Open letter to Justin Sun

in #openletter4 years ago (edited)

I've never understood why people write open letters to politicians, ceos or celebrities. I'm pretty much sure they don't look at them anyway. But here I am, trying to address a person wealthy enough to have home stories in magazines I don't read. Maybe it reaches him.

Dear @justinsunsteemit,

that was a rough start. Maybe you had a closer look at what you own now, and even if not I want to congratulate you for your purchase!
You are now a huge stakeholder of one of the most promising blockchain technologies out there. In the AMA you told us how advanced TRON is, but seriously, nothing that platform offers impresses anyone here. So let's talk STEEM.

The project has a rough history. It started out with a way too high inflation, and the people working on blockchain code continued with pushing weird ideas changing stuff. The community often felt bewildered by those changes, but for the sake of doing at least something most of these things were pushed through. There were a lot of promises for better communication, and during the last months it looked like it's really improving. Then the Steemit Inc. sale happened...

You are in a crucial position now. While the tech is great, the community is the biggest asset here. Getting both under one hood, combined with your capabilities, can lead us to formerly unknown heights. On the other hand, if you continue the way it went before, the decline will most certainly continue.

It's not difficult, but there are a few things you have to take care of imo:

  • Steemit Inc. stake was mined early under better conditions than anyone else could get, under the premise to be used for development and onboarding. There has been a lot of mishandling of these funds. Please consult with the community how to handle them responsibly.
  • The STEEM blockchain is a different product to the blockchains you work with. There are no smart contracts by design, it is a database for text/json storage. This creates flexibility for app developers, and the diversity of apps compared to what i.e. TRON have to offer should be notable. Cherish this!
  • Development on STEEM by Steemit Inc. just started to get more open. This path should be continued and prioritized even higher.

These are the absolute basics. If these ground rules are met, you will find us to be a very diverse and welcoming community. Don't make quick decisions or let single people tell you all that's wrong, but take the time to get a grasp of the whole ecosystem. You'll be amazed.

Looking forward to your ideas and contributions,

// EDIT:
I tweeted this, help it get some visibility if you're there


Great letter and I do agreed on most. Hope he gets the msg.

nothing that platform offers impresses anyone here

That's harsh XD

I have been a part of many transactions involving new ownership of a company I worked with. Never have these transactions worked out well for me.

Luckily for us, this is not new ownership of the blockchain. Just a section of it that has been underperforming for quite a while.

Love the open letter and I am betting it makes it under his nose. This is an investment and he has a wealth of information, opinion and passion related to a large investment.

Gonna be interesting and potentially more fun than it already is.

Posted using Partiko iOS

It’s good.

In the AMA you told us how advanced TRON is, but seriously, nothing that platform offers impresses anyone here.

Really? I think that is a bit harsh and maybe a bit presumptuous too if you're claiming to speak for all of us. If this is the attitude we are taking then we really are going nowhere. Crypto Tribalism wins again...?

The rest of your letter is good though. Thanks for sharing :)

I was talking about the points he mentioned in the AMA - scalability and dapps. Nothing of that is better than what steem offers from a technical standpoint.

Hopefully someone can find possible synergies between the two, but, from a technical standpoint again, it's hard to imagine for me right now.

This is not tribalism. I'm absolutely blockchain agnostic when the use case fits. And I hold TRX myself, I just can't find anything to do with it besides staking and looking out for the superrepresentative that pays me the most for my vote.

Do you play Blackjack? :)

I don't own any TRX but I have been looking into it since this announcement and am well invested in other Smart Contract blockchains like ETH and EOS. I do like the idea of having proper Smart Contracts implemented natively on STEEM so from a technical standpoint I will have to disagree with you.

I don't gamble, but I made the first dice app on steem. It was running well over a year, there is no need for smart contracts for provably fair gambling. The max risk due to the app doing the transactions centralized is what you set in a bet, and 3-6s later you and everybody else know if you've been scammed.
I stopped it because too many people lost a lot of money, and I originally only coded it as a proof of concept. I don't regard gambling as something that needs more platforms, people can lose their money in enough places already. And even if you think it's beneficial, it's already possible on steem.

The idea of native smart contracts on steem has been discussed and discarded long ago. We already start to see the scalability problems decentralized calculations bring with them on both ETH and EOS, and a lot of people saw them coming from the start. As long as there's no good solution to them it's wasted effort.

//update: Even ignoring the last paragraph - where was anything announced that new features would be implemented into steem? So far all his talk has been about merging with TRON, including STEEM. His exchange announced to swap STEEM to a TRON token, and this announcement is still up!

