"We invite you to join us as a paid member and to help support an ad-free platform that delivers the right type of content: the type that can only be created when independent writers and publishers are rewarded based on value rather than clicks," the subscription page reads.
Versus something like Patreon where people can sponsor their favorite creatives directly and for varying sums of money, this may prove attractive for folks who feel nickel-and-dimed by that approach. Medium has stated that it thinks getting away from relying on ad revenue to fund the service is the key to success.
But this move seems outdated on arrival (magazines and newspapers rely on ads and subscriptions to be successful and even then...), it'll likely need a decent amount of subscribers. Can a Netflix-style subscription model work for web publishing? We're about to find out.