Steem Experience Hangout: Let's Talk about Paid Voting Bots...

in dsound •  2 years ago  (edited)

Be a part of the Discussion!

I'm joined by @RichardCrill to talk a bit about the history, good uses, some not so good ones, and more importantly a few ideas that might just be able to improve things for the community as a whole.

In fact, in the last week about 250 Steem Dollars were paid to bots to bump up my post on "What is the Steem Experience" to the trending page! With the goal being to get more views, follows for me and people checking out the community...which we easily considered successful.

Love them or hate them...these bots are here. While I understand the potential frustration or monetary motivations that go along with paid voting services (...heck, can we just call them advertising already...), it's still important to look at they positive and negative effects they have here on Steemit.

So instead of getting inflamed and calling foul...let's sit down in the Steem Experience Discord and have a calm, rational discussion about the paid vote/advertising bots on Steemit.

Enjoy the discussion and please leave
your thoughts in the comments!

Steemit is Neither FAIR nor EQUITABLE — and Why This Post Will Never Make it to Trending by @DenmarkGuy

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advertisement is what it is.

If "Time Magazine" established themselves on STEEM blockchain, they would have to advertise just like any other magazine, video-channel and etc... It is what it is.

I've seen this argument time and time again and find it to be lacking. The problem is at first glance users don't know the difference between an advertisement and an actual post that has been upvoted organically. The payout number on the post is misleading indeed. Furthermore, there are more nuances concerning curation.

If I wanted to "game the system" as many profiteers have no scruple doing, I could just set up a bot with an algorithm that would monitor paid votes and undercut the bid bots with the highest bids for pure curation rewards. I, unlike many of the "leaders" of this platform, have a little thing called ethics that deter me from such a course and understand it is not viable for the long term. I'm sure some greedy asshole is already doing it and it is indeed tempting for the sake of fighting fire with fire but I am playing Steem the long game. I want it to succeed and am not thinking about lining my pockets from a short sighted perspective. We truly need to make it meritocratic in terms of rewards and get as far away from "pay to play" as possible. No, I don't want Coca-Cola, Deja-Blue and Gatorade circle jerking each other up to Trending. People are going to bail when that shit happens. If you want a corporate echo chamber, go for it but I will power down long before that shit becomes a reality.

Your equivocating bid bots to simple advertisement is an analogy that is sorely lacking. It's a tired anology that need to be laid to rest. If you want a commercial, there is a place for that. It's called the promoted tab.

I say as I have said before. Do we want to increase the value of Steem? We create art. We create beauty. We don't create a GLORIFIED BLOCKCHAIN BILLBOARD.

Nobody looks at the promoted tab, what's wrong in advertising our own content?

Nobody looks at the promoted tab

Exactly, because we don't want to see paid ads.

Believe me, if there was an option that I could use to filter all paid content out, I would click that checkbox in a second.

Nothing wrong with advertising but paying for votes is another matter entirely. Not the same thing.

In that case, I believe you always ignore hot, trending and promoted tabs and just read posts on your feed?

Not really. But I do ambition to create a front end that will do as I have said. It's on my todo list. People just might go for that sort of thing. I know I would.

Total agreement! Bots will kill steemit! I am here for 14 days... there is no way that the valuable (at least in my eyes) content I want to share with the steem community will get more than 10 views as it will just disappear in nirvana covered by voting bots, voting pools and funny cat clips... I am starting to believe that even FB would be better in delivering my words to the world...
The initial free market quality system based on monetization is great but its put upside down by abuse of bots...

Welc9me to our world

Yep, thats why we discussed marking them as ads like google does.

I thought that is what the promoted tab's purpose was. Guess they are ok with Steem becoming a billboard. Whatever.

The thing is, if steemit really becomes that big, trending and hot pages will be filled with adds from cocoacola, johnon n johnson, etc. here good content is anyways being screwed by the rich with 100000 SP, imagine these brands coming with a Million or 10 million+ SP? todays whales will be tomorrows minnows.. we need to do something about this..

Yeah, there needs to be a major change to the "Promoted" tab. No one uses it. It's the space that these posts are supposed to go. If you want to pay to get exposure, burn the STEEM for everyone's benefit. Voting bots are just a way to circumvent the established procedure for the sake of saving money.

The reason no one uses it, is the same reason we should have categorically rejected the use of voting bots, it doesn't lead to quality through consensus. We knew it would be stuff that didn't get any attention through regular channels.

The problem is many shit posts are trending. posts with just 2 lines or a photo are sometimes found on trending page. here are some of the points that needs to be done:

a) We need good content on trending page, and no 2 liners or only specific content related or of specific members only or just a dinner shot.

b) Bots should review the posts before upvoting.

c) Need genuine Meritocracy, not fake (Give Fair chance to everyone, not just the rich)

d) Meetups/Programmer related posts should be funded privately, and not by trending, This is not called good content. Need a separate page for it like an UPDATE or ANNOUNCEMENT page without votes.

e) Or You can remove Trending and Hot page, so people will only look for content they are intrested in, using search bar or tags, & not upvote only for rewards.

f) We also need Reward limits and Posts limit. I guess if we keep max 200$ per post and max 5 posts, that comes to 1000$ per day means 30000$ per month. Which is morethan enough for any one to live life in any part of the world. and obviously you can invest in steem/SBD or other cryptos. This will also limit greed.

g) Also a minimum reward like 50 cents to 1$ (more or less i leave to experts) for every post with a minimum content (bots can handle this im sure) will give a boost to minnows, and will also lead to genuine wealth distribution.

