NEW PEOPLE: How to deal with jerks that love to censor ideas they dislike...

in #downvote3 years ago


Technically there is no true censorship on the steem blockchain. There are some things that can be like censorship and most of them we have some ideas how to approach. I decided after seeing a new person I think writes well @ura-soul have one of his posts "censored" from his perspective that it was time to write about this and give new people that haven't been around to struggle through some of these issues some information. Perspective helps.

First if you are flagged (aka down voted). Don't panic.

The down vote is intended to fight plagiarism, spam, abuse, and they added for reward pool issues (wish they hadn't as that opened the flood gates).

This is currently necessary to fight spam, plagiarism, and abuse. Without these tools there is no clear way to stop such things.

There are a lot of suggestions people will often make but they are usually easy to get around by using multiple accounts, or they introduce an entirely new set of problems.

I consider the misuse of the down vote to be one of the biggest problems that remains with steem/it. In fact, for my first 6 or so months on steemit I was a vocal supporter of removing the down vote. I didn't see it as being needed. I wrote quite a number of posts on it. I also even discussed it with Dan Larimer one of the co-founders here.

The problem is that if the down vote is removed that opens the door to other problems and we haven't found a programmatic way to address those.

So really when you see a down vote that is questionable it can be like a punch in the gut. It can be far more soul draining than the greatest of up votes. Who says humans don't react to negative reinforcement? If your goal was to enrage someone down vote them because you don't like their topic, opinion, or you think people that DO like it are rewarding them too much. You'll get your rage. People don't like others dictating what they can and cannot like, or can and cannot be rewarded.

So yes I think from what I said just now you can see I totally GET why people are upset.

They will say "Censorship" to which you will encounter people saying "It was not censored".

It becomes a matter of perspective, opinion, and semantics there. Technically the information is still there on the blockchain and people that want to see it can. That is what will be used to justify that it was not censored.

However, it may have cancelled out the reward other people wanted to give you for that topic because maybe they really liked it. It could be viewed as restricting the right of people to support the people that share their interests. Is that censorship? If the post was high quality, took a lot of time, and thus needed some funding then by removing that funding such posts might have to stop, and when things like blocking funding occur in the non-steemit world that is usually considered a form of censorship.

People will say it was hidden and couldn't be seen. It actually will still be visible it will just need to be clicked on extra to be visible. If someone with sufficient reputation up votes it that will cancel out that visibility issue as well.

So as I said don't panic. You have some options. Let someone you know that has a higher reputation know about the incident. They and potentially others can up vote to help out. Since Hardfork 19 people in the community banding together have a better chance to counter these actions.

The next thing you should do is remove your support from the people that do this. Don't follow them, don't up vote them, etc. If they want to be a jerk and be an island then so be it, but we shouldn't be giving them more power if we can avoid it. Some people may even decide to mute them, but I personally leave mute off the table unless they are abusive and trolling... I like to leave the door open for people to change.

Telling people they shouldn't do this doesn't usually work. As the floodgates open and more and more people join steemit we will occasionally have people who spend a chunk of money and buy in and they will have quite a bit of power at the outset. They may not be familiar with our community and will bring ideas like those on reddit here. We have to help them see the way that hurts the community, we can't expect them to get it when they first get here.

So when you are down voted what can you do?

First: Be civil. Don't drop to their level, don't call them names, don't suggest flagging all of their stuff, etc. I've never actually seen that work out well for anyone. Keep civil even in the face of their ignorance. Don't allow your attitude to become their justification for why it was okay that they flagged you.

Second: You can try talking to them. If you can keep it civil perhaps you can convince them to reverse their action. If you don't think you can keep cool then avoid this step.

Third: Find out who they are. If you are following them and they didn't agree in step two to change their ways stop following them. Don't vote on their posts. If they want to force their opinion upon all of us then do not give them more power to do that.

Fourth: Reach out to community members you know. We'll help you counter such votes to the best of our ability even if we may not agree with your opinions in your post. If you were being an ass to someone in your post then you'll likely not get sympathy, but if it was down voted just due to subject matter you'll get support.

