HF21: What Makes Steem Valuable?

in #hf213 years ago (edited)

(If you're an audio/visual learner like myself and would prefer a video of me reading this post, scroll to the bottom of the post)

When it comes to difficult contentious decisions which impact what people value, it's very important to keep our emotions in check and do our best to argue from first principles. Too often when we disagree, we fall into the trap of thinking someone is either ignorant, immoral, or stupid. This post is directed at those wanting to have a rational discussion about the coming Hard Fork 21 of the Steem blockchain, which is certainly a contentious decision to be made.

I think a good starting point for the discussion is figuring out a shared understanding of value itself. Most people haven't done this. To say "We should do X because it will make Y more valuable because it improves Z" we better have a clear understanding of X, Y, and Z. All code improvements are supposed to be about making things more valuable over time. HF21 makes some claims about how it will increase value, so let's start there. I can only speak from my perspective, so I will refer to many of my posts to give further context for my perspective.

I'm operating under the assumption that you've seen my video on What is Financial Value? which, in summary, states financial value is simply a shared story we collectively choose to believe. As more people believe a story of value (special rocks, shells, tally sticks, gold, silver, coins, paper fiat, cryptocurrencies, etc), it becomes a reality. There is no intrinsic value, only some stories that are better than others based on specific context which become more widely held as shared belief.

When it comes to the Steem blockchain, let's sincerely ask what aspect of the chain we value. Is it the purchasing power of the tokens? Is it the decentralized, uncensorable blockchain which stores plain text and links to media which can not be completely censored? Is it the relationships we build through interacting with like-minded individuals around the world?

I had to figure this stuff out for myself early on. I tried to explain the basics to my friends and family:

The main point being:

"Steemit is a decentralized social media platform built on blockchain technology which pays content creators and curators in tokens of real value."

I then tried to explain that value: #SteemitIsToMe: Relationships, Reputation, and Rewards. This post covers three areas of value Steem creates for me and partly from which I make my decisions about value as a witness for the Steem blockchain:

Over time, I also realized the problems with extrinsic motivations alone surrounding my involvement (i.e. "Get paid to post!"). I had to continue posting because I wanted to intrinsically, not because someone was putting a carrot in front of me. I did that with experiments like this:

I actually hid the $$$ in the interface to focus more on the content and the relationships, and it worked. I suggest you do the same and use it to find a foundation for why you're really here.

I had to come to grips with the super linear rewards curve and how it was designed to be a lottery where some people get super lucky with big payouts and others get nothing:

HF21 (which we'll get to here eventually, I promise) brings things back to this approach just a bit from the current linear rewards curve where everyone can get something, even if they are the only ones self voting on their own content.

The next major breakthrough in understanding for me was realizing the Steem blockchain and STEEM token is where the value is, not the Steemit.com front end or Steemit, Inc or (potentially) even the content hosted on the chain.

Steemit, from a purely financial/monetary perspective, distributes value because investors and speculators choose to buy the STEEM token. Investors and speculators drive all the financial value we see here.

This, I know, will be a tough pill to swallow for authors and curators. Please, pause for a moment and read that post. You may have a misunderstanding of my perspective without doing so. At the time that post was written, STEEM had a market cap of over a billion dollars. Today it's just over $100M. Where many other tokens have grown 10x in value, STEEM has declined 10x.

To me, this is a sign that what we've been doing is not working, if we consider financial rewards (i.e. that thing completely supported by the token price) as an important part of the value Steem creates for us.

To further illustrate this point, I put together some data from 148 weeks of the Exchange Transfer Report I've been doing:

USD Exchange Transfers Over Time.png

(click to see a larger version of this image)

In USD terms, that's a net amount of -$172,260,609 worth of value that people are cashing out of their personal Steem accounts and sending to exchanges without someone else buying the Steem and sending it back to a personal account on Steem. There are many caveats to be aware of with this data, so please see an Exchange Transfer Report to better understand the data and the limitations as to what conclusions you can come to with it. Either way, it's a strong indication to me that most people are cashing out Steem they earn (either through early mining, author/curator rewards, Steem Power inflation, or witness pay).

If you're curious which accounts have been cashing out the most over the past few years, check out this post:

Hopefully at this point we've set some foundational definitions relating to value, and we've shown the current system for creating value in Steem has not be working well compared to other cryptocurrencies. Now we have a choice. Do we leave things as is and just celebrate the existing benefits we get from the Steem blockchain (again from this post you should read):

  • Zero fees.

  • 3 second block confirmation times.

  • Energy-efficient DPOS algorithm.

  • Built-in, on-chain governance.

  • Account recovery (unique to this blockchain).

  • Time-locked savings via smart contracts for SBD and STEEM.

  • User-friendly wallet addresses (instead of complicated hashes).

Or should we consider we can try to change some things to create more value without sacrificing these value adds?

That, to me, is what Hard Fork 21 is all about. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity.

Let's not be insane.

There have been many months of debate about what changes should be made to the system to improve the value here. Here's how HF21 deals with many of them:

SPS: Steem Proposal System (SteemDAO)

From HF21: SPS and EIP Explained, we see this is about decentralization, sustainability, and funding valuable projects. Steemit, Inc, in my personal opinion, hasn't done the best job of managing this blockchain. I've mentioned this before here and here as well as a possible solution of my own relating to a SteemDAC which I figured talked about here: SteemDAC: A Plan We Can Start Today to Decentralize Steem Governance. Maybe this failure was due to inexperienced, centralized leadership. Maybe things will turn around if we decentralize more.

I think this is a great step forward for Steem. I think 10% funding for it to start may be a bit much and would be happer to start with something like 7% or even lower until we better understand how the funds will be used and what types of projects will get funded. That said, if HF21 comes through at 10%, I would not reject it over this detail.

To me, the SPS also addresses an interesting question for us all: Who really adds value around here?

To me, in a big way, that's the developers who build the tools we use within this ecosystem. Check out https://steemprojects.com/ to see what I mean. Check out things like https://steemmonsters.com/ which is creating a reason for people to create Steem accounts. Check out https://steem-engine.com/ where people spend their Steem to support other Steem related projects via tokenization. Take a look at tools like the Steem Wallet Chrome extension or the Vessel Wallet. Developers create a ton of value, and I think we should start rewarding them directly for their efforts, not just through their posts talking about what they are building.

Economic Improvement Proposal (EIP)

You can get details on this from Improving the Economics of Steem: A Community Proposal which outline these benefits:

(1) Moving from a linear rewards curve to a convergent linear rewards curve. A convergent linear rewards curve would start out superlinear, providing minimal gains at first, and smoothly become linear as more votes are made. Users that are interested only in maximizing the return on their Steem Power, instead of benefitting the platform through thoughtful curation, often engage in practices such as self voting or delegation to bid bots. The proposed curve incentivises concentration of votes on to fewer pieces of content, which increases the visibility of such counterproductive behavior. Alternatively, users could choose to act more subtly by spreading stake across more, but smaller, votes at the cost of a suboptimal return. We cannot eliminate such behavior entirely, but we can make it less economically viable.

To me, the key point here is "which increases the visibility of such counterproductive behavior". Keep that in mind as it will come up again. You can learn more about this change here: Reward Curve Deep Dive. Essentially, linear voting was tried and creating more problems than it solved. I was a supporter of trying the linear curve becuase and in the beginning it was exciting to see everyone getting some little bit of reward. Unfortunately it was too easy to game the system. Instead of going back to what we had before, we're trying something new and that, to me, is a good thing. We should get more information which we can continue to iterate with.

From that Deep Dive:

One problem with this change was that it reduced the incentive to consolidate one’s stake in a single account, which made it easier for bad actors to divide up their stake and hide their activities.

Unfortunately "bad actors" is still mostly undefined or if there is consensus on what bad action looks like, some accounts are too big in terms of Steem Power to do anything about.

(2) Increasing the percentage of rewards that are distributed to curators. One of the problems with Steem as it stands is that there is a strong incentive to self-vote. The more rewards are distributed to curators the less incentive there is to self-vote. At the same time, if curation is improved, then those content creators who are currently submitting great content which isn’t getting seen, should stand to benefit as that content will be more likely to get unearthed.

This, I think, is one of the most contentious aspects of HF21. Humans have trouble with loss aversion and many will see this as "Hey, I'm an author and now I'm losing part of my rewards. This sucks! I'm leaving!" It is possible some quality authors will leave because of this. I'll argue they may be here for the wrong reasons as mentioned above in the The Steemit $$$ Challenge post. It's also possible we've had many other great authors who came here, posted fantastic content, got no notice or rewards what-so-ever and left. What if those authors might come back or others like them might stick around if eager curators who are now twice as motivated to find them out and promote them actually get them some attention and rewards? I think it's at least worth trying. The current author rewards system is too easily gamed, and I don't think changing the rewards curve alone will fix it. I'm concerned this will create more Steem Power rewards for bots over time, but I've been trying to get people to stop using bots for a long time with little success:

An Argument for Long-Term Rational Self-Interest Versus Short-Term Irrational Value Extraction

Side note: see the articles linked to in that article which include a year old discussion about a separate reward pool, self voting, and Operation Clean Trending which encourages downvoting crap content on trending which used bit bots. Note, that tool appears to still be up here: https://steemwhales.com/clean-trending/

And finally from the EIP:

(3) Create a separate “downvote pool.” Downvotes are a critical component for regulating Steem, but there is no incentive to render them because they are not rewarded. In fact, they cost voting mana which disincentivizes the use of the downvote. This creates more opportunities for self-voting abuse as it reduces the likelihood that this behavior will be countered. By adding a small pool for downvotes that is consumed prior to consuming voting mana, users are more free to downvote content as a curation mechanism without losing out on potential rewards themselves.

Remember how we talked about "which increases the visibility of such counterproductive behavior"? Well this is where that comes in again. The only way to have working Proof of Brain and ensure rewards are distributed to valuable content in a meaningful way which Steem investors and speculators might respect is to use our votes effectively. That may include downvoting low-value content which, in effect, upvotes all the other higher value content. I hope we start building easy-to-use tools to automatically use some voting power to downvote content others get rewarded for finding. I'll leave this a project for the community to explore, but if you're interested please let me know. Maybe this will be a good candidate for an SPS project.

