Matter articles are ideal for reading on iPad or Kindle
Medium was announced by Twitter co-founder Ev Williams in October last year. At the time, in a post on the website, Williams discussed the need for a platform "where anyone can have a voice but where one has to earn the right to your attention" and "a system where people work together to make a difference, rather than merely compete for validation and recognition".
He described Medium as "a system for reading and writing". "A place where you can find and share knowledge, ideas, and stories – specifically, ones that need more than 140 characters and are not just for your friends. It’s a place where you can work with others to create something better than you can on your own."
A month later Matter officially launched, following a successful Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign, during which it raised $140,000 to help it get started. It announced a business model focused on micro-payments per article, at a cost of $0.99 each, with its long-form journalism content to be brought to audiences both online and via the iPad and Kindle. At launch the platform was on a monthly publishing timescale, with plans to eventually publish at least one feature a week.
One of the project's backers during its Kickstarter campaign was Williams. Having met with Williams, Matter's co-founders Jim Giles and Bobbie Johnson were approached by him with the idea of "joining forces", they said in an announcement about the new deal, published on Medium.
"It didn't take us long to realise how much sense that made for us, our readers and for the people we work with".
While Johnson and Giles have now effectively joined Medium and their editorial team, they will also stay in the driving seat editorially for Matter's content.
And as for the impact of the acquisition, Johnson and Giles said users should not "expect big changes yet".
"Our service is an ongoing experiment, but we have no immediate plans to alter the team, the places we publish (our website and the Kindle store), or how much we charge for each article.
"More importantly, we have no plans – at any time – to stop crafting hard-hitting narratives about big ideas. One of the things that made it easy to join Medium was the knowledge that the company believes in great storytelling as much as we do, and is prepared to support what we do."
Changes on the cards include "using Medium to expand on the ideas we cover" and improvements to the website "that will make the site better for readers, and improve our mechanism for supporting long-form writing".
"And we'll be helping Medium become an even better place for smart, thoughtful writing, as we work alongside the great editorial team that it's assembling," they added.
Matter articles, such as 'Do No Harm', can now also be seen on Medium, which says "Matter members get access to our full content collection, as well as a range of exclusive benefits, for just 99c per month".
In December last year Matter also partnered with bookmarking platform Pocket, to help users who may not want to read at the time of purchase.