Hello @michaelcj! You pose a great question, and it's certainly a topic that is going to require some additional discussion, since this is one of the great challenges we face as a community.
One of the ways The Agoric Challenge might help minnows is by creating a kind of community, where everyone who gets invited in through agoric.co would be encouraged to help one another, and the group would be easy for whales to identify. Also, the way we are currently doing account registration by paying the cost up front, will re-distribute stake to new accounts, thus helping to level the playing field over time. There are other things we can do as we develop this project to support and encourage new users. Ultimately the more widely STEEM is distributed the more people that will be actively voting with a significant stake.
We anticipate that 'communities' and 'SMT's' will play a huge role in helping minnows to succeed as well. If I'm not mistaken, we should see the communities feature implemented by the end of the year.
Let's talk more about this at SteemFest! We look forward to meeting you there, and would definitely see some of the Agoric Scrip travel home with you to the community in Nigeria!
Thanks for your comment and your support!