Could this cause more "flag wars"? Yes, it could. We already have accounts like @berniesanders who flag content based on personal issues with the author and not based on the quality or value of the content to the Steem ecosystem. It's possible this could increase after HF21. It's also possible that it's a real problem we have to solve today anyway. Imagine for a moment you're a huge multinational brand and you really want to get involved in blockchain technology. You want your content onchain and you look to Steem as the answer. You task your marketing team to come up with your first post and when the CEO goes to look at it, he sees this:

Not only will that brand never use Steem again, but someone might get fired.

It's possible serious brands are already avoiding Steem because of this very issue. I know of a few investors who won't touch Steem because of this. When large accounts can control which content is seen, especially if there's nothing fundamentally "low rating" about the content (other than a personal attack on the author), then that's a big problem relating to creating value. Why would they buy Steem and Power Up to promote their content if it will just get downvoted and disappear if some people don't like them?

If you see large accounts downvoting content based on personal issues with the author, I encourage you to upvote that content and counter the downvote. Also, I'd like to see us make a change to Condenser (the Steemit front end) which allows an "I'm an adult" setting which doesn't hide downvoted posts and/or allows accounts to be whitelisted from being hidden.

Why So Many Changes at Once?

We seem to have this discussion with every Hard Fork, so I won't repeat it at length again here, but it basically comes down to this: Every single wallet, exchange, application, payment processor, and service provider that relies on a Steem node will have to do a full resync of history every time we make a hard fork because these are consensus-breaking changes. That means everyone has to agree to them or else the tools that don't upgrade will stop working. With our low token value, it's possible some exchanges might consider delisting us instead of putting in time and money to resync their nodes. That means fewer hard forks are better.

Why Aren't Witnesses Taking a Cut of Rewards?

To increase curation rewards and create the SPS pool, many think the witnesses should also decrease their pay. I'm actually cautiously in favor of this as well, even if it's just one or two percent. That said, it's important to remember within DPoS that the security of the chain is directly related to the value of the rewards given to the block producers who secure it. If that value is too low, high quality witnesses will not stick around and it will be easier to attack the chain. That said, I do respect and appreciate @smooth's comment here:

A DPoS chain depends fundamentally on the competence and integrity of its witnesses. Putting that at risk puts the entire system at risk.

If the price of Steem goes too low and witnesses can't afford to run servers (or choose not to), the entire value proposition would be at risk for everyone. That's a systemic level risk which is important to consider.

If HF21 is adjusted to take some rewards from witnesses (while, ideally, spreading more rewards to backup witnesses to further incentive more decentralization), I'd be in support of that. As it is, I won't reject this Hard Fork if the witness pay is kept as is.

In Summary

Okay, that's probably way more than you wanted to read anyway, but those are my thoughts so far on Hard Fork 21. I will support it as a consensus witness (if I'm still in the top 20 at that time) because I think the value proposition we've created here so far is not working out well compared to other cryptocurrencies, and we should be willing to try things more often and fail fast. If we find these changes are far worse than what we have now, we can and should make new changes. What I'm not a fan of is doing nothing and expecting a different result.

That's just crazy.

As always, I'm here for your questions, comments, or concerns. Let me know what you think, but please understand, many of these conversations have been going on for more than a year now. Rehashing them again and again without taking action and trying something is mostly a waste of time, IMO.

To view what other consensus witnesses have to say about this Hard Fork, see these posts below:

There are also a lot of witness comments on this poll here: As a top steem witness, will you support a hardfork implementing the “Economic Improvement Proposal” or “EIP.”

Here's a video of me reading this post, if that's your thing:

Luke Stokes is a father, husband, programmer, STEEM witness, DAC launcher, and voluntaryist who wants to help create a world we all want to live in. Learn about cryptocurrency at UnderstandingBlockchainFreedom.com

I'm a Witness! Please vote for @lukestokes.mhth


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Happy birthday ;) @lukestokes.

I have what i think is a pretty awesome idea to get more people to steemit. Basically a reward system or a referral system. I know plenty of people who are good at writing but i dont want to pester them into joining, mainly because why should i there is nothing in it for me. If i got even a very small reward for their posts for signing up under me then maybe id be incentivised to get them to join up. You can lead a horse to water but you cant make them drink it is basically how iv felt about crypto for years. I was passionate about telling my friends about how crypto could change there lives in the early years but gave up once i realised nobody wants to hear it, which is why i dont promote steemit to people.

Hey - might not be 100% what you have in mind, but did you know https://steem.ninja/ let's you refer people and earn from that referral? You can even set your own 'price' for the accounts you 'sell' and thus decide what you earn from your referral yourself.

It might be a bit 'cleaner' from an outsiders perspective than earning from other peoples posts as tish would easily be seen as 'ponzi' where the first movers get passive income from the work of others?

Anyway, just adding this as an fyi :-) Cheers!

thats cool, i do understand there is stigma around it, and im only talking about a very small reward. Its a tricky one but i still fee like it would help to get more people to steemit. It has flatlined for a while now which is not great. Coinbase, ledger all do referral programs it doesn't have to be scammy.

A referral program has been discussed many times, but nothing has been implemented yet.

I've dealt with the same frustration over the past 6.5 years regarding trying to get people onboard with cryptocurrency. It's hard to teach experiential knowledge. People just have to do it and they have to do it because they want to intrinsically, not because someone gave them a reward to do it. More thoughts the experience problem here: How Do You Teach Experience? What Will Your Cryptocurrency Story Be?

i get what your saying and your right but i just know that cash rules everything around me. Give me a referral program and watch me at least try to get people to see the potential. Personally i could see it blowing up with this type of thing easily.

To me, that sounds terrible. I don't want to be around people who feel "cash rules everything around me" and who need to be paid in order to positively promote Steem. Why would we encourage that kind of person and that kind of behaviour? Yuck.

human beings, human beings are the most vile disgusting sick creatures this planet has ever seen. Im honest about it.

They say that "Hell is other people". I didn't used to understand it.

busy.org has had that for a long time and but you only get beneficiary rewards from your invitees posts for the first 30 days

thanks for that i didnt know.

Yes this is the frustration I have also been through this is a good idea how do you contact the right people to make this suggestion be considered for implementation? :)


I'm totally with you on the need to focus on value. The question I always like to ask is: "If you take away speculation, why would someone want to buy STEEM?"

My issue with the EIP (and the whole concept of rewarding content just for the sake of it) is that even if it works out perfectly - i.e. the highest quality posts always end up with the most rewards or however you define the perfect "proof of brain" system - I still don't see how there is value to owning STEEM or why I would want to buy any.

Maybe I'm a great curator and can earn a ton of curation rewards, but being able to earn more STEEM is not a reason to buy STEEM in itself. That presumes STEEM has some value to begin with which would make you want to earn more of it. Again, if you remove speculation which gives it its value right now, what is the reason to buy STEEM?

That's what I think all of our efforts should be focusing on - giving STEEM some actual value that doesn't just come from being able to earn more of it.

The reason i am buying Steem is cuz of its consistant passive income.
When the price rises the income would be greater as well.
I am not a writer so the curation rewards are a big thing for me and for the most people that arent writers.
I think i am the only one who thinks that a 50/50 reward distribution is a great thing.

I could explain how 10 measly content producers could generate enough demand for consumers to buy 2.5 million STEEM. The problem I have with explaining it is the fact I've tried what feels like a million different ways of saying it. Maybe it's my wording? I don't know. I have these two recent posts:


I left a good comment somewhere else where I actually break down how 10 content producers could create so much demand. I don't know what to say anymore and I'd have to hunt for that comment, and I'm so tired. Writing it out again just seems like a waste.

*Edit: Found the second time I used that comment I speak of under this post

Combine the wisdom from everything I've said within these links, plus I can find more links, just read my entire blog and every comment; you'll eventually find some answers.

So I just skimmed through your posts linked above (sorry I didn't have time right now to fully read them) but I really think you're on to something there. I would love to see an SP holding based subscription model for content.

Off the top of my head I'm thinking there could be a front-end where content creators can choose a subscription level, for example 100 SP, to have access to their content. So that means if I want access to that content I have to have at least 100 SP in my account and then when i click some button to access a particular piece of content it will "unlock" it by submitting an upvote from my account.

I think that would be really cool and, if done correctly, could actually incentivize a significant number of people to invest in Steem Power.

Off the top of my head I'm thinking there could be a front-end where content creators can choose a subscription level, for example 100 SP, to have access to their content. So that means if I want access to that content I have to have at least 100 SP in my account and then when i click some button to access a particular piece of content it will "unlock" it by submitting an upvote from my account.

Patreon 2.0?

It's more about selling the idea to consumers. It's already happening all around us, people just don't realize it.

Every time an "established" content producer shows up, what happens? People cheer because they have a large following. The established content producer then starts churning out content, but their following doesn't come with them, and the ones who do, don't buy STEEM. The established content producer forgot to secure their place here by explaining to their followers the benefits of purchasing STEEM and upvoting over the long term. They still ask for "donations". That money is thrown away and the consumer or follower must then donate again, and again, and again. That's silly, when we have a platform like this. Instead of donating, invest. Then if that content producer isn't performing up to the consumers standards, they can have their money back, or go support someone else, without ever needing to throw money away in the form of donations, ever again. Because these established producers fail to secure their future here, they often leave after only a few months, and the "benefit" of them simply showing up is nil.

You guys already get it. If someone plays Splinterlands, and gets bored, they get their money back. Aggroed said something along the lines of what I'm saying while promoting Splinterlands at a recent conference. The consumer can have their money back, plus more, if they decide they're no longer interested in playing. Games are part of the entertainment industry I speak of, so it's not hard to shift some of those billions over to your product. It's already working. People just don't realize it.

I'm not talking about a paywall, but I've written posts about what you're saying.

The whole point is to make the consumer realize the benefits of investing in content rather than buying it, or donating to content producers. Offer incentives like the 50/50 rewards split to encourage more consumers to consume. There should be far more consumers than content producers here, like in the entertainment industry, because that's how this works.

The fact is, people already spend the money. STEEM can offer them a better deal, with any form of entertainment consumption.

This is about educating content producers as well. There's a reason why you can't find content from an established producer describing to their following the things I'm trying to point out. They didn't know, but if they did, everyone benefits.