Fifth: Be available to support other people in similar situations. If there is someone doing this activity to other people stop following them, voting for them, etc. This is true no matter how big they are. I've seen some truly big people do this before and people keep following them hoping for those high paying votes that person might dish out. This is compromising their integrity for the sake of greed. Don't do that.

So how do you find out about them? There are a lot of tools. I tend to use steemdb.com.

If you are looking at a post it will have a url beginning with https://steemit.com/ simply change steemit.com to steemdb.com and keep the rest. You can find out in detail all about that post including all the voters.

There are going to be problems with steem and steemit. We cannot magically expect them to be fixed. This is something that has never existed before. This means it has new challenges as well as opportunities. We as the community can solve a lot of them as changing it in code often will not be the answer. I wrote a post about this that explains in more detail why this is so.

Here are some of my past posts on the topic of flagging for those that want to know more:

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Good post man. The downvote should be removed just as you say here, its to bad people have to abuse things but if downvoting becomes rampant than why use Steemit? We need to get back to good ole non censorship.....JUST LIKE OUR CONSTITUTION says.

Yes broncnutz, if only everyone thinks and behaves properly. Is that possible?

Your right....and probably not

The downvote should be removed just as you say here

I am not saying that. I was saying that for 6 months, and realized that if we did away with it that'd open the floodgates for other types of abuse. We can't get rid of it yet, as we don't have a way to stop the other things without it. So as I said the community needs to do what they can to remove support from people that abuse it.

I don't like the downvote system either but it does open up other problema if it is removed. Thing is the bigger steemit gets the bigger the problem with people getting downvoted will be. Look at youtube for example, even on a superb video of performance or informational video that has some popularity there will be quite a few dislikes. There will always be people that will feel better about other peoples unhappiness. Steemit for now is a bit different and a lot more friendly as a social media but more people coming along everyday will make it inevitable to not have any of the internet "trolls".

Visible monetary rewards does have a unique effect on trolls that isn't anywhere else. You see people don't up vote trolls here. In fact they down vote them, mute them, etc. So the only troll that actually would likely survive long here would be one that wanted absolutely no money. :)

True that. I was referring more to the people that might use the downvote/flag system as a dislike button which it isn't meant to be or at least not in the way people use it on most social medias.

On the "regular" forums, trolls are paid by outside political parties and special interest groups. The same could happen here. Once the user base is large enough, it can be corrupted... like anything else.

Yes, there is some of that. However, many are just jerks. :)

Good point i-am-zol. The time will come when this will happen. If you have any ideas as to solving this inevitable issue bring it up. I can't think of one yet, but we should all try to find ways to keep this site away from fallacies.

I love your post .. there is always something we all dislike we cant disagree but for platform like this one i feel that downvote should be removed ... we all in steemtopia see the dream in this and we should be able to support one another

While down voting is necessary to stop plagiarism and hate speech, I think users should lose their down voting power if they overuse it. It should never be a tool used to censor views you don't agree with.

The problem is there is no centralized authority so who would have this "power" to strip voting rights, how would it be dictated, and how could you insure that power could not be corrupted?

I will never down vote anyone, regardless of what they post, I am all for freedom of speech. Overall people on Steemit are respectful in my experience, hope it stays that way.

You may encounter the occasional jerk. Don't panic. Though they are still here they are far more rare than anywhere else.

Best ignored so they do not latch onto you, right?!

Ignore if they don't follow you around. Yet can also stop following, voting for, etc so you don't help power them up.

The other day I was wondering about this possible refinement to the flagging process. If you flag someone a box pops up asking why you are flagging and you have to select one of the options, which might be a) plagiarism b) spam c) abuse d) other. If other you have to type your reason. Whatever you select then comes up as a comment on the post. It won't stop flagging, but it will force the person to give a reason, for all to see. So increased transparency. What do you think?

