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    I find Safari’s “Reader View” to be acceptable most of the time, although it’s nice to see someone taking Medium back to what it was regardless.

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      Firefox has the same feature which I use extensively without any issues.

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        I find myself usually just sending long Medium pieces directly to Pocket, and then I’ll read them later on my phone during a spare moment.

        The Pocket reformatter gives up too easily in my experience but does an adequate job at Medium (only really breaks pull quotes).

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          On mobile the reader mode is a blessing. Instead of accepting the cookie policy, closing the app bar at the top, closing the other modal windows and then reading, one click and it’s all gone, clear text, large font an no distractions.

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          Also, it is worth mentioning that the author is also developing https://write.as/, a Fediverse clone of Medium. Worth checking it out if you create content and want to get rid of all the things this extension takes care of.

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            Looks very cool, thanks for sharing (IMHO this is far more interesting than the submission itself).

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            I really don’t understand why people choose to write on Medium since the reader experience is so awful.

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              the reader experience is better than a lot of journalistic places.

              The alternative for lots of medium content is either on some newspaper website, or on your own blog (or I guess something like blogspot?). Better looks are possible, but require access to some sort of design sense that most people simply don’t have.

              “But you can make a simple layout that is nicer than Medium”. Well, you can, but they don’t necessarily know this or have the skills to make a simple thing.

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                Network effect is my guess.

                Initially medium was a good tool for writers and readers and they grew aggressively and so it’s reputation grew. So many links to medium on reddit, here, HN etc.

                If you’re interested in getting your links/likes/upvotes/ideas/brand/… across why not go where more people visit?

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                What can Medium do to prevent stuff like this? Because I bet they’re going to go after people using these things if too many people start using them.

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                  Usually sites take the legal route and go after the use of the name. Another site did that a few weeks ago and made minor tech news, but I’m at a loss as to which one at this very moment.

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                    They could start focusing on readability again, which is probably the reason why things like this happen in the first place.

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                      I meant, what nasty things can they do? Obviously they’re already on a nasty path and very keen to continue on it.

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                        They can employ the same methods other sites have been using to prevent adblocking: changing the markup frequently to escape whatever filter is popular.

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                      I don’t think they can do much to prevent it other than adding more and more changes that regularly break the extension, but this will always be a cat-and-mouse game.

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                      Interesting project. I’ll probably try it out. I do find it amusing that decades in, we’re still fighting over the one thing the world wide web was designed to do, which was create a decentralized network of documents.

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                        Can someone please explain to me what a “dickbar” is, and why this is an appropriate description of the UI mechanism? I read the daringfireball link, but I don’t quite get it.

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                          Twitter kills the #dickbar has a screenshot. It’s the ad obscuring the content.

                          Actually called the Quickbar, but introduced when Dick Costolo took charge, hence the name.

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                          Can we please stop using the “Make X Y Again” schema for advertising things? I know there is no ill intent behind this but some of us are directly affected by the policies and rhetoric that comes out of the very much sincere desire to roll back progressivism by decades.

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                            Your comment is off-topic.

                            You reasonably observe that the name of the project is derivative, acknowledge that the author bears you no ill intent, but nevertheless suggest the project name is harming you and yours.

                            You don’t address the author, you don’t talk about Medium as a platform, you don’t talk about blogging or anything apparently connected to the article. Your comment is a generic complaint. (Applies to any submission matching your pattern.)

                            We’re a community of practitioners. We show (create, invest, fix), rather than tell (scold, beg, demand).

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                              The title of this project is a riff on a political slogan that itself is a riff on various fascist slogans throughout history. Making a joke of it by using it as the name of a browser extension is, at the very least, in poor taste. The commenter you responded to made a polite request to the community to stop doing this thing that is in poor taste. There was no need for them to address the substance of the project because the comment was only concerned with the choice of title. In terms of scolding/begging/demanding, I see more of that in your comment than in the one you responded to.

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                                Apologies for the off-topicness, but are Mel Brooks’ Hitler jokes/comedy in bad taste? Can something horrible be alleviated by ridiculing it?

                                This is a philosophical question that doesn’t wven account for the author’s intent with the naming.

