My view is that Medium is primarily a publishing platform that helps authors take their ideas and publish them onto a beautiful, consistent, and free medium. It's an easy way to host your writing and ideas.
Where it falls short, in some ways, is that you're primarily speaking to your existing audience. That is, you post on Medium and then distribute it to your network via FB, Twitter, company website, etc. It's not a great tool for discovery. While there is some content that gets boosted and begins to "trend," it's more akin to having a post "go big" on a platform like Hacker News or Reddit — the exception, not the norm.
dev.to is built specifically for programmers. That means that the editor is more friendly and customized for a technical audience (Markdown + code embeds + liquid tags + etc). We also make it easy to support canonical_urls when you're cross-pointing your content that was originally published elsewhere.
The biggest difference, though, is the built-in community and distribution that comes with posting on dev.to. As you build up a presence on the site, your followers are alerted to your new posts. If you submit to relevant tags, the people who follow those topics see your post. And your content can also appear on the homepage or be shared via our social accounts. At every point, you're reaching your desired audience — fellow software developers.
We work really hard at the various points of this progression — from the editor itself, to the discoverability features, to ensuring we're maintaining a culture that is constructive and inclusive.
We're always open to more feedback :)
Medium has a nice aesthetic, but it annoys me with popups and footer banners urging me to subscribe.
There are about a dozen things blocked by my ad blocker (vs 2 for this site). The more blocks I see, the harder I find it to link the site to others, because their experience might be significantly worse than what I see.
I can't quite put my finger on it, but I don't really like the way comments are done on Medium. It's abbreviation of the comments seems more invasive than just hiding unpopular ones. I have to expand them a lot.
I like that dev.to is focused on devs and positive community and lets me sign in with github. Whereas medium is more general including a lot of pop and political crap. So even the tech articles draw extra flies.
I found Medium more daunting as a platform. For someone who is starting, it looks like you need to have some really good well-written content to fit in. I went with dev.to because I felt that it was more welcoming for a newbie like myself, been following them on twitter for a while now and enjoyed what they shared, and also because developers are their main target audience.
Feel free to touch on any other blockchain topics, also like I'm five. 😝