There's a significant percentage of Hubbers for whom HubPages is a writers' community first and foremost, and the loss of comments has shattered that community.
While Samantha has said comments are "on the list" to be reinstated, realistically it's likely to be months (due to the upcoming holidays, Covid, and the fact that it requires programming effort). I'm concerned that if it goes on too long, the community will have drifted apart by the time it happens. With that in mind, I've been looking for temporary homes, where people can write and comment easily and keep the community spirit alive.
My recommendation - MyLot.com
I could hardly believe MyLot was still running, but it's still a lively site and worth a look. If you were on Bubblews, you'll see the idea is similar - but the difference is that Bubblews was paying out far more than it earned, so it died. MyLot pays very little, and it has survived and thrived for years for that reason.
But money is not the point. If you want a place where you can post short articles and interact with your friends, MyLot is ideal. In fact, you don't get paid for writing, you get paid according to how many comments you get! And because you don't have to invest hard work into crafting long articles, it will be easy to leave behind in the future, if and when comments are reinstated here.
If, on the other hand, you'd prefer to move to a site where you can earn money, then I'd say Medium is the only option. On Medium, you earn money by having followers who read your work, so if the whole social community moves over there and continues their reading/commenting habits, that has potential. However, everyone would have to become a paid member (non-members can't follow or comment). There's a learning curve (I recommend Glenn Stok's articles on ToughNickel to get started) and it's probably not the kind of place you'd go if you're just looking for a stop-gap measure until comments return here.
I have mentioned Wizzley.com - there's already a group of HubPages refugees there, and Hubbers will find the rules and layout are familiar from the old days of HP - but the earnings potential isn't good.
This is good information, Marisa. I've told you privately, and I'll now say it publicly: I really appreciate the effort you're putting into finding alternative (perhaps temporary) homes for the HP community. I live in Florida and we have what we call "snowbirds" who have second homes in Florida where they spend their time during the winter months in order to escape the cold. Perhaps we should consider becoming snowbirds until our main home (HP) has completed its repairs and renovations.
Thanks again. You're very much appreciated, Marisa!
I forgot about MyLot. I have an account there that I haven't used in years. I remember it being a fun site. I might go back.
Hi Marisa, Thank you for recommending my two articles about Medium. I appreciate it, and that's very kind of you.
Medium has made major changes with comments recently. Comments used to be treated as individual articles, which was strange. Now, with the changes to the platform, comments appear with the article they are posted in, and open in a side-panel.
It's somewhat different between the website view and the mobile app, however.
I read your article on ToughNickel, Glen. Very comprehensive and detailed. Marisa suggested I read it and I'm glad I did. I will be emailing several of my HP friends with the link to your article.
Yeah writing is a passion. I dreamed of one day, a book, article, an author. It only seems impossible now. With real great writers out there and we can't catch a break.
I am not so concerned about the community of writers but I do miss the comments since those people with dog health problems could read and ask if they still had a problem. I wonder how HP would feel if we added something at the bottom of articles directing people to make comments at that site?
Sounds pretty interesting thanks for the suggestion. Will do.
I love the snowbirds analogy, Bravewarrior! That's exactly what I was thinking of.
Nate - yes, I was on MyLot years ago, too. In fact you just prompted me to go and check - my old account is still there! I'm Marisawriter. My last activity was 2007, would you believe.
I didn't do much with it at the time. It was in the early days of trying to make money online, and I decided it was too slow for that purpose, so I didn't take it further.
I had to go check when my last activity was there; it was back in 2013. Which I think was about a year after I joined Hubpages.
I have to say, my first reaction was that there aren't many people I'd be interested in socialising with on the site - but that's not the point. If we can get a group of HubPages "snowbirds" on there, that would be a big enough community on its own.
However as so few "social" Hubbers visit these forums, they're unlikely to hear about it, I guess.
I wrote on MyLot years back but gave up. Wonder what I should do ?
If you wrote years ago, your account is probably still there. Mine was. Can you remember your username?
I just posted my first article. It's not even called "writing an article", it's "start a discussion". Very easy - just write a paragraph or two and add an image and you're done. It feels like a nice place to write something when you don't feel like knuckling down to a serious piece of writing.
I'm casually interested but am not sure what to do. Every time HP changes, I feel I'm at square one.
I have to start writing books or doing research writing for pay, not for clicks.
Perhaps the forums here are the solution to needing interaction and comments. I intend to continue interacting with the community; I'm just doubtful I will do any more article writing here. (A few, maybe.)
I spent an hour or so yesterday at Wix to set up my own website but got frustrated with the new formatting and icons. I'm just not ready for a new webpage when I already have accounts at Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Pinterest, all of which I have allowed to become dormant, except Facebook because of family members.
We still have HubPages feed where we can make comments and read those of others. Besides, I tried snow birding last summer and got stuck in Michigan!
