Updates to Community Author Created Gem Choices

Hello Episode Authors!

In surveys, support tickets, and direct feedback from creators, we’ve heard that you’d like more ways for readers to be able to support you and your writing on Episode. To help with that, we’re revamping our Community Author Gem Choices to give creators more control over when and how to offer readers unique, fun experiences or to ask for support. As always, using gem choices in your story is entirely optional, and can only be added by you, the author.

In order to give our authors more control and creative direction with their gem choices, there are two areas previously limited by Episode that we’re expanding: total number of gem choices per branch, and the price of each gem choice.

We’ve increased the limit to 5 gem choices per branch to better support you trying out different types of gem choices. To help your reader have a great experience with your story, more than 5 gem choices per story branch will not be allowed. If more than 5 gem choices exist in any one branch of that chapter, the script will give you a warning message, and prevent you from publishing that chapter.

Authors will also now have the ability to choose the cost of individual gem choices. The prices of gem choices can be set at the following levels: 5, 8, 12, 17, 22, 28 and 35 gems. Previously, the cost was set by Episode and was based on the total number of reads a story had. With these additional controls, authors can now base the price of their gem choices on the content they are providing their reader. For more information on how to use the new gem choice pricing donacode or writing gem choices in general please go here.

Our requirements for unlocking the Writer’s Payment program will stay the same.
However, we’re in the process of re-evaluating the gem bonus payment to better reward the creative choices authors make when writing their stories. As we continue to expand the ways that authors can earn on Episode, we want to ensure that the payments program can effectively support how you choose to write your story. We’ll share more about this in the coming months, but for now, the gem choice bonuses authors in the Writer’s Payment program receive will remain the same.

In the meantime, to unlock writer payments, we still require that authors be 18 years of age or older and their stories need to earn a total 500,000 general chapter reads in the last 60 days, or a total 100,000 gem chapter reads and 300 gem choices selected across all published stories in the last 60 days.

We know that many authors are anxious about losing reads and readers by adding gem choices to their stories and we hear you. As a way to help authors who add gem choices to their stories and to address these concerns, we are in the process of updating the trending leaderboard algorithm. Story ranks will still be determined by the number of reads a story gets, but will now also factor in gems spent in a story. Stories without gem choices will still be able to trend high in the ranks and this will not fundamentally change the way rank is calculated. Over the next few weeks as this change is being slowly rolled out, authors may see a mismatch between ranks in-app and on the Writer’s Portal. This will be the case until the rollout is complete.

Authors can add these gem prices to their stories starting now, and in the near future and over the coming weeks, all iOS readers will see any gem choices in your stories, with rollout to Android readers in the future. Previously, gem choices were visible to only a small percentage of readers.

We hope that with these and future updates, authors on Episode will be able to devote more time and energy to offering readers new, fun and interesting ways to support them and their stories, as well as providing authors with a means to pursue their dreams of becoming full-time writers and creators.

– The Episode Team

33 Likes

This idea is not going to end good. It just isn’t going to work on the readers behalf.

But hey! We will see where this goes! Be optimistic! :partying_face::crazy_face:

30 Likes

Can we make the price 2 gems?

10 Likes

not supporting the fact gem choices can give you an advantages in being on the shelf.

like I might support the gem system if we actually could earn gems by haveing them,

33 Likes

I’m a little upset to see that we can’t set it at 2 gems, not gonna lie :woman_shrugging:t3:
But it’s nice that we now have a say over how many gems our choices will be worth.

Though, I don’t really understand why this needs to affect the trending algorithm. I feel like that just puts the more undiscovered authors and authors who don’t use gem choices at a disadvantage.

If anyone understands better and would like to explain to me, please do… I’m a very tired stay at home mom so this could very well just be going over my head :sweat_smile::sweat_smile::sweat_smile:

17 Likes

I think it’s great that we now get to set the price of our gem choices. (All mine will be 5 lol).
5 per branch seems excessive… especially in an episode that’s barely 10 minutes long. So I hope people don’t abuse it, particular if they new payment system is based on the amount of gems spent or something.

I’m curious to see how this works…

8 Likes

I personally don’t have a story myself but know many who do, and to be honest I think this may harm many undiscovered authors because yes, authors want to give their story the best it can get and I think it will unmotivate many readers if they see their fav author add gems.

