The rise of the clones (steem clones)

in philosophy •  6 months ago
The interesting week that just passed in many ways has given these emerging clone projects a special opportunity to add Steemians to their ranks. To me this is not something alarming, not even a little bit, but I don't discard the concerns some people are expressing on the matter.

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Some History

I think there is a considerable amount of people that would be surprised to know that STEEM clones are nothing new. Yes, they've been around for a while and most of them have already lived their life cycle. That is, they opened shop, failed to take root, and closed down.

I found a very interesting post by a well known steemian who was surprised to find clones of STEEM two years ago, but was not worried either. I must confess I did not even know about these projects and two of them are literally forked githubs, but this tells me that my current position on this matter is probably not wrong after all.

But things are different now, right?

I guess that is where some people stand at the moment. Since those early days of STEEM cloning, we've gone through so many changes, so many updates, that I'm sure if one of those old clones was still operational, we would struggle to find our way around it.

But to answer the question here; Are things really that different? I mean, we do have a collection of information, a historic record of human behavior if you will, right here on this blockchain. So, you could say that someone attempting to clone STEEM would be wise enough to study in detail what changes worked and which ones have not.

In other words, it's not entirely impossible that a clone would "remain" (not correct but indulge me) on an older fork with little to no change to it, with the idea that at that point STEEM had it right. I see this as completely plausible, but it still does not convince me entirely.

Elements of nostalgia aside, and frustrating screw ups we may have committed, at every step of the way the upgrades that have been done to this blockchain, have been implemented with one goal in mind; scaling, so if a clone does not address this issue, it's bound to find its proverbial bottleneck sooner or later.

What about loyalties?

I'm somewhat pragmatic about this as much as possible, even though I've been one to struggle with myopic idealism. True loyalty cannot be imposed or demanded. It's actually an oxymoron to even utter these words, but I think I get the point. If someone is more dedicated to the growth of another network, then it means they won't be working on STEEM as hard, thus it's going to "hurt steem".

There is some truth to that assertion, specially if aggressive recruiting begins. That is, prominent leaders starting to badmouth STEEM and promise greener pastures for those who would like to partake of the exodus. But, let me ask you this; Has this not been happening the whole time? I mean, I can't even count the amount of times I've been told to leave, to stop wasting my time here, that I'm nothing but a pawn being used by the stake holders to make this place look legit, I've seriously lost count at this point. So, when crypto Moses shows up, It literally feels like it's just one more prophet.

People are just people, and everyone needs to find their place, their calling. I can empathize with those who feel like the STEEM blockchain has not received them well, and have chosen to look for greener pastures, and I don't judge them. But, I would never demand loyalty, as I've said, I find that to be quite ridiculous.

Will any of the Clones make it?

Of course I don't know which one of them will, but it's more than likely than some of them will survive the crossing of the pond. As a matter of fact, just yesterday I wrote down some ideas that I believe are pivotal in the success or failure of projects, and they apply very much to these clones too.

Their leadership, the long term plans, etc, are probably the only things that will matter in the end. I have no doubt that simply cloning a github and slapping a new logo and call it a day, is a recipe for long term failure. But, some of the clones that have risen are proposing some very interesting differences like it's the case with

As far as I know none of the clones of STEEM at the moment, or even back when the first generation of clones spawned are being traded in a platform with heavy volume. So, it's not easy for us to gauge anything like public interest or demand, but this is bound to change very soon as a few of them have announced that trading will begin before the year closes.

What about wasting time?

I've spoken to a few Steemians who are too worried about spending time on a network that will never take off. Yes, that is completely possible and I would never be one to say otherwise. However, it's also pragmatic to never put your eggs in one single basket.

Everyone who knows me, knows that I dedicate myself to the improvement of this network, and have no intention of changing my current path. However, there is no harm on creating an account on trybe, which I have, and posting some articles on there as well.

Being the author of these thoughts, there is no harm or plagiarism in spreading them around, and funnily enough, as I've learnt more about other projects, some of my ideas about STEEM and it's future have also matured. As I keep on saying, perspective is one of our most valuable tools.

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After the HF issue I saw quite a few people pumping whaleshares and weku but I don't get it, whats the value of using these platform when this one has hardly made it through its growing pains. or is it just making sure you have a horse in every race?