Blessings and best wishes for the Christmas season and the new year!
What's snow birding?
Interestingly, my earnings have gone up on Hubpages during the past month, as have my numbers.
With regard to Medium, there are only four areas that do really well on Medium - IT, Business, Writing (articles about writing), and self-improvement. There are also a lot of success marketers on Medium "I only earned $10,000 this month, but I will show you how to get 17,000 followers in your first month." Um. Ignore.
That said, I started a lifestyle magazine a week ago - home, arts and crafts, beauty, and architecture.
A month ago, I started putting affiliate links on one article. Last month I earned from it. In the 10 days since the beginning of December, I've had 36 sales and more than 2000 reads sent from Google.
Some months ago, I wrote an article similar to the one I had on hubpages. When I saw that the article was curated (for further distribution), I decided to change the title of the article on hubpages to the same one as Medium - only the content was different. What happened next suprised me. I got a helluve lot of traffic to my hubpages articles and earned $90 from it that month. I think it was that. I do feel bad, though, It wasn't even remotely the same article.
My point is that while hubpages has its strenghts in the variety of topics it reaches (as you pointed out to me a long time ago), Medium has some other strengths.
I'm not sure if the magazine I've opened up will work or not. I'm looking for writers for it - decor, arts and crafts, beauty, etc. and am considering advertising on Craigslist for writers.
If it works, then I think Medium might open up for more than just a few who write on the current narrow range of topics. I'll let you know.
Tess, after reading your article on publishing, I Googled you to see what books you've written. I'm interested in purchasing your rapid weight loss book, but only see it in Kindle form. I don't read books online because I work on a computer 40 hours per week. When I read, I want to hold a real book with real pages.
Are your books available in paperback?
Not at the moment. Howver, I've just signed up for Tangent Templates in order to do low content books. And I've discovered I can do print books with it as well. So if you let me have your email (firstname.lastname@example.org), as soon as it is done, I'll be in touch.
The book isn't a diet book, though. It explains how your body works, explains, food, energy, metabolism, and a thousand and one things that contribute to weight loss. There is a link to the research for everything if you want to learn more.
It enables you to design your eating patterns in way that suits you in order to keep to your diet. One thing I learnt the hard way was that if something feels like a diet, one isn't going to stick to it.
That's exactly why your book interests me, Tess. I'll email you via Contact Author button. I really would love to purchase it in book form.
Thank you, Marisa. I will check out MyLot.com. I already have had a medium account for a couple of years and written a few things there, but it doesn't really engage me. The change to comments there may help.
John, I have full intentions of emailing you, Bill, and several others with some information Marisa sent me. Until then - and this is part of the intended email - I urge you to read Glenn Stok's article on Medium. It's detailed, in-depth, and provides specifics I think will appeal to you and Bill. Here's the link: https://toughnickel.com/self-employment … orm-review
It's definitely worth the read. He's done quite a bit of research and has also become a contributor based on his findings.
Thanks for the information about MyLot. I was one who made quite a bit of money on Bubblews before it folded. They were paying an amazing amount of money at the time for little work.
This is a good idea for those who interact on hub comments. I have never heard of MyLot before. I just looked it up.
not sure what you mean, but i did notice the comments were taken off hubs....i guess this is a forum for people to talk?
If you're referring to MyLot, it's not a forum, exactly. After all, we have a forum here already.
The thing is, there's a whole community of people who socialize on HubPages by commenting on each other's Hubs. They don't like the HubPages forums, so when comments disappeared from Hubs, they had nowhere to go.
It may be a long time before the comments come back, so a site like MyLot (which allows you to write short articles and comment on each other's) could be a stop-gap solution.
Must be that I grew up in the print world. One wrote letters to the editor and one wrote articles for magazines and newspapers, but one did not communicate with one's readers.
@Tess Schlesinger - Good point, Tess! I'm a bit from that world, but online blogging is a whole new experience. Helping others is time well spent.
I don't have it in me.
It takes all my time to research and write the article. By the time I'm finished with that, I don't have the time and the energy to speak to readers. I also think it's unnecessary. I will certainly help readers and go out of my way if they contact me about something. I have always done that. But I'm not going to comment on the work of other writers in order to get them to read mine.
It works differently on different platforms. Take Quora, for instance. I don't write there often, but when I do, I get a few hundred thousand viewers/reads in a week. I didn't have to speak to anyone to be able to do that.
In Google Plus, it was the same story. I used to get up to 1.5 million views in 24 hours for posts 3 or 4 times a week. It's the way the platforms are set up.
On Medium, it's a battle. Although my articles get curated (distributed), the 15 or 16 reads aren't worth it. What is worth is is the thousands of reads I get sent from Google - and who buy my affilate products.