And I feel it can cause a problem in a way.

19 Likes

Can’t say i’m happy about more gem content being added :frowning_face:

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I like that we can now set the price of gem choices. I always thought 15 was way too much. Five gems are a good start, especially since five gems are pretty easy to gain. However, my concern is this.

This way will keep the stories that are trending in place, but I feel like it’s going to be harder for small authors. I mean, it’s already hard, substantially since the “new story” section barely works. But, if a smaller author adds gem choices to their stories, they will most likely get a lot of hate mail for one, and two, chances of readers selecting a gem choice is slim. I know that you said stories without gem choices will still rank high, but I don’t know. I feel like small authors keep getting the short end of the stick with each new thread containing the trending section.

25 Likes

So do we earn gems by reading community story chapters now or do we still have to read episode official stories to earn them? :blue_heart:

5 Likes

Gem choices don’t actually help small authors though! So I don’t understand how this is making anything beneficial to us whatsoever!

The only ones who stand to benefit are authors who already have millions of reads, and of course you guys… who’ll easily make an absolute killing from it, no doubt!

Small authors will suffer! (Especially in the ranks!) You’re also implying that my story which has been trending in the top horror for over 5 months solid could also be set back due to this gem choice drama? How is this fair to us?! We (smaller authors) already struggle to be seen as it is! The LEAST we deserve is to keep our places in the trending sections!
We earned our places!

And yes, I’m aware that I’m not the only small author who stands to lose my place in the rank, but I can only speak for myself. I cannot speak for others.

And now I’ll show you how gem choices clearly do NOTHING to benefit small authors. You can see in the picture, that I’ve already majorly surpassed the 300 gems needed to unlock the payment program… yet I’m still struggling to reach the needed 100,000 reads within a 60 day period! My story even made the shelf and yet I’m still struggling. And I assume others will too! You’re not even giving us a chance! image

33 Likes

Basically… if your story doesn’t have at least 1 gem choice, it has no luck to trend on shelves.
Secondly, even if you’re a beginner, you can have 5 gem choices in every chapter of your story and value each of them 35 gems. This is if you want to earn.

Question is, will our readers be able to pay the gems, so that we can earn? At least 5 gems so that our story can trend on the shelf?
Tough, I personally don’t have gems. Only few. :woman_shrugging:t4:

11 Likes

If we do not set the price what is the default price? Like if we leave < GEMS > as it is?

2 Likes

I suggest you read properly. This is in bold.

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@Melani3 if you’re thinking about determining our salary on gem choices purchases (that is different than current 25% of all reads) you also have to provide us the tools to measure them - so create the statistics. We were waiting for proper statistics for over 4 years and still the only thing we know is our total reads. Comparing to other apps it’s pretty ridiculous.

We don’t have any crucial tools that are necessary to measure our growth, impact, the ways people use the app or read our stories. And it makes our work less efficient. I’d suggest providing us the following information:

  • the real date of publishing the episode (now all dates change as soon as you hit publish again, we don’t see when the chapter was released and have to base on our Instagram posts or excels, it’s ridiculous)
  • our rank history
  • total story reads each day
  • new reads each day
  • the choices people pick - proportion and numbers
  • the retention of each chapter / total reads of each chapter every month

If we have no idea how many people picked the premium choice and how it varies depending on the price we have no tools to adjust the best solution for our story or simply check if the payment is fair and revenue fits. We can only do it with reads.

If you want to help the creators, please start with the tools that are basic on every other application. Create the decent dashboard and provide us the data that let us make our stories better.

46 Likes

Yes, you’re right, but I didn’t say the opposite.
Your story can still rang, but by logic, it has less chance than those with gem choices (because reads + gem choices count)

2 Likes

Community reads should earn gems, then.

13 Likes

Frrrr

1 Like

Nowhere in the original post says that stories with gem choices have more advantage than gem-free stories. It only says gems now play a factor in determining ranking.

Example Story 1: 25 000 reads and 6 000 gem choices.

Example Story 2: 25 000 reads and 0 gem choices.

Which one do you think will rang higher?

8 Likes