If he comes up with plans to enhance STEEM everyone will happily discuss his ideas. But we certainly have bigger issues than smart contracts, which would have to be developed completely from the ground up anyway as steem and TRON are completely different protocols, with seperate codebases.

Gambling is just one use case for Smart Contracts and it's arguably the simplest one. More sophisticated DApps will (and already are) being developed. Every blockchain has scalability issues so thats not really enough justification to kybosh the idea, but I am not going to argue with the STEEM tribe about it so lets not.

I know there was once a plan to upgrade STEEM to run on EOS tech when Dan was around and that got killed off a while back with the whole executive schism but the idea of upgrading the underlying blockchain tech to support Smart Contracts is not out of the question for me. The question is, would it really be worth the effort and expense for Justin to push that?

Personally I think migrating to TRON to realise the synergetic benefits and then potentially forking out if there's a governance problem is not a bad strategy to get the underlying blockchain tech for STEEM ugraded. Maybe it's too risky and disruptive to the business models of the STEEM tribe to really consider though.

The existing use cases are well covered by ETH, EOS and TRON. They are not congested by these though, they are congested by gambling and bots.

The concept of steem is not decentralized execution of code. We are lightyears away from having scalability issues. The codebase of steem is the most efficient out there, we are prepared for tens of thousands of transactions per second. Smart contracts would change that, and I strongly doubt the witnesses would take that risk for the chain for something that doesn't cover the mission statement.

EOS runs on steem tech. I don't know what you think you know, but there wouldn't be an upgrade about that. Dan played with the idea of implementing smart contracts, but then moved this to an own project. He took over the codebase of steem, since then there have been several huge updates on steem itself as well as on the code used by both.

I don't know what you understand migrating to mean. So far all info we got was that STEEM would become a TRON token, which would kill off this chain, completely ignore the governance structure of the project, and would by no means be an upgrade! The tech base here is solid, and a move to TRON would never be possible without huge modifications to the TRON core. It would also be too late then to fork off, as a fork would mean forking the current codebase, not TRON.

As soon as this question is out of the room, there is no need for any sort of tribalism. But yes, telling a decentralized community that you will now decide their future will bring people together and make use of the governance tools they have.

Ok.....I'm not that interested in arguing with you, nor of defending what Justin has done or even is planning on doing.

I am only interested in avoiding yet another shit-show and seeing STEEM make the most of its opportunities. I think I'm wasting my time though, sadly. Good luck to you all.

Now you're just being a troll. If anyone wasted his time in this conversation it's me, explaining you things you don't have the slightest idea of. But sure, hold your opinion holy and ignore the reality. Everything will be great, it's Justin!

This conversation had a great starting point. (It's just that I come late here for voting.) Not to speak about where it had gone then. Lot's of smart contracts are done with Steem. Not via Steem. But that's not a point here. So I keep it as is. Steem on!

Oh, btw: Thanks for the open letter. I could not have read it when it hasn't been open - no matter whether the addressee finds it.

I thought the letter was short, balanced and to the point. @buggedout

You seem to read one sentence in a slightly biased way... and then carried on the conversation. It is unfortunately sometimes even a good conversation get imbalanced somehow and runs amok.

I don't think you and @pharesim are in much of a disagreement to begin with. Anyways I hope you gather your thoughts. Last few days emotions are running high. It is normal. But please let us slow down and think about the facts. Not much has actually happened, and it is highly unlikely anything else will happen anytime soon.

Did you miss the part where I said :-

The rest of your letter is good

I'm not the only person who thought that the sentence I picked out was harsh. In my experience if you are trying to reach out to someone like this you don't insult them (or their project) in the first paragraph.

I know that it will take time for this to play out. I only need 13 weeks.

I didn't actually. I that's why I wrote:

I don't think you and @pharesim are in much of a disagreement to begin with.

I am saying that you are mostly in agreement. You are also correct that it will take time for this to play out. Whether you will need 13 weeks or more is up to your personal choice and risk tolerance.

I can personally tell you that I have 2 full orders of magnitude (and more) money to loose compared to you and I am staying.

Those 3 points seem very well thought out. I support this opinion.

We have to consider that people like Justin don't have the time for reading posts and responding to things unless it is their true passion to engage with individuals. So the key really is to be surrounded by the right, small handful of people.

I can only hope that's the case, because we can't rely on him to understand the entire ecosystem in a year, let alone a week - In the same way we can't expect Trump to understand the US political system in intimate detail. He just needs the explanations at the precise time its necessary to make an action.

Fingers crossed he knows what he's doing in this regard


Not bad. I think the first thing Justin needs is a trustable interpreter.

Between, I followed you on twitter and gave the post more visibility

Great letter, hope it will arrive at the right door!

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