However, there comes a point when there are more readers than writers, and when that happens, essentially the market for writers falls flat. There is simply too much to read.
When people are looking for relationships with others, that is not what writers are supposed to do. Writers are supposed to bring solid information or good entertainment to readers. The source for the satisfaction is supposed to be what is written - not the relationship with the writer.
I've once more changed direction. Back to affiliate marketing and low content books.
Do you mean there comes a point where there are more writers than readers? I would agree with you.
I think the internet has fundamentally changed the nature of writing. Readrs nowadays expect to have a personal connection with the writer. As with celebrities, they expect to know about your personal life and they expect you to interact with them. That's very tough for writers because most have a naturally introverted nature (you need it, if you're going to spend hours alone in a room writing).
Well, yes, 5% of people are genuine readers. They read all the time. The rest aren't readers. They just like knowing that they are talking to people who are either famous or who are perceived to be famous.
And 84% of Americans want to be writers and think they have the ability to be writers. That is hilarious. According to research I read, 95% of 4-year American university students cannot write a grammatical sentence. I have some lovely people in my life who see themselves as writers (some are even making money out of it teaching others to write), but they are semi-literate, and outside of blogging, they would never be paid by a mainstream magazine to write. Or even be accepted for publication. Now they will tell you that in order to be written, one has to interact with with one's readers.
The real writers do NOT have to interact with their readers. You show me one bestselling author who has to make friends with their readers in order to sell books.
The writers for newspapers, magazines, etc. do not have to interact with their readers in order to find readers. It is the publication that gets the readers, and that is still true on the web.
Hubpages has good SEO. And the majority of the readreship still comes from the web. I didn't have to interact with my readers in order to get read. One of the unique things about Quora and Google Plus was/is that the writing and the posts were based on merit - not on making friends with people. One didn't (and doesn't) need a lot of followers) in order to be read. The publication does that for you. I know that from experience.
Medium works both ways. It gets a lot of traffic from Google. Unfortunately, that traffic isn't paid for. One only gets paid for reads by people who read one (who have paid for their membership).
So a lot of people have a quid pro quo relationship with their 'readers.' "If you read mine, I will read yours." This makes you a few pennies per read. I think it's rediculous. Nobody has the time to to read 20,000 pieces per month in order to get paid decent money. Some 'writers' are just so desperate to be read that they actually think that having six of fifty readers a month makes them a writer. That's why 95% of Medium writers make under a $100 a month.
Because Medium doesn't have a good algortihm to weed out the good from the bad, it's quite difficult to find followers and be read, etc. This happens on a lot of platform. It doesn't help that when a site does have a decent algorith for good distributorship, the baddies come along and game the system.
Essentially, it's rediculous for readers to expect a personal relationship with a writer. How can anyone with a million readers have an authentic relationship with each of those readers? It is absolutely and utterly impossible and unrealistic.
The internet has misinformed a lot of people as to their worth and what they are entitled to. Why? Because success marketers depend on flattering people and making them feel good about themselves.
I'm not talking about anyone having an authentic relationship with an author. As you say, it's not possible. But just look around you at successful novelists - they have Twitter accounts, Instagram, Pinterest, Goodreads etc. They use those media to "talk" to their readers, telling them stuff about their personal life. Of course, the authors have no idea who their readers are, but the readers feel as if the authors are talking to them, and that's the desired effect.
In the old days, it was possible to write a novel under a pseudonym and keep your identity secret, but nowadays, readers won't warm to you unless they feel they "know who you are". I'm not talking about knowing you personally, or interacting on an individual basis. I am talking about putting yourself out there. Which should not be necessary but it's the cult of celebrity we have today.
Oh, I get that.
But fans are very strange people. And I know plenty of authors who do fine without putting themselves out there.
I don't think the comments are coming back so fast. That's the bottom-line.
@Stacy Vizcarrondo - "Snowbirding," Dear, is jargon for relocating (migrating) from a cold climate to a warm one to avoid long, cold winters (often deep in snow).
@Stacy Vizcarrondo - (Snowbirding, cont.) . . . and vice versa!
@Glen Stok - I read your article about Medium. You did a great job writing this piece; it's very thorough. Frankly, Medium sounds more like my cup of tea, due to my dislike of ads. If I'm writing quality, I deserve to be able to have a modest living income. $100/month, though, doesn't quite cut it, but it a start. Thank you so much for the precious time you took writing this piece. Blessings!
I could care less about the social aspects of the comments section. However, I do care that lack of comments can affect an article's position in search and therefore its earning capability. Comments add more content to articles and show engagement. Answering questions and comments helps the readers. That's why we are doing this, no?
Comments are fairly important. I am really surprised that HP/Maven are not putting more of an effort into solving this problem.
I just got a comment notification about a comment that was made three months ago. Some testing must be taking place on comment notification.
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