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Publishers are leaving Medium, the crowdsourced-based content platform, amid business changes that make It harder for them to make money. Most notably in the last month, Bill Simmon's sports/culture blog The Ringer moved to Vox and Condé Nast's tech blog BackChannel moved to Wired.

Why it matters: Medium's long-term solution to this problem is to wait until its subscription model is out of beta and revenues will go up. But their interim strategy of retaining publishers despite having no short-term revenue plan is failing. Medium's struggle is shared by other internet publishers struggling to figure out how to build a sustainable long-term subscription model while ad revenues collapse in the wake of Facebook and Google's dominance.

It's been hard for publishers to make money on the platform since Medium announced in January that it was pivoting its business model away from ad-supported content towards a subscription model. A lot of these publishers initially joined Medium last year because of the ad revenue cut (among other benefits), but with Medium's subscription-supported revenue model still in beta, publishers haven't seen short-term benefits of staying within the platform.

Who's ditched:

  • June 9: BackChannel: "In the time since Backchannel launched, Medium has shifted its business strategy, and it's no longer as focused on helping publications like ours profit," BackChannel Editor Jessi Hempel said in a blog post.
  • May 30:The Ringer: "This partnership allows us to remain independent while leveraging two of the things that Vox Media is great at: sales and technology," The Ringer founder Bill Simmons in a statement.
  • May 16: Pacific Standard editor-in-chief Nicholas Jackson says it's building its own site to migrate to that will better drive subscription growth, in an email to Poynter.
  • May 10: Film School Rejects: "We'd love to be able to do this all without any ads, but there's no money in that," publisher Neil Miller said in a statement.
  • April 1: War is Boring announced that it left Medium in April to use its own proprietary platform.

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Over 3,000 detained in protests across Russia demanding Navalny's release

Russian police officers beat protestesters at a rally against of jailing of oppositon leader Alexei Navalny in Moscow on Saturday. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

Police in Russia on Saturday arrested more than 3,300 people as protesters nationwide demanded that opposition leader Alexey Navalny be released from jail.

Details: Demonstrations began in the eastern regions of Russia and spread west to more than 60 cities.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Arizona Republicans censure Cindy McCain and GOP governor

Combination images of Cindy McCain and Gov. Doug Ducey. Photo: FilmMagic/FilmMagic for U.S.VETS/Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Arizona Republican Party members voted on Saturday to censure prominent GOP figures Cindy McCain, Gov. Doug Ducey and former Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), who've all faced clashes with former President Trump.

Why it matters: Although the resolution is symbolic, this move plus the re-election of the Trump-endorsed Kelli Ward as state GOP chair shows the strong hold the former president has on the party in Arizona, despite President Biden winning the state in the 2020 election.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Health: Most vulnerable Americans aren't getting enough vaccine information — Fauci says Trump administration's lack of facts on COVID "very likely" cost lives.
  2. Education: Schools face an uphill battle to reopen during the pandemic.
  3. Vaccine: Florida requiring proof of residency to get vaccine — CDC extends interval between vaccine doses for exceptional cases.
  4. World: Hong Kong puts tens of thousands on lockdown as cases surge — Pfizer to supply 40 million vaccine doses to lower-income countries — Brazil begins distributing AstraZeneca vaccine.
  5. Sports: 2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Carbon Health's CEO on unsticking the vaccine bottleneck.