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Dec 05, 2018 09:24:21

200 Words a Day will not be the next Medium

by @basilesamel PATRON | 441 words | 591πŸ”₯ | 642πŸ’Œ

Basile Samel

Current day streak: 591πŸ”₯
Total posts: 642πŸ’Œ
Total words: 272631 (1090 pages πŸ“„)

Since I launched 200wordsaday.com two weeks ago, people who use the product are not afraid to go ahead and say that this website will become the "Idea Twitter", an "Anti-Twitter", or the "next Medium".

I understand what they mean by that. 200' has the potential to help many people in getting into a writing habit, be read and act upon their life by doing so. A publishing platform that could become as big, if not bigger, than Medium in size.

Truth is, 200' is, and will be, something entirely original. We will represent something much different than Medium.

Medium's description says it all:

"Medium taps into the brains of the world’s most insightful writers, thinkers, and storytellers to bring you the smartest takes on topics that matter. So whatever your interest, you can always find fresh thinking and unique perspectives."

I approve of the latter sentence, yet 200 Words a Day will stand against the former.

Writing should not only be about "the smartest takes" or the "topics that matter". There is beauty in every piece of writing. We should not have to discriminate against any.

While Medium extols its quality publications from insightful writers, I say: everybody can be a writer. Even if it is just 200 words at a time. What Medium does not show you is how many years it took renowned writers to perfect their craft before being able to "make it big". Such filters should not exist in a publishing platform, diversity is key.

I want this website to be a place where poems can stand side by side with tech tutorials or kid stories. A website where, even if your english is bad or broken, you feel great about sharing your thoughts with others. A website where you can improve: be read, gather feedback, refine your words as a delicate painter would do.

What more, I want this domain to be an independent publishing platform where community would be its strongest foundation. An indie website for indie writers who are not afraid to speak out.

During the upcoming weeks, I will be working on making 200 Words a Day a sustainable business for everyone. This will include new feedback and community features, bug fixes, but also talks with fellow members about finding a sustainable monetization method that could suit their interests (I think the business model should include ways to reward content creators right from the start).

What started as a pet project is now my life work: empowering people to write, and as a consequence access a higher quality of life.

I hope you will follow me on this journey. Whatever your decision is, take care.


  • 1

    @basilesamel great idea ?

    Samuel Mark Wadham avatar Samuel Mark Wadham | Jan 23, 2019 10:33:32
  • 1

    @basilesamel interesting to learn how you're going to scale, and highly appreciate that you're engaging the writers! I personally am fine with 200WAD as a non-monetizable platform with organic growth since this is a space driven by a simple and strongly genuine desire to create a writing habit. But I can understand how that direction makes sense if most writers are aspiring content creators/marketers.

    Victoria Maung avatar Victoria Maung | Dec 05, 2018 21:09:19
    • 1

      @vickenstein 200WaD has to make a living, one way or another if it wants to grow/improve. Growing takes time, but my runway is limited. We can try a donation system but I'm not really convinced by this, few businesses running on donations are actually sustainable (maybe only Wikipedia?). Anyways, we will all talk about it further when the time comes.

      Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Dec 06, 2018 07:09:41
    • 1

      @basilesamel that makes a lot of sense
      You've certainly created an excellent product, and I guess I'm plain curious/skeptical (can't wait to be proven wrong, however) about monetization outside of ad revenue.

      Victoria Maung avatar Victoria Maung | Dec 06, 2018 15:01:32
  • 1

    @basilesamel Agree with everything. I never liked Medium, its lock in even for publications is a big problem (just look at what's happening with freecodecamp) and locking content for users after 3 articles seems way too little.

    Valentino Urbano avatar Valentino Urbano | Dec 05, 2018 17:55:20
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      @valentino @jdaniel_richer Yeah I think this is the dumbest thing. I just browse in incognito mode to avoid the paywalls. At the same time we have to think of a way to monetize writers like you in an ethical way. My best take is on keeping this business indie and try to add value to all the contributors. This is what many of the upcoming features will be about: publishing and being seen.

      Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Dec 05, 2018 19:03:50
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      @basilesamel @valentino Obviously you need to monetize in some way. I'm not a big fan of donations, but makerlog seems like it's doing well with it (problem is that matteing is just supporting server costs, not himself). A free base feature with paid more premium would be more sustainable I guess. Finding the right monetization strategy is always hard.

      Valentino Urbano avatar Valentino Urbano | Dec 06, 2018 09:55:24
  • 1

    Medium is quite the intimidating platform for those just starting out. Also all the good writing gets paywalled unless you're a member.

    JDaniel Richer avatar JDaniel Richer | Dec 05, 2018 16:02:38
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    @basilesamel If we all aspire to become the next big company and copy someone we will never be original at what we do. If Taxify wanted to become the next Uber it wouldn't have become what it is today. So be original and keep up the good work. I am not on a mission to be the next Hemmingway or anyone else because i want to do something original.
    PS. Plus i don't drink that much alcohol to become the next Hemmingway :D .

    Berkan avatar Berkan | Dec 05, 2018 15:51:05
  • 1

    My observations after 4 days of using 200 words a day and reading the User's comments:
    User's are learning and practicing self-discipline. They don't want to break their streak.
    People who may be a little shy or self-conscious feel more relaxed here and this will help improve their confidence & communication skills.

    There are more, but I'm a little busy...

    ...Gotta write my post about the sale of a domain name for tens of thousand$. (I promised it yesterday)

    Mark Armstrong avatar Mark Armstrong | Dec 05, 2018 13:01:17
    • 1

      Thanks for the insights @markarmstrong ?

      Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Dec 05, 2018 14:41:44
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    @basilesamel love it. On Medium, even joining their publication program to earn money adds a layer of pressure. 200WAD is where I have no pressure to write. I simply practice, practice, practice. Keep it up ??

    Ruben Ramirez avatar Ruben Ramirez | Dec 05, 2018 10:28:51
    • 1

      @RubesWorld Thank you Ruben! We are going to build something amazing

      Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Dec 05, 2018 10:36:06
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    @basilesamel And here is my reply to this. Too long to put it as a feedback, so I created it as part of my 200wordsaday ?

    Gene Lim avatar Gene Lim | Dec 05, 2018 10:12:24
    • 1

      @wernminlim great idea! ?

      Basile Samel avatar Basile Samel | Dec 05, 2018 10:18:49
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