Medium’s New Password-Free Sign in Option Takes Twice as Long as the Old Way

Is signing in to Medium using an email link, rather than a password or external authentication, really easier?

SAN FRANCISCO - APRIL 14:  Twitter CEO Evan Williams speaks during the first annual Chirp, Twitter Developer's Conference April 14, 2010 in San Francisco, California. The conference is a two day event for developers who work with the popular social networking service.  (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Evan Williams, former Twitter CEO and Medium Co-founder. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Medium has added a new way to sign in without a password, according to a post on the company’s blog on Monday. Now, you can log in to the blogging site by inputting your email and then clicking on an email link that Medium sends. We checked it out to see if this really is easier than the old way, which used Facebook or Twitter to authenticate.

Here’s how long it took this reporter to login, using the old methods and the new:

  • Logging in using the email method: 32 seconds, in six clicks.
  • Logging in using the Twitter method, not signed into Twitter (password in browser memory): 15 secs, in two clicks
  • Logging in using Twitter, already signed in (which—let’s be honest—I always am): 13 secs in one click.

Each test started with the site not yet opened.

So it’s not clear that this is really an easier method, but it is nice to give people more secure ways to access a site. If I ever had a proper password expressly for Medium, I haven’t the foggiest what it was. Medium’s New Password-Free Sign in Option Takes Twice as Long as the Old Way