Introducing "Read Max Chat"
If you subscribe to any other Substack-platform newsletters, you may have recently been invited to join a “chat” on the Substack app by these newsletter authors. Officially the idea is that it’s a place where Substack authors can send their subscribers short, casual messages in a, I guess, “chattier” format; I suspect that it’s also the product of Substack noticing that a lot of their writers had set up quite popular Discord chats of subscribers.1
I like this idea, or at least the possibility that there’s a place I can drop funny tweets or stupid ideas, and where subscribers who are interested in that kind of thing can find them. (And where they can be hidden from subscribers who don’t want that kind of thing.) So I just started a “chat”; come join me? To join you need to download the Substack app, and then click on the little chat-dialogue bubble icon along the bottom. I should be there, embarrassing myself.
Currently my plan is to use it to ask questions, share memes, and consult on important issues, but as with all things Read Max this feature will be a permanent experiment, to be developed and re-fit for the desires and patience levels of myself and the subscribers. Let’s find out!
P.S. I’m not sure if Substack will send out a second email about thisautomatically or not; sorry if I’m accidentally double-contacting you!
What it reminds me of, more than anything, is my former boss Nick Denton’s eternal quest to create software products that would entice his writers to share posts/ideas/rumors/ill-advised opinions about politics/gossip without any kind of hesitation, bar, or needed activation energy. Denton’s vision for “Kinja” was, in retrospect, basically what Twitter ended up being; Substack now sort of seems to be attempting to reverse engineer Kinja from the subsequent tensions between itself, Discord, and the Twitter of 2022.