The guide I wish I’d had when I first started interacting on Medium.
FACT #1: It costs you NOTHING to clap.
Paying member, non-member, MPP person, it doesn’t matter. You will never be charged for your clapping. This is awesome!
FACT #2: You can clap for as many stories as you want.
Obviously, in order to read as many stories as you want, you have to be a $5/month member…but if you can access the story, you can clap for it. No limits.
FACT #3: You can clap up to 50 times per story.
PRO TIP: pressing/clicking the clap button and holding it down will generate claps without you having to wear out your fingers. You’re welcome.
FACT#4: It takes ten seconds to clap 50 times with the continuous-hold method.
(I counted.) If your fingers are faster, it’s less.
Fact #5: Writers need your claps.
Writers have the opportunity to earn money for their hard work — and here’s the thing: if you are a paying Medium member, your five bucks a month is going somewhere. And, you determine where it goes, based on how you interact with what you are reading.
BONUS FACTS FOR MEDIUM WRITERS:
FACT #6: Clapping does not necessarily mean you support every viewpoint espoused in the piece you read.
This can be a tough one — it took the amazing Iva Ursano and her bombshell article below to help me figure it out. I had to disconnect my brain from believing that by maxing out on my claps I was converting to the author’s perspective, or supporting every word they typed.
Instead, I realized that I was supporting the person, and acknowledging the time and effort that they put into their work.
Why I’m Giving Out 50 Claps For Every Damn Story!
I could actually start and stop this whole conversation/piece with this: Because I can.
I don’t give 50 claps for every single story I read; but I do it far more often than I don’t, for those reasons.
Fact #7: If you want lots of claps…give lots of claps.
Writers pay attention to their stats. It’s part of the job.
When I, as a writer, see another writer consistently engaging with my work, and regularly leaving high applause, I take note. Then, I make it a priority to reciprocate.
The opposite is also true — if I see a writer routinely leaving one or two claps for my work, I have to assume they haven’t connected with Facts #1–6. That’s okay — but engaging with their work may have to take lower spot on the to-do list.
Does this sound like “scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours”? Maybe. Here’s my take:
Writing on Medium is climbing a mountain; it’s important to know who’s holding your rope.
Does it mean I’ll never hold someone else’s rope, if they don’t “hold mine”? Of course not — when someone needs help, you help them because they’re a companion on the journey, not for what you get out of it. It’s a fantastic thing, and a win-win.
But you also recognize your team. At the end of the day, they’re the ones with a grip on your lines — and you can’t wait to give them a boost!
Writers and readers, what did I miss? What would YOU like people to know about the clap on Medium? Share in the responses.
Special thanks to Stefani Vader, Iva Ursano, Mark Escalera, Violet Escalera, Zach J. Payne, Janis Cox, Dharmesh Basapati, Christina Hausauer, Michael Shook, Cheney Meaghan, Randy Shingler, Martine Weber, Jenny White, Elle Fredine, Shae Jackson, Michelle Monet, David Dzimianski and so many others in the Medium Mastery Facebook group.
The generosity you give away, the words you write, and the encouragement you bring to the table every. single. day. inspires me, and fuels my fire. Thank you!