Can Medium’s clickbait problem be solved?

Please don’t let it become another Quora

source: freepik.com
  1. X things every Y must know about Z
    Replace X with a number, Y with a work title/profile and Z with a subject/ tool/topic.
    This is the most common and one of the most annoying kind. Don’t get me wrong here; in my experience, most of the times this type of article bear a generic content. If Y is designer, then you’ll find content in lines with ‘Learn how to present your work’, ‘Talk to all stakeholders’ or ‘Have sympathy for the end-user’ irrespective of Z.
    Yeah, Thanks for pointing out users are important. Being a designer, I never knew that.
  2. One simple trick regarding X that will change your life/workflow forever
    Just replace X with a tool or software and there you go. Honestly, I haven’t felt a change in my life after reading any such article. If you really want to change my life, you need to tell me something more than how to create a component in Figma.
  3. Bet you didn’t know these X things about Y
    Well, I knew 90% of the things in your list — like everyone else who has ever heard of Y. Where do I come to collect my bet winnings?
  4. X ways to use Y in your project.
    I remember reading an article titled something like ‘10 ways to use the dropdown in your UX project’ where after a point, they stopped talking about dropdown altogether. Point 5, 6, 7 in that article talked about alternates of dropdown — use radio button, sliders, checkboxes instead. Come on! at least stay loyal to the title. If someone has opted to read those articles, it implies that she/she/ they are interested in learning 10 ways to use the dropdown. Don’t switch lanes.
  5. X habits that’ll make you successful in your career.
    Wake up early, plan your day, be passionate, stay honest to yourself, avoid distractions, read, work out, have empathy, learn from your failures, find time for yourself.
    There you go, I saved you all the time reading such articles and finding things you already know. Do feel free to add to this list in responses.

Censorship is NOT a solution here. Since we’re talking in qualitative aspect, AI wouldn’t be an ideal solution either.

Solution

An icon denoting an article marked as clickbait by the community on the feed itself
Option to mark clickbait along with floating icons
Option to mark clickbait at the end of the article. Data of ‘mark as clickbait’ count could be hidden for users.

How’s this solution any good for Medium?

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Vaibhav Gupta

Designer & storyteller. I write whatever I’ve learnt so far about design, development and other things I care about. https://linkedin.com/in/vaigu