The Nibble, Bite & Meal of Medium

I really like how Medium is evolving as a platform, particularly how they are re-imagining comments with Highlight, Comment & Respond.

As I mentioned earlier:

… I’m a big fan of how Medium has rebooted blog commenting, with line-by-line comments and a ‘respond by blog post’ feature, of which this is an example (actually, this is a response to a response to this post).

- Where’s the conversation these days?

Recently, moreover, they added Highlighting to the mix:

With one simple swipe of the cursor, you can select a word, passage, or paragraph to highlight it…. The writer will be notified and receive a warm fuzzy. It’s a nice way to show them that you liked a particular part of the story. When your followers read the story, they will see your highlight, and your name will pop up above it.

- Introducing Highlights

For me, these three interactive features echo the ‘nibble, bite, meal’ content model, but in the other direction, from the reader back to the writer, and his/her wider community of readers:

  • Highlight = give a Nibble: just select & click to say something about something, although noone (perhaps even you) will be quite sure why
  • Comment = give a Bite: select, click and then type a few words — like a classical blog comment, but more selective
  • Respond = offer a Meal: instead of a traditional comment that gets totally out of hand (or hits a character limit), hit ‘Respond’ and start typing. Bingo. You’ve just blogged, and your post is directly linked to the one that got you typing. Nice on-ramp for new bloggers, and some sort of replacement to Trackbacks, which I still lament.

However, as mentioned earlier, is does leave multi-person discussions in a bit of a limbo — it probably won’t be as easy to follow multiple responses to a post, let alone responses to the responses.

But then, comments, like blogging, are dying, right?

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