Medium isn’t profitable yet, so I think they keep tweaking things to see what might work and draw in more paying customers. When I get an article curated I’m happy about it, but when I don’t, I chalk it up to being a competitive market with tens of thousands of articles coming across their transom and their own subjectivity playing a part. I can never tell which articles will get curated, but sometimes I can look back at my work later and see flaws or problems with a story that might have led to it not getting curated.
I think the curators try to select stuff that would go over well outside of Medium; things that could pass muster for one of the major online publicatons or for a print magazine. Medium doesn’t owe us anything. For our $50 a year they provide us with a platform and a built-in audience. I don’t get too bitter about it when my stories don’t gain much traction, because there are a lot of writers out there who write so much better than I do. I’ll just keep plugging away, trying to improve my writing, connect with a few people and who knows? There’s always the next story that could go viral and gain a big audience.
In the meantime I get to practice, and I get to read some really good writers (such as yourself!) who make me laugh, think, and try harder. You really are a talented writer and I enjoy your work, so I hope you don’t exit the platform. But I know it gets frustrating at times to put in all that work and feel like it’s a waste of time. I’ve been on this platform a long time, and at first I didn’t get any attention at all. I used to think if I could just get 10 fans for a story, I’d have it made! But now I get a fair amount of my stuff curated (for what that’s worth), and I get to practice writing, interact with other writers and write about whatever I want. So for me, it’s worth it to stay.