Update: Friends, Adventure, New Paths, 500th Follower - Giving Away 500 SP and 500 TRAIL in Gratitude

in #gratitude5 years ago (edited)

When I first came to Steemit a few months ago, I was encouraged by the nice payouts being given for good content.

Since I've been writing for years, sometimes getting paid handsomely while at others scratching by like a starving artist, I had some idea of what my writing was worth, at least as a freelancer. I didn't know what Steemit would pay.

My first efforts were disappointing. A couple of pieces that would have drawn 250 or so under contract, bought me a cup of coffee. But then another piece jumped to over $700. It was a good piece, but was one of those that just flows through the fingers with little effort. It was philosophical, which I only do sometimes. Of course, it was about economics too, which I write about often. At the time, my friend @piedpiper was very helpful and I received some encouragement from @donkeypong and a few others as well.

Later articles met varying degrees of success. But, like so many here on Steemit, I was always looking for the angles that might offer greater opportunity to promote the possibilities of Steemit. There are tons of ideas out there, but execution can be tough. And, let's face it, the Steem blockchain is a tech challenge to work with. And I'm not up to the task. My strengths are more organizational, networking, communication, writing and that sort of thing. So, I could see possibilities, but couldn't really grasp the tech potential.

Finding My Place

I experimented with a few ideas. Like many, I saw the opportunity to support underpaid articles through a guild of some sort, and wrote an intro article about it. But I hadn't networked enough at the time and was unable to get much action.

The early efforts of MinnowsUnite and Steem Squad helped a lot of minnows, so I got involved with them early on. A few folks embraced my efforts and encouraged me along the way (the first one I remember was @kennyskitchen - Thanks Kenny!). Did it keep me from leaving? No, I don't think so. I saw a lot of potential. But they probably did help me to continue being more active than I might have been otherwise. And the friendships forged I expect will last many years to come.

Networking and Building Friendships

Over the following weeks I'd reach out to folks with ideas, read other ideas, investigate possibilities and keep on chatting with others about what we could do. Sometimes I'd get involved heavily with one group for a bit, but mostly it was individuals that I kept in touch with.

A few stand out, who've become good friends through this platform. So here's a shout-out to @papa-pepper and @kevinwong, especially. My andrarchist friends have been wonderful. Others have been an amazing encouragement to me, such as @ats-david, @englishtchrivy (who, for some unknown and illogical reason thinks I'm funny), @sethlinson, @thecryptofiend, @the-alien and more. Please accept my apologies to those I've missed - it's more than likely that my feeble brain has failed to recall quite a few of you.

Gaining Direction

As ideas kept jumping forward from various Steemsters and the more tech savvy among us have kept building amazing tools and putting forth incredible ideas (that fly way over my head), I kept pondering projects that could help the community. Some things would click, but I was too tech reliant and shallow-pocketed to just make them work. Others were toyed with and then tossed as the "interesting-but-not-so-great" ideas that they were.

There was one that kept surfacing though. It was a tech idea, but I thought it had enough merit to get some involvement. Basically, it's an internationalization site. When I saw what SteemStays was doing, I figured we had a lot of complementary elements. So, after chatting with @complexring for a bit, we found that we could help each other. I had already chatted with @jesta about Reprint, so bringing me into the circle went pretty smoothly.

Their challenges, like so many of us, have to do with the time involved to make their project work. While mine is less tech intensive, it's not on the front burner. And there was/is an obvious need for a good front-end developer. This project is still in the works, but will be awhile before it's ready to launch, so I kept looking around at potential places to get involved.

About that time Robbinhood Whale was looking for more folks to help out (and they still are), so I started curating with them. It's a great project with some top-notch folks, so I enjoyed doing so. But there was another idea kind of dancing around in the back of my head.

I had never spoken to Rick (@instructor2121) prior to this time, so had no idea what to expect. I did see that he had a lot going on and appeared to be both dedicated to Steemit and a hard worker. And he clearly had some of that tech savvy that my noggin lacks, so I reached out to him with an idea.

Over the past almost two decades I've messed with some websites, gaining a small degree of proficiency in WordPress (still sorta amateurish, but not terrible). My idea was to have topic focused sites where curated articles could be fed, providing readers with resources based on the various popular categories on Steemit. These would be linked (directly or indirectly) with the various steemtrails he had introduced to Steemit.

Rick loved it. He said that he'd been pondering some ideas, but really lacked someone to come along and work them with him, and that my ideas tied in with his wonderfully. We agreed that we'd keep the sites as a separate project from SteemTrail though, to avoid confusion.