                                And on the other side, would “Medium we can believe in” or “Medium we can” be more acceptable or less, and to whom?

                                A rose by any other name… It seems to be a somewhat useful browser addition regardless.

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                                  Can something horrible be alleviated by ridiculing it?

                                  Yes, somewhat, and only if actually done well. (And even then, sometimes the supposed object of ridicule can miss the point entirely and embrace whatever the “joke” was about.)

                                  I guess the point is, naming entirely unrelated things with the same pattern (“Make X Y again” here) is not comedy! It’s literally just spreading the slogan.

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                                You can’t ignore politics when they are no longer ignoring you. However much you may think that Lobsters is a domain of pure, unadulterated reason and everything unreasonable is offtopic, the linked software decided to make a political slogan ontopic.

                                You’re grandstanding here about how neutral Lobsters is, but there’s no neutrality on this moving train, and telling people to shut up about the politics that affects them isn’t nice.

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                                  We’re a community of practitioners. We show (create, invest, fix), rather than tell (scold, beg, demand).

                                  I like this a lot! The internet would be a better place if there were more places that followed this philosophy.

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                                    Yeah, wouldn’t that be something…

                                    :-/

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                                    I also happen to feel playful takes on MAGA is putting googly eyes on swastika, and was about to post similar comment. Didn’t post as the earlier exchanges OT exchanges like this on Lobsters suggest ethics is a taboo subjects to many here.

                                    But seriously, screw this.

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                                      Fine, let’s discuss ethics.

                                      Calling a playful riff on the MAGA slogan”putting googly eyes on a swastika” is bullshit. It’s the same authoritarian communist rhetorical technique that the East German government used when they called the Berlin Wall the “anti fascist defense wall”. I’m not a huge fan of Trump myself, but I’m even less of a fan of the anti-Trumpist faction in American politics characterizing Trump’s policies as literally Nazi-like so they can feel justified in weaponizing the social norm that “Nazis=bad” in western society against their poltiical enemies.

                                      Nothing the Trump administration is doing is in any meaningful way close to the bad things that the Nazis did - frankly most of what he’s been doing are the same things that every post-WWII American presidential administration has done, just with less high class verbiage to describe it. The people who claim otherwise are doing so in order to make themselves feel like they’re morally-righteous crusaders instead of people having ordinary political disagreements in the American political system.

                                      Lobsters isn’t a political discussion forum, but if people are going to say that nonpolitical articles that happen to reference the current US President’s campaign slogan should be considered forbidden, you’re already bringing politics into the space, and you shouldn’t expect that your particular poltics must go unchallenged. There’s nothing wrong with the title of the article, and people claiming otherwise are making a backhanded political argument that Trump is Bad on a technical forum.

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                                        Now this is an off-topic comment.

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                                          And yet despite being in good company, it is the only one flagged to death, because it comes from the perspective of the wrong tribe.

                                          You see why I object to politics and “ethics” discussions? This is sort of the reason why–people don’t get a fair shake.

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                                            This is a tough problem to solve, for sure.

                                            I am among those who have flagged it as off-topic, as per @alynpost ’s comment here

                                            https://lobste.rs/s/f4t0y2/make_medium_readable_again#c_ty2pp6

                                            (based on my understanding, posted here: https://lobste.rs/s/f4t0y2/make_medium_readable_again#c_szkkme)

                                            As both this downvote and the one I made on the other post were made in affect, I have removed them both.

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                                              This whole discussion is a response to unnecessarily politicised title. Ironically, it’s the objection to the title was attacked by no ethics pls crowd.

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                                            I’m not taking the bait. Would just remark that my reply, and your rant could be precisely avoided if the author stuck to fucking technicals for technical write up.

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                                          How does one show, create, invest or fix in response to a negative pattern like the “Make X Y Again” headline?

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                                            Indeed. I suppose one could suggest an alternate name for the project, in which case I will propose “Readable Medium” as a straightforward name for a browser extension that would entirely avoid any political connotations that only serve to distract from the substance of the project.

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                                              I like that also because I find it humorous – a medium is a person who may do a “reading”, so “readable medium” sounds backward to me.

