Tony Stubblebine
1 min readSep 28, 2023

Update Oct 4. Sorry, I got this wrong. We do have another more likely explanation for the pay discrepancy you’re referencing on Medium the past few days, which is that we recently discovered organized fraudulent activity impacting payments. We found fraudulent activity from accounts targeting our program to specifically divert funds. If you’re a Partner Program writer, you may have seen a decrease in earnings from on or around September 25th. Our team has removed these users and we’re working on what we can do to address the effect. Thank you for speaking up.

The only change I know of is rate limiting. There's been an unfortunate belief that the way to make money is to give and encourage engagement. This does go directly against the goal of quality when it is done in an inauthentic way. So our take is that the higher the volume, the less authentic the behavior. Or less antagonistically, if you comment on hundreds of stories then a comment from you is less of a signal that any of those stories were the cream of the crop. Someone with more tact than me will probably announce something soon. But essentially, manufactured engagement is a form of growth hacking. I wish that were more obvious to the people doing it.