‘Long-Form’ Isn’t Dead Yet

Just a few years ago, many believed that the rise of fast-paced mobile culture would kill magazine-style journalism, often referred to as “long-form” journalism. With a combination of new technology and a little nostalgia for in-depth reporting, however, it appears that long-form may not be dead just yet.

Websites such as longreads.com and longform.org have cropped up in recent years amid speculation that long, magazine-style journalism would become obsolete now that a majority of consumers worldwide read on their computers or phones.

Interestingly, it’s the creators of popular micro-interaction sites who seem most interested in providing an alternative. In 2013, Twitter co-founder Evan Williams created Medium, a long-form blogging site built for specifically for in-depth storytelling. Michael Shapiro, by day the features editor at Buzzfeed, crowdfunded a project called The Big Roundtable that same year. Both creators expressed an interest in protecting the integrity of magazine journalism.

And people are responding. Shapiro received a little over $19,000 to fund his project, and although it’s difficult to measure Medium’s current success, some reports have estimated it at about 9 million unique pageviews per month.