Yeah, the difference between us and Whaleshares/Weku/Scorum/etc. is that we're dealing with the problems now that they will be dealing with in the future. Maybe they'll handle them better by learning from our example, but you certainly won't avoid them by switching.


I honestly dunno about weku, though checked their block refreshment and it is bad. I have superlimited time so justvon steemit and yes whaleshares because they were the first discord community to help me on steem. So I am over there because some of the steemian friends I made are there. Not thinkng I can get bigger, I am not ambitious and whatever growth I have on steemit was made organically. Not leaving steem at all unless I leave all blockchains and crypto all together and could happen if only cos my time is limited. @meno knows I am ver committed to do things right


Pretty much and I'm with Poly on this one, once they start getting real blockchain bloat, they will have to come up with ways to deal with it, or they just won't make it.

The hardware requirements for nodes just get ridiculous.


Thanks @tcpolymath, @yidneth and @meno for the pretty interesting feedback!

Also the % of people using Steem clones who are not steemians I would assume is a very small percentage and probably a lot of cross posting going on then! So its not only a replica in tech and design but content too so are you really missing out on much?

From the chatter ive heard about it a lot of what attracts people is seeing the $ value attached to payouts that are so high, rewards sound high because people are basing it on steemit value/dollar exchange. I mean who knows if or when these tokens will ever be worth anything but i'm hearing people go I got 20 Weku Dollars for a post I got 10 cents for when I posted on steemit.

Thanks but 20 dollars of nothing is still nothing. I'll sit back for now and If it does blow up I'm happy to be told I was wrong and become a late adopter!


I'm going to stick into Steemit for sure and because It's the one I've invested the more time to build a feed in. I like a consistent feed. I like whaleshares because they have some slightly different features I like (shares apart from your feed) and because on my first post in steemit they kind of welcomed me in, so logically those people were my steemian friends and it's "NOT" my split and I don't think they see it as a split themselves but I'm here on steemit cos of the people and on ws for the same thing... the payouts coudl be nothing you're right... And now I see more and more and more... my time is limited, I don't even want them to be exact clones of my content, I'm going to upcycle yes, but probably will choose a different approach... I'll see
haven't checked weku but saw the blocks refresh not often and I don't think it's sustainable long term... might be wrong though.

I started writing a post about the same topic yesterday. Just because you can create a fork of Steem (MIT license) doesn't mean that you should - unless you want to make some quick scammy money.. The only case when it would make sense to fork Steem is if you had a team of very competent developers and you believe that your ideas of the future of Steem are not possible to align with the ideas of Steemit Inc and the Steem witnesses - let's say you had a team like and wanted to create smart contracts on Steem, but @ned doesn't want you to. Even with all what has been going wrong in the past, Steemit Inc still has one of the best and most experienced teams world-wide for development of a DPOS Blockchain.

Most of the forks talked about so much these days - weku and smoke network to name just two - only do some cosmetical changes to Condenser to make their frontend look different from Steem (it still feels exactly the same!), but they leave the backend the same because they have no blockchain developers - if they were serious about their project, they would be off much better with a dApp on Steem and an SMT in a few months. And then there are projects like Whaleshares that actually make some small changes to the forked Blockchain (but mostly just to their UI) and claim to solve Steem's problems. I actually made an account there to know what I write about, but some of their claims are just ridiculous:

Another "YUGE" change on Whaleshares... 😮
There are no megawhales 🐋 on Whaleshares like you may have encountered on STEEMIT, and there is no delegation to create even more megawhale-type users either. Currently, the largest "whales" you might encounter on Whaleshares may hold around 1% of the initial 21 Million WLS Supply.

Two of Steem's largest and best known whales, @ranchorelaxo and @hendrikdegrote, both hold less than 1% of the Steem supply and look how much they are able to influence the rewards pool.. But I guess they are not megawhales then. Ok, there are a few bid bots that use delegations, but most importantly, delegations enable dApps to start off - be in by a delegation bought on minnowbooster or by a delegation from Stinc or another whale. Whaleshares uses some controversies of Steem and tries to do better, but it will never have an infrastructure in terms of developers and dApps anywhere close to Steem nor do I believe that by simply disabling helpful but features that can also be used for reward pool abuse such as delegations is a solution.

