Goodbye, Coffee Times Publication

Photo by Javier Carrasco on Unsplash

By now, most of you know that the hugely popular Coffee Times publication which encouraged and uplifted writers by creating the Coffee Times Movement has closed.

Currently, the page where it used to be, still shows as “under investigation” by for violating Medium’s rules.

Many of you want to know why.

A story titled “Why I hate the LGBTQ Community” was inadvertently published and to add insult to the injury, the publication owner, unfortunately, clapped for it.

Naturally, this enraged the community, which reported it en masse to Medium. The publication was suspended and put under investigation and the writer of the article was also removed from Medium.

Winston’s profile was also removed in the process because Medium does not tolerate hate speech. Did Winston deserve this? Does he deserve a second chance? That’s for you and Medium to decide.

However, he took the decision to close the publication and take a break. He wrote about it here as his profile on Medium was no longer active.

Sadly, that is not enough for the community that is hurt as it does not specifically apologize to them for what happened.

Be that as it may, it is what it is now.

I joined the Coffee Times publication as an editor when it was launched last year in September 2021. We were gearing up for its first anniversary celebrations next month.

The good times

Until this point, Winston was always supportive and went out of his way to promote the writers of Coffee Times on social media, publishing Top Ten lists to highlight writers, and creating interesting contests with cash prizes that also helped the participants learn something from them, and grow personally, etc. He also had big dreams for the publication.

I am truly sad

. . . that Winston decided to close the publication, because, from the number of private messages I am receiving, I can see that the publication that launched so many writers and made them feel welcome will be missed.

I did not mind having to take on more than I had to — there were weeks when I was the publishing editor for five days in a row — simply because I wanted to be helpful and enjoyed the work. Sure I whined about it, but that was par for the course.

Gradually, we worked towards interacting with each other — forming an editors group, meeting once a week on Zoom, and streamlining the way the publication was run.

Just when we thought things were going well — this unfortunate incident happened. I admit I am shocked.

I have been reading, with sadness, a number of speculative posts and some that were understanding and kind. I don’t think anyone actually expected the publication to close and call it a day abruptly like this.

I don’t know if a publication can recover from an incident of this sort, but what makes me sadder is the fact that we will never know.

Image via Pixabay by OpenClipart-Vectors

I loved Coffee Times. I still remember my stunned surprise when I logged in to check how many drafts were in the queue so I could plan my day, only to see a page indicating the publication was under investigation.

Lesson learned — lessons we should already know as writers:

  • We have the power of words to use as we wish. Let us use them to uplift.
  • Forget hate speech. I am glad Medium has strict rules. But these rules apply anywhere you choose to write.
  • We are nobody to judge another. If anyone has anything nasty going on in their minds, please take a brisk walk, meditate, vent to a close friend, and be done with it. Do not dwell on it. It is not good for your health.

Goodbye, Coffee Times. I only wish the exit had been under happier circumstances.

Thanks to all those who messaged me and asked how I am doing. I will be fine.

My post may not live up to what the community expects; I am still hurting. But here is my apology as an ex-editor of Coffee Times to the LGBTQ community. I am so sorry that post saw the light of day.

Forgive me for the delay in writing this — I had my own personal issues to deal with at home.

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Vidya Sury, Collecting Smiles

Vidya Sury, Collecting Smiles

Writing about Self Improvement, Mindfulness, Meditation, Parenting, Health, Travel, Life, Books. Showing my diabetes who’s boss. Visit: https://vidyasury.com