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What to Do When Reading on Medium

Stuff writers wish you knew!

By Judey Kalchik Published about a year ago 5 min read

Writers create content on Medium for many reasons, some of those reasons include:

  • have their work seen by many people
  • make money
  • improve their writing
  • build a following
  • replace a bad habit

All writers, Medium, Vocal, Substack, and more: rely on readers interacting with their work, and there just may be ways to do that which you haven’t yet discovered! So submitting these for your consideration, please pick as many as you like and employ them when you read on Medium.

NINE Ways to Interact With Medium Content

1) Read all the way from the top to the bottom.

This is more important than it may seem, since Medium calculates the reading time and counts and records as complete reads only those that are read in totality. Yes: all the way to the very bottom of the words that are written!

2. Clap for the article

Clap for the article by clicking on the little hand icon that appears as you read and at the bottom of the page. You can clap up to 50 times, although a casual reader may not realize that!

Clapping the full 50 times can happen by just keeping your finger pressed to the icon, and it could become important for that writer in 2023. This is because Medium may start to give more prominence to writing that has high reader interaction, including maximum claps.

Highlight stuff that you like

To do this hover on the start of the words that are speaking to you and drag your finger along until the words are highlighted, THEN click ‘highlight’, which appears on the page for your choosing. The reason is to show the writer that something they wrote connected with you, and it also gives the Medium platform further evidence of interaction with the writing.

Pro Tip: it is best NOT to do this if you are reading one of the occasional pieces that appears where the writers scoffs at highlighting. Why do they do that? I dunno. maybe drama. Maybe to create controversy and increase reads?

Leave a comment.

You can do that as an option when you highlight- essentially commenting on the particulars that you’ve just read. You can also do that by clicking on the dialog balloon that appears next to the clap icon.

Many writers interact with comments by clapping, so you know that they’ve read what you write. Writers may also respond to comments, compliments, and questions, leaving you an answering comment, too.

Follow the writer.

You can do that by clicking on the ‘Follow’ button that’s on the page by the writer’s icon, usually at the top of the page, and also on a writer’s profile page. This makes it easier for YOU to find the things from that writer on your own Medium homepage.

It’s also very important for new writers: they don’t have the opportunity to monetize their writing until they have 100 followers.

Subscribe to the writer.

Some writers ask you to subscribe in the context of what they write, others put a request at the end of their writing, in what is known as a CTA (Call to Action). Subscribing means that Medium- NOT the writer- will send you an email with a link to the writer’s work whenever they publish.

It’s FREE to subscribe, and besides yet another way for Medium to measure interaction with their content, it gives the writer a warm happy feeling. (Maybe that’s just me?)

To subscribe you can click on the ‘envelope’ icon that’s just under the writer’s icon at the top of the page/on their profile. Or, you can enter your email address at the bottom of the page if the writer includes subscription information there.

Give a tip and reward the writer.

Most, but not all, writers have enabled this option, which was enabled by Medium in 2022. If the writer you are reading has this feature enabled it is at the bottom of the page (and you ARE reading all the way down to the bottom- correct?!). Take it from me: no amount is too small!

Share what you’ve read and get the writing in front of more people.

To easily share click on the icon of a square with an arrow coming out of the top, which can be found at the all-important bottom of the page just after the content.

Pro Tip: you can also share it directly to your social media accounts by choosing the appropriate icon at the top of the page, just above the title. Your choice is Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or you can copy the link and share it that way.

Enable your reading to contribute to a writer’s monthly Medium payout by joining Medium as a paying member.

You may not know this, but Medium writers only receive payment on what they’ve written when a Medium member reads what they have written. There’s also a benefit for the reader! Non-Members are limited to three free reads in a calendar month. Members get UNLIMITED reads to everything- all the time!

Medium membership is $5 a month, or new members can save money and pay $50 for an entire year. Becoming a member means that you help EVERY writer by reading their work, every time and everyday that you read while you are a member.

Many writers include a link (where? at the bottom of the page, usually!) for people to use, since Medium will send them a small $thank you$ when people join using their link.

Here’s MY link: If you use this link to join I’ll also get a small thank you from Medium, which is much appreciated!


  1. Interacting with content on Medium helps a writer know what you read matters to you.
  2. More interaction can mean Medium spreads the content more widely.
  3. Becoming a Medium member gives you unlimited reads and also means your reading time helps support all the writers of the content you read.
  4. It’s easy to become a member: and using this link to join means that Medium will send me a small thank you and the time you spend reading helps me, too!


Were any of these ways to interact new to you?

Here are FIVE ways to interact with the things you read on Vocal:

  1. Leave a comment and share your thoughts.
  2. Click on the little heart to let me know that this clicked with you.
  3. Click on the subscribe button and get a FREE notification when my next post goes live.
  4. Feel free to share a link to anything I write on your social media.
  5. A one-time tip is always appreciated if you are so moved!

A version of this article was previously published by the author on Medium.

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About the Creator

Judey Kalchik

It's my time to find and use my voice.

Poetry, short stories, memories, and a lot of things I think and wish I'd known a long time ago.

You can also find me on Medium

And please follow me on Threads, too!

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Comments (4)

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  • sleepy draftsabout a year ago

    This is sooo helpful!!

  • Gigi Gibsonabout a year ago

    Clap, clap, clap! 👏🏻🙌🏻👏🏻🙌🏻👏🏻 Great article!

  • Great Insights,❤️ Thanks‼️

  • Donna Reneeabout a year ago

    I’ve been considering joining Medium so these tips are super helpful! If I decide to join, I’ll be sure to use your link.

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