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                                              If the title of the project bothers you, open an issue and try to convince the author of your point. If not possible, fork it.

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                                              I downvoted this comment as “incorrect” but I have since reconsidered and removed my downvote.

                                              I initially read the comment to mean “never discuss anything political, (as defined by us the community*) on this site”.

                                              I know hope it reads “please feel free to discuss things political, but the focus should be on the technical contents of the submitted post”.

                                              In this spirit, I will submit a comment that both reflects my opinion on the linked content, and will serve as a template for an acceptable comment that also addresses the political/ethical implications.

                                              [start comment]

                                              This project strikes me as useful for now, but ultimately reactive. It’s easy for Medium to redesign their site to defeat the circumvention, and the developer and users will engage in a game of whack-a-mole to keep up.

                                              It’s a similar situation with ad blockers, with the significant difference that the market for ad-free browsing is much larger than the market for reading Medium without a bunch of banners.

                                              This segues nicely into the problems with Medium’s business plan. Ultimately, it’s just Wordpress.com with a nicer editor and draconian rules about CSS. There’s really no reason to pay for Medium apart from the content, and the content, for me personally, seems mostly to be cryptocurrency boosters nowadays. Essentially it’s content as a commodity… there has to be a critical mass of writers who are only available on Medium for it to be worth paying for.

                                              If Medium promised a cleaner reading experience as part of a paid tier, that would maybe help?

                                              As to the name of the linked project - it’s unfortunately hard to detect irony on the web, and considering the “alt-right” has had some success in shifting the conversation by “pretending” to be racist, saying it’s for the “lulz”, I am prepared to automatically assume that someone who seems to do the same is either on the same side as this political faction, or insensitive to how they appear by choosing this name.

                                              Personally I would add the name choice as a negative in evaluating this project.

                                              [end comment]

                                              If anyone upvotes or downvotes this comment, please let me know if it was because of the content, or the presentation, or the meta-narrative on how to handle political/ethical/sensitive submissions to the site.


                                              * who represents this community is another question that deserves discussion but that’s for another time.

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                                                Good comment, upvoted. You address the content of the article first, make good points and analysis, and close with minor but reasonable speculation and an opinion–and you don’t go on a screed.

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                                                @gerikson, @jamesmacaulay, @JordiGH, @varjag I’ll reply to all of you at once in the interest of my time.

                                                I have had folk observe that I’m prone to understatement. I may have done that here describing the project name as derivative, when I could have said political slogan (h/t jamesmacaulay) or dog whistle (h/t gerikson). Both would have been more accurate.

                                                The de minimis statement I made supporting my off-topic claim was “Your comment is a generic complaint.” I then provided a test so the claim can be falsified: “[Your comment] applies to any submission matching your pattern.” This same test holds without regard to the sentiment of the comment. A similarly context-free comment supporting, rather than detracting, this political slogan, dog whistle, or derivative name would also be off-topic.

                                                We know that naming things is hard. The problem is featured in a widely known joke. (“There are two hard problems in computer science…”) We also know that names can be chosen because they’re provocative. (“There’s no such thing as bad publicity.”) Discussing names gets the benefit of the doubt regarding topicality. The comment in question is off topic qua a kind of behavior.

                                                Thank you all for your replies.

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                                                I suppose to a progressive, the title would sound like “make medium awful again” – the exact opposite of what the author is trying to convey!

                                                (I didn’t even pick up on the political reference until you pointed it out.)

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                                                  Can’t speak for others, but to me the original intent was clear given the context. But it’s hard to divorce the connotations of opression and hate from it. As @JordiGH said so eloquently, at this point it’s impossible to ignore politics as they won’t ignore you. Using this language will hurt people. I assume this wasn’t anyone’s intention by choosing this name, so I’m just trying to point this out hoping that when the next time comes around people can make a more informed decision.

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                                                I’m using Tampermonkey plugin for “adjustments” to other sites like these. The plugin itself is really nice if there’s a need to adjust some website, i.e. hide some website element, like a chatbox on a Bitcoin exchange site. Just wondering Is there any reason why the plugin wasn’t released on the Tampermonkey engine?