Supersize Roll Call
Your web venture stands a greater chance of success if it has a few big names behind it. So, here we have Medium, founded by Evan Williams, a founder at both Blogger.com and Twitter, which is being backed by Biz Stone, also of Twitter fame. That's a decent all-star line up right there, and the product sounds a reasonable proposition too.
Medium offers a new publishing platform that aims to offer both collaboration and curation to help make better published content. But, at the very start of their journey, we have what looks rather like a collection of stylish travel brochures or product catalogs, personalized true, but still style-over-content material you might find in a consultant surgeon's office.
Medium offers themed snapshot collections, but could become much more
As the founder put it, "Medium is designed to allow people to choose the level of contribution they prefer. We know that most people, most of the time, will simply read and view content, which is fine. If they choose, they can click to indicate whether they think something is good, giving feedback to the creator and increasing the likelihood others will see it."
Getting involved is a simple task. Sign in with your Twitter account and start rating what you see on the service. The higher-rated an image, the more prominent it becomes. Content creation is currently limited to a small set of users, but it will be rolling out to more as time progresses and features are added.
It would be easy enough to log in the once, decide you had seen enough and move on. But, beside the initial, rather Pinterest-like categories, we get the feeling there could be a lot more to this once it gets up and running. While we'd rather see a less airy mission statement, something like "we're going to be the best, most rock-n-roll publishing site on the planet" it'll be fun to watch this develop.
Many have weighed in already, worrying about the lack of mobile (although Pinterest is only just seriously getting going on that) and a need for greater filtering, but you'd think that the founders of Medium will be well aware of what needs doing. Certainly, keep an eye on this rich-looking white space.