Thank you for explaining this well here. @starkerz and @oracle-d have been working with a model like this for companies and governments as well, encouraging them to invest in Steem Power to pay people involved via the rewards pool. It may work, or it may get downvoted. The key is still education, helping people understand how ti works. Now with Steem Engine tokens, communities with their own tokenomics rules can experiment with different approaches.

Yeah, a delegation economy. I mentioned that idea in a post I wrote a while back. Think I called it "Steem Is Not Facebook, Steem Is LinkedIn" or something. The value I saw in Steem was its potential to create a delegation economy where you don't have to give money, just vote authority.

That said, the haters of self-voting ruin that entire aspect of Steem, because without the 100% value of the upvote given to the company I don't think the numbers work.

Maybe what people need to see is an example of it actually working, not just talk about it. There's been a lot of talk over the last three years. Not many success story examples.

There's also the downvote UI issue I mentioned in my post. Any serious content producer wouldn't touch this place at all if they thought one person could come along and hide the content they worked so hard on.

What are your thoughts about that being a big part of the problem why serious content producers don't waste time with Steem?

Maybe what people need to see is an example of it actually working, not just talk about it.

Did you even read that stuff? Skim? Couldn't grasp it? Can't see how it already works? Plenty of examples. I used music in one, to be able to tap into a few billion. Blog posts/magazines what's the difference? So there's a few more billion. The fact is people spend money on entertainment. It's fact. What examples are you missing? Just look outside.

There's also the downvote UI issue I mentioned in my post. Any serious content producer wouldn't touch this place at all if they thought one person could come along and hide the content they worked so hard on.

What are your thoughts about that being a big part of the problem why serious content producers don't waste time with Steem?

So the other day, sometime this week, another top twenty witness insulted me. Do you realize what you just said? Since I reacted poorly to the insults earlier in the week, I've learned my lesson and will not snap.

Again. Luke. I want to stress the fact that I can respect you. I have no issue with you as man, at all.

Any serious content producer wouldn't touch this place

For nearly three years, I've been watching so many witnesses in top positions put their disconnect on display. Do you truly know what goes on here?

What makes you think I'm not a serious content producer? Do you even realize you just insulted me?

I'm looking for examples on Steem. That's what really matters. If your premise is correct. show me examples of where it has worked with Steem. Just saying it can work doesn't accomplish anything. Yes, we know many things can work, but what is working?

I ran a business for ten years. Ideas are cheap. Implementation is everything. Pointing to other industries and saying "We can do that here also. Millions and billions!" is not reality. Real examples here on Steem is reality. Make that happen, and I'll better understand what you are saying. Until it does, it's just more opinions and ideas with no implementation leading to actual results.

What makes you think I'm not a serious content producer?

I have no intention of insulting you, but if your premise is correct, shouldn't you be a working example of how the price of STEEM is increasing because you are here adding value? By serious content producer, I was referring to your examples of the millions and billions of dollars available in the media and entertainment industries. These industries involve millions of people and their millions of dollars. No cryptocurrency project has been able to do that, let alone Steem.

To me, your ideas and the reality of what Steem actually is today is equally disconnected.

I think most of us see the potential. It's why I invested ~9 BTC into Steem when it was around $3/$4 years ago. I saw this as a technology which would take over the world and become a global phenomenon used by every media outlet on the planet. It didn't happen.

Maybe what people need to see is an example of it actually working, not just talk about it.

This isn't what you say to someone who wants to invent the car. "Well maybe if someone else invents the car, and I see it running, then I'll believe you."

Luke. You've frustrated me beyond words today. Blah. That's all I got.

In your interactions with me, you seem to describe your frustration and how no one seems to understand what you are saying over and over again.

Henry Ford didn't talk about inventing a car for mass adoption.

He went and did it.

I'm simply saying go and do it and then maybe people like me will understand what it is you're trying to communicate, and you won't be frustrated all the time at our lack of understanding.

You come to my blog leaving your comments on my post and then tell me to be quiet. Ugh.

There's simply too much to get into to be able to explain, current issues with the platform that need to be resolved, a playing field that needs turf. Many of these things require a community effort. You've insulted me, shot me down, doubled down on those insults, already proven you're unwillingly to listen. There's no LUKE in team. Therefore, there's no point in having a discussion. You've been disrespectful and that's why you should just be quiet, so it stops, because I don't want to hear it. If you can't respect that, it's because you're disrespectful.


And here's my response to this strange little troll underneath me.


Dude, leave. Social media on a blockchain is about free speech, so don't tell people to be quiet or anything like that. Respect free speech or go back to Twitter.

According to your logic, it's perfectly fine for me to say, "Be quiet."

"I still don't see how there is value to owning STEEM or why I would want to buy any."

Are you implying that Steem has no value? Advertising makes it clear that people's eyeballs have value. Bringing people's eyeballs to Steem has value.

People would buy Steem to increase their influence on people eyeballs and mind which are all very valuable to even the biggest corporations and governments.

The original whitepaper states:

"The second principle is that all forms of capital are equally valuable. This means that those who contribute their scarce time and attention toward producing and curating content for others are just as valuable as those who contribute their scarce cash."


Eyeballs are largely a property of a web (or non-web) application, not a blockchain. The white paper and in many ways the whole Steem community both confuse the two in very significant ways. There are many logical leaps in these assumed models that are poorly supported if at all.

The only thing a blockchain can really ever do is pay people money (or tokens) according to a variety of rules. Apart from that, it is impotent to interact with the world in any way, eyeballs or otherwise.

I'm not convinced that people influence people's eyeballs by buying Steem, or at least the model by which they can do so has not been clearly explained in the white paper or otherwise. They can influence who gets paid, but that isn't the same thing at all.

Why do you think 'eyeballs' wouldn't play a (big) role on a blockchain application like STEEM(it)?

Imagine for example I am writing an article about Steem Monsters (or any other business built on STEEM). Then I think it does matter if 50 people are reading it or 5000, if I assume that a certain percentage of the readers gets interested in Steem Monsters and decides to buy Steem Monsters cards with ... STEEM! :)

Apart from that, as many well informed poeple (including you) are so eager to test the planned HF changes, I would say "Yes, lets try it now, don't lose more precious time (apart from testing) and just see what happens!"
Then at least we cannot say we hadn't tried it out ... and then I really hope my scepticism proved to be wrong.

Well the simple fact is you can't, as a typical user, "look" at a blockchain in and of itself. You are always going to be using some sort of application and the application is effectively a gatekeeper on eyeballs.

For example, steemit.com has started showing "featured posts" which have nothing to do with the blockchain, that is just whatever their company management decides users should look at, and those posts I believe get far more eyeballs as a result.

Yes, of course the programmers of the different apps have quite some influence, but apart from that, if there are more users altogether on a blockchain, business owners (investors) have a bigger pool of potential customers (my example was Steem Monsters). If the products of the businesses are paid with the currency of the blockchain (for example STEEM) that should originate in more demand and thus a higher price of the currency (at least that would seem to be logical in my eyes).

Sure more usage can correlate with higher value. That's not at all the same thing as 'eyeballs' though.

I meant we should care about getting/retaining as much as possible users which means more 'eyeballs' as well (English is not my mother tongue but I translate 'eyeballs' here with people who view content, advertisements, articles about Steem Monsters etc. - tell me if I am wrong) which should lead to more usage as well.

I'm not convinced that people influence people's eyeballs by buying Steem ...

Yes, if someone is buying STEEM that doesn't influence people's eyeballs, but if there are more eyeballs (= more users) there is a bigger chance of more people buying STEEM. Therefore I think the formula more users = more value still should work even on a blockchain based platform.
And that's why we should care about the effect every change has on (potential) new users.

Passive users and active users alike increase the value of Steem.

Why do you think Steem has value if it ain't what I highlighted?

For the reasons you mention here, I think my STEEM is not Steemit post may have been one of the more important contributions I've made here. It seems the community (and investors/speculators trying to evaluate STEEM) are still stuck in this discussion without a resolution. The utility of STEEM (unlike most other cryptocurrency projects) is no longer based on wild speculative dreams. It's being demonstrated right now, and some don't like that.

Utility of steem is a joke at this point because most users used centralized bullshit. Developers have to build real technology first.

Without smart contract technology, building truely decentralized applications is difficult (though not impossible).

Curious, do you run your own front end to the Steem chain locally? If so, what do you use?

We run our own front ends. We ran into many problems following the herd per say , from centralized front end development. (i've gotten more people to deploy front ends, but it isn't a solution to have them only on the VPS servers) Web apps seem to be an extremely locked down ecosystem that isn't very p2p friendly.

Next logical step is running the chain locally with a front end/webui talking to localhost , and that is what myself, powerpoint45, techcoderx, and vaultec have been working together with.

Only times I use the full stack locally (more people should have this access and would run steem blockchain on their hardware) is when i'm logged into the witness node on smoke and need to broadcast a transaction per CLI. This is why we need Witness GUI for DPOS as well as front ends for posting data into the chain.

At no point is this Steem blockchain's fault. It's front end and backend developers who missed the point/access of what BTC core wallet (full nodes) achieved, as bitcoin has over 10,000 live copies online. Steem only has 125.

This comes from lazy development , not pushing hard enough , (even to the brink of failure) innovation.

I often wonder what it would look like if people built integrated hardware solutions. Something like a raspberry pi complete with the full blockchain ready to go, you just plug it in and you have a full node available to you locally. Maybe @anyx's api could be used as well.

I don't think Steem has really demonstrated much clear utility. It has properties which can be useful as you described quite clearly in your "STEEM is not Steemit" post, but its user base has stagnated so it isn't really demonstrating that such utility has much appeal.

I think a better narrative than speculators "fearing" utility is something like earnings reports on stocks. Sometimes the demonstrated utility falls short of expectations and this causes the story to adjust downward and the price falls, but sometimes it exceeds expectations (or points to even greater possibilities), and the price increases. Unfortunately Steem has not really demonstrated the latter.

Obviously, when there is a excess of hype and expectations are 'to the moon', it is more likely that 'earnings' (or demonstrations of utility in the case of blockchains/tokens) will fail to meet them, but the opposite does sometimes happen too.

I was more thinking along the lines of "We're going to build project X that will do Y!" where X doesn't exist in reality yet and Y is just a set of features (not a promise of future economic returns). If X does get built and it does functionally accomplish Y, then it's no longer speculation. Then it's more along the lines of what you describe in terms of evaluating it as a real project with expectations of profitability and utility value.

