WordPress as a decentralised Medium

I was think­ing recent­ly about Medi­um and Word­Press, as I’ve start­ed cross-post­ing a few arti­cles from the lat­ter to the for­mer. Medium’s writ­ing inter­face real­ly is as easy to use as every­one says, but what I val­ue most is see­ing who has inter­act­ed with it: the names attached to the ‘rec­om­mends’, and the easy access to sta­tis­tics. I miss this when writ­ing on my Word­Press blogs, and it led me to con­sid­er how, with Jet­Pack, Word­Press could eas­i­ly make a site to aggre­gate self-host­ed con­tent into a Medi­um com­peti­tor.

Then I went to wordpress.com and found out that, qui­et­ly, that’s exact­ly what they have built. You can write posts on your self-host­ed blog that will be pub­lished to the cen­tralised site; you can ‘like’ and ‘share’ and fol­low authors to cre­ate your own feed of inter­est­ing con­tent, enhanced by fea­tured and rec­om­mend­ed posts. All the ingre­di­ents are there to be a Medi­um com­peti­tor, except that it’s all cur­rent­ly private—you need an account to cre­ate a feed, no con­tent is find­able by default.

I’m not sure how much of this Word­Press have announced, or even if mak­ing a pub­lic Medi­um com­peti­tor is their plan at all. But it’s inter­est­ing to see that all of the infra­struc­ture is in place for such a move—a decen­tralised Medi­um is an excit­ing notion.