All the above points will eliminate the "Central Banking System for the Rich only" type scenario that going on on steemit.


If that happens, steem will be the medium of exchange, not a mere token as it is now.

No, sorry, all of these ideas are poor. The only way to get what you're suggesting IS A CENTRALIZED BANK and that's not what this is. It's not about those posts getting too much, or even the quality of those posts, it's that the community is not involved in the decision. I think the only solution is to begin labeling posts that have purchased votes and downvoting them. Then you'll see backlash from the whales, they'll suddenly have time to be back on the platform doing the work they should be doing now.

so what do u suggest? i feel money should not be the power on steemit, good content should..

I just told you my solution. It's at the end of my last comment.

Very true.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)


Just how reddit is really.
When the elections were on sure the front page was littered with politics but you still had your selected communities where you were free to continue with the topics and discussions which you cared about.

ONLY when reddit went feral with the net neutrality crap did every community get bombarded with the same crap. So steemit DESPERATELY needs communities so everyone can congregate with their respective niche groups.


and the maggots sitting on their hands might get a light switch moment and go..

"Oh yeah... we DID PROMISE communities to these fucken fools didn't we... and we PROMISED TO HAVE THEM OUT BY LATE 2017... maybe we should.... DO... THAT ! "

I think communities could be helpful, but the devil is in the detail. Is there somewhere in particular that explains how they are supposed to work? Because if they are just like the specific tags we have at present, that won't work - many tags are also dominated by bot-upvoted content, e.g.: @pinacle in #philosophy. If communites are just goign to replicate that, I'd wonder why anyone would bother.

Well we can't predict the future but we can try with some applied pattern processing.

I do agree with you that communities will work similar to tags. The popular ones like SCIENCE and PHOTOGRAPHY will no doubt become popular communities. The one thing which I anticipate happening, apart from the usual whoring of rewards.. is that as each community will have an appointed (self or voted) leader, there will be WAY MORE responsibility for maintaining an honest community. In effect, this will work to clean up steemit somewhat.

The bad actors and actions will be easier to realize. So it will be an incentive for communities to become "THE GEMS" so to speak of steemit. As the communities with the most positive effect on say: sign ups, buzz generated, in-the-news, etc.. will no doubt become places of congregation for members of the platform that still hold on to the vision of a steemit where QUALITY & VALUE (voted organically) IS REWARDED.

As, some communities might not even want any bot-voted content. Giving those who detest their use a place to exist and develop without that element. Many ways in which the simple act of creating pockets within the system will give a real place for many who feel lost in a sea of chaos which is steemit. There is good here but it's all hidden under the giant pile of waste.

Spanish communities and Korean communities for instance will have an official place within the system where they can exist united and seek each other out easier to help with their growth. Communities will not be a magical transformation though. So it's important to note that it's THE PEOPLE that will determine their utilization. If the masses choose to continue with the same broken system then shiit.. can't do much about that. The ones who are whoring the rewards though will stand out like dogs balls and they might find themselves isolated if the majority of the communities are working to a more sustainable and "fairer" system of rewarding content.

BUT!.. Communities don't exist and may never!... so this was all just my opinion.

It gets worse: If Steemit gets big enough, during US presidential election campaigns it'll be filled with advertising from candidates and their associated super pacs. So yes, we do need to do something about this.

I will disagree with you on one point - if they play it smart, today's whales will probably still be tomorrow's whales - they will be the one's making a profit from the paid advertising after all.

we could create our own superpacs or maybe a SUper bot that downvotes those corporations to oblivion.

the thing is that i see one of those institutions taking the idea and building their own platform eventually. steemit is just a prototype and will likely go the way of myspace and blackplanet.

from my observation its not the first that survives but one of the startups that address the problms of the first platform.

google killed yahoo

facebook killed myspace

apple killed motorola/nokia

But people didn't have crypto locked into yahoo, myspace, and nokia either. That locked SP keeps a lot of people here.

^ i concur

i doubt, as it will only increase the price of steeem/sbd

This is not advertising. The promotion tab is advertising. In order for this to equate to advertising, you're saying the whales own that spot at the top of trending, it's theirs to sell, like a radio station's airwaves, or a newspapers column inches. That's not true at all.

Bingo. The bid bots = advertisement is a excuse for bid bots. Notice the one making such an argument. We've heard it before and the discerning reject the false equivalency.

Yep, I think so too, but until that idea reaches witness level and they decide to take action, it's not going to change.

ye marketing is a great idea same as a referral program, word of mouth is a great and powerful tool. I think not having ads on steem is amazing however allowing them could create money to promote the blockchain and share the profits.