First Ideas Are Stepping Stones to Better Ideas

Rick wasn't ready to unveil his baby to me yet. As we worked together longer, our friendship grew as well. And as that grew, we started sharing ideas, vision and dreams more freely. We found that we had a lot of similar ideas, but they came from different perspectives that reflected our strengths and weaknesses in a quite complementary way.

As we worked on some of these ideas and started solidifying our first project, @STEEMNEWS.ONLINE, it started to become apparent that the best way to pursue this would be to merge the trails with the sites. It only made sense to do so, since the trail curators would likely end up being our best curators for the sites.

As our friendship has grown, we've shared more of our "babies" with each other. Expect to see some new ideas as the project matures.

Not too long ago, Rick introduced TRAIL to me. This was his baby. And, honestly, I don't think either of us realize the potential of this project right now. But what we do realize is pretty cool, and certainly helpful for promoting the Steemit community, especially when it comes to curation of great content.

At first, we didn't really know what the reception would be. We knew that some folks in Steemit, especially those who'd been around since early on, would either be against it, or resistant to it as if it was a Steem infiltrator or competitor.

But we were convinced that such a token would serve to reward folks in ways that Steem simply wasn't designed to do. To us, this user issued token was a great means to offer encouragement to curators who couldn't make much in the way of rewards for their curation. It could also serve as a token of appreciation for those who provided great content as well as those who follow the SteemTrail on Streemian.

Our expectations were generally on target. We did meet some resistance from a few folks. Some don't understand. Some feel threatened. But I don't think either of us expected so many to become more interested in SteemTrail. Since then, we've been able to open up new trails and encourage even more authors in their efforts on Steemit.

Why SteemTrail and TRAIL Help Steemit

At first glance, many fail to see the benefits of TRAIL in particular. Here are a few that Rick and I have discussed over the past month or so.

  • Encourages curation by offering rewards just for doing the work
  • Encourages folks to join SteemTrail, giving it more voting power
  • Involves more of the community in promoting excellent content
  • Provides a means and motivation for like-minded people to work together
  • Provides stronger voting and greater recognition for some articles that might get missed otherwise
  • Rewards authors for excellent content, regardless of their expected payout.
    • In this, SteemTrail complements Curie and RHW nicely, because they fill the need to bring low-paying articles to the fore and encourage newer authors
    • The focus isn't on the author. It's on the content itself, which promotes Steemit's presence on the web.
  • Some of the content is now being sent to Twitter and Facebook pages. We have a way to go in this regard, but it's a start. Obviously this is good for everyone, since more traffic and more users can only help to improve the community.

What's Next?

Well, that's an interesting question. The plans for TRAIL are very ambitious and don't end with what you see. In fact, we expect the volume of TRAIL token trading to increase dramatically once our plan unfolds more fully. Suffice it so say that this will become more apparent as more of Steemit's potential is unveiled.

For now, we're working on a couple of sites to try to show what we can do for Steemit. As soon as we get one to that point where we're happy with the results, we'll unveil it to the community. Best guess for that date would be a month from now, though we have met some considerable technological setbacks over the past month in ways we couldn't have foreseen.

How Can You Help?

Rick hasn't announced it officially yet, but he's set up a witness under his account, @instructor2121. Head over to this location to vote by inputting instructor2121 in the field at the bottom and clicking on the "VOTE" button. Proceeds from his witness will help with the SteemTrail effort.

If it interests you, get involved with SteemTrail. The easiest way is to sign up on Discord. We have some amazing teams already, with new teams forming fairly often now. It's been pretty cool to see.

We're starting to get a few developers involved now, which has been an amazing encouragement. But there's so much potential, we could still use some more. Let Rick or me know if you're interested.

Obviously, I need to include Rick in my list of folks I'm grateful to as well. If you've ever been blessed with interacting with him, then you know he's a great guy. He constantly teaches me about patience and humility just being who he is. This is especially true as he attempts to explain tech stuff to me. :)

Thanks Rick! Here's looking forward to the ride. Happy TRAILs to you bro.

Get to the Gratitude Gift Part Already!

I thank God for the time I've had to be involved with Steemit. Though it's not been a huge financial boon for me so far, it has been rewarding in many ways. And I've been happy to Power Up all my earnings and scrape by at home to invest into the community. Of course, I plan on getting paid back handsomely one day. But, for now, it's all sweat equity and building friendships.

Because it is a privilege to be a part of this community and something that has the potential to be a game-changer in so many ways, I'm grateful to all those that have encouraged me. Especially I'm grateful to followers who've actually followed, upvoted and commented on my articles.

