Hi Tim, thanks for all your writing I enjoy a lot of your work, so I feel I should offer my thanks for your efforts!
Regarding the topic of this article, specifically your Keanu story, I think Medium curators are becoming increasingly wary of people using celebrities or news stories as the main pull to their stories, maybe some of the curators more than others. But I have noticed, in my very limited experience, that irrespective of the amount of heart and soul I put into a story I spoil my chances of curation if I centre it/title it around a clickbait-y news story or celebrity.
I get the impression that if they smell a whiff of; ‘I’m going to use this news story/celeb to draw in the views, yay!’ then it goes in the no pile regarding curation, even if the content is actually really heart-felt.
It’s hard however because I think that by using these socially iconic figures (such as Keanu) as an intial draw to a heartfelt article we can encourage people, who might not normally have been inclined, to wrestle with deep and meaningful issues. So, it seems a bit unfair to write of all such articles as having self-serving motivations.
Probably it’s a lot less complicated than this — maybe it just depends on which curator happens to see your story, how they’re feeling at that time and what their own subjective opinion of the story (or celebrity!) is. We’re all at the mercy of subjectivity I guess.
As it goes, I really liked your Keanu article, so I’ll thank you for writing it anyway!
All the best,