I'd say Steem is built, and it does functionally exist as a social media application on the blockchain which rewards people with tokens of value. Many other blockchain projects still haven't been built out to do the thing they claim they are going to do. Many more are today than in 2017, but I still think there's a disconnect between pure speculation in the space and evaluating a cryptocurrency project against other competitors in that market vertical.

Ultimately, I agree, the value hasn't yet been demonstrated, or we'd see more people buying Steem and powering up.

In practice, it's still speculation for a very long time. The speculation is over how much it will grow. Building a blockchain to do Y may demonstrate it can do Y, but from a value perspective, that is little more than a proof of concept until it demonstrates that it can grow large and attract a large amount users and economic value. It's barely one step forward from pure hype, and if the proof of concept demonstrates some problems with the concept or growth potential, that's a negative not a positive. It's not a given that such a proof-of-concept will be a negative in this way, but in practice many are, for various reasons, some totally legitimate (like most high risk experimental ventures fail, but that doesn't mean trying them was a bad idea) and some not (naked hype and fraud).

Steem curation can be displayed as a reflection of the most valuable content according to the shareholders.

The Steem community provides the following services to its members:

  1. A source of curated news and commentary

This has value for the community, aspiring authors and curators.

I'm not convinced that people influence people's eyeballs by buying Steem, or at least the model by which they can do so has not been clearly explained in the white paper or otherwise. They can influence who gets paid, but that isn't the same thing at all.

There are clear incentives for the community to have a window on what are the best-paid posts and the more Steem someone has, the greater their influence on the platform/pay.

The third principle is that the community produces products to serve its members.


There are clear incentives for the community to have a window on what are the best-paid posts and the more Steem someone has, the greater their influence on the platform/pay.

Maybe. For those who are personally involved with dedicated curation of reward payouts, very likely yes. For major investors, maybe (depending on their own views on how important it is what particular payouts are made, some will care and some won't).

For many users, they may be happier looking at whatever Steemit thinks are the best posts to 'feature' or content that meshes with their own personal interests regardless of payout (possibly by app-level targeted curating, or just the user's own decisions of what to look at), or they may not even have a choice if their preferred UI (for whatever reasons) takes a different approach to showing content or doesn't even show 'content' at all (as with some of the games now reasonably popular on the blockchain).

I don't know how much demand there is for influencing the eyeballs of power curators, who are the only ones who can actually be counted on to have their eyeballs directed as a result of on-chain curation. There might be a bit more demand to influence the eyeballs of major investors (since that is a relatively valuable demographic to advertisers), but it still depends whether the investors care about payouts for their eyeballs to be focused on that content.

Saying 'curation' generally isn't specific enough, because Steemit does their own curation when they decide what posts to feature and what advertisements to place on the pages and where to place them. This curation exists alongside the curation of payouts and the former is more directly in line of users' eyeballs.

For users of UIs and apps that have their own policies on what content to feature, or none at all, those looking to reach those eyeballs will simply buy advertising from the app or UI operator, as with Facebook or non-blockchain games. Having a blockchain behind the UI doesn't change anything here.

The best way to capture people's attention is to let them express what they value. This is done through curation. Displaying the results of curation refines the process and create virtuous cycles.

People's attention has value. Capturing people's attention has value. We can account for irrational behavior but it can't be predicted.

See my other reply. I really believe that the biggest problem is simply that we have elevated this whole content and curation mechanism into something that it supposed to be a big deal on its own, when in reality it isn't.

It isn't that it has no value on its own but it really needs to be just a small piece that starts the ball rolling on building a larger community with its own vibrant economy that does much more (which makes the costs of paying content an acceptable means to an end). When it becomes too much of the focus and only a small part of the story for where Steem is going then, the fundamentally unfavorable economics of it all become dominant and value just bleeds away.

The attention economy was never a good story here. Attention has value but it has financial value that can be monetized only to the extent it can be tolled off, as sites like Facebook do. That's not a good fit for a blockchain economy which is built around permissionless access.

It's true that eyeballs are not property of a blockchain, but what if we make it one?

We can easily solve this problem in a centralized way.

Step 1: Steemit, Inc stop using ads for personal profit.

Step 2: They start selling the ad spots by auction to the advertiser who is willing to burn the most STEEM. (They can even take a small cut if they are that greedy).

Step 3: Bidbots are obligated to burn at least 20% of the profit they make, if they don't, then steemit, Inc downvotes them to death. This will create a good sink for STEEM. Centralized, yes, but effective.

Step 4: Price of STEEM obviously falls less than it is now, and rises higher if helped by speculation. Steemit, Inc which holds millions of STEEM is now happy because they made more through increase in price than by selling stupid google adsense ads.

Step 5: Encourage Dapps like Dtube etc to use ad spots and sell them by auction to the highest bidding advertiser (again burn most of the steem). Those apps will help the price of steem, which will benefit them, benefit users, benefit Steemit, Inc. THIS IS THE STRONGEST NETWORK EFFECT EVER.

Step 6: Dapps that help steem in absolutely no way are also downvoted to death. Centralized but effective, again.

With the exception of (6) none of these can actually be enforced in any plausible way. (6) should probably happen but even without any access to the reward pool, dapps can still build business models (for example around selling ads, services, etc.) which don't contribute much if at all to the value of Steem

Can’t be enforced but it’s possible to go in this direction through discussions. You are more influential than me so getting to you is one of the best things I can do.

Posted using Partiko iOS

When I say not enforced I'm really saying that I don't think they will work out because without some form of enforcement, people and companies will find ways to cheat, although they will usually dress it up in less negative terms than that.

A couple of years ago Ned was talking about the attention economy and some concept (never fully defined) of how ad revenue would be shared with the content creator, the reader, and/or with Steem as a whole through burning.

But when the rubber hit the road and they started selling ads, they just decided to keep all the money in the name of 'sustainability', and there isn't a damn thing anyone else can do about it.

Another reason our coin has devalued so much is because the original whitepaper is such a piece of trash. Maybe we should re-write it with #freedom values developed by steemians not Dan, who btw powered down his steem already and fucked off.

The whitepaper has already been re-written.

But with who's values? Maybe Steem should re-write it every year since we evolve unlike ANY other chain! A decentralized vote is possible with the amazing data chain that steem is!


If content is actually valued in a way that is perceived as fair/valuable, that is a big deal. It means that the inflation being printed isn't just dumb dilution and there is genuine value being generated and rewarded appropriately. It means that others will seek to come in and participate in the exchange of value for whatever it is that they are creating on this platform. Others can come and participate in continuing to contribute to rewarding value, and be rewarded in the process (the motivation to buy-- influence within a fair system of value generation). A positive feedback loop.

And even if we aren't thinking along those lines, good content and engagement attracts users, and the platform's total networking power is what is valuable. If the system is perceived as fair then more people have reason to participate. Going the mass adoption route legitimizes the platform as a currency system in its own right.

I think there's a few holes in my argument / avenues for exploration here, but I can't quite figure it out right now.

This is very abstract. I'm looking for a clear reason why a person/business/organization/etc would want to buy STEEM for something that isn't speculation or "because I can earn more STEEM".

For some examples, someone might say:

  • I bought Bitcoin because my local currency is being debased and the government confiscates precious metals.
  • I bought Ether because I want to use decentralized applications that run on the platform and that requires ETH to pay gas fees.

I bought steem because I want to have more influence in the core social game (whose incentives have now been addressed to make things more fun)

May not be the motivation for everyone, but it's there. And the usual benefits of steem vs others but who is really using those as reasons.

I'd argue the Bitcoin reason is also highly speculative.

No one buys bitcoin for reasons like that. Everyone buys bitcoin because it may go up in value and make them money.

This isn't rocket science.

The tokenomics of any project is the magic part. When it works, no one can really say why. When it doesn't work, everyone has an opinion why it failed. Ultimately, all financial value is a form of speculation on story telling. I think Steem as a blockchain and a cryptocurrency could tell some really compelling stories which investors and speculators will value. I think it's had this opportunity for quite some time. I hope that story develops. This post here is the primary reason I was so excited about Steem: Steemit's Evil Plan for Cryptocurrency World Domination.

I still think it's possible.

I think Steem as a blockchain and a cryptocurrency could tell some really compelling stories which investors and speculators will value

I agree with this, I just think the value is not in the "proof of brain" concept itself but rather in Steem being the platform to power other applications which may or may not use "proof of brain".

You say that doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is insanity, and that's how I see this EIP. We can mess with reward curves, percentages and voting pools all we want, but the end result will be the same. There is no magic formula that will change everyone's behavior and prevent automated systems from being able to "game the system" in a more optimal way than a human can.

Let the different apps deal with that and set up their reward systems how they think is best and we should focus on how building on the Steem blockchain can let them do that more quickly and easily than anywhere else. That's a story I know first hand that investors will value.

Funny, I was leaving this comment at the same time you posted yours. I agree with you. SMTs and the work you're doing with Steem Engine may have been an important piece of this system's success from the beginning. Without it, there's no experimentation or growth. That's certainly one of the stories we were sold early on. The downside of that story is it may mean the STEEM token itself has no real value other than serving as one example among many of what may not actually work well economically compared to other cryptocurrencies.

Maybe cryptocurrencies, like healthy life, need to reproduce. I explored that a bit in this Twitter thread.

That doesn't meant that STEEM has no real value! STEEM is the token that powers the platform. It was so much easier to build Steem Monsters on the Steem platform than any other blockchain platform I know of, and to be able to do that we need to have a significant amount of SP available to make sure all of our players have enough RC to play. SP is our fee for building on the platform and the bigger we grow, the more we will need.

Appics wants to create their "proof of brain" content platform - they can do it on Steem where (in theory) it will be just filling out a form and hitting submit or they can do it on a general purpose platform where they have to build the whole thing from scratch. Many will choose Steem, and they will all need enough SP to allow their userbase to use the platform and receive their rewards.

We already see there is demand for this type of product (appics, VIT, scorum, etc). This is how STEEM can be big. This will sell to investors and speculators.

Thanks Matt. That's a really helpful bit of optimism and encouragement. :)

If we had more successful examples like Steemmonsters, I'd fully share your enthusiasm about the great potential here. I've championed it for three years now (as of today, my accounts is three years old) and unfortunately feel like I was selling an idea which never materialized. Yours is one of the few examples. Appics was stuck waiting for SMTs and hasn't been able to move forward much (prior to Steem Engine), VIT has it's own troubles and forked the code anyway, so that won't help the STEEM token. (I didn't realize they had pivoted their whole company away from adult content). I'm not a big fan of sports anymore (even though I was a college athlete), but I do see a lot of potential there for sure. I just don't see how that will necessarily help the STEEM price if it becomes easier for people to just spin up their own chain as DTube just announced.

That is true, when the cost outweighs the convenience of building on a blockchain, whether that is Ethereum or Steem, building a sovereign blockchain becomes the natural choice.

A lot of blockchains are indirectly gunning for Steem's job. Ethereum is soon getting Akasha, but right now it already has Loom which created DelegateCall as a sample site to display the capability to build Steem on Loom. Then Cosmos is another way to do it effectively, and some social sites are already being built on it.

Ethereum keeps getting abandoned for sovereign blockchain roadmaps and if Steem was expensive for businesses to build on, why not fork?

There is a clear issue here, which is that blockchains and their participants have conflicting interests. Coins/tokens need to have a utility, but at the same time it seems in crypto that coins and tokens can become more expensive than the value they provide to the user, so the user starts fresh.

I see STEEM or mainly Steem Power as a way to be able to engage actively in one or more communities on the STEEM blockchain. Also yes that gives you more weight on rewards as well, but in general you are earning by helping build the blockchain and communities.

@yabapmatt I hope you read y reply because the answer to your question is very simple.

Basically what you are looking for is to give STEEM a sink. A strong sink that makes it scarce and valuable.


Content (written, audio, visual, etc...) and games bring users. People pay to get ads in front of those people. On the steem network, they pay bidbots to do that.


You are the father of bidbots. You obviously thought of this. Delegators to bidbots wouldn't mind cutting their APR by 2% if it meant that the steem was burned instead. And people who promote their posts to get them on rending wouldn't mind getting a bit less in upvote value from bidbots.

BURN 20% of all bidbot profits. This is the best sink steem can get. You have the influence to convince the whole steem ecosystem to follow this rule. If a bidbot doesn't burn, then mark him as unhelpful to STEEM on steembottracker.com.

My issue with the EIP (and the whole concept of rewarding content just for the sake of it) is that even if it works out perfectly - i.e. the highest quality posts always end up with the most rewards or however you define the perfect "proof of brain" system - I still don't see how there is value to owning STEEM or why I would want to buy any

I'm not going to entirely disagree as I've been making this exact same argument since 2016 as many are well aware, especially regulars on the old steemit.chat #price channel.

However, I do want to make a counterargument which is that EIP and better voting generally may allow stakeholders to coordinate to pay out not necessarily the 'highest quality' content (which is a poorly defined concept in any case) but on content which brings value to Steem. This can happen in many different ways including:

  1. Being externally popular (the best example of this I can easily recall is Dan's early post "Will the DAO be DOA" which was covered in popular media when The DAO was in the new first during its enormous fundraise and then during its hack. The steemit.com post was widely linked and discussed and probably helped give Steem a big early boost in attention and growth)
  2. Being part of a process that evidences virtuous cycle growth, for example, externally-successful influencers with an audience being successful on Steem and inspiring more to join in turn
  3. Contributing directly to growth by attracting users, but this only works if churn is also under control. This probably requires there being enough other "stuff" of interest on the platform/ecosystem beyond just free money, which most new users won't get much of anyway.
  4. Supporting organic Steem influencers who develop their brand and attract a new audience to Steem.

There are probably others.

I don't know whether EIP will actually do this and if so I doubt it will do it right away, but it is possible that a stronger voting system will eventually allow more of the reward pool to be directed to these sorts of specifically value-adding content and not just content for its own sake or even just 'quality' content.

I love the idea of rewarding highly shared content referenced in news outlets. I'd even support using SPS funds to do it, if we had to. If someone writes something that goes viral on the Internet and is highly linked to which brings more people to a Steem frontend interface, I think that's something we should reward and encourage more of.

Do that with upvotes and lack of downvotes. Start upvoting based on actual value to Steem (external exposure is one great example but not the only one) and not just content that looks pretty but does little to nothing to help us (we could use 'likes' or some such to express recognition apart from pay) and downvote where value to Steem is absent but people upvoted it anyway.

In a few cases it might happen too late (after 7 days), in which case I would agree with the SPS idea of an exposure bonus fund or such.

Adding a "I like it, but it didn't increase the value of my STEEM" button would be interesting, but again, confusing to explain all the details and the differences. The more complexity added, the less people will understand and the more they will complain.

It's more like "I like it but I don't think it should get money" which is something that has already been discussed numerous times. We have somewhat of a version of that already with payment-declined posts, but of course those are based on the poster saying not to give them money which is not quite the same thing.

Alternately it could be more specific reactions than "like" such as "funny" "interesting" etc. which also don't necessarily imply that you think it should get money.

I agree there some obstacles but if somehow voters don't start directing rewards toward meaingfully value-contributing activities then @yabamatt's point about investors not seeing the value in buying into something that is going to be inflated away to pay for content for its own sake are going to turn out to be correct, and demand will continue to evaporate.

I still don't see how there is value to owning <STEEM or why I would want to buy any.

but being able to earn more STEEM is not a reason to buy STEEM in itself.

Why not, though? Let's say it's 2016 again, there are no bidbots, and the only way to earn STEEM is through upvotes on steemit.com. Let's say there's a culture on the site where users who buy and power up are rewarded. Why wouldn't this culture encourage buying?

I like how you took the time to lay it out as you understood it to be. So in that vain I agree with you 100% but I am no fan of the downvote for 1 simple reason. And I realize there are more than 1 reason to downvote. But for me I was in the twitter beta test and spent a lot of time up at Facebook campus. These companies have spent a decade training millions and millions of social media users how to share and consume content. And whether we like it or not, it has short form and mostly "shit" content that only people within their "social' group may or may not like. If we are to retain a social media element of steem we need to embrace that style of content and not downvote it . Instagram alone has thousands of influencers with millions of followers that would be far better off moving over to steem and subsequently moving their followers over to curate than by staying on instagram. If we model ourselves after a currently irrelevant long form content platform like Medium, we are dead in the water. I don't like seeing share2steem or actiffit content downvoted. Those types of dapps are our future whether or not steemians currently "get it" or not. In my opinion that is where our growth is and if we have influencers participating and earning here, then the investors will follow. I'm fine with the fork, just not the downvoting because big stake holders will just downvote for the hell of it.

I think you make some very important points. Steem is still in the “What am I?” stage and the dominance of Steemit.com in defining that self-perception can’t be overstated. Most people still use Steemit to access Steem content. Many people have very entrenched views on what is valuable here and what isn’t, and your point is important that it might be categorically based according to the medium (memes, short form tweet style, images, video, etc). I think the promise of SMTs was supposed to resolve this by letting each community creat their own token of value. Steem-engine is starting to make that promise a reality, but that doesn’t necessarily help the STEEM price.

big stake holders will just downvote for the hell of it.

As I mention in my post, this may be the single most important reason some larger brands and influencers stay away from Steem.

The challenge is, when monetary rewards are involved, people act differently. Instagram likes are free and dot mean anything. If they did, the behavior on Instagram would change.

I wouldn’t consider Medium irrelevant, just different. The dialogue we’re having now is because of this long format approach.

I really like how you lay out your points. You're very easy to understand and that is important because very few steemians can take a step back to explain their thoughts clearly enough without being tribal lol. I agree about monetary rewards. You can pretty much figure out how things will be when you throw in human nature. That being said I firmly believe our future is in more instagrammy type content and not in Medium style. Medium is irrelevant when you compare it to social media platforms. The problem with steem engine (which I love) is that the content gets shared to the steemit feed and that's where the downvotes come from. People really should just hold the downvotes unless it is blatant spam.
For example I see a guy who posts a link to his site where he sells gift cards. It's 100% link spam. He should be downvoted. But people should layoff downvoting share2steem posts.

Thank you for your kind words.

Do you think people should downvote content that is overvalued? By overvalued, I mean a mostly spam comment self-voted to the max. Should that be downvoted to leave more of the rewards pool for other, more useful content?

No. And the reason I think that is because in the big picture it doesn't do that much damage unless the person has a high stake. That stuff going with plankton doesn't bother me at all.

What I often thought is that if whales would take 1 of their 10 valuable daily votes each day and split it up into 100 1% percent votes and vote plankton and minnows with it, the whole ecosystem would be different. Even if they did ten 10% votes to save their precious time things would have been different and we wouldn't have come to this.
The "Rich" need to be smart enough to protect and grow their stake by giving a little away instead of being greedy. 1 lousy vote a day sent out to the universe would have, and could still make a huge difference here.

unless the person has a high stake

And in this case?

I've seen examples where people would count from 1 to hundreds, each as individual comments, and vote them up with sock-puppet accounts for many dollars per vote. If we allowed this, people would extract the entire rewards pool inflation for themselves with junk content.

These are hard problems to solve with no easy answers. I agree, people should think in terms of long-term value creation instead of short-term wealth extraction (see my post on that for more). Until then.... what do yo we do? What changes do we make to our system here to incentivize the behavior we hope for and prevent the behavior we don't like?

no I do agree with you on this point. Blatent reward pool rape is bad. But I get downvoted for my actifit posts all the time and I feel like that has no purpose.

So how do you allow for one and not the other?

If some things were made off limits for downvotes, people would extract value from those opportunities.

These are very difficult problems to solve. It's easy to complain about them when they impact us personally, but very very difficult to built actual solutions for them.

Absolutely agree. Downvotes serve no real purpose, because the people upvoting are upvoting with the share of Steem Power that they purchased. Who gets to decide that what they like they should not like? Some people like to upvote sophisticated articles of deep study and others like to upvote funny cat pictures. To each their own I say.

Honestly, I believe the biggest problem on Steem are these idealists dreaming of this perfect content machine that produces only pure content. However, this doesn't work, and the evidence is not there to show that the world is going to use downvotes for good. People are already much worse behaved online than they are in person, but now we're giving some people the power to be a real pain in someone else's backside just because they can. We need to think about whether Steem will cultivate positivity or negativity.

I think it's a positive thing when someone downvotes a comment spammer who is extracting rewards and ensures those rewards instead go to people adding value. Scammers can extract a lot of value (this is just one example) and if the community doesn't work to prevent that, more scammers will come until it becomes a serious systemic risk that destroys the system.

The rewards pool is, in a way, a shared collaborative commons. If we don't protect it, it will be abused. Votes are how we come to consensus on how that works.

That said, I agree, people using downvotes to harm others may actually increase.


the evidence is not there to show that the world is going to use downvotes for good

Ummmm have you heard of @steemflagrewards? Are you asserting not one SFR downvoter is doing so for the greater good??? (Perhaps you haven't heard of us and it's too bad. We don't abuse promotion like everyone and their mom so tend to be a more niche community.)

To quickly address your question:

I did not say there was no evidence that someone would use it for good. I said there is no evidence that the world would use it for good. Most people on the platform are hoping Steem will do well and are considered with the health of Steem. However, if Steem got to be as big as Facebook, people would stop worrying about the health of the network and begin focusing on using their downvoting power for whatever they deem worth downvoting. That opens it up to a lot of whimsical downvoting.

I recall seeing an article related to the words "steemflagrewards" that was talking about figuring out how to reduce the cost of flagging and also how to flag anonymously to avoid retaliation. That was enough for me to disagree with the group.

I mean no disrespect to you or anyone in your group, but I believe that your program is exactly the opposite of what will help Steem achieve success. The mentality behind flagging is very flawed when you think about the economics of Steem.

If you wish to know more about what I mean by that I welcome you to check out this lengthy comment I made:


Ultimately, and I realize that you likely strongly disagree, I don't consider use of the term "abuse" legitimate. When people purchase STEEM and turn it into Steem Power, they have paid for something and that means this "power" is not a priviledge or an opportunity but a property. Thus, standard property rights apply on Steem.

When you buy something, you are entitled to use it however you please, so long as it does not interfere with another person's rights. This is where downvotes become the true abuse. Someone with their purchased Steem Power is using their power to hurt someone else because they dislike something they did.

Upvotes are a non-aggressive action, and that voting power a person purchased and its share of the reward pool is their property because they purchased it. Downvotes violate the rights of individuals and the votes they purchased.

I believe that people should be able to upvote whatever they wish to upvote without harassment. They purchased their voting ability and that purchase helps keep the reward pool valuable.

Another gross violation against personal rights and personal property is the aggressive behavior and downvoting of bidbot customers. If two accounts make a private business arrangement with each other it is their own business.


Downvoted because I don't believe you should be a top 20 witness.

Good luck to you, in the end the STEEM power holders will decide.

You hit the nail!
Why should any company invest in Steem and present their brand with the risk of getting downvoted?
I'm wondering, for example, about why is RT still posting here for the laughable rewards they get.
And yes, the downvoting will increase flag wars and make the climate more worse then it is already.
Cut rewards of content producers will drive people away as well...
All in all is not that difficult to see the changes are coming aren't good for the system or the value of Steem at all.
The view of an ordinary user.
Have a nice day

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To be fair, there is a lot of genuine overlap between personal attacks and low quality content that should be downvoted. However, I see your point that this could really dissuade brands/large creators from using the platform. I'm imagining two competitors just flagging each other to get their own content to the top.

I also worry that this will drive people away. I think we really haven't recovered since Hard Fork 20, which was so badly botched that a ton of people left and never came back. We can't take a hit like that again without the whole website basically collapsing. This Fork needs to be quick, but even then I am worried.

You guys just can't see the potential. "What we're doing isn't working." True, and what you're missing, is annoying, and I don't say that to be a jerk. It's annoying watching so many scratch their heads, when there are piles of billions of dollars everywhere to tap into. Luke. You know crypto, blockchain, financial stuff, tech. Okay fine. Have you ever heard of the entertainment industry? So many links here, so many posts to read within your post. Why not stop talking and start listening?



Maybe it's your writing style or formatting, but I have trouble understanding your point from these posts you link to. Yes, I understand the entertainment industry is huge. No, they are not using Steem and have no reason to (other than Steemmonsters). Why is that? I've spoken to authors and such and they won't risk their reputation by posting here.

As I mentioned in reply to your comment above, I think it has something to do with the story told around Steemit, Inc, Steemit.com, how things can just be hidden at the whim of individual whales, etc. Until those things are fixed, why would any serious content creator waste time here?

Another insult. Just rubbing it in. Writing style, formatting. Making excuses to remain ignorant. I truly don't know what to say or how to respond, because I might do it wrong. Like I already said, and this is the third time now.

why would any serious content creator waste time here?

This is a huge insult to myself and many others here. Probably the most disrespectful thing you could say, and you said it.

Again, you are misunderstanding my comments, as I explain in this thread.

If you honestly think that's "the most disrespectful thing I could say" then we're in completely different worlds of understanding.

You don't respect the content producers who are here. They are lesser, than what you view as "serious". And we're wasting time.

Thanks? Is thank you what you'd prefer to hear me say, rather than "that was disrespectful"?

That's not an accurate representation of my views. That's what this is about. You took offense to two words, that in my opinion, you misunderstood.

If you want an apology, I'm sorry for not communicating more effectively.

I know you are serious as are many others who put in tons of effort on Steem every single day creating content, curating, commenting, and more.

That's not what I thought we were discussing. We were talking about the millions and billions of dollars in the entertainment industry who are not currently using Steem. I was not referencing anyone on Steem (because they are not here) which means I was not referencing you.


While I’m not the most clued on all the technical stuff I do believe in failing fast and testing new ideas! Steem has some real potential but it feels as if it’s being kept isolation and the whole blogging and curating uses case has too many people seeing as all it is when it can be so much more!

If we are to create more value we need more use cases and I think that blogging and the social media aspect can amplify all these use cases!

If we had more eCommerce both physical and digital with more cases to buy and sell Steem and make it an attractive place to not only promote but conduct business we would really have a winning formula on our hands

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I love the idea of people using Steem for eCommerce. It was one of my original posts three years ago when I still ran FoxyCart: How to Build a Product Catalog on Steemit.

My worst mistake in crypto.... STEEM. Everyone get out why you can. I'm 1000 miles away from my keys so I can't power down and get out so I have to watch it be drained to a point where it will be about #150 on CoinMarketCap

The worker proposal funds will just go to the witnesses and large stake holders who already drain the system.

Stack Steemit Inc on top of the chaos and you are in for a financial beating. Don't invest your money here.

Congrats Luke you have everyone fooled into thinking you are doing something for STEEM. I would be embarrassed if I made as much money from this system based on everyone else chasing the carrot.

Your posts aren't any more valuable than someone like me throwing up pictures from vacations or random other things at this point.

Slow clap for running a witness server and being part of the club.

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I invested ~9 BTC into Steem when it was around $3 and $4. Steem is my worst cryptocurrency mistake (financially) also, but it's also been the best for other valuable reasons I describe in my post. I still believe in what this platform is attempting to do, and I still think it's undervalued by the market for what it is doing. Part of that, IMO, is that speculators fear utility. If I was just about the financial side of things, I would have left a long time ago. I hope you find something more useful to spend your time on as you go elsewhere. I'll enjoy not having to deal with your rude (and often, from my perspective, incorrect) comments anymore. :)

The worker proposal funds will just go to the witnesses and large stake holders who already drain the system.

Define "drain"? Did you even look at the data I linked to in my post: https://steemit.com/cryptocurrency/@lukestokes/exchange-transfer-transparency-for-2016-2017-and-2018

You can see right there who is "draining the system." Worker proposals, ideally, will go to developers building value so we don't have to relay on a central system like Steemit, Inc who we already know can't manage funds well (and thus had to fire 70 people). Throw as much shade as you want, but I think anything would be better managed than what we've seen so far.

Congrats Luke you have everyone fooled into thinking you are doing something for STEEM.

I do exactly what I've always done: I create content and run a trusted witness node. Being a trusted member of the community and running a reliable node is the primary job of a witness. It's insulting to insinuate I'm attempting to deceive or fool anyone. If you don't like the way people vote, take it up with the voters. Go vent somewhere else.

I would be embarrassed if I made as much money from this system based on everyone else chasing the carrot.

I'm not embarrassed for the content I've created or for the witness node I run. As I already said, I'm not even close to ever making my initial investment back and if you take a look at the data I linked to above, you'll notice I'm not someone cashing out like many others.

Your posts aren't any more valuable than someone like me throwing up pictures from vacations or random other things at this point.

And who gets to determine that? The entire point is that value is subjective story telling. If you think the people who vote for my posts shouldn't, then take it up with them. What does that have to do with me?

I'm glad you're moving on from Steem. I sincerely hope you find something better.

@lukestokes I think a lot of people initially bought into the idea that you weren't a complete ghost figure like a lot of the witnesses and with your programming experience and Ivy League education you would actually build something. You continually say that a witnesses job is to just maintain a reliable node.... etc

Well I guess you are right. You and several other witnesses continue to stack coins up but how many people see what is going on and don't say much but take their money elsewhere?
The subject has came up several times at EOS related events when talking about problems with STEEM. Most other people who are front and center aren't going to say anything. They will just go on and move their money away from here.

I'm not saying you are some sort of scammer or something and I guess you positioned yourself well with minimal effort but a lot of people who understand what is going on just take their money elsewhere.

I would still be embarrassed if I got as much STEEM for no more than you have done here. You refuse to realize you are part of the problem around here.

STEEM is only going to get worse unfortunately. The market has spoken and we will likely all be sitting on a pile of dust very soon.

If I made as much STEEM as you I would have certainly utilized those funds to build something. At this point it is mainly impractical to build something here if you are self funded because it would just be more profitable to just put that money into a crypto that isn't in a death spiral. Worker proposals in principle is a good idea but it will back fire because the same exact people reaping the largest rewards will become the beneficiaries of the worker proposal funds. People will see what is going on and roll their eyes and take the rest of their money away from here. Sometimes the truth hurts.

This place was busted from the start. It is going to get a lot worse Unfortunately. The main winners will be some of the overpaid people st STINC, a handful of witnesses, and a select few others

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  • I'm not a complete ghost figure.
  • I never suggested or implied I would build something. That is not the role of a witness by the time I became one (witness rewards were drastically reduced to emphasize this).
  • "take their money elsewhere?" can be seen in the data I put out every week. You may notice my accounts aren't there.
  • I've been actively educating people about cryptocurrency with my content here for 3 years. I wouldn't call that "minimal effort." My experience which you cited earlier has value. I've earned that experience.
  • After about a year or so on Steem, I put up a witness account after numerous people asked me to please do so because they wanted a witness they knew and could trust. Blaming me for how voters vote doesn't make sense. Are you saying I should shut down my witness node and if so... why?

If it's so broken, why are you still here? Why still participate?

I don't think there will ever be a fair value distribution system anywhere in cryptocurrency space. Either you have cheap electricity and technical ability to mine, you get votes in DPoS for being popular, you run an ICO, you ninja/pre mine, or you buy your way in with POS and earn even more.

As much as we all like to complain about the unfairness of STEEM distribution (I do a fair amount of complaining on that topic myself), there was no ICO and anyway can, in theory, earn at least something by doing something which might actually be considered valuable to the world (curation, content creation, etc), unlike most other cryptocurrencies which are just making pointless hashes.

You just continually say that it isn't the role of a witness to build something. It just reminds me of someone who sees a stack of papers fell off of a table in an office and instead of picking them up they say that isn't their job.

A better analogy of what is happening is when a kid's dad is the coach of a sports team so that kid is automatically playing all the time even if he isn't as good.

Kids start leaving that team and playing another sport and everyone just talks shit about the situation over there.

That is a lot of what has happened to STEEM. People just see that everything is an unfair joke and keep pulling their money out.

It is like you are oblivious to this.

My suggestion would be to either build something or use part of your stack to commission others to build something.

I powered down from 10,000 SP down to 2,000 SP and put it in other cryptos. Now from what I continue to see I will likely power down to 200 SP just to keep a pinky toe in over here and move the rest.

One of the only reasons I'm still here is because I'm trying to get a little something out to lessen the blow and I can't power down right now while I'm in Cali.

People just aren't impressed with the situation with most of the Witnesses, are annoyed with Stinc, and don't really see any future here.

I guess you could continue to just be one of the few really stacking anything from this place.

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You just continually say that it isn't the role of a witness to build something.

Because it isn't. This has been discussed at length and as I already told you, a previous hardfork change to reduce witness pay made it clear. You saying otherwise doesn't change this reality. It's also why HF21 includes the SPS.

That said, different witnesses add value in different ways. I certainly appreciate those who are building things to add value to Steem, but I'm also frustrated to see witnesses like @jesta outside of the top 20. Look at how many awesome things he built over the years and still maintains. Why is he not being supported? Because he's also involved in EOS projects? I think it's a great loss to Steem to lose someone like him.

Ultimately it's down to the token holders to decide which witnesses they want and why. I've been helping people understand cryptocurrency and STEEM for three years with my content here. Some find that valuable. Maybe that explains why they vote for me. Ultimately, it's up to them, not me. I'm just doing my thing and people are voting.

If you think I'm oblivious to the problems of Steem, you haven't followed what I've written about. I also don't waste time complaining about things I can't directly change. I also know there are no easy, quick fix answers. Many strong arguments to move in one direction have equally strong arguments to move in the opposite direction. Now that we have Steem Engine to experiment with different tokens, different interfaces based on those tokens, and different reward models, I think we'll start to see some interesting things happen. We (hopefully) won't be as reliant on Steemit, inc to make changes. If the SPS includes projects which have great upside potential for Steem, I would certainly consider funding them above and beyond the SPS inflation.

I appreciate your suggestion to build something. I could ask you or anyone else to build something also. Witnesses run nodes. Product builders build products. Sometimes they are the same people, sometimes not.

Congratulations on cashing out your Steem to more profitable cryptocurrencies. I mostly have not because I do believe in the long-term value of this chain.

It was agreed upon by the rest of the circle jerk crew that witnesses can just chill and passively stack coins ? Did @freedom decide that for you guys?

Again the people with the technical competence to also be doing the same thing aren't amused by STEEM and all the BS.

By continuing what is going on is just making the problem worse because even the people who have stuck around and saw potential in the project can't really recommend it to anyone.

I tell my YouTube following. How many EOS? How many Litecoins? How many Monero? And I tell them that Steem is a bad investment at this point.

Asking me to create anything for STEEM doesn't really make sense. I have never really made any money with STEEM. Also I was building a multiplayer game for STEEM and have a website for it and all that but stopped because to go the distance I was going to have to hire other developers and I weighed out the pros and cons and decided that just keeping more money in crypto opposed to spending money to pay developers to finish this thing made more sense.

The same was true for developing the same thing for EOS. I felt I was better off letting the value of my crypto go up.

The proposal funds will for sure go to those of you in the circle jerk power positions which will be lucrative in the short term but will further implode STEEM and alienate more of the community members.

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People building centralized websites on the blockchain de-values of coin. Steemit devalues, d.tube devalues, steempeak devalues. I've begged all the developers to build decentralized applications but they build capps. Centralized applications. What's the point?

Building a real dapp is hard.

@anyx has some great posts on this:



Also, people want to control things they create so they can take the profits. That's why I've been focused on helping promote DAC technology via eosDAC. I think DACs are the future so that everyone can be an owner, employee, and customer all at the same time. That's a truly decentralized solution. Apps, tokens, communities, non-profits, companies, governments... I think they can all benefit from forming a DAC.

I hope some day Steem becomes a DAC. https://steemit.com/steemdac/@lukestokes/steemdac-a-plan-we-can-start-today-to-decentralize-steem-governance


Realmente este hardfork21, no apoya a los nuevos usuarios su apoyo va dirigido a los curadores , bien es cierto que ayuda a escoger mejor la calidad de las publicaciones a votar, pero hay a autores que merecen un buen voto y esto desmotiva y por lo tanto la afluencia de usuarios abandonan y el movimiento de la criptomoneda asumo que también baja en el mercado. Compartire esta publicación

The point of rewarding curation is to, hopefully, reward people who find those authors who deserve a good vote (especially new ones) and ensure they receive it. Curation rewards are much higher if you find a great post early before anyone else compared to just voting on the same author over and over again. I'm hoping curation services powered by real proof of brain will become popular so that good authors can get discovered and rewarded.

For everyone saying Steem is undervalued, if you aren't buying it, why is that? Is Steem boring? Does it lack potential? Or are you broke?

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I put in ~9 BTC years ago when Steem was around $3 / $4. I can believe what I want, but when the market tells me I'm wrong, eventually I have to listen to the market.

HF21 is extremely bad. People who put in the effort to make blog posts get their rewards cuts. People just upvoting get more. Even whales get increased curation rewards just for clicking on an upvote button. Maybe the best strategy for everyone is power up and delegate their complete SP out to get automatic rewards and do nothing. Have they gone mad?

Thanks for sharing your views.

Do efforts on blog posts equate to value? If some people work harder than others on a post, does that make the most more valuable? How are you defining value here? If a post is considered "valuable" does that value change the price of the STEEM token?

"Just upvoting" with a non-linear curve no longer means they will get a meaningful curation reward. They have to upvote stuff other people agree is valuable. That means effective curation. That means more generally-accepted-as-valuable content rising to the trending page. That, hopefully, means more investment in Steem and Steem Power by brands who want to be associated with this high quality content site.

Delegating SP to effective curation systems would actually be a good use of SP. Some might say it's a better use than posting valueless content and self-voting it to get a reward. One fills the blockchain with crap, the other improves content discovery and has the potential to make Steem look like a better investment.

Edit: btw, your "have you gone mad?" statement fits nicely into the post I linked to first in my article: https://steemit.com/relationships/@lukestokes/we-disagree-are-you-ignorant-immoral-or-stupid

Well, I see you still have a really different opinion. Nothing stops bots/people from finding the most profitable posts to upvote to get the most rewards. Got nothing to do with the value of a post. So we will see that the top popular bloggers get the most votes. People will cluster around those. Newbies will have a lot of difficulties getting popular when blogging. We will have more a "winner takes it all" thing. Self votes also become more profitable I think?

I do not really believe most people buy Steem to make Steemit better (it's a pity, but that's the case I think). Most just invest in cryptos that will give them the highest ROI. If you delegate SP out, those people/bots will in a lot of cases 'optimize' their votes to get the highest ROI.

You're highlighting many of the reasons why I was in support of a linear rewards curve. Unfortunately it didn't work out that way and it was just gamed even more. Yes, the little guys will get very little. It will go back to being more like a lottery as originally designed and as outlined in my post. I do think more of the reward going to curation combined with the ease of downvotes (and hopefully tooling to make content to downvote easier to discover) have the potential to change things up this time. We'll see.

It's not really a lottery when there is near-linearity among everything above 16 STEEM. It should be quite different from the original n^2.

Thanks for clarifying. I need to go back and re-read the deep dive post on the curve change. I'm not the best at the maths.

I have never downvoted anyone. In some cases down voting might be a good option. However I have mostly seen that downvoting is being misused. Like "oh you don't share my opinion, well I will downvote, and if you continue posting the same thing, I will continue downvoting everything you put on Steemit".

Yep, that happens, but so does people extracting thousands of dollars by self-voting and voting via sock puppets on completely useless (often spam) content. Just because most people don't see it, doesn't mean it doesn't happen. It's usually done on older posts as comments to avoid being noticed. People complain about low rewards or a low STEEM price, but often they don't understand what causes those things. People extracting value from the Steem rewards pool is a big part of that. At least vengeance based downvotes can be countered with upvotes.

I just read this, please tell me this is not true:

Under HF20 a post receiving $1 in upvotes would give the author $0.75.

Under HF21:

The reward pool will be 10% lower to fund the SPS.
The CLRC will reduce the payout by a further 40% compared to linear.
The payout to the author will then be 50% (rather than 75%).
I make this: $1 * 90% * (1 - 40%) * 50% = 0.27 under HF21

So broadly: $0.75 under HF20 vs $0.27 under HF21, a reduction of about two-thirds for smaller payouts.

If the $1 vote was a single vote from a single account, then yes, the non-linear curve would give a different result by design. This will hopefully prevent comment farming and self-voting we see which leaves more of the rewards pool for valuable content. If it was a number of votes, then I think you'll begin to approach the same amount as previously. See the deep dive for details and examples: https://steemit.com/steem/@vandeberg/reward-curve-deep-dive

The end result is, yes, I think the author rewards per post will go down. If that's too much of a problem, people may want to try other experiments like https://palnet.io or do what I suggested in my post and hide the $$$ to figure out what motivates you to be here.

There is no trivial way for a bot to find the most profitable posts to upvote because the curation algorithm is designed such that voting on anything is equally profitable at any given point in time. To tell the difference requires anticipating how others are going to vote which in turn requires evaluating some aspects of the post. People and perhaps some forms of AI can do this, but simple bots can not.

Self-votes are not any more profitable, there is actually no change there except: a) small payouts are penalized, which will include a lot of small self-votes in practice, and b) with cheaper downvotes it is hopefully more likely that undeserved self-votes will be downvoted (though it is not guaranteed this will happen)

But let's say there are a few popular bloggers, wouldn't that mean that people with automatically votes more and more for a few of the top bloggers to get the highest payout, even when a certain post is garbage?

First of all, it goes linear after about 16 STEEM, so based on current prices, once the payout goes above $6, piling on more votes does not increase the payout on one such post more than another.

Second, even generating a high payout for a blogger doesn't directly benefit you as a voter, unless you are the blogger and are self-voting, which is a different issue.

it is hopefully more likely that undeserved self-votes will be downvoted (though it is not guaranteed this will happen)

I think we will need easy-to-use tools for finding these posts and downvoting them. Without that, it's unlikely people will spend time doing this and these changes kind of need this to happen for this to actually improve things around here.

I don't think there is any real shortcut apart from people being willing to subjectively use their downvotes on payouts that just aren't worth it to Steem to be getting paid what they are. Which very well may not happen due to a variety of reasons.

When I say self-voting (and vote selling) that is a shorthand for posters opportunistically extracting more than their contributions are worth. There are many ways for that to happen other than the obvious and literal self-voting that can be easy found by tools, including multiple accounts and sock puppets, vote trading, purchased votes, games, social engineering, etc. and this is not at all a complete list.

You're right, the time and effort (as well as why bother to get involved) factor is a major consideration.

that can be easy found by tools

Know of any projects actively working on this we might support through SPS?

Maybe my comment wasn't clear. I do not think this can be helped much by tools.

There are probably some existing apps that identify literal self votes but I don't think that is very useful and I wouldn't support much SPS funding for that. If we did build a super-duper self-vote finder, then milkers will just get more clever and the investment will have been largely wasted. There is no substitute for voting based on value, which is almost entirely subjective, or at least requires "intelligence" to assess.

People, users! User are giving its value. Have you noticed that the total market cap is static, 120-130M. Why? Because the number of users is the same.

It's true for every single social network, steemit as well.

*don't tell me that Steemit is not Steem. Just don't.

"Just don't" because you don't want to hear it or because it's not true or because... why? It's fundamentally important to understand the differences between Steemit and STEEM and the cryptocurrency nature of this system that provides rewards in real tokens of value. Just saying "we need more users" is like saying we need air to breathe. It doesn't provide much useful information.

Other social media platforms do not provide rewards. Those that have tried, have failed (I can name them if you want). This is fundamentally different and that needs to be appreciated if we're to come to any form of consensus on how to improve things.


I was a supporter of trying the linear curve becuase and in the beginning it was exciting to see everyone getting some little bit of reward. Unfortunately it was too easy to game the system.

Yeah, and this was pointed out many times by people who were not in favor of linear rewards for precisely this reason (and there were other reasons too). The rationale was questioned long before the HF was officially proposed and implemented and Steemit, Inc. was asked directly why linear was suddenly preferred, in light of the previous rationale for non-linear. Those questions were pretty much entirely ignored.

But I'm curious...

How did it take two full years of economic and social destruction through a variety of abuses and exploits for this to come up again and finally be addressed? That is the truly mind-boggling aspect to all of this. What has Steem's "leadership" been doing, other than completely ignoring every call to scrap linearity, as well as other terrible protocols?

I would say that our consensus witnesses have been mostly derelict...again. We still can't even get much insight from most of them about the current proposed fork. Meanwhile, I've written a post for each of the two components of this fork, engaged on other people's posts about it, and I'm not even allowed in the witness/investor/cool people club chat where these discussions allegedly take place. Isn't that kind of ironic?

Steem is a blockchain supporting social interaction. In the three years I’ve been here I’ve had a number of negative social interactions with you personally. I like many of our ideas, just not how you express them or how you’ve treated people in the past you’ve disagreed with (from my perspective). If you acted in a more socially positive way, I think you’d get more support as a witness. I was surprised and grateful not to see any direct personal attacks in your comment here.

I’m not trying to be a dick pointing this out, I’m just giving my perspective. I hope it’s well received.

And yes, the Steemit leadership hasn’t really put a focus on improving the economics of STEEM or on improving Steemit.com. Hopefully the SPS will create a structure for the community to move things forward directly. Maybe we can start with people using the community GitHub repo instead of the Steemit, Inc one.

As for the linear curve, I do think it could have worked if more people downvoted and more people cared about fairness than greed. The previous curve was kind of ridiculous with thousand dollar posts on one hand and quality posts getting pennies. I think iteration, change, and experimentation is good. Let’s do it quicker next time.

You have been decentralised.

Yeah. Decentralized by the centralizers.

The funny thing here is - Luke seemingly doesn’t even realize that I was also (actually, primarily) referring to him and his witness cohorts when I refer to our “leadership.” He also conveniently ignored the direct mention of consensus witnesses, which he is and has been for a long time.

But it’s cool that he uses his typical passive-aggressiveness to give me “his perspective” about my typed internet tone. As usual, he missed my point about irony and used the opportunity to try to marginalize once again - as most of our “leadership” has done in the community for three years.

Isn’t it a lovely culture that they’ve cultivated here?

The more things change...

Centralisation by Accumulation isn't all that much better than having an unelected Supreme Soviet. Having both rolled into one is fatal.

Steemit, Inc has wasted too much time perpertuaing an essentially discouraging economic model for too long. All my belief in Steem (and Steemit) was shattered with the advent of bid bots and their huge success. Steemit, Inc leadership seemed to be uninterested at thar time. Many people left. I did too. I won't have read this post but for our facebook connection. This is the first post I have read about HF21. I'd read a dozen more to arrive at an opinion and see what my Steem holdings can expect in the future. I had read almost all the posts linked within this so it was easier to finish reading it in one go.

"What makes STEEM valuable?"

I don't know, but I sure hope we find out soon! :(

In other words you are in favor of HF21.

Yes, but context matters and most people don't realize that.

I agree context matters (I am also in favor of the SPS & the EIP). To be honest I am tired of the complaints, most of them come from people that are used to getting their rewards without bringing any monetary value to the steem token. I am not going to name anyone but several authors that I followed started to bitch a couple of months ago about the platform but when you look at their wallets they cashed out tens of thousands worth of value (in USD). I say good riddance to them.

I did not invest as much as you did but what I did purshase was what I could allow myself given my financial situation. I still believe that as long as we have a core group of people that are willing to work to improve this place we will see it reflected in the price down the road. It could turn out to be a mistake but nothing is guaranteed in life.

I'm tired of the complaints as well. One of the things that really frustrates me is an entitlement mentality. Maybe my responses to @nonameslefttouse in the comments here were not as nice as they could be, but I was picking up on that same attitude of complaining mixed with "I've got it all figured out and everything would be better if people would just listen to me" which, to me, smells like entitlement and gets under my skin.

I'm more interested in people building stuff which creates value, not in complaints or mere opinions.

Thanks for taking another shot at me here.

I've got it all figured out and everything would be better if people would just listen to me

You're a poor judge of character. I thought I might have some answers. Thought it would be okay to share, and to come and talk. My frustrations stem from encounters like this, where someone like you feels it okay to throw me under the bus. You don't like complaining and opinions, as you offer your opinion and complain about me. If I said you were being disrespectful again, would you once again deny it, or would you, this time, be able to see yourself?

@lukestokes, I don't know if my understanding is right but in my opinion some aspects are really powerful:


Definitely these beings should empowered because they are developing Working Product and Ecosystem.


Large stake holders can use their stake to curate valuable content or projects which will inturn add value to those content which will help in boosting of Site Rankings And Visibility.

Bid Bots

Promotion is ancient method to promote particular Product, Project or Idea but here we all saw that, unfortunately reward pool consumed by lot of content which doesn't had true value for that much of rewards. Hopefully this change will bring the true idea of use of Bidbots and that is, Promotion of Project, Product and Idea.

Content Creation And Curation

In my opinion hype transfered different knowledge about this platform and many pursuing this platform as just limited to the Blogging. But this is Social Media and here every Network have equal space when they hold value. At the end of the day, at this time if we just not see our own benefits and focus towards Steem's growth then in my opinion there will be time when rewards will not matter that much because masses will see the value and we all going to become pillars of future giant Technology who stood strong and Transformed and Adapted all the changes no matter how much painful it was by keeping all Human Emotions aside which is generated in the competitive world.

Wishing you an wonderful time ahead and stay blessed.

Posted using Partiko Android

HF21 How long will it be placed?

Sorry, I don't quite understand your question. Do you mean when will HF21 be released? Keep an eye on @steemitblog for updates.

Yes I wanted to ask that

My one disagreement with HF21 is the downvote pool. This will only further arm those who are abusing downvoting already. If one does not downvote now then they are not likely to start. If one does downvote now then this will mean more amunnition to do so.

Downvotes should cost more not less so as to cost abusers more in my opinion.

It's a tough situation in that people extracting rewards which don't increase the value of STEEM keeps investors away and keeps the narrative going that Steem is just a scam for scammers. The downvote, in theory, is supposed to prevent that via proof of brain.

If people abuse the downvote and remove potential rewards from those who are contributing content that actually could increase the value of STEEM, then that's certainly a problem. I don't know how much that actually happens (since it would be counter productive to the SP holder to do so), but I do think people take flags and downvotes personally and get very emotionally upset about it (even enough to leave). This, I think, keeps major brands and well-known content producers away. That, to me, is the real problem with the flag/downvote. It creates a negative emotional experience.

If everyone was able to get over their ego and not worry so much about it, maybe it would be okay. :)

Maybe just removing the "click here to show this low rating post" aspect of Steemit.com might help.