Publication analysis

About the publication

Title: Medium



Purpose, objective, or mission: “Our sole purpose is to help you find compelling ideas, knowledge, and perspectives. We don’t serve ads—we serve you, the curious reader who loves to learn new things. Medium is home to thousands of independent voices, and we combine humans and technology to find the best reading for you—and filter out the rest.” 1

Medium is a publishing platform where people can read important, insightful stories on the topics that matter most to them and share ideas with the world.”2

Target audience: Inquiring minds on the web. Medium publishes content across a vast array of topics to interest all sorts of readers.

Publisher: A Medium Corporation.

Peer reviewed? No.

Type: Civilian publication.

Medium: Online.

Content: Articles of varying lengths.

Frequency of publication: Daily.

About the publication’s submission guidelines

Location of submission guidelines: Medium’s Write a Post page has information on posting, editing, importing articles and directs authors to information on creating an account.

Types of contributions accepted: Articles on a plethora of topics, grouped into broad categories such as Technology, Culture, Entrepreneurship, Creativity and more. Anyone and everyone can post articles, granted they create an account on the website.

Submission and review process: Medium’s Curation Guidelines: everything writers need to know is a section that discusses the writing standards and rules, as well as the curation process.

“When publishing a story on Medium, you can choose to make it eligible for curator review and distribution behind Medium’s paywall.What does it mean to be curated? When a story is curated, it becomes eligible to be distributed to readers across Medium surfaces — on the homepage, on topic pages, in our app, in our Daily Digest newsletter, and in other emails — and shared via Medium’s recommendation system.” 3

“Curators are looking for thoughtful, clearly written pieces that tell a compelling story, convey an interesting idea, or share a smart point of view. Curators will not distribute misinformation, stories with clickbait headlines, stories that are primarily marketing a product or service, or stories with excessive typos and errors.” 4

Editorial tone: Professional, yet casual.

Style guide used: No style guide is specified, Medium’s Curation Guidelines provides the rules and standards that should be followed.

Conclusion: Evaluation of publication’s potential for LIS authors

See “Medium for Nonprofits, Explained” for suggestions. See also the SJSU iSchool’s Medium site. And you can search Medium for “libraries” and “librarians” to find lots of examples from other sources.

Given the sheer number of daily users on Medium, it could be a great place to submit writing, especially if you have never been published before. However, there are plenty of articles out there about how it can be difficult to get your work seen since there are so many postings per day, as well as how you can increase your viewer traffic.

The following articles may be helpful for those interested in posting on Medium:

Audience analysis

About the publication’s readers

Publication circulation: Anyone can read articles for free, but monthly subscribers get access to more content and curated collections. “Become a Medium member for $5/month or $50/year and get unlimited access to the smartest writers and biggest ideas you won’t find anywhere else.” 5

Audience location and language or cultural considerations: Published in English, but read worldwide. The majority of readers are in the United States.6

Reader characteristics: According to statistics, the majority of Medium’s readers are college educated.7 The sheer amount of topics covered and the breadth of articles published shows that Medium readers are curious information seekers who have many interests.

Knowledge of LIS subject matter: Varied. There are certainly articles written by LIS professionals, but they are often geared towards the general public. Examples: Three Lessons I’ve Learned About People from Being a Librarian and Google’s Slow Fade with librarians.

Conclusion: Analysis of reader characteristics and their potential impact on authors

Medium is a unique platform for writers in many ways, but its ‘clapping’ feature allows for readers to respond to articles, and in turn directly shows authors how widely read their work is. It can be difficult to increase readership across Medium, but there are plenty of third party websites that give you tips and tricks to improve visibility.

Last updated: September 6, 2020


Show 7 footnotes

  1., accessed September 6, 2020,
  2. “What is Medium?”, accessed September 6, 2020,
  3. “Curation Guidelines”,, Accessed September 6, 2020,
  4. “About Medium’s Distribution System”,, Accessed September 6, 2020,
  5. “Membership,”, accessed April 2, 2018,
  6. “ Traffic Statistics,”, accessed September 6, 2020,
  7. “ Traffic Statistics.”
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