  ·  2 years ago Reveal Comment

Yep, and it gives you train wrecks like Top 40 music & Reality TV. The quality of content is now moot with paid votes. It just doesn't matter. Just because it's advertised doesn't mean it's good. The trending page is evidence of this. There's not really one thing on the trending page I care to read. #rewardpoolrape

Thanks for touching on the fact people are being misled by these advertising practices. That's my biggest issue. I don't want to vote for advertisements. I don't pay Walmart for dropping a flyer off in my mailbox. A simple icon that indicates the post we are about to read is a PROMOTION and not regular content would go a long way. Youtube keeps the ads separate, Facebook does it, Google does it... even the banners on websites now clearly mention how they are ads. When people advertise without mentioning the fact their post is an ad, that falls under false advertising. The only reason these ads on other sites are marked is so they don't get sued and end up paying fines.

Many who use the promo bots are attempting to mislead others into thinking their post is popular by placing money beside it. The honest content gets pushed down. If I vote for a struggling minnow, it's wasted the moment someone buys a vote and pushes that minnow away.

If the ads were marked and moved away from the trending page, at least other members can still use the platform as intended instead of feeling defeated within weeks and giving up.

▲▲ THIS! ▲▲

I'm fine with the underlying idea of bots existing, but let's call a spade a spade: If you are buying bot votes, it's PROMOTED CONTENT. As @fyrstikken said, it's advertisement.

So, when I buy placement on Facebook, twitter or anywhere else, it's clearly labeled as "Advertisement" or "Promoted post." So why don't we do the same thing here? That way there's no stealing of anyone's "freedom" and there's no "censorship," there's simply truth in labeling.

Of course, some are going to say "But then people wouldn't read my posts!"

Where's your loss? I see a bunch of posts with $50 in rewards, 13 upvotes... and 8 of them are from voting bots. Nobody's reading your stuff anyway.

Imagine the ratings and revenue a television network would get if they flip-flopped everything.

Just imagine: all of the late night infomercials(paid programming/promotions) get placed in the primetime slots and the actual programming gets pushed into the late night slots.

That is how you set yourselves up for failure in the entertainment industry.

That is what Steemit is currently doing.

That is why people are failing.

It is painfully obvious.

Where's your loss? I see a bunch of posts with $50 in rewards, 13 upvotes... and 8 of them are from voting bots. Nobody's reading your stuff anyway.

That is exactly what is happening.

...and unmarked advertising is what is convincing people this entire mess is a good idea. They promote their promotion services, disguise them as helpful blog posts, and people get duped...

Nearly every goddamn day.

Yeah, and to expand the TV analogy... the gleefully rub their greedy hands because TODAY the ratings were really good, while being utterly blind to the fact they will have no network on which to even run their stupid ads, a few months from now...

Bots are ruining this platform. I agree that some bots are good, but most of them are using the rules to hurt this platform.

We at @moonbot have a subscription based model for upvoting. It's a small upvote amount over 30 days. If someone were to implement this on a higher scale ( which we'll be doing soon ), it might be a worth option for people. It solves the only use bots for monetary gain issue. It is a clean system ( no comment spam back ), and you ( the end-user) doesn't have to do anything for a whole month. The bot just upvotes your content for a whole month. Bots, will always be around. It's a matter of which kind can you stomach.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

I think this is all related to the "economy" of Steemit. Payments to authors are due to new buyers of tokens, buyers are attracted to the possibility of obtaining additional income from renting SP. In fact, many people just need passive income, and they buy tokens for POS-mining. Available to all boosters is the least evil here. Without redistribution of emission to investors, the entire pyramid will quickly collapse.

This is the true explanation for boosters. Almost no one actually wants to pay authors out of their own pocket for their posts.

p.s. I heard that in new forks of Steem the distribution of emission is 90/10 in favor of investors (curators). With such distribution, you can probably do successful project without boosters. But with boosters the percentage of shares in distribution is regulated by the market, this is correct I think.

Thank you for sending the link earlier and was able to listen while at work (helped me not sleep at work! :D ). It was nice to hear @RichardCrill and your perspective on this. I can see that both of you are concerned for the long term good of Steemit. :)

There were a lot of insights that I got and I would like to comment on how new users or outsiders may perceive Steemit when they see the trending page. It's true, they wouldn't know most are because of bots. When I was new and saw them I thought they were organic and then I learned about bots (had to correct my expectations on rewards when I realized this). I guess they're okay if something has to be promoted like Steem Experience discord or for an important announcement. But that's not what's happening not just in the trending, I have seen more people who seem reliant on bots and more whales who delegate to paid bots. I hope to see more whales who manually curate. I had this discussion with @tanishqyeverma before and he has a good point when he said that whales should support more curation groups more than paid bots.

I also wonder if you've decided to use bots to promote this post about paid bots :D It's a timely and relevant topic that concerns all of us so for me I think it's okay to promote this. I just wish whales support this post so you don't need to pay :)

I'm always hesitant to tell others how to spend their money...but personally I'm with you, rather seeing their SP put into supporting the curation groups...or to at least still get some payment, the paid delegation seemed like a good middle ground in my eyes. But even this can be tough to ask...I haven't crunched any numbers, but I suspect running the bots pays a lot better than any of the other options (bots still own the SP, get curation rewards and get paid for each vote they cast.)

