As Substack, the platform that allows journalists to build paid followings from newsletters, moves into the mainstream, woke critics are suggesting the site is biased towards white writers.
“I am a white person and I am a top earner on Substack and it’s very weird to me that some people don’t wanna admit that white people do way way way better on Substack,” journalist Emily Atkin tweeted on Monday, adding that maybe people should “figure out how to make it not that way.”
Atkin also said that “pure raw talent” is not behind the success of many who have moved onto the platform.
Especially if you’re a new Substack writer who shot up the charts and started making $200,000 before writing a single newsletter. Maybe you should be honest that your pure raw talent isn’t the only thing that got you there.
— Emily Atkin (@emorwee) November 17, 2020
Substack has become increasingly popular recently, as journalists such as Glenn Greenwald have fled to the platform in search of an independent site to release content.
Atkin’s assertion has not earned much support, as many have blasted the journalist for “humblebragging” and virtue signaling unnecessarily.
“You can criticize consumer preferences, but they’re difficult to change,” user Steven Walk wrote.
“The woke war on Substack begins,” another added.
I am a black person and I am a top earner in the NBA and it’s very weird to me that some people don’t wanna admit that black people do way way way better in basketball and maybe we should figure out how to make it not that way
— scott foster’s bookie (@dsonoiki) November 17, 2020
The rare double humble brag – in which I tell you both how much I make but also highlight how much more I care about black people than you https://t.co/uwnIsmC562
— quodvultdeus (@_quodvultdeus) November 17, 2020
“It’s very wrong that Diversity hasn’t also ruined Substack” https://t.co/ckLnvwHRSw
— Dimitri Kolokotronis (@JimmyLevendia) November 17, 2020
Substack has become a target for many liberals, as the platform has become a popular destination for writers seeking to escape mainstream censorship.
Leading journalists such as Greenwald, Rolling Stone editor Matt Taibbi, and Vox co-founder Matt Yglesias have brought attention to the site with their moves.
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“The best grift in media today is telling your hundreds of thousands of followers that you’re suppressed with nowhere to take your voice, and that they should pay a lot of money annually to support you,” New York Times tech reporter Mike Isaac recently tweeted about the site.
“Corporate journalists despise independence,” tweeted Greenwald, who recently left the Intercept after accusing it of suppressing stories, in response.
Look at how much NYT reporters hate and resent Substack, because it provides the ability of writers and journalists to be heard and to reach an audience without having to submit to their monopolistic structures and discourse controls.
Corporate journalists despise independence: https://t.co/6w0NRhXAIh
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 17, 2020
“This is the same reason they hate @JoeRogan. They think it’s a grave injustice that millions want to listen to him – [and] are willing to pay – but not to them, and that he’s free to say what he wants and they’re not,” he added. “The more free discourse emerges, the more they’ll malign it.”
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