Clapping or Slapping?

Did you know you can clap more than once for a story? I didn’t.

Tim Wells
2 min readJul 4, 2023

I’ve been using Medium for a while now, but at no point was it clear to me that the “clap” button (which until now I saw as akin to a like button on social media) was able to be used to clap more than once.

Photo by Daniel Lincoln on Unsplash

It’s only thanks to a rant from fellow writer Gareth WilleyWriters I Can’t Stand on Medium that made me aware it was possible to actually applaud a story on this platform. By clicking and holding the clap button you can clap more than once, thus applauding instead of just a single clap, which it seems, is more of a slap than a clap.

I’m guilty of being one of those writers that Gareth mentions when it comes to the “slapping” but only because I didn’t know about it and I assumed, like other social media, clicking the button was a way of showing that I liked it.

My sincere apology to anyone that was annoyed by the fact I “slapped” their story. I plead ignorance, though I realise it’s not much of a defense. Please rest assured it meant I liked your work. Now that I know how to use it properly, I certainly will make proper use of it.

Perhaps I missed something, but I never noticed in the UI for Medium anything that indicated the clap button was intended to be used this way. Perhaps when hovering over it on PC it should say “hold for applause” or something similar instead of just “Clap”. I don’t use the mobile version much but I imagine holding it down there does the same thing.