I did decide last night that even if just for the sake of irony, I'd use the bots on this post. Personally I'd only done it once before...months ago...just to get a better idea of how they worked.

I also read that running bots are a good way to earn for them. And I agree, can't really tell people what to do with their money, it's their decision and investment. Whatever they do, I hope they think of the long term good of the platform, that will greatly benefit them as well.

Yes Bots pay far more than any project. Look at @thejohalfiles wallet, he get around 650 SBDs everyday delegating to Bots. Nothing is better than delegating your power to bots all in the name of advertisement.

I have stopped suggesting the minnows to comment, create great content etc etc. I think that doesn't work, you want to reach the trending page buy votes simple. Everyone is doing that, spammers are doing that, memes are trending with far more rewards than a good thoughtful post. If you still want to be visible invest in SBDs and buy votes. Whales/dolphin are delegating to bots and missing the big picture, but who cares and who is listening? Instead of empowering projects/communities they fulfilling their greeds. People would stop powering up, instead they would just keep all the money in SBDs and invest that in buying votes. I do the same and I suggest others to do the same. I mean people working hard on their post and earning pennies, I don't want to give them fake assurances, commenting doesn't help , it helps gaining followers but not rewards.

IMO Bots will affect the business model of steem as well, people needs to accumulate STEEM to push the prices up. Simple supply and demand.

I have stopped looking at my own rewards and just hopeful to get curated every once in a while. Still early for me to expect rewards anyway. Hopefully, I don't need to resort to paid upvotes if after some time of trying to grow organically, I still get pennies. We spend so much time and effort here and I hope that gets rewarded somehow. I still know a lot who consistently create quality content despite pennies so I'll just keep my eyes and support on those. :)

That's like saying: I live the politicians to make laws and i hope they will not make any laws that will be bad for the society or that will affect me in a bad way. Of course you can't tell them what to do with their money; but if their actions start affecting the society/community in a bad way, it's your job as well to get involved and do the right thing. I will exagerate a bit saying the following, in order so that you understand the real gravity of this whole situation: Is like someone, a person, would go in a house and rob it of its goods. What you are saying then is: I can't really tell people what to do with their time, is their decision. Whatever they do, i hope they think of the long term good of the neighbourhood. So the thing is, you can't really stay away just because your house wasn't robbed by them. If an negative action is instilled upon the community whether intended, meant, or any other reasons, then it's your duty as its ''citizen'' to take an action to reverse and prevent from happening again .

You have really exaggerated my comment there. Who are you to say that I do not care or I do not do anything for the comnunities I'm involved in? Who are you to say that I am not affected by all these? You can check my page to see the pennies and tell me I am not affected. Read this post that I have written a month ago Organic Growth in Steemit: Is this the right path for me?

You can see on that post how I have been so emotionally affected these and my health has been affected too. And now I have just decided not to stress myself too much on this issue. I have decided to focus more on what I CAN DO for the communities where I belong.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Sometimes i use bots to improve the value of some posts where i spend lots of time an effort to made it and maybe i can't receive good upvotes so when i use that bots i can't feel the real value of them because when i receive my rewards i recieve less of what i invest so @sykochica if you have any recommendation about how to be more viewed but without use bots i will thank you. Regards

At worst, your reputation always increases and assuming you don't power down, so does your voting power.

It can be a bit tough and take a while to build up a following and support on here. But I have a ton of different tips on things to try to achieve this more 'organically'...just look at my 7 part guide series called "How to get more votes" over here:

@sykochica thanks for share your knowledge with us. Regards

@sykochica Going to check this out as well! It's a bit bothersome that the bots exist but I understand, although I don't fully support, the notion.

I'm really happy to have listened to this podcast, we have to remember this is a cryptocurrencie and services are simply an answer to a need. People who are here maybe 99% are here because they want to promote their brand or make some money or both.

If they are not here for those reasons, if they don't get how investments work they should probably start a non profit and leave this platform.

I appreciate this type of honest content...

all the best


Are you saying I have to start paying so people look at my work, or leave?

I came here to help prove to the world that you can be artist, earn an income, and not sellout all at the same time. Patrons come to my virtual online art gallery(my blog), I don't charge admission, they can view my work and talk to me about whatever they want, and many of them leave with more money than they had before they arrived. It's the exact opposite of selling out and I'm 100% independent. I'm one of the first in the world to do what I do, the way I do it.

You're telling me to leave? I should go work for nothing?

Interesting conversation! I'm relatively new to Steemit and pretty much from the start saw the bots as a different name for advertising - which has its ups and downs, like everywhere.

