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Medium Is Changing A Lot In The Background — Here’s a First Glimpse Into The Future

  • 5 min read

From hashtags to image sizing. From Book Checkmarks to no customization.

A few minutes ago, I was in the middle of writing a story about Medium publications for parents….when this happened.

I wanted to add a featured image… and suddenly I added two?

1 — Image sizing seems to come back

When I deleted the second image the featured image appeared much larger than usual.

In fact, it looked like the image feature that was available until January 2022.

Then Medium killed this feature. You couldn’t resize your image anymore.

“As of January 2022, Medium no longer supports formatting options for images in the Medium editor”. Medium

Image sizing mattered to many writers.

Medium took away a functionality many writers used every day.

What exactly happened back then?

All images were displayed in a single image size.

“It’s a step toward a new, more interconnected Medium

To that end, we have removed certain design elements on the published story page, along with the ability to format and resize imagery in the story editor.” Medium

Why did Medium remove the image sizing in the first place?

In late September 2021, Medium announced the company wanted to improve the reading experience.

Therefore, they wanted to redesign parts of their website.

“That’s a good thing. I like the fact Medium is innovative”, I thought.

In Medium’s Help Center, I found this explanation:

“We removed image sizing to accommodate a new right-hand column that provides readers with relevant context on the story they’re reading, along with related reads across Medium.” Medium

That’s the annoying right-hand column:

2 — Hashtags seem to become a thing

I know that Medium is reorganizing its tags/topics in the background.

They want to create a whole new landscape of the most popular tags.

Tags always were hashtags but now they seem to really want us to use a # in front of a word we’re tagging.

When I wanted to tag my story with 5 relevant topics, this happened:

See?

Medium apparently uses hashtags now.

Tag pages still look the same at the moment.

3 — Blue Book Checkmark for authors

Last week, Medium launched a new blue checkmark for authors.

Scott Galloway screenshot

It’s a checkmark that actually means something.

Medium now verifies the identities of published authors and puts a symbol next to their names across the platform.

It’s 100% free.

The only requirement: your book has to have an ISBN.

  • You don’t need to be a paying Member or in the MPP.
  • There is no minimum number of followers required.

How to Apply for Medium’s Blue Book Checkmark

If you have published a book with an ISBN and want to verify your Medium account, visit this link to learn more.

The page makes it seem pretty easy, listing three simple steps:

  1. Claim your book: Apply for verification via this form, which will ask you for your published book information (ISBN, title, description, and publisher info)
  2. The review process: Medium will review and verify your information, then contact you within a few weeks
  3. Get verified: Once verified, your profile will include the official Medium author badge, and feature your book

4 — No custom profiles anymore

Medium won’t allow anymore to customize your profile’s background color, accent color, and fonts!

Why?

“In the time since launch, we haven’t seen the widespread adoption we’d hoped for. We also want Medium to be accessible to everyone (…)” Medium via email.

On April 12, your custom background color, profile accent colors, and profile fonts will be set back to default.

Good news: customization for publications will stay the same.

Where can I access my design?

You can get access to your design setting by going here medium.com/me/design (me = your Medium handle).

Bottom Line

The only constant on Medium is change.

Don’t be surprised if, in the near future, more Medium features will be gone, added, or revived.

Have you seen other features tested/added/being removed?

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