Has Online Publishing Turned More People into Writers?
Just knowing that we have the ability to speak our truth and publish it online freely is satisfying enough
If you ask people to name some of the most legendary Writers that they can think of throughout history, you might get a lot of similar responses— you might get some names like William Shakespeare or Ernest Hemingway or Maya Angelou; well-known Writers who have published iconic pieces of writing that are now timeless.
Of course, back then, Writers like William Shakespeare or Ernest Hemingway or Maya Angelou didn’t make a name for themselves by going viral on the internet. Instead, they published physical copies of their writing which were manually distributed to readers. How times have changed so drastically since then.
The hoops and hurdles that an individual has to go through to get their writing out into the world is much less stressful and much less difficult than it was before.
Now, any average joe who’s never wrote a day in their life might one day decide that they want to publish a one thousand-word essay on the changing culture of music. And that can easily be accomplished in just a click of a button — whether or not it will be seen or read by many people is wildly unpredictable, but at least it can be put out there for the world to see, right?
Just knowing that we have the ability to speak our truth and publish it online freely is satisfying enough.
Online publishing has given a voice to the formerly voiceless which has in turn created a new generation of Writer. When we look back at the increase of new Writers and the new bodies of writing over the past few decades, one can’t help but to ask “Has online publishing turned more people into Writers?”
On a global scale, the digital publishing Industry is on a continuous incline. According to a December article by MarketWatch, they reported,
“The “YOY (year-over-year) growth rate for 2021 is estimated at 10.22%” by the end of 2024.”
And this is only speaking about the digital publishing trend within the corporate setting. One can only imagine what it might look like on a more grassroots level for the self-published, Freelance, and Indie authors who have no representation.
A 2019 Forbes article cited that the change in the percentage of Freelancers between 2015 and 2019, although not extremely compelling as a percentage, was still quite an impressive jump as a whole.
“In 2015 Upwork determined that 34% of the American workforce had earned income through freelancing. In 2019 the number had not materially changed in percentage terms: 35%. However, 53 million Americans freelanced or gigged in 2015, while 57 million did so in 2019. The growth of four million freelancers is impressive.”
And at the rate that some Freelancer Writers are publishing their work, just multiply that number by the few million new Freelancer Writers there actually are.
I’m not saying that every self-published Writer is going to constantly churn out an insane number of articles each and every day, but there are some (if not, many) that in fact will.
So, to answer the question of whether or not online publishing has ultimately prompted more people to pursue some for of Writing, then the easy answer to that is “yes.” And the reason for that is because they simply can.
Give people the ability to do something won’t necessarily make them do it every single day — or possibly event at all — but when they realize that they actually want to, then they surely can and they surely will.
Of course, allowing people the freedom to write whatever they want to online may be a good or a bad thing , but that’s for the audience to decide.