Speaking of quality - I have some feedback about your post (based on my own experience). If you're making a podcast by uploading audio from an internet call, you might want to edit out the blank spots where your call was interrupted. It makes for a better listening experience. I have done it myself and typically, it's easy to edit it out because you need to restart the conversation anyway after you've reconnected. Anyway, just my 5 satoshis ;)

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

I have never used a voting bot and will never use one because to me the value in steemit is drawing an actual audience of people, not bots. I personally feel that steemit is losing its luster and compass by not adhering to the rules which made steemit such an awesome community to begin with. What happened to people verifying that they are real... now you can set up fake accounts to vote for fake accounts. So between fake accounts and voting bots it eventually will alter the very core of steemit.

yep, as a new person here, i am trying to learn how the system works, and whether if i actually do post content for a year straight, what is in it for me to do all that work and get nothing for it? its seems odd they allow bots to skew the game?

Agreed. Disillusioned. What's the point???

.. Glad there are people who feel the same way.. 🙂

Yes! Wholeheartedly agree. I am very new to this so please forgive my ignorance- but can't there be bot to downvote the bots? Is this not successful?

Bots cost alot of money from what i can see... but the issue of fake accounts is bothersom too.

I understand it is still in beta mode, but it's not user friendly, it's complicated to understand, and it seems very difficult to have a chance to have your content seen unless you already have a large following elsewhere. I suppose I'm just used to seeing how google, FB, twitter and you tube works with the search function.

yes the good content stay pennies coz all of the voter go with biz. :D.

Sorry, to disagree, but it isn't advertising. Because 1. It's not labeled as advertising, which is a legal requirement, in most cases, for advertisement, so it gains more legitimacy. 2. It's not just causing issues with the trending tab, it's undermining the entire proof of brain concept. Is this the will of the community issuing these rewards? 3. The bots themselves are earning profit from the reward pool in something similar to laundering money. They don't face any real opposition or the possibility of downvotes, they collect before the post goes up. Sure, we can penalize their users, if we could all agree, but the whales already have their profits. As to you "taking back" the page by pooling money, how does that work? You're just increasing the gap between those who are low on the pole and those at the top.

That's it isn't it - people talk about how much of the reward pool is allocated by bots, but really, the bots are allocating it to themselves and the accounts who have delegated to them. So there's a sense where the proof of brain concept is undermined twice.

You are right, unless a bot account posts anything, you can't downvote it. And even if they did post, and you did downvote them, this wouldn't directly alter the profit they are making from selling their votes. It might reduce demand for their services though, as a lower reputation bot can't improve the reputation of accounts that buy votes from it. Who would take that sort of action though? The potential of a retaliatory 100% downvote from some of these bots would be enough to make many people think twice before flagging them.

YASS! Someone bring this man a prize. You sir understand it completely. It's like money laundering. And the poor bastard who bought the votes, feels okay with his pittance of profit, because he thinks slowly he's gaining ground, which would have been true,if the whales played by the rules and earned by the proof of brain mining procedure, because, unless they invested more, they'd be limited in their income. So, when "someone" complains about "someone" making top profits off of ten posts per day, while his bot is earning that much every hour and a half, it's all smoke and mirrors, my friend!

FYI, someone started an account that left a messages on posts indicating how much had been spent buying upvotes for them - its been heavily downvoted by a few bots, and at least one bot-owner. Yes, it was super-spammy, but I don't see anyone else flagging them. The worst thing? I don't dare name names - even posting this here is taking a risk.

A little scary that the checks and balances aren't present here. Reminds me of Police retaliation from reporting their misconduct. Seems like the basis of this platform isn't being supported as the bots are potentially more powerful than the community.

Because it's a pyramid that feeds steemit Inc.
Why would they add checks and balances...
Derail the money train... are you crazy?

Promise I'm not crazy. ;) Maybe I'm missing something here but it doesn't feel ethical.

Nah you're not crazy. You're good to be so aware of the reality around you.
It's not to say that this is hopeless though. On the contrary. It needs more genuine players like yourself that DO bring real hope for those in the depths that seek to look up to individuals who are here for the right reasons.

Are you serious ?? Just because it's not labeled as such it means that it's not ?? So if i were to label a curtain as a lightbulb for example, would it mean from now on that it is a lightbulb just because i labeled it to be that way? And labelling isn't a thing, of consens, it's 2 or 3 people agreeing for a name and the herd has to follow. And since when what is legal is actually a proof of a thing being good or legitimate about it's properties and results? Alcohool is legal, it doesn't mean it's the right way to be; especially when so many drink and drive (that to name the most common negative things of this being legal); also many herbs are labelled illegal when their healing properties are absolute proven to be good. Cannabis for example; just because it's illegal (in many countries now as it started to legalise here & there) doesn't mean it's bad for you.

What i'm trying to say is that advertisement is bad. You only advertise something when it's not that great and you want to acquire audience to sell it and make a profit. If the product would be that good, it wouldn't require advertising at all. Let's take Tesla for example. I have used bots personally quite a few times and then i felt dirty of myself, kinda bad about me and about my post. Is like after masturbating, you have that mmbleah feeling and you go wash yourself. Make good content and let that grow, otherwise is just money laundering and other pittyful actions and behaviours one undertakes. That's why societies (all of them) are so degraded in the present day; because of people with that type of comfortable thinking, that is okay to be a bit outside the ethics cause it's a good way of living more comfortable. Haish..

No, you're missing the point entirely. Advertising is something that can be bought or sold. The person selling it owns whatever promotional vehicle they rent to the buyer, such as a billboard. Advertising is not bad, it's a service, but when things are advertised, you know it's an ad. For instance, an ad showing you that canned goods are on special at the grocery store. You would buy them anyway, but knowing where to get them cheaply will help you decide. But this method would be like a celebrity that has pull in a restaurant taking your money to get you a table,then rather than pay the waiter himself to get you that table, he goes into the restaurant and takes a little from everyone else, keeps your money and gives the money from the others to you (reward pool share drops for everyone as other rewards rise)

Yea everything comes with good and bad, but i also do feel bots play a lot of effect in making one' work visible or noticeable but it leads to a trend like newone's me start getting attracts to it, and they feel its the only way to get their work appreciated, its kinda necessary evil here

That's what the promoted tab is for though, right? I think the only reason that people use bid bots instead is because it's cheaper. If they made the promotion tab cheaper then I think it would be used way more. Like, it only burns a small amount of steem, but how promoted it gets depends on how much you put up, and the amount you put up gets locked for 5 days or whatever.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

yeah, your thought really very good. i use doing votes for some post of improved my steem power.but,i am not understand this important matter i read your post and i am learning alot of thing of this valuable matter.i hope that,steem is the best platform for good comunication all steemians friend.i think i am a quickly success of steemit to talk and paid voting bots.thanks dear for your good post.. @sykochica

I don't know one to use cos I heard some persons say a lot of paid bots are scams. I just keep off it.
I have seen the ones whales and dolphin uses but after going through. I couldn't afford, so am moving slowly.
Do you have any recommendations any suitable ones for minnows like me?

I'm really not a huge fan of them myself as you'll hear in the recording....and for new users, I definitely don't suggest using them until you have some idea of what they are, how they work, and really what effects they have (good and bad.)

However, you'll fine a lot of 'tips' for those just wanting to grow themselves organically on here. Take a look at the 7 part guide series in here called "How to get more votes?" You should find them rather helpful:

Thanks for the link to 'how to get more votes', appreciated.

Thanks for sharing! A link to your post was included in the wiki article about Upvotes Bots. Thanks and good luck again!


a) We need good content on trending page, and no 2 liners or only specific content related or of specific members only or just a dinner shot.

b) Bots should review the posts before upvoting.

c) Need genuine Meritocracy, not fake (Give Fair chance to everyone, not just the rich)

d) Meetups/Programmer related should be funded privately, and not by trending, This is not called good content. Need a speprate page for it like an UPDATE or ANNOUNCEMENT page.

e) Or You can remove Trending and Hot page, so people will only look for content they are intrested in, using search bar or tags, & not upvote only for rewards.

f) We also need Reward limits and Posts limit. I guess if we keep max 200$ per post and max 5 posts, that comes to 1000$ per day means 30000$ per month. Which is morethan enough for any one to live life in any part of the world. and obviously you can invest in steem/SBD or other cryptos. This will also limit greed.

g) Also a minimum reward like 50 cents to 1$ (more or less i leave to experts) for every post with a minimum content (bots can handle this im sure) will give a boost to minnows, and will also lead to genuine wealth distribution.

All the above points will eliminate the "Central Banking System for the Rich only" type scenario that going on on steemit.

Reposting here as it gets ignored all the time..

You have a lot of really good suggestions @veerall. I'm glad I stumbled across this post. Plenty of really good discussions. I wish I could suggest that you make your list of potential fixes into a post but that would be risky considering how sensitive some people are regarding suggestions that could potentially reduce short term profits.

everything is made for a reason. these bots are here to keep check and balance of the steemit procedures. some of them are to promote the good contents as well as banging the plagiarism and use of content without copy rights. one way or another they are useful. my vote is with bots

I prefer bots like postpromoter. We are losing too much SBD for advertising purpose. It will be better if we can predict how much we can lose by using bid bots.

Bid bots used to be used because they gave more value in upvotes than they cost. Now you have no idea what you're going to get. It was clearly a system that wasn't going to last, but now the only real winners are the people who own the bots.

isn't this unknown factor part of the fun when deciding to use them or not?

there are lot of boting offers in steemit I would like to know the best ones and how to maximize the true potential of it.

As a new user I would like to understand Steemit deeply. It's so good to see many opinions about this. Thank you for your great post!!

While we are all here, and since I've seen at least one attempt at using bidbots as some sort of investment strategy today, there's another one I've been watching for a while that I'm wondering about:

  1. Set up an account and buy at least $20,000 worth of SP, as well as a good amount of SBD to spend on bots until the posts start paying out.
  2. Make some sort of self-indulgent shitpost.
  3. Upvote yourself.
  4. Have your friend upvote it some modest amount - say about $4.00.
  5. Leave enough time for some more observant punters to throw in a few votes.
  6. Pay for $90-$150 worth of upvotes from bidbots. (Making sure to never go so high that you get on the trending page).
  7. Receive delirious adulation from poor people who see the $120 payout figure and assume you are some sort of messiah.
  8. Repeat steps 2-6 at least once a day, every day.