That box already pops up, but doesn't require selecting a choice and it doesn't add the comment. That'd be interesting to see but that is a UI aspect of the web it might work for people that use your particular web page, but it'd do nothing to those using other sites busy.org, zappl, chainbb, command line, steemdb, etc. It could help some though, but it wouldn't necessarily stop it. It might reduce it a great deal for new people that decide to use it.

I've never flagged, so I didn't know a box popped up. I suppose I'm suggesting tweaks to that box and how it works - forcing people to say why they've flagged and have it displayed.

All those technical aspects are a bit lost on me. I've never posted using those other ways in - can people upvote / flag through them as well? And you're saying that my suggestion could only be enforced on those voting / flagging directly through the Steemit interface, and not through others?

I wasn't necessarily thinking it would stop people, more that it would make them accountable to a certain level.

All those technical aspects are a bit lost on me. I've never posted using those other ways in - can people upvote / flag through them as well? And you're saying that my suggestion could only be enforced on those voting / flagging directly through the Steemit interface, and not through others?

Yes to both of those. :)

I think its a great idea kiwideb!

This was very well written! Flagging definitely is justified in some cases if the user is plagiarizing or spamming and continues after being warned.

You hit the nail on the head with this:

There are going to be problems with steem and steemit. We cannot magically expect them to be fixed. This is something that has never existed before. This means it has new challenges as well as opportunities. We as the community can solve a lot of them as changing it in code often will not be the answer.

There are so many issues that will arise over time, but as long as the community sticks together, we will be just fine in the end!

Don't panic is right. Just ignore them is probably the best advice and most of the time they will go away. If they keep flagging you then speak up.

Thanks for your valuable post @dwinblood. I have had a few flagging incidents, which were solely based on them not liking facts I had posted. This information helps in dealing with triggered folk.

did you need me to take a look at some of them and help? what posts were they?

No, but thanks for offering to help @truthforce.

Someone else saw what happened and immediately stepped in and reversed the down vote. I don't even know who it was, but they saw what was going on, and knew this down-voting person was being a grub.

I'm still angered by what happened but it was resolved quickly and in my favour. It's made me very mindful of being targeted and harassed simply because of truth telling and opinion.

Thanks for the beautiful piece

Downvoting should be linked to reputation not to Steem Power. It doesn't make sense that the people who have most money dominate downvoting system. One of these whales flagged me down today with his 11 accounts.
I would suggest that to flag down - you need 3 people with high reputation because reputation takes longer to build than power

Actually reputation is very fast to build. All it takes is up votes from people with higher reputation than you. The higher your reputation gets the slower it increases because there are less and less people higher than you to vote for you.

Also reputation was a code thing implemented here on steemit. It is not actually used everywhere on the blockchain itself and a lot of the voting happens via command line, or other interfaces to the blockchain.

As I stated trying to fix it with code is not EASY or people would have done it already. It is also easy to get around code solutions. Person could create alt accounts... build up reputation then power up that account and be right back where we are.

In most cases code is not the solution. This is why I put so much emphasis on community action.

True, but building reputation for a few accounts takes more time than building Power.

Actually it doesn't. You can gain a reputation very quickly.

I have to say I can't increase my rep, I've been on 62 since trump was elected :)

Now if you have moved on from agreeing with my current position of saying flagging should be binned, what is an example of something that flagging is essential to prevent?

It's often said it's needed to stop plagiarism, but it doesn't stop plagiarism - Steemit is full of copied content - although it doesn't make much $ because hardly anyone upvotes it.

And same with spam - it certainly doesn't stop that - so apart from control and revenge, what does flagging achieve?

I know I'm following in your footsteps miles behind, but at this point I think flagging totally sucks, and I've been on Steemit almost a year.

what is an example of something that flagging is essential to prevent?

Do you recall the time when 1 out of 10 posts were not spam and the rest was all bot spam? It only lasted a week or two, and @cheetah and others were trying to fight it with no luck. They were using the down vote on this. The reputation system was implemented so those fighting it could be effective without being sybil attacked by bots. After that the vast majority of that spam was gone.

You can't eliminate ANYTHING completely. You can make it a hell of a lot better. There is still a ton of spam being removed pretty regularly. Follow Steemcleaners or have a chat with @anyx who made @cheetah for current stats.

Another thing it is currently needed for is people who do not tag NSFW things such as graphic blow job or sex initial image and it shows up in everyone's feed. We want to remove that from the feed as quickly as we can. There are children and people who either should not be forced to see that, or at least should have the option.

So does it STOP it? No. Yet this is true of reality too. It does help.

The problem is that it can be abused, but even the amount it is abused I'd contend is lower here than on social media platforms that also have it.

"people who do not tag NSFW things such as graphic blow job or sex initial image and it shows up in everyone's feed"

Thanks, that a really good point - on my recent post about flagging not a single person came up with any good arguments like that for flagging!

The spam part is still a mystery because the whole of Steemit is full of spam comments, and they are not flagged. I think if people said flagging prevented porn rather that spam it would make a lot more sense.

This looks like an example of flagging not working:
https://steemit.com/steemit/@utfull/attention-steemit-spam-comments-are-now-getting-huge-upvotes

I remember when NSFW was first set up a bunch of people were freaking out, but although I've always had it set to show, I've barely ever encountered any!

I did post one myself once as a bit of a joke

The spam part is still a mystery because the whole of Steemit is full of spam comments, and they are not flagged.

Spam comments are trickier to police. The spam that most people fight is the posts themselves.

Excellent post on one of the most important topics Steemit has to deal with. Upvoted and re-steemed.

Sharing for solutions!

We see eye to eye on this,pretty much.
That is well said!
I do not think I have ever been flagged,if I have been It was not noticed. Except once by @cheata ? ...so new didn't know it was a bad thing...lol. But I have tried to help some users I thought were being unfairly flagged. and seen people flagged to negative Rep. IDK maybe they real did deserve it ,But I do not believe it, not Negative #.
Thank you for a great post and your links.
I really enjoy your post's. You seem like really good people.( I do understand that we are not held in great regard as a species in the bigger cosmos sphere,and I mean no disrespect) :-)
namaste!

Thanks @dwinblood for this post this is a very important issue we facing this in EU and i believe in other parts of the world. Steemit must stay a free platform and this is the good way to face the censorship of some little brain. ^, follow and Resteem. Peace

Great post. One of the things I like about this post, is that it brings the community front and center. The community can work it out when people are being downvoted for ideas rather than plain plagiarism.

This is an important distinction to be made about the flag feature that I did not consider before. The term, "mutual aid society" comes to mind here. Rather than a central authority acting on a complaint, we have a group of people working to right a wrong.

Exactly. If we don't resort to negatives to fight a negative and we can still fix the issue then that is what we should do.

seems like most people have been cool here overall, or maybe I'm just running in the right circles currently. peace

The jerks are an extreme minority here. :) Making money is an incentive. The people that remain jerks tend to have enough power to where they are satisfied with curation rewards and don't really have to make money from people voting on their own posts.

Thanks for your comment here. I have just written a post in response that includes suggestions for an improved post quality management process for Steemit: https://steemit.com/steemit/@ura-soul/stopping-downvote-censorship-on-steemit-suggestions-for-a-new-model-for-anti-spam-that-prevents-malicious-censorship

Do you think it was good that @berniesanders account was killed?

It wasn't killed. It is still there. He is VERY active. He has many accounts and moves a lot of power between many of them. I do think it is good that he doesn't SEEM to be flagging people for simple disagreement anymore, though he has so many accounts I don't know if that is the case.

I am pretty sure randowhale is him. He is also engagement, thecyclist, and several others. So it was not KILLED. You can't kill anything here. He has moved power around on his own.

His posting power is killed - his posts don't show up. But his voting power is still intact - that doesn't change.

Oh I see... Dang I didn't realize his reputation was -10. I guess things caught up to him finally. He just moved his power to his other accounts.

@dan killed his account because of downvote abuse.

That was the @dantheman account and it didn't kill it at all. He stopped using them after he resigned from his position.

I said @dan killed bernies account.

Oh I didn't know he killed it. How recently was that?

He also didn't abuse it. He actually down voted the whales like bernie that had been down voting people and suddenly they didn't like it. Oh actually it was OZTchart and the other whales that down vote attacked... but that is of an example of why I said flagging and going negative against those who flag and go negative doesn't work out well.

then flagging him is even worse, imo.

Maybe he learned the lesson and you are right that it was OK to go to war - Im no pacifist btw.

My questions are rather meant to provoke thinking about actions then that I really want to blame someone for murder.

Sometimes it is good that things die.

He didn't learn his lesson, just check all his comments in the last days - including comments to my latest post that he downvoted.

it's 2am and I already got a headache. If I forgot remind me to look into it, maybe I can be a neutral 3rd party ;). But no promises I already failed when it came to Steemtrail.

I know that the person behind the account is not dead and that he is also not away from Steemit. I never encountered his other accounts though.

I dislike his approach and his flagging for disagreeing or thinking people don't deserve their payout. Manly I don't like the cursing and camp-thinking he promotes.

However, I think he came from an honest place and downvoting the account he down voted from is eye-for-an-eye policy I do not really like. Maybe I should have got more involved in the last big dispute (Steemtrail vs Sanders). I felt incompetent though.

Not matter how much I like to say "I was busy looking for a job", it was also his arguments and even more the reaction to those arguments that made me abandon my @politics-trail account.

I will resume at least some work within trails soon (if they let me after all the inactivity), mainly because you have to try to change things in a civil way from within, namely talking in a friendly manner with our leaders, Rick and Joe, about the problem.

Maybe as a specific note on @politics-trail. Looking around the politics tag I saw many established authors similar to you, who have a decent following, reputation and solid (topic-based and well written) articles.
At some point I felt that I might not be the right person to create a politics-community, mainly because there already is one!
That said there are still tons of undervalued in #politics that I would love to promote in one way or the other.

I was supporting the trails and allowing them to use my account for some voting via streemian. After HF19 that was leading to a lot of problems with being able to vote as they were voting some decent sized votes with my account.

I then watched and they were always voting trail posts. Those posts were making a ton, but the people the posts were highlighting were not. So my reward pool was draining too fast, and they were not actually doing much to really support those posts that were in their overviews.

Overviews can make a lot of money here if done well, without needing a streemian. It is not really my thing to do overviews. I did think of it briefly when I started here, but decided "nah not really my thing", and then soon someone like Gavvett was doing it and he made a fortune doing it.

I'm okay with that. If I was in it for the money I'd handle my account a lot different than I am. Don't get me wrong the money still matters, but growing it organically over time with people supporting me for being who I am means a lot more than trying to change who I am to get the best rewards. I know you are not advocating this. I am just rambling.

I am waiting to see what this COMMUNITY thing they've been talking about for months will be as it could dramatically change the landscape of how steem/it works. I don't know if it will, I know almost nothing about it other than it is in works. There are talks of more tokens which tons of people love, but to me it sounds like further complicating things which is not the direction to go I'd think. You don't want it more complicated. Though that is going ot happen (the token thing) and it may not be as bad as I am imagining in terms of adding complexity. I don't use bitshares for example because I find it a pain in the ass. I have trail tokens I don't do anything with because working with open ledger (especially if you have password issues) is a total pain in the ass. I spent 3 hours setting up streemian, steemtrail, etc. I am also very technically minded. If it takes that long for someone like me then it is not going to be very accessible to most of the community.

I'm okay with that. If I was in it for the money I'd handle my account a lot different than I am. Don't get me wrong the money still matters, but growing it organically over time with people supporting me for being who I am means a lot more than trying to change who I am to get the best rewards. I know you are not advocating this. I am just rambling.

I actually do appreciate your rambling ;). @felixxx made a very similar point that was hard for me to dispute. He is a curator and the creator of @deutschbot that he organicly grew, so he was kind of pissed to see @germain-trail just be made out of nothingness.
The two of them also had a debate that was just an exchange add homines, before that I thought the #deutsch comuunity and their curators are actually quite united.... I was disappointed to say the least.

I spent 3 hours setting up streemian, steemtrail, etc. I am also very technically minded. If it takes that long for someone like me then it is not going to be very accessible to most of the community.

I spectaculary failed at making my Streemian account. I thought I needed to make one for the politics-trail account but I actually did not need to, since it already got one. My personal account is not on Streemian.

Overviews can make a lot of money here if done well, without needing a streemian.

For the sake of transparency let me tell you how the trail works from the inside:

We have 2 official ways of promoting: Voting (like any other acc) and posting it in certain channels of discord (They may or may not get promoted after posting them there). However me and appearently some others trailers thought there might a third. We get high visibility due to the votes on our posts and I thought "hey, why not use that visibility for promotion.

After reading the critics towards that approach I went and looked back at the people I mentioned in my overviews... it was rather disheartening to see them not growing in value, especially the one of new authors.

To present the side of the people who are behind the community-trails, a position that I am actually quite curious to get your opinion on: They see
it as a job and many of them do work hard to be engaging and make valuable posts. Steemtrail in itself can be viewed as a company that has a social/good intended goal - promoting valuable content on Steemit.

Compared to a random real life company Steemtrail seems to be a good thing and I might go back working for them "part-time". My conclusion after all of this is that Steemit in itself is too strongly modeled after reality and doomed if there are no drastic changes. Maybe I will be able to initiate change through the organisation of Steemtrail.

We have 2 official ways of promoting: Voting (like any other acc) and posting it in certain channels of discord (They may or may not get promoted after posting them there). However me and appearently some others trailers thought there might a third. We get high visibility due to the votes on our posts and I thought "hey, why not use that visibility for promotion

I actually am familiar with how it works. I was offered to make a trail when I signed up and kept getting rewarded for awhile. That seemed to have stopped too. I stopped seeing the notices that a post was considered good and had been rewarded some trail tokens. Hell I didn't even get all the trail tokens I was already supposed to have. Ultimately I decided I didn't care as trying to deal with bitshares, open ledger, and trail tokens was a pain in the ass as far as I was concerned. They also were not worth an amount I'd consider it worth spending all of that time trying to use them.

To present the side of the people who are behind the community-trails, a position that I am actually quite curious to get your opinion on: They see
it as a job and many of them do work hard to be engaging and make valuable posts. Steemtrail in itself can be viewed as a company that has a social/good intended goal - promoting valuable content on Steemit.

Sure and their trail posts could stand on their own as the old aggregators do. I don't see much value to the community in people aggregating other people's work and then the people that actually made the work that is being aggregated hardly benefitting at all. I can tell you I was able to watch where they were using my votes. They were voting on trail posts, not the people they were aggregating. That has a leechy feeling to me, so I didn't really want to allow my account to be used for that anymore.

Compared to a random real life company Steemtrail seems to be a good thing and I might go back working for them "part-time". My conclusion after all of this is that Steemit in itself is too strongly modeled after reality and doomed if there are no drastic changes. Maybe I will be able to initiate change through the organisation of Steemtrail.

I am not anti-steemtrail. I support it. I just won't be letting them vote with my account any longer, I do not endorse how they vote at all.

I honestly do not understand why you(in particular) would support Steemtrail. It is a socialist intervention into a free market, but we can jump on discord by Hammer and Sichel inc, supported by the chinese company Tencent that owns the most successful videogame of the world.

I know it's Hammer & Chisel , but in German you would pronounce it very close to Sichel (Sickle)

On the other hand I don't want to judge people according state socialist memes. And even if they are, I don't want to fight against them, I want to convince them to fight with me ;)

We call it a Sickle in the U.S. too... not chisel.

Oh and just as an additional info I think China is actually doing much better things for the world than the US and Europe, see Africa as an example.

Just after a quick google search, even the guardian is reporting on it and there are much more flattering docus/articles

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development-professionals-network/2016/dec/22/the-new-scramble-for-africa-how-china-became-the-partner-of-choice

China is a long term view country. I don't judge people or nations by pockets of doing good or bad. I try to look and see what they've been doing long term.

China does great at the moment they have two of the largest capitalist ports in the world... Hong Kong and Singapore. :) Without that they would be in a very different state.

Ye, he disagrees that people deserve payouts because of no curation - when actually if you pay him via his bot randowhale, he doesn't have any problem to upvote you. If this is not hypocrisy - what is?

It is. I dislike any pay for vote system. If you want to rent SP than I am cool with that, but not just pay2vote.

I am not defending Bernie. I disagree on a lot of what he does. Mainly his statement "I let my votes talk!" instead of talking to me made me actually really mad at him!

I just think it is hypocritical to downvote the downvoter.

When I started using Steemit I thought it would be an alternative to more traditional media such as Fakebook, but I see that the problem is in people and not in the platform.

What I see at Steemit is that there are huge numbers of socialists who think "of the general well-being of the population," including many whales.

They flag comments and posts that, according to them, go against the philosophy of the community and blah blah.

For me most of the arguments are socialist talk, or worse, use socialist arguments because he is afraid that a newbie may over time have more power than themselves.

Anyway, one interesting conclusion I get is that the root of the problem is people, not platform.

Great post my friend.

Upvoted and resteemed

There is some of that. There are a lot of anti-socialists here too. In fact the two founders are both anarcho-capitalists which definitely is not an ideology that is a fan of socialism.

EDIT: The problem is that some (not all) advocates for socialism do what is naturally the problem with socialism. They try to use force to make people comply with their personal wishes.

Etiquette to many is a form of socialism, that is why you are a socialist in my book :)

They flag comments and posts that, according to them, go against the philosophy of the community and blah blah.

actually 'liking your own comments' or that you should value posts above author would be one of those blah blahs, you think talking about social guidelines is unnecessary? I see there is a difference between flagging and talking ethics, but if someone is behaving in a way that you just don't want to tolerate you should be free to act accordingly.

Anyway, one interesting conclusion I get is that the root of the problem is people, not platform.

Worst. Conclusion. Ever. to be fair @dwinblood expresses a similar thought when he says "people are not ready", but it is in fact an argument you hear for bad ideas like original socialism all the time. It sounds to me like "We just have to convince them and then everyone will agree with us" at least when it comes to political ideologies.

I hear about down voting a lot. I'm mean I'm a bit new here but I also know that the use of some bots is allowed. My thing is isn't that like a contradiction...A lot of invisible rules here on STEEM but yet publicly I see people speaking on things that have me like..."wait...isn't that cheating?" It's a bit confusing.

You can't block certain things with code. This include bots. Bots just mimic a person there is no true way to detect them, trying to do so would false flag a lot of real people. Bots are built to just do the steps a person would do.

Is it cheating? Some people may say yes. Since we can't beat it with code we have to just as a community not support such people, and support those we see as doing good acts for steemit. Some bad things will happen. Humanity has not solved "cheating" in any endeavor in history. Humans will find a way to cheat. So does it happen here? Yes. It does however seem to be much less than other places. The down vote is also used much less here than places like Reddit. Yet when it is used due to potential loss of rewards it feels a lot more like an attack. Yet this is a personal perception and WE can control our personal perceptions as long as we've learned to recognize them.

Great post once again pa dwin, Flagging is an issue, and will always be an issue as long as humans are behind the keys of any account. I believe the keynote to take awy from all these is to be moderate. A certain person which I do not wish to name(someone mention him a littledown) has quite some bots and a number of accounts on steemit, and he holds no bars when it comes to flagging. Then again, I believe using bots is cheating, though depending on the context. Ive found the use and help from minnowsupport and randowhale immerse, but there are bots out there that basically do nothing but cheat the system. I do understand that the blockchain is free for all, but when steemit grows ti a very large number, little problems like these could become major issues.

just like youtube and reddit.

I don't think it'll ever be as bad as youtube and reddit.

