Our Narratives are not supported: Medium, where is the Inclusivity for Our Voices?
I always thought that writing for Medium’s Partner Program was inclusive, until I battled Meduim’s awkward minefield of why my voice and other voices were not supported.
Medium is discriminatory to voices that are in the unsupported countries categories. Yes, in the words of Nene from the Real Housewives of Atlanta: ‘I said what I said’.
I’ve been playing a tentative game of tennis with a couple of support staff at Medium for the last couple of months, tirelessly informing them that I live in a French Overseas Department — Guadeloupe — and that my bank account is attached to Stripe for other online endeavours, I’m still given a regurgitated story from the support staff that my country remains ‘unsupported’.
Earlier this morning, I read the fine print again on their website about supportive countries, and I’ve noticed that they now seem to have added this piece of text stating: ‘Please note: Outlying territories of supported countries are not supported at this time.’
I guess they were tired of my ‘love one’ tennis scores when I previously questioned Medium on my status of living in an overseas department, and the nonesical stance that has been taken on all of this.
C’est la vie…
It was at this point that I threw my hands up in the air and gave up. However, a few jarring questions have arisen for me in all of this:
Why if we, oversea departments, share the same laws as the supported countries, that writers are being excluded and dare I say, discriminated from? So, from Medium limited reasonings, Martinique, St Barts, St Martin and the other French controlled islands cannot write for Medium. They have some great creative writers in these locations, in fact, the entire Caribbean, yet these territories and countries remain unsupported! Even though the French Oversea Departments primary bank headquarters are based in France and we can access Stripe, we are still excluded.
Why isn’t Medium accepting writers all over the globe who can contribute to their creative spaces in such inspiring and motivating ways? Additionally, I’m noticing a trend at Medium, that many of the countries that are ‘supported’ are so called ‘1st world’ countries, yet the voices of so called ‘developing nations’ are left out.
Why then is the diversity of my voice and myriad of my experiences — Nigerian- British woman, who has moved to two, small Caribbean islands — being excluded, out of this space of writers? I have so many stories to tell, but the blockage is real.
Why are African, Caribbean, South American and other voices from the ‘unsupported countries’ excluded from this inclusive space?
Medium states on their article regarding setting up payments https://help.medium.com/hc/en-us/articles/360003928833-Setting-up-payouts-with-Stripe, that you must have a Stripe account. As I mentioned earlier on, I have one, so tell me, what is the problem, and why am I being excluded for writing for a large audience? Surely our voices are diverse, and engaging as the other writers who get paid for their stories in your writers’ programme?
According to Medium on their website, they boldly declare that ‘if you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home’.
I guess then that we have been evicted, because the ‘welcome mat’ is non existent for voices who do not come under that large canopy of writers, so our privileges as creators are being denied at this point. Am I wrong?
To reiterate, I understand if writers can’t access Stripe for your bank account, but why not use other payment processors so that other unsupported countries can become inclusive within this writing programme?
Because of your policy, I am not getting paid for my words, so effectively, its free. Yet my $5 every month contribute to the writers who are included in your Partner Program!
After looking at these questions that arose for me, I have decided to take the decision to cancel my monthly membership. It’s only $5 a month; a paltry amount, but it’s the principle of the matter.
Medium can only accept my money as a monthly paying member, yet I’m still excluded from the Partner Program? I could insert a rude expletive at this juncture, but I’ll refrain; I’m trying to remain positive about this negative experience.
In conclusion, I am going to exclude myself and find other inclusive and nurturing writing communities that accept me, my voice, my diversities, my narratives. I may not get the same audience in numbers, because its clear that Medium brings all the’ boys to the yard’ when it comes to their readership, but I’m ok with this. At least I will know that my writing is supported and appreciated, and that I will get paid without being discriminated against.
I don’t like to be in a space which excludes my voice and my experiences, and this was one of the reasons why I blaxited from the UK. Sadly, I will not be sharing my voice or experiences with the Medium audience, on this or any other stories that I have to share, as it seems from Medium’s stance that I am not welcome to. For now or for how long?
Au revoir Medium. Until you can include and be inclusive to a spectrum of voices from all around the world, and they can use your preferred payment processor (Stripe), or Medium, as a large organisation can look at other means of paying writers who are coming from unsupported countries, I’m going to exclude my monthly fee and go elsewhere where I am appreciated.