Given the near-zero ROI on most bidbots most of the time, where's the profit here?

Selling them.

I stopped using them recently not so much on a basis of morality, but because the rewards I have found to be rather elusive in that the payouts were always changing; more often than not becoming smaller and smaller. If someone wants recognition, than maybe they should work harder on generating stronger content and focusing on actually what people want, otherwise nobody wins.

I am new to the platform. When i mention to other people this is a big thing they bring up. The fact that whales can decide what information makes it to the top.
They veiw this as a form of censorship. I find this opinion hard to argue with.

The question is always how can a minnow with amazing content, get the word out. Bots are an easy way out, they prey on the concepts we have grown up with (i.e. advertising, pay-to-play)

I am actually super excited for the potential of SMT's. I see them as a way for (example: an SMT around physical sports, NFL etc..)
would allow people wanting that content to focus on their content.

In this type of environment sports writer minnows could be found more easily. Instead of attacking bots and spending time/energy discussing the good/evil of them.

I feel we should spend energy adding to the steem blockchain in ways that will help draw in new content creators.

Dont hold your breath on them smts, the only thing stinc has delivered on was more reward pool rape.

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$250 is a lot to pay to make it to the trending page. How much did you earn as a result?

Right now it's about $515 (still has a couple days of active payout left). Though on this one, I actually wasn't the one who 'boosted' it with the bots...instead the community owner it was about, where the goal was getting views and people to join that discord. (A good win/win in this my opinion)

Really, most the promo bots seem set (and I believe this was the intention) was to typically get the amount you paid in...essentially a near zero ROI on those bought votes themselves. The bigger value comes from the votes acquired from human Steemians.

thanks for bring it up... I see many benefit from the bots... but I can't convince myself to do so! am I lost?! I want to generate good content and I have done my best so far. some posts attracted some attention, but not enough... but I'm not definitely going to speak for BOTS and machines :))

It's still soooooo worth making content we're proud don't have to be on the trending page to get yourself built up on here (even if it's not quite as fast.) Before these bots were around, we really have the 'paid' spots taken mostly by the same handful of authors...still essentially creating the same 'access' problem, but it just being more socia/networking/etc versus monetary.

With all that said though...It's really pretty rare that I've even been on there but I do consider my time here to be well worthwhile.

However, there is an idea I've been talking with some other people on here that might be able to help out some people. But I don't want to say too much on this just yet.

Thanks for your explanation. I see you have had quite a time here and much more experience than me; so your words are of knowledge and wisdom :)
Still for me, I dont feel good with intensive use of them (as I see some people do)

But look at future life, maybe we have to accept them even in life! Maybe I don't see the bright side just for the feeling and lack of experience. Cause in the end these bots may let you contribute with more real people too and penetrate better...

it's like you do a TV program and pay someone just to turn the TV on your channel and leave the house! or I am stupid! :(

i like this pragmatic approach to discussion. I think ill join your discord if these are the converations your having!

I'll echo @markrmorrisjr - this isn't advertising - it's more like paying CNN/Fox/BBC/ABC etc. to appear on their evening news and not overtly tell viewers that how that story was selected.

Two related observations:

  1. I know they aren't trending, but check out @dailytop10open's posting strategy.
  2. A somewhat more honest take on the trending page (which most of you will ahve already seen, but just in case you didn't) How To Get To The Trending Page On Steemit Even If You're An Autistic, Paint Chip-Eating Bork Like Me
  ·  2 years ago (edited)
We can actually buy anything here on Steemit!

We can buy our reputation because its based on the history of upvotes.
Buying bot upvotes is also buying reputation.
Spending money (a lot) on Steemit would make your reputation skyrocket.

Is this good or bad?

How valuable is it to be on the trending page? Seems the real winners are those selling the votes. I choose not the buy.

Steam is based on work and effort There are a lot of people exploit Steam in the ads and this is sad
But the pricey vote has its drawbacks and it has answers. Please help us more about the negatives

If you don't want to advertise your work, you don't pay for it.

If you want to be noticed in any other way, good luck because there is no quality promotion on Steemit, or anywhere else.

Also, paid content increases your reputation and steem power. It costs you more in present time but increases curation and image for the future.

Advertising is when i sell space to you that I OWN, it was designed that anyone wanting to earn here, also risked the community downvote. There's no risk for anyone profiting from bot votes. It's not the same as advertising at all. We all knew we didn't want ads, that's why there aren't any, and why the promoted tab became a joke.

Someone advertising his skills is not about selling space, nor is when he makes public a certain event.

There is some risk in using bots, in the sense you lose money for promoting something that probably nobody will care about.

I never check the promoted tab, so I agree there is no point in existing. But saying you don't want bots means you need to have some sort of better filter in their place for somehow promoting comments based on other variants than the reward sum.

I'm saying that advertisement, is sold on a private media that belongs to the seller. The trending page does not belong to the whales. And yes, there should be some content suggestion engines,but using bots is not the only way. Collaborate. Create community. Find a niche and share in it, regularly. you can build audience. Votes are not that hard to get, but value is,because the bots and delegations to bots and groups have decreased vote values.

