Has Episode Reached it's Peak in Terms of Popularity?

Stemming from a post I saw on Instagram… I’d like to address this question on the forums.

I feel like Episode had reached the height of its popularity in 2016-2017, and maybe part of 2018. The community doesn’t seem to be as active as it once was, although that can be attributed to a variety of reasons.

Some concerns/problems:

  1. Episode has oversaturated the kinds of stories they feature on their app, which in turn has affected what stories people want to write–aka stories that will trend. Overall, it has lessened the amount of variety we see on this app.
  2. Lack of communication and response that episode has with the community and authors.
  3. Unclear, ever-changing, inconsistent guidelines. One minute your story is reviewed by X team member…then two months later, team member Y makes you change the same scene all over again.
  4. POC community feeling frustrated with their lack of responsiveness to the infamous racist event that occurred in January 2018, where members were getting harassed with racist messages.
  5. The bullying and favoritism in the community is still an on-going problem.
  6. Feeling creatively restrained by guidelines, lack of backgrounds available due to no longer allowing community members to create them, etc.
  7. Having multiple shelves every month in comparison to previous years = fewer people excited about them = less reads.
  8. Favoriting Romance/Drama genre only by creating redundant featured promoted content.
  9. Constant opened ended responses that cause more confusion and frustration form the community instead of clarity.

And more.

Other apps have been approaching ‘big-time’ authors on here, claiming they’ve been seeing the constant complaints from the community and would like them to join their team with suggestions. They are also offering contracts, including payment options.

It’s not a shock that many authors are leaving Episode. In 24 hours, more than six authors have written farewell posts on Instagram claiming their frustration with Episode, the lack of communication, and overall unclarity with the app. One of them recently got their story featured on Episode.

Which brings me to my question…
Do you think Episode has changed for the better or, the worse?
Do you think Episode is ‘dying?’
What are your overall thoughts on this change in this comment that seems to stem from chronic feelings of frustration?
What are some improvements you’d like to see from the team?


I think all of the points you have brought up are quite valid. What’s frustrating to me is the lack of communication with the Episode company and the community. A lot of misinformation gets spread around in the community very easily because whatever episode tells us tends to be on the vague side. When It is not really 100% clear what they want from us it causes us to go into a panic. I think the entire review process we all are going through is a great example of lack of communication.


This is true about the guideline that only gives us points what not to do but still doesn’t give a FULL detail explanation. When changing the scenes in your story, it all depends on the content that you added in your story. Think about what content you want to add in it first, send a ticket to the team if it is okay or not okay to include the scene. Whether it has a sexual details scene, etc. Stuff like that, yes so u won’t have to change it. Episode is getting strict with their guidelines now, yes, a lot of changes are being made.

Now for bullying, I can tell that this is still ON-GOING. The favoritism are u talking about like when Episode team using the same author to feature their stories?

Now for background, yes Episode did give us a rule about using their assets in their backgrounds to create our own which IS NOT allowed anymore. Yes, the community is STILL MAKING backgrounds but not USING EPSIDOE assets which I am thankful for because they are the bomb, better than Episode. We don’t have to use Episode’s backgrounds over and over again.


I can agree. :clapping:


I too love a lot of the new content that some background makers are creating… but I think we do have to acknowledge that damage that happened with the backgrounds this year. It caused A LOT of creators (especially background creators) to leave Episode :disappointed: I remember being so panicked that I would not be able to find backgrounds again for my story! And I had 2 friend who weren’t background makers leave because they were too stressed about finding new backgrounds for their content.


Same here. I had to stop making Halloween Backgrounds, but this was BEFORE the rule came out.


Instead of having us revise all of our stories in 30 days they should of gave us until January 1st. My heart goes out to the people who have multiple long stories.


I really don’t believe Episode will gain any more popularity than it already has and spoiler alert I dont think it’ll be stable.

There’s so much tea to recap :coffee:
on where things started to go South.

I have been working on a story for about a year, when the new guidelines rolled in I basically had to scrap the entire thing. The new guidlines seem so descriptive yet so vague, all my ideas along with my creativity has gone dry.

I feel like if I give to harsh of a criticism to Episode, I’d be silenced. As this is a thing I’ve seen on Insta and also here on the forums

Adding on to that, a couple of months ago my account got suspended for 1000 years or something like that. I got no notice, no nothing until after a month when my sister checked her account, she received a PM which stated that my account was suspended for a month because they thought we were the same person. And well that’s where I started to lose it with Episode.

I also happen to believe that this thread is gonna get closed, no particular reason other than Episode


My first experience with Episode is the forums. The forums, now, I know everyone knows that when they are giving out their opinions, criticism, etc. There is always a flag and this makes them upset because everyone is entitled to their own opinions. We talk about diversity but in a respectful way, yes. When it comes to arguments on the forums, people get flag of course, which I don’t blame, but at least take things to private message before u comment. Now with the new rules on the forums. I think I can agree to it because, we always rant, have wedding threads, dating threads, etc. because this forums is only for Episode. Nothing else. If nothing relates to Episode, don’t create the thread.

Now for banning, I’m just going to be brief, when Episode bans a user, at lease give us a warning first before u automaticaly ban them from forums. ik this happens a lot to people which makes them upset, and its like Episode is losing the community because of our actions on the forums.


Exactly, people have jobs, family, personal stuff to deal with. Give us more time to make changes.


I was planning on leaving when it came out but u know what, I stayed, used Picmonkey to create backgrounds, regardless. I did fantasy backgrounds because I LOVE fantasy.


Exactly!!! Legit no consideration at all.


Agreed with all of the aforementioned points!

