"The Paradox of Online Sharing and the Journey of Figma: Insights on Accessibility and Launch Strategies"


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 09, 2023

4 min read


"The Paradox of Online Sharing and the Journey of Figma: Insights on Accessibility and Launch Strategies"


In today's digital age, where information is readily available at our fingertips, a peculiar trend has emerged. Despite the vast amount of content shared on social media platforms, it seems that very few people actually read articles in their entirety before sharing them. This phenomenon sheds light on the weak relationship between scroll depth and sharing. As we delve deeper into the reasons behind this behavior, we also uncover the fascinating journey of Figma, a creative tool that revolutionized the world of design.

The Paradox of Online Sharing:

A common observation is that individuals often share articles without fully reading them. This observation is supported by data collected by Schwartz, indicating that a significant number of people tweet out links to articles they haven't fully read. This raises questions about the credibility of recommendations on social media platforms. It serves as a reminder that just because someone is sharing a story online, it doesn't necessarily mean they have engaged with its content.

Accessible Design for a Remote World: In Conversation with Dylan Field of Figma:

Figma, a popular design tool, has gained significant attention for its accessible design features. In a conversation with Dylan Field, the co-founder of Figma, he shares insights into the company's journey and their unique approach to design. The process began with the application for the Thiel Fellowship, which prompted the exploration of various ideas. It was during this phase that the idea of utilizing WebGL for creative tools emerged as a potential game-changer.

Learning from the Experiences of Others:

Field and his team reached out to Aviary, a company that had previously experimented with WebGL. Despite being warned against pursuing this path, they decided to explore further. Aviary's insights provided valuable knowledge on the challenges associated with WebGL, allowing Figma to approach the technology with a fresh perspective. This demonstrates the importance of seeking advice and learning from the experiences of others, even when the prevailing opinion suggests otherwise.

Building a Network and Iterating:

Recognizing the significance of collaboration, Field utilized a network visualization tool to identify designers he admired and mapped their networks. This proactive approach led him to engage with these designers, seeking their feedback on Figma's early product. This emphasis on gathering insights from the design community played a crucial role in refining Figma's offering. Additionally, the use of the "Eliminate, Raise, Reduce, Create" framework helped them identify their unique position in the market and differentiate themselves from competitors.

The Evolution of Figma's Strategy:

The initial strategy of building a community for designers, similar to Dribbble, was soon reevaluated. Field and his team realized the need to prioritize revenue generation before focusing on community-building. This shift in approach, encapsulated by the motto "come for the tool, stay for the network," proved to be a pivotal moment in Figma's journey. By recognizing the importance of financial sustainability, they ensured the longevity of their platform and the ability to foster a thriving community in the long run.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Launch Early, Gather Feedback: Field emphasizes the importance of launching a product or service earlier than anticipated. This not only generates excitement around your vision but also provides invaluable feedback from early users. However, it is essential to strike a balance between speed and readiness to ensure user satisfaction.
  • 2. Create Spaces for Gathering: The pandemic has highlighted the significance of virtual spaces for people to gather. Figma witnessed users even engaging in virtual games within their platform. This insight underscores the importance of creating opportunities for users to connect and share experiences, fostering a sense of community.
  • 3. Iterate and Adapt: Figma's journey showcases the power of iteration and adaptation. By seeking feedback, listening to users, and constantly refining their offering, they were able to create a tool that resonated with designers worldwide. Embrace a mindset of continuous improvement, and be open to evolving your strategies based on user needs and market dynamics.


The paradox of online sharing reminds us of the need for critical evaluation and discernment when consuming and sharing content. Figma's success story offers valuable insights into accessible design, the power of networking, and the significance of adapting strategies to meet user demands. By implementing the actionable advice shared by Dylan Field, aspiring entrepreneurs and designers can navigate the challenges of the digital landscape and foster meaningful connections within their communities.

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