Matthew Butterick, whose book Typography for Lawyers ought to be mandatory reading in law school, doesn’t like Medium. He sounds a little ambivalent about it typographically. Really, you get a sense of where the bulk of his antipathy lies from the title of his blog post, Billionaire’s Typewriter:
Whereas the traditional typewriter offered freedom at the cost of design, the billionaire’s typewriter offers convenience at the cost of freedom.
As a writer and toolsmith, I’ve found the rush to embrace these systems perplexing. Not because I’m curmudgeonly. Not because I fail to understand that people, including writers, enjoy things that are free and convenient.
Rather, because gentle scrutiny reveals that these systems are powered by a form of human fracking. To get his fracking permit on your territory, Mr. Williams (the multibillionaire) needs to persuade you (the writer) that a key consideration in your work (namely, how & where you offer it to readers) is a “waste of time.”
Human Fracking as a Service probably won’t catch on, but it’s a pretty apt description of these platforms that offer nothing so much as the chance to power a platform.