I think Episode has changed for the worse. It’s sad to see so many talented authors express their frustrations over sudden changes in the guidelines without much warning. They’ve imposed so many restrictions this year that can really limit an author’s creativity, and it’s very easy to see why people have been leaving & searching for other platforms to showcase their work.

Yes. I honestly felt that Episode has reached its peak during the Demi Lovato/Mean Girls/Dolan Twins era. In my opinion, this was a time when their featured stories were different and exciting to new readers. I think featured stories were a great way to get new readers’ attention, but they’ve been making a lot of strange decisions lately.

Well, for starters, they can improve their communication with the community. The authors are the ones who help attract new readers to the app and generate revenue for them. Not sure how that could significantly improve things around here though. Things have been going downhill for a while and they’ve consistently shown blatant favoritism, so… they can’t really take back anything they said or did.

Edited to add: They’ve never properly addressed the bullying or racism issues here, which says quite a lot about them too.


Mm, I don’t think they would want to embarrass the person. If I were to ever get banned from a community I would be so upset if the company blasted that information out to everyone😅 but I would appreciate if they gave me like 12-24 hours to PM my close friends and let them know how to contact me.


At this point so many people are jumping ship and i think by the time they roll out this supposed “mature” app it’ll be too late. This company already has Left a bad taste in so many people’s mouths


I have noticed a lot of these things that you mentioned that are going on in the Episode community and the platform as a whole. I just thought I’d say that.

Do you think Episode has changed for the better or, the worse?
Both, in a sense, I am happy about Episode acknowledging more new and upcoming authors. They haven’t done that so much in the past, but now they are starting to do it more. Episode is doing a lot of things that are different and kind of questionable when it comes to decisions that are made. We can definitely agree that the platform has made some changes that should have been made a few years prior. I just think Episode is coming to their senses and realizing the issues that should be fixed and handled, and I have no problem with that at all.
Do you think Episode is ‘dying?’
At the moment, I think Episode is reaching its low point at this time due to quite of few authors leaving the platform. I wouldn’t say the Episode platform is dying, but some things are starting to get old.
What are your overall thoughts on this change in this comment that seems to stem from chronic feelings of frustration?
I don’t really know how to answer this question. I have a lot of mixed feelings about the Episode platform at this time.
What are some improvements you’d like to see from the team?
The improvements that I’d like to see from the team has already been made. However, the Episode team does need to improve on their communication and the way the go about making decisions. Their communication isn’t the best, but I think they are trying to change that by involving the episode community in some things.


Actually I think they’ll be ok even though they reached their peak years ago. Episode is always doing something goofy but they have an edge that no other app has and that’s what’s keeping them alive.
Because trends come and go, there will always be new upcoming authors that fill in whatever gap outgoing big authors leave. I think this is a bump in the road and it might hurt Episode for a few months, but they’ll bounce back eventually.
The thing is that Episode could have been an untouchable interactive storytelling juggernaut, but poor management and business policies have led to a constant revolving door. That’s money going out the door. Their growth can only go so far with the way that it’s run. Most of the concerns you mentioned have been ongoing for years, and never really are addressed. We tried to tell them years ago but it hurt some of their feelings and they took it personally so :woman_shrugging:t4: Don’t get me started with literally telling people they’re not going to listen to them because they’re not in the target demo :woman_facepalming:t4: WHO TELLS MONEY TO GO AWAY WHY ARE YALL LIKE THIS :joy: Thus, they’re constantly playing the bounce back game instead of growing.
They’ll keep making money, but they won’t make as much as they could have had they not treated their users and writers as replaceable. At some point that’s going to add up.
Episode is a great, creative app and has so much potential. That’s the only reason so many stick around. Also, if you’ve been around for more than three years you’re just used to the antics by now.
So yes, I think they’ve reached their peak. Either they can actually listen and get past this rut they’re in, or they can keep playing the bounce back game until they’re eventually lost in the sea of interactive stories. I don’t see that happening soon, but there’s only so long you can do the same thing over and over.


Yes! I agree with you 100%. Episode’s communication hasn’t been the greatest, and that is something they need to really improve in. They tell us to email them and file support tickets on information we, as the community does not understand, when they should address inquiries and questions the community has before we ask them. Even if they don’t do that, they can at least make sure they’ve explained things very clearly, so that we can understand. I could be wrong, but that is what I think.


Also, I think they’ve should’ve considered making a mature app a long time ago when they saw the number of mature stories on the app; it’s a lot of them. Many authors write stories with a lot of mature content now, and Episode can’t necessarily stop them because you can’t do that to an author who has planned, thought of, and executed their story. However, they can put requirements on those authors who write stories with mature content and that’s when those new guidelines came in at.


Has Episode changed? Sure. Absolutely. I understand when times shift, companies need to adapt and adopt whichever lucrative routes are available. But the shift Episode’s made over the years is confusing. From highly vetted works to poorly assembled and directed gaffs, the evidence is clear. I don’t know what their end goal is anymore. Are we geared towards children or grown people with actual money? And if it’s the former, why are there stories published by the company that violate their own guidelines to begin with? :grimacing: Y’all good? Why suddenly enforce guidelines you can’t abide by and hold 100k+ user stories in contempt until they’ve been reviewed, stifling creativity and the rewards that drew writers to the app in the first place? I have my own theories but I digress. I’m left with more questions than answers from this company as time passes. (Which makes sense because communication’s never been their strong suit.)

Episode has peaked. Anyone on the app can admit that readership and engagement has declined as time’s progressed and there’s not much we can do about it. It’s harder than ever for new writers to get their shine and even OG authors are struggling to stay in the game. The added mistreatment of community authors adds a dark tint to the entire scene. They will continue to attempt to stay relevant due to their innovative tech, but it won’t last forever unless real changes are made from the ground up.