Some people sell body fluids and others sell bad art on Etsy. Everyone has their unique spin on making a buck out of their time. More power to them all. But there’s this odd and reoccurring trend of truncating RSS feeds, tweets, and even Web site posts in an effort to force additional clicks. The trend surges every 18 months or so, but some sites try it again and again. It’s difficult for me to believe that this method generates any additional value for anyone, especially the authors.

Truncated ideas and opinions are not taste tests. From the perspective of a reader, truncated thoughts create a barrier for my interest. The opinion or information must be so extraordinarily compelling that I’m willing to change my reading patterns to access it. The content needs to be worth a trip out of my feed reader or Twitter client just to be exposed to the writer.

From the perspective of someone writing on the Internet, it’s so incredibly difficult to get someone to care about what I think, I can’t imagine making them work for it. It’s such a huge privilege to have anyone contemplate my words, that I feel obliged to roll out the welcome mat.1 There are billions of new words put on the Internet every day and so many of them say the same things. It’s a wonder anyone reads past the first “click to read more”.

Here’s to hoping new ideas in monetization are in all of our futures. After all, the value of making connections with actual humans that want to read our words is not derived by immediate page views, but by…

  1. Everything here is available through RSS, plain text markdown, through a responsive Web site, and posted as full content on Pinboard. It’s damn near impossible to avoid the stuff I put out. ↩︎