How Do You Decide How Much to Clap on Medium?

Kristin Rowan
2 min readApr 2, 2023
Photo by Lisa Fotios: https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-person-wearing-ring-4124315/

Like what is your clapping scale on Medium?

I pretty much just one clap anything that I enjoy or find intriguing. I’m so used to other social media platforms where it’s like a yes/no sort of thing. Either you like it or you don’t.

I’ll even clap things I disagree with if it’s thought provoking and not just outright awful.

Sometimes I will get distracted and accidentally clap the same thing twice. Then sometimes I try to undo it and accidentally clap a third time.

Sometimes people will fifty clap on a comment I’ve made and then respond to it. Then if I respond to it I feel like I should also fifty clap their response. That just seems like common curtesy at that point.

Other numbers feel too arbitrary. I like the one clap because it acknowledges that I liked it. However there are certainly some articles I enjoy more than others.

Fifty claps feel excessive unless it’s like a life changing article. Like being the only person trying to do a standing ovation at the end of a show.

There’s plenty of good writing here, but we’re not Shakespeare or anything.

Then if you do some other number of claps that isn’t one and isn’t fifty, I worry that people will be like ‘so if you know you can clap more than once why didn’t you go all the way to fifty?’ I already worry that when I accidentally clap a second or third time. What if they think I’m being sarcastic?

I don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings by doing a ten clap. That feels like you liked it but not that much.

Long story short, I overthink things and clapping is one of the many things I overthink.

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