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What Is A Locked Story On Medium, Exactly?

Medium Partner Programs and locked stories and paywalls–OH MY! Say, what is a locked story on Medium? Why are we paying for blog posts?

What the heck kind of a world is this? The internet should be free!

Okay, calm down. I’ll explain to you just what a locked story on Medium is.

What Is A Locked Story On Medium, Exactly?

Well, it’s a story that you have to pay to read, basically.

Writers, on the backend, can choose to “lock” a story so that only Medium Members can read them. If you’re not a Medium member, you can’t read it.

Well, that’s not entirely true. If you’re not a Medium Member, Medium allows you to read 3 locked stories per month as a sort of grace offering before they lock you out.


Because they want to keep you happy, I guess.

Are All Stories On Medium Locked?

No they are not. There are many “free” stories you can read. In fact, I would wager that about 50-75% of the stories on the platform are free to read for everyone.

Why Do Medium Writers Publish Locked Stories?

To make money! There’s a whole process behind this that I’ve outlined in other blog posts, but when Medium Members read and clap (Medium’s version of a FB Like) for your story on Medium, you get a portion of that reader’s Medium Membership fee.

People pay $5 per month to read unlimited locked stories on Medium. So, in essence, the more people you can get to “clap” for your stories, the more money you make.

How Do I Lock A Medium Story?

It’s really, really simple. Just visit this blog post that I wrote. I break it down with pictures and snappy sentences and lots of personality.

Trust me. ;)

How Much Can I Expect To Earn With Locked Medium Stories?

Well, are you ready to put the work in?

My friend Shannon Ashley made $1,400 last month on the Partner Program. The catch?

She wrote 2 locked stories per day.

That’s 60 locked stories. By the time she was done, she was averaging about $23 per locked post.

Some writers earn up to $10,000 PER MONTH on the Partner Program. But my friends, these are the outliers.

Most Medium writers earn about $100-$200 per month on the Partner Program, which is really awesome pocket change for those that like to write for fun.

So, that’s that.

I hope this blog post cleared up the “What Is A Locked Story On Medium, bro?” question. It’s just a way for writers to make money, that’s all. It’s actually a pretty damn good way for writers to make money if you want my honest opinion.

Maybe you should try it sometime?

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