Since my involvement with SteemTrail and TRAIL, it's been tough to continue producing material for my blog. I've focused on curating and attempting to keep up with my feed, both upvoting and offering comments and interaction with some of my favorite authors. So many get missed in the busyness that I feel bad about it. But I try.

In the midst of this, I'm still getting followers. Maybe some have seen my involvement with SteemTrail and TRAIL. Maybe some are because of my comments. But they keep happening.

As of late last night, I hit 500 followers. With this article, I suspect I'll see a few more. So, here's what I want to do. It's a sorta-contest, but more of a recognition of those who've blessed me. In celebration of and gratitude for hitting 500 followers, I'm giving away 500 Steem Power and 500 Trail to the following:

  1. 100 of each token to the 500th follower, provided s/he comments on this post before the first payout. If the 500th doesn't comment, then it will be the next closest above 500 to comment before this article's first payout.
  2. 250 of each token to the person who has followed me the longest and leaves a comment on this article before the first payout.
  3. 100 of each token to the person who has followed me second longest and leaves a comment on this article before the first payout.
  4. 50 of each token to the person who has followed me the third longest and leaves a comment on this article before the first payout.
  • Anyone who has ever unfollowed me is automatically disqualified.
  • Steem will be in the form of Steem Power and TRAIL must be transferred on Open Ledger. You can sign up for an account here.
  • I reserve the right to change the rules and/or payouts in case something unforeseeable happens, or if I simply failed to recognize potential conundrums, confusion or repercussions.

This is my small gift back to the community and to those who've been loyal to me, plus one who took a chance last night. Anyone who knows me, knows that loyalty is very high on my list. So this really gives me a lot of pleasure to be able to offer rewards for long-time followers.

I don't want to denigrate those who came later either though. Obviously I had to set some sort of rules. And I wanted to keep some Steem for myself. :o) I am grateful for you all. Thank you!

What's Next?

You mean, besides paying out rewards to awesome people? Or continuing to work on the SteemTrail and TRAIL projects?

I'd really like to finish my Regrarians series. I was almost halfway through when busyness caught up with me. And each of those articles require quite a few hours of work, while not really generating much reward. Still, the information is excellent in so many ways, I really want to get it out there for folks to find and benefit from.

I've had several projects on the table for awhile, mostly waiting for some tech savvy to get over the hump. In my mind, they were independent. And, in many ways, they still are. But with TRAIL, there are new possibilities to roll these out in ways I couldn't have ever imagined. I suspect that these will move to front burners within the next few months, keeping me hopping and offering more opportunities for many more to get involved, and profit from their labors.

These are exciting times. I think only a few grasp the significance of what's happening with blockchains and the new projects rolling out. Watch closely and you'll have some pretty amazing stories for the grandkids. I think the one that may really be a gamechanger is still a bit of a sleeper, and that's the DAWN project, being built by several folks here. Watch it closely. And, of course, keep an eye on TRAIL. There's more than meets the eye. ;)

Again, thank you for the follows. Thanks for your support and encouragement. And, if you got this far, thanks for reading.

Steemin' on,
Another Joe


Awesome man! Very nice thinking! It feels really good to see such good people on steemit! Never stop sharing!

Thanks Señor funnyman! You're an example of the good folks on Steemit. Keep up the great work.

Congratulations, friend @anotherjoe! Quite a milestone, and one that I am yet looking forward to myself.

I must confess that, though I have been following you for quite some time, I'm a pretty poor follower overall; I was just reviewing what of your work I've read and encouraged, and my record is pretty poor...

Nevertheless, I have appreciated you and your visits to my blog and your encouragement, and I'm quite pleased to see that you've done so well here! Very happy to celebrate this milestone with you! You have been, at least, part of my original "Periodic Personal Pantheon" of Steemit Authors, and I wish you the very best.😄😇😄


P.S. Thanks for your generosity! ;)

Howdy creatr!
You got second. Thanks for following me for so long! ;)
I'll get the 100 SP to you shortly. You can give me your OL info here, in chat or on Discord, whatever works best for you.

My, my, my... @anotherjoe, you are too kind... Thank you for your generosity!

I don't have an OL account yet... need to set that up to collect a couple of other Trail Coin awards!

Thank you again for your over-the-top generosity! I'll be powering up now... ;)

Thanks @creatr! I see your posts often and usually read them. In my rush to curate, I don't get to commenting nearly as often as I'd like.