And the most important thing that these forks claiming to fix the rewards pool overlook is that Steem is much more than - there is a whole Steem universe and with SMTs, the rewards pool distribution for dApps will differ significantly from the Steem rewards pool.


imo the most promising one is whaleshares atm, but then again, we can't predict human psychology and as much as we hate the idea, greed is an element that is necessary to bring speculators into the fold.


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While we have clones we don't yet have hardforks, at least as far as I know. (The real kind.) That's going to be the really interesting challenge.


I think golos is the only real hardfork, don't quote me on that, but the project is pretty much dead these days.

Our local community is currently lost at what to do because losing a major whale supporter really dampened the spirits of everyone.

There are still others who continue to post but there simply is less enthusiasm to be active and post.

The thing with anything new people want to be the pioneers and trailblazers in the hopes of being able to build up their reputation and earnings as fast as they can and then cash out and look for the next big thing.

This is a thing that is currently a problem in the cryptosphere in my opinion as they are constantly looking for the next Bitcoin explosion and the dreams of lambos and taking it easy for the rest of their lives.

This is where the get rich quick makes people want to gamble and yet also for others they really do not have a choice and shitposting and spamming becomes a way of life because they can earn without the mental capacity to think or have effort.

You know I am still here albeit not as active but I did try other platforms yet for me Steem still retains its First Mover Advantage it just needs to push out Communities and SMT now lol

Greetings, @meno. Very important topic to discuss. I have seen many people open accounts on other platforms, especially WEKU, and even though they can post content they already had on Steemit, i find it stressful to attend both fronts. I mean, it is not just posting and collecting, especially in a new platform. I find it stressful enough to socialize here :)
and i mean this in the best sense. There are a lot of interesting people here whose attention, support and insights one'd llike to have.It's not easy to build lasting relations and I don't see how "partitioning" (if the concept is valid here) can help.
I get the whole dont-put-all-your-eggs-in-one-basket thing, but we are talking about full time dedication to many things at the same time.
I think I'll stick here for whatever it takes for it to take off or collapse or for me to afford being connected.


I think choogirl kind of nailed it... its a bit of a gamble, but some have the hope they can be the whales there, since they missed the boat here. It could happen, it could.... they could also be whales of a worthless token, which defeats the purpose, but whales nonetheless.


Interesting. I see. Well, my brain can't handle that much. We have a lot to be concerned about over here.

People only care about the clones cos they didn't get in early enough here and think if they jump ship it will easier to get to whale status. I haven't heard anyone saying they're leaving steemit cos these other ones are actually better.


i think you nailed it choo... why sugarcoat it?

Most of us likely hold more than one token and have some other interests.

I find it funny when people demand loyalty. People have day jobs, hobbies and other investments.

Most of the clones don't trade anywhere and currently do not hold value yet.


Most of the clones don't trade anywhere and currently do not hold value yet.

You know, I think a lot of weku peeps don't know this, funny enough. They keep on seeing the numbers and get all pumped up.

Given the potential of the intersection of Blockchain and Social Media and the adoption gap between the two, there is surely room for clones and/or other projects to be successful as well. However, I do not see it as a problem as there is room for various of these protocols. The one that is nimble and adapts accordingly will always get the edge in the long run.


i do think there is room for other blockchains to take on the whole "social media" world. But again, I'm not so sure these clones have worked out scalability issues. So, I don't expect most of them to make it.

It all comes down to leadership and a solid team of devs, no magic or secret there.

hmm interesting topic!

I think it all comes down to that question

Will any of the Clones make it?

which is tied to the link of your previous post. Also i think that the whole clone thing is stupid. I don't believe it will end up anywhere at least for the majority of people. Those that create it probably gonna make some money.

It would be way better in my opinion to take some of the good elements that steemit has for example and create a different and better social media platform based on blockchain with your touch. Facebook Instagram and all of these platforms have down exactly the same.

An exact clone though and i think we both know were i am referring :P in my eyes at least has no meaning. The changes are a just a few compared to the main source of their "inspiration"


Yeah, its a long shot to say the least for them...

I don’t trust Weku at all. Information was scarce, but I found some comments that seem to indicate they aren’t even running on a blockchain yet. The witness system certainly isn’t there yet; only one init.miner witness. And there are actually 3 different Weku front ends that accounts don’t seem to cross over between. All of that is just on top of their blatant plagiarism of Steemit. I’m not going near it!


i had no idea on the witnessