Time To Smash The Hold of The “Big Publications and Big Writers”on Medium

Too many decent writers are coming up against a rigged system, which entrenches the “big writers and older publications”. The time has come for an overthrow of the existing order, which privileges the few over the many.

Tamara Gak via Unsplash

This write up isn’t going to earn me any brownie points and guess what? I don’t care at all. It is something that I have been keen on writing for a very long time and I was especially impelled to commit words to print after having read a number of articles, over the last few days.

There are a number of unpopular opinions that I will list and outline over the course of this article, stay with me, if you can.

Unpopular Opinion Number 1: The Famous writers on medium aren’t better than the newer ones.

Having read a vast number of writers on medium, I remain unconvinced that the older writers produce intrinsically superior articles to the newer scribes. This is entirely based on prose style, flow of arguments, knowledge of subject and the vocabulary of the writers, encountered, thus far.

I have read profoundly incoherent and inaccurate articles by writers, who have 100,000 followers and have been utterly spell bound by authors of fewer than 200 followers.

Great quality is to be found in the most unusual settings — small publications. Please take note.

Unpopular opinion Number 2: There are only so many articles, that we can handle, from these “celebrated writers” regurgitating the points they made, in a different article, two hours ago.

It’s not uncommon to see a feted scribe, generating ten write-ups on their existential angst about their next career option, Anglo-American Fascism or corrupt plutocrats and Oligarchs. Without wanting to seem hostile or even worse — a troll — there is only so much rehashing of the same topic so many times, that anyone can bear, without coming away feeling that one’s intelligence is seriously being insulted.

Unpopular Opinion Number 3: No writer, however popular, on this platform,is about to be the next Pulitzer or Nobel Prize winning author.

Salman Rushdie, Malcolm Gladwell, Ta Nehisi Coates, Jordan Peterson, Marlon James, Aravind Adiga, Howard Jacobson and Margaret Atwood aren’t about to lose sleep over any one of the “marquee writers” publishing on a regular basis on medium, thinking that they about to be displaced in the world.

There seems to be a number of people,who suffer from the Dunning-Kruger syndrome. And God knows I might be on the list!

For those who don’t know, the Dunning-Kruger syndrome is when people think that they are much better than they are, when in actual fact, they are not.

I think that the time has come for people to appreciate the diversity of the writers on medium and stop harping on about people who write bad grammar.

Unpopular opinion Number 4: The big writers are as worried about money as you are.

The introduction of the relational model, late last year, took them entirely by surprise and were worried about the hit to their monthly fees from the medium partner program. The reason why you see 8 articles about the same subject, which are usually 7–10 minutes long, simply reflect their deep seated fears, about their potential loss of income and their need to milk their popularity on medium.

Unpopular opinion Number 5: The “big writers” know that new writers have an inferiority complex.

All new writers to medium, must know that they are enough. They must never acquiesce inferiority, not even for a nanosecond. Every writer, however, adroit or maladroit in their use of the English language, must know that, working at the craft is an imperative and no one knows it all. There are vast numbers of people, for whom, English is a first language, and yet, struggle to convey the power of their thoughts coherently.

As I have pointed out, a number of times on this platform, despite my years of compulsory education and erudition, my written form is as average as it gets. The fecundity of my imagination, still gets entangled in the web of complexity that’s called “English”.

Do not fall for the hero worship or the cult of personality, that seems to have taken hold, here, where there’s no article written without seeing the same names popping up.

You, the new writer, are as important and central to the success of medium as the older, entrenched, writer.

Unpopular Opinion Number 6: All the big publications are hugely overrated and insufferably smug.

At the risk of being labelled, “bitter and disgruntled”, for having had a number of articles rejected by the supposed big publications, It must be said, that nearly every single one of the “popular pubs”, to which the marquee writers submit their work, are usually opaque, biased and not entirely objective on their reasons for rejection.

Why, I hear you ask?

When you read articles accepted by these overrated publications, you sometimes find that the flaws, which they allege was present in your writing.

So if you are prepared to accept one “flawed writing”, why not the other? why is preference being shown for one over the other?

Could it be the bias and prejudice of the editors at play, here? Only God knows.

Unpopular Opinion Number 7: Too many crap self-help articles from the “big writers”

In these economically crushing times, when jobs have disappeared and getting by on a daily basis is something of a titanic battle, the last thing we want to see is a self help article, promising to change your life, with minimum effort, or an article from a misguided writer, telling you how many thousands of dollars, they have earned.

I can only characterize these guys as having no sense of self awareness, no humility, no compassion and just downright idiotic.

Self-help articles are to all intents and purposes, dead. These articles should come with a special health warning for all would be readers.

As I have written elsewhere, the great beauty of medium lies in its openness, no barriers to entry, approach. What I don’t like is the fact that the algorithm is heavily skewed to these “big writers” however tautological their work is.

The time for a complete change is now. I hope to see more subversive writers, making their voices heard.

You matter, you are as important, as anyone else.

Thanks very much for reading.

A lifelong bibliophile, who seeks to unleash his energy on as many subjects as possible

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