regular-article-logo Friday, 02 June 2023

Medium founder Ev Williams steps away from CEO post

Famed serial entrepreneur is stepping down from his role at Medium, an online platform that has transformed publishing on the Internet

Mathures Paul Published 15.07.22, 12:15 AM

Another day, another tech company CEO is stepping away. Famed serial entrepreneur Ev Williams is stepping down from his role at Medium, an online platform that has transformed publishing on the Internet.

Williams knows more than a thing or two about publishing. In 1999 he co-founded Blogger, which made blogging mainstream and was sold to Google four years later. In 2006, he co-founded Twitter, which is at the moment going through a volatile phase.


The 50-year-old called Medium — when it debuted in 2012 — “A beautiful space for reading and writing — and little else.” And it did. In a 2014 interview with The New York Times, he said he wanted to create a company that focussed on quality content rather than relying on speed and quantity. For independent publishing, Medium has been a role model. It was among the first online publishing companies to have moved away from advertising in 2017. That year, the company focused more on subscriptions, starting a programme that gave writers compensation determined by an algorithm that factored in the number of “claps” they received from readers. According to The New York Times, read time became the primary factor that determined compensation. In the last few years, Substack has become popular, allowing solo creators to develop thriving careers by offering individual subscriptions.

“To be clear,” Williams writes, “Medium’s story is far from over. The team today is probably the most capable I’ve seen at this company. I’m excited to see what they do.” He is replacing himself with Tony Stubblebine, the chief executive of the online coaching company

Williams is also a venture partner with the venture firm Obvious Ventures and he plans to launch a new “holding company/research lab” that can be helpful to Medium and other companies.

CEOs who have stepped away recently

  • Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey stepped down as the CEO of Twitter for the second time late last November
  • Pinterest co-founder Ben Silbermann stepped away as CEO of the company late last month
  • Glossier founder Emily Weiss has stepped away as CEO in late May
  • founder Richard Liu has stepped down as CEO in April
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