I have joined steemit a few months ago. I've heard, many people use dolphins to increase their steem power. I would like to know from you,Increasing steem power by investing is good for a steemians ?? @sykochica

I'm not quite sure what you mean by using dolphins...but they are great ones to be able to get advice, support and ideally even votes from. Many do run (or help run) various communities, initiative or just all around be helpful. However behind every account, minnow or whale, is a person, which is who we're really connecting with (versus their wallet.)

I have to give the disclaimer here that it's up to each individual to decide how to spend or invest their money. But with that said...generally for those of us looking to be here on Steemit for the longer haul, there is value in building up Steem Power (whether from posting rewards or investing) since this increases your influence here with your votes giving more and you getting more from curation rewards. However when purely viewing it as a monetary investment..the end question here is do you think the price of Steem will go up and to some slight degree how much could you make from your own votes/curation.

Personally, I powered up everything I earned on here for my first 3 months...then started to diversify a bit. I'm never comfortable having 'all my eggs in one basket.'

capitalism works via investment

It's really the only way to get good quality content noticed on Steemit. There's nothing worse than working hours on a post and seeing that it barely gets any upvotes. If you can't fight them, join them...

Agreed! I wish it was different but it's not. I'm yet to use them though.

In the beginning I did swear not to use bots. But I did :(
The problems with bots is, besides the fact that most of them does cost you SP, that they do give a false feeling of appreciation and can be addictive.
By giving your posts a little boost, the value of course increases, hoping that more people will notice the post. But there are always other who do invest more into the bots, than you did. So the point of getting noticed by using bots, is for the most of us just useless.
After I did stop using the bots, the value of my posts dropped a lot. But at least it shows not the real appreciation of the Steem ecosystem!
The positive sides of using good established bots, is that it is one of the fastest way the grow in reputation! I always thought that reputation was valuable and that it couldn't be bougth, But I was wrong. Even reputation can be bougth at the Steem ecosystem.

.. Well. In my opinion, reputation should NOT be bought..

One they take sbds from us for upvoting our stuf... And acc to them give almost equal value back in steempower n sbds and also take most of the curation rewards...


How do you get noticed without paying?

This is so deep @sykochica. I'm open to everything discussed. For now I'm going to remain neutral, because I'm learning so much a prefer to be open while i'm green. This is very meaningful because it's something I'm curious about, but sometimes have double think tendencies on this issue..

very good, please vote and permission is shared


I want to add two things about bot.
1 Good for all those who create quality content and wants to be visible.
2 Bad when spammers use bot for coming into trending or hot. Its worst when we open a spammers post and invest 5 mints in reading.
Neutrally bots are bad because it is good to interact manually.

Interesting I must say!

I understand the use of bots, and have used them, sparingly, in the past for the few good reasons that you mentioned: increased visibility, etc... I even wrote a poem about them:

A Few Words With The Bots

That said, I do understand the frustration with bots, it's a little like paying for love :)! Also, it offers an unfair advantage, this type of advertising, to those with money. I agree with @RichardCrill's comment re: lower quality posts and, frankly, wish they were abolished.

That way, we might see a survival of the fittest posts, versus those artificially propped up.

So, in short, not too sound too fanatical, I agree with you, @sykochica that's it's a question of balance, and that it might have become a little 'too much'.

Thank you, for this important discussion. As a (relatively new) writer on Steemit, this is an issue that I am happy to see being addressed more seriously.


wow nice idea!! i can see Little similarity, that bottle head and the artwork bellow. creativity has no end :)


I take no credit for the art (it's from Pixabay) but I wrote the poem that I linked to above :) Cheers!

All the best for you @sykochica 👍👍😃

Very useful, nice post!

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likely the most positive post about bots for the last time here

I'm not too sure about voting bots yet. But it seems like the people who use them do very well.

İts nice perhaps!

Thanks for sharing
Very good @sykochica

The one who has money how to pay to earn more, can make it bad is what we do not have how to do it, greetings

Will not have time :( that's a pity !
Wish you a lot of success in the talk :)

i'm worried about the voting bots...and their power and addictive thing...!! at the end the bots will take all sbd. Good content will fade and crap will become standard if upvoting is the norm, everybody for himself, and there will be no community...!
How much power do bots really have... what kind of bots are needed... as a community....!!
personally, i use bots, to climb out of the nothing into a more powerful place... good.. bad...?? i do not know but its the only way to make more from the investment, ( TIME AND CREATIVITY ) i make in steemit....

what can bots do, they could filter out low content posts and ban the user....!! they could but that takes time and energy... the one thing we all lack....!!
or the bots will give less upvoting sbd and punish everyone, the artists, bloggers, and all the other high content makers and steemit lovers, for the fact that there are crappy post getting big upvotes...!! and that will not stop , if there is any profit to make with shitty content...
what rules and regulations in steemit are needed to get bots into a community service and really care about content in posts...??
what do we want....??

good bots for the community...??
good bot..jpg

or bad ones...??

terminator b.jpg