've designed enough questionnaires and tests in my now long lifetime to know that you are skewing the responses you get by offering this pittance. You will get people who really need five dollars. Those are very different than people who may not need five dollars or even want five dollars.
I thought of signing up just to see what your questionnaire looks like and what questions you were asking — but I decided it was not worth my time and/or brainpower. For me, it is far more fun to write this article than it is to respond to your email. I'm probably a person you should want information from but I will charge more than five dollars to get that information, especially since you didn't want it for free when offered by me, and many I know.
I'll keep paying attention like my dog does for her tennis ball — knowing where it is, but not staring at it — to see if you get back to what I liked when I first joined.
But you know what? I'm not holding my breath.
I recently got an email from an organization that I subscribe to and they asked me to answer a few questions about another company for a $10 Amazon gift card. One could see what the questions were before even starting the questionnaire. They weren't asking me to tell them how to do their job — they were just asking me some questions about me and my business and things like that. It took maybe two minutes. That's the kind of questionnaire I will answer. They didn't verify that I could actually “merit” doing the questionnaire, I didn't have to apply to do it, I could see what I was going to be asked and so I did it. I'll get $10 to spend at Amazon. And I will check out the company when it goes live…
I think Medium has a lot to learn — S.T.I.L.L.