LongReads was created to help users find the best long form stories located on the internet. These can be read through many devices, including the iPad, iPhone, Instapaper and Kindle. By compiling a list of “LongReads”, the site has formed a single go to resource to find good reading. LongReads gets the user community involved by allowing them to submit long form stories they feel are interesting, important, or worthy of a read. The content included come from renowned resources, such as Esquire, Vanity Fair and the New York Times. LongReads also give users the ability to search by length so they can find a long read story that suits their needs, whether they are traveling for hours in a car or an hour on a plane.
LongReads was founded in April of 2009 by CEO Mark Armstrong. Based out of New York City, New York, LongReads was intended to help users find something to do while traveling or waiting or doing anything that involves down time. By tapping into the user base, which can add their own long read stories, the site has expanded to include many different items that fall under various topics. LongReads claims to offer users the “best long form stories on the web,” and that may be true in the eyes of many readers.
There are many places to find information and stories to read online. However, these are scattered everywhere and can take a lot of time to find. Plus, locating a piece that is just long enough to read on a commute is not easy. Every reader hates having to cut their reading time short because it exceeds the amount of available time. On the other hand, when a story or article falls short of the total commute time, the user must seek out another. LongReads allows users to search by reading time so they can find the perfect item for any commute.
The LongReads website is very basic, featuring a red round “L” logo which is reminiscent of WordPress. The sparse design works well, allowing users to focus on the task at hand: finding interesting reading material that will keep them busy for a specified amount of time. The homepage includes a large archive search box with a drop down box that allows the user to choose a specific length of time, starting with less than 15 minutes and going up to over an hour.
LongReads is essentially a search engine for a database of content. The site does not really need to require a user registration process. There is no traditional registration form or other registration option currently available. Although a favorites list or something similar might be a nice addition, LongReads remains very simple so users can find what they want, read and move on. There is a link to contribute, but this only opens up an email so users can send their contribution that way.
LongReads provides users with a way to find items that are readily available online. The content is free, and so charging people to find it would be a bit much. Luckily, the site is available to anyone at no cost. There is no registration process so really, there is no way to request payment, anyway.
Naturally, anyone that loves to read can really appreciate LongReads. The reading time filter is a nice addition and extremely handy for anyone that travels by bus, train or other method that requires a lot of boring down time. Users can find just enough reading material to keep them busy without forcing them to stop before they have read through.