Thanks so much, my friend! I'm looking into running a 'bot so I can show some more love to the content creators I most appreciate. Witness @clayop recently published code for a stand-alone 'bot and I'm waiting for him to post a user manual...

I am making a major revision to reduce requirements (e.g. no need running full node)

Superb! I will patiently await your results, and thank you for working on it and for your kindness in letting me know what's happening! :)

Congratulations. I have to look up to you to catch up. :-)


Your rep is sure up there though. Good job!

You're welcome. Rep is good but it's the supporters who bless you with them. :-)
And I like to think most of the supporters are followers.
So, follower? Yes, i LIKE.

Hey Ace,
Nobody after 500 responded, so I'm breaking it up for others who did. You got 50 SP coming. If you have a OL account, I can send you 50 TRAIL too. You can send me your acct info in chat or Discord.
Thanks for the follow!

Wow, thanks. No, OL. it's OK.
You're welcome

Congratulations on the milestones! I really hope the initiatives keep taking off!

Hey bro, you were the third longest follower to respond. Woot!
50 SP coming your way. Want to shoot me your OL account in chat?
Thanks for your friendship!!

Wow man that is so generous of you! Thank you! I will pay this forward and send some of it to a good cause on here or an up and coming author. Thank you!!!!! And congrats again on the milestones.

Well, I've been following you for quite awhile so I think I got a shot! :D

Seriously though, your articles have been some of the best here - Happy dog, land regeneration, your first ones on gold and your post 'are you a weed' that rocketed you into the spotlight. Hey, I might not have been into the bible chronology that much but I tried to keep up.

Yeppers! Thanks man! We have been following each other from early on. You're one of those that I missed in the folks who've encouraged me along the way. Thanks! I've enjoyed the train ride with you.

This is interesting - The records on Steemdb only go back four months. It doesn't provide the date you started following me. It doesn't show you at all (though I know you're there). @jesta said it'll take replaying the blockchain to correct it, even if that's possible. He's not finding data prior to late August!
This might turn into a conundrum. haha

Oh man, the lost history of Steemit! Maybe you would have to go with earliest comment then?

haha, well, so far, you're earliest on both. I thought I'd get quite a few comments on this, but it hasn't happened. Looks like it'll be easier than I expected. And none of the 500 or later folks have posted. Crazy.

Hey Señor Train,
You were the only one from before the 4mo mark to reply, so you get the jackpot! :)
I'll get your 250 SP to you. Do you want to send your OL info here or privately? Chat or Discord are fine.
Thanks! I appreciate you.

Woohoo! Thanks @anotherjoe :D

I'll have to make a discord account, but don't have the time to right now. Will hit you up when I do though. Thanks again, you made my day!

Thank you for posting @anotherjoe this update regarding your work...your journey and the Steem News Online project.

bleujay had seen that you had upvoted bleujay's Principle of the Day and had no way of reciprocating that upvote ....so decided to 'follow' in in order not to miss @anotherjoe's next article. Appreciate the support.

Yes ...one of the best rewards for joining Steemit is the cyber friends one makes. Loyalty is a big part of it....some use the word 'core-supporters'. @englishtchrivy is one of the best.

Wishing you all the best in your journey. Kind Regards, bleujay

Thanks @bleujay! (I almost spelled that wrong)
Keep up the great work.

@anotherjoe hi funny :D

  • let me remind you what started that "funny" check out the comments you threaded on that article. I used to only laughed at @papa-pepper's comments when I was new here till I bumped into you. You really must be friends and am sure touched to be thought of as one of your cyber friends. Thank you!

I almost missed this again had it not been to @bleujay whom I often visit for a drop of wisdom. I went to bed last night so I didn't get to see this soon.

So it's been a long journey huh funny? I guess what matters is you're still here and maybe you've been quiet but that's just cause you've been curating. I wish you luck on your project and I still am going to haunt you in the chat :P There's no running away from me funny bwahahahahaha - :D

Hey English!!,
Nobody after 500 replied, so I'm breaking it up. You have 50 SP coming and I'll send you 50 TRAIL if you give me your OL account. You can do so in chat or on Discord, if you prefer.
Thanks for the friendship. I really appreciate you. And that's not funny, it's just a fact. ;o)

@anotherjoe what? wow! you're so generous! There's a price? Wow thank you very very much! for commenting? Wow ! wow! wow! I hit the jackpot!
As for the OL account I don't know what that is.

I appreciate you, too @anotherjoe 50 sp or no 50 sp you've always made me giggle in the past and now 50SP richer. Thank you so much! I hope good karma pays you thrice this. You gotta post again!