Jerks quickly stop making money and don't do as well here so while it happens I've also encountered people that are "admitted" trolls on every other platform that are not one here. So it'll never get as bad as those places.

With that said if they believe everyone should not be interested in the same things they are not interested in and they want to force it upon all of us and they happen to be VERY powerful then our support or lack of support becomes meaningless.

I only know of one person that seems to have been consistently like that, but I don't know if he still is. I think he may have focused his energies elsewhere. Though I can't really tell you as he has a great many accounts and a ton of power.

We can't make it go away completely, just like you can't make people like that go away in any other thing in real life... not just social media.

All of your points for de-escalating the situation are outstanding, and it is in that very spirit in which I'm hoping to provide an outlet with @freezepeach for those who need help with being flagged.

I imagine many of the flag wars of the past have been started because the users felt like they had no recourse, and going on the attack seemed like the only choice. Hopefully your advice, the @freezepeach service, and many conversations like this will provide an avenue that helps mitigate future conflict.

There are always going to be people that have a way of getting under ones skin. I suppose even having a lot of steem could make someone envious, but down voting them doesn't make sense. Unless there is a cruelty involved to another person or animal. Thanks for posting a solution to handling this situation. 🐓🐓

Thanks for your support of @ura-soul
The downvote being removed would indeed be a disaster and would lead IMO to the downfall of the platform.
I fully support the downvote option but have never used it, probably due to the fact that the vast majority of people I encounter here are intelligent and respectful of the opinion of others regardless of whether they agree with them.
I came close a few days ago when someone posted "love the pictures please follow me" on a post I'd written about paedophilia, however others stepped in and down him voted before me so I left it.
That's the kind of insensitive crap that requires the downvote option.

Love the pictures, follow me, great post, nice post, with nothing much else said. I see some of that so fast it is clear they didn't read the post.

My friend @dreamrafa on here is a great guitarist and does some amazing covers he did this one cover of an insanely difficult Dream Theater INSTRUMENTAL... I highlight that for a reason.

He received a "nice vocals" comment. There were no vocals. :)

Hey, I just wanted to make my first post after a month as politics trails. I got an idea for a challenge, but I accidently posted it as @thatgermandude and deleted it instantly because I did not want it to get traffic before i delete.

I remember someone tellling me that nothing is truly lost on the blockchain, now i have the most Word Doc but there is was still like 20 minutes of fine tuning that I would have to do again.

Is there an easy to look at the post I deleted, so I can copy paste it?

You can go to https://steemsb.com/@thatgermandude and explore the blockchain for your account in some detail and even find that original post...

There is also some new phist tool can't remember the URL, but will see if I can find it that shows you a post and ALL of it's edits. It's pretty nifty.

I just realized that I can be in two different accounts in the same browser (different tabs). This is a new change and actually caused my failure :D

mhh, I can not reach https://steemsb.com/@thatgermandude do I need tools to establish connection?

should be steemdb.com as in steem database. Did I have a typo?

yeah, I thought it was another way to view your activity than steem.db xD

I do not even have a link in Steemdb and on https://steemd.com/@thatgermandude it is unclickable(broken link). It is the post i made 7 hours ago. It has politics-trail in it's name. This was the first way I tried and really confused me that it did not work.

I have not been targeted by any of the downvote trolls but I would be very upset to loose my rep and Steem because someone wanted to be a jerk.

Very nice take on the issue and something I will refer two of my friends to that I just convinced to sign up. We discussed exactly the issue of downvotes/censorship etc. in real life just a few days ago and I am glad you provided this, very timely!

I really like how you put this. I have seen this happen a couple of times now and sometimes I think the flagger was right and sometimes it could be considered as 'a little harsh'. Whatever the case, it's probably best to follow your steps and try keeping a positive mind. Keep on inspiring!

Good post. I just think that downvotes should be reviewed by 3rd parties before they are allowed to stand and affect the post. Yes, this makes complications, but sometimes it's the only way to prevent abuse.

Thanks for you post, i am wait another post from you. Many things i know from every

Good stuff, I didn't know about steemdb.com