It makes me happy to make you happy! :)

OL is Open Ledger, a cryptocurrency exchange. Right now it's the only place we can issue TRAIL. You can sign up here if you're interested.


@anotherjoe bwahahahah funny, I'm going around checking out entries for the SCC via my replies and then comes this -
you always makes me smile thank you ^ ^ !

@anotherjoe, replying to your nested comment. Okay, I'd check it out in the morrow now dead tired trying to keep my lids open hahaha
should use a toothpick to support them hahaha 1am here
reminder on a post it made!
Thank you very much again ! Tonight I'm 50 SP richer wooo hooo!
Thanks to you!
I hope you don't mind if I share some to bleujay, had she not told me about this I would have missed your post again - and would have not won!
That makes us two happy Steemians. Thank you again!

Thank you for your kind words @anotherjoe. Yes...it is easy to get wrong....have to keep Steemians on their toes. :)

...and the same for you...looking forward to the fruition of your projects and collaborations.

Giving you a follow now, @englishtchrivy's comment on his reward got me here and I have to say it's been quite a ride for you.

It's nice to see how much you have invested into the platform so to speak.
It's always hard to keep going ,but you seem to have found everything you need to keep you sharp and ready.
Great to know that you made the trail, I'm having some issues with the autovoting, but so far it's nice to see a token going to the unknown authors so to say.
A dollar is a dollar after all, it would be best if it was a actual trail of people going by their choice, ie. post of what you like and then people can go over and see for themselves, that way at least authors will get views as well as votes, but I'm not very technically savvy ,so I can't imagine a better way that is as easy as the one you have developed.

it's also nice to see that the hardships are the same for everyone, even for experienced writers. Good luck on your projects , thank you for supporting and growing the community and best of luck in the future :) !

Great post! Tons of useful information and I feel as if I've found a kindred spirit, so much of what you spoke on makes me believe the afformentioned to be true.
Good people are hard to find when you're looking so I feel blessed to have stumbled across your post and you most of all. I wish you all the best in you're endeavors.
I'm looking to be a lot more active on Steemit so if you need help with anything, please don't hesitate to get in touch with me.
Thanks and praise V.

Thanks V!
If you're looking for something to be involved in, head over to the SteemTrail Discord server. We have a lot of great folks doing some pretty cool stuff there. Shout out to Rick and Joe and let us know what you'd like to do.

I've been on SteemTrail for a little while, but most of the time I don't find much. I'm definitely gonna holler some guidance would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

You're in the Discord server? We don't have much going on in the Chat.

I'm already on discord and the offer to help was for you. I was trying to be polite, but I have plenty of other things to keep my mind learned.

Not knowing what you can do, it seemed like a good way to find out. We have plenty of ambition and there's a lot of opportunity, for the right people.
Keep on learning!

Hi @anotherjoe, I just stopped back to let you know your post was one of my favourite reads yesterday and I included it in my Steemit Ramble. You can read what I wrote about your post here.

Howdy Pub!
Thanks for the encouragement. Will check it out now.

my pleasure... keep up the great work.

Really inspirational post to a steem noob like me 😉 It's amazing what you can do here 😆 The TRAIL project(s?) are a super interesting take on how to extend what already exists here. To be honest I'm drawn a lot more to ideas like that than "let's change this aspect of Steem(it)" ideas.

Also love your attitude! 😎

Hi anotherjoe! Even though I've been on for quite some time, I'm not sure I've seen your posts. I'm following now :-) Good work, and good luck!

New follower here. Will be looking back over your past work.

Howdy Jacob. Good to see you.

@anotherjoe, this is a fabulous post! It has made me smile from ear to ear.

Congrats on all that you have accomplished and will accomplish!

I look forward to watching your projects grow to a higher level than you ever imagined!
Btw, I style plan on playing around with what we talked about. I've got a few pieces of furniture to build over the next two weeks, you know, #non-steemitlifestuff. Haha

Edit: No wonder I missed this post, I thought I was following you...well either way, now I am. Haha

Good to see you. You're a day late, or you might have won the 100 Steem. It would be fun to send you even more!
Keep up your great work. I'm sure we'll be hitting you up for more designs too. Rick was commenting the other day how every time he sees the SNO logo where I've curated, he smiles. It's a cool logo. Thanks again!

Ouch. haha Well now that I'm following you, I will see your 1000 follower post. ;)

Ah man, that really just makes my day, you have no idea! It was my pleasure.
It has been super cool watching it get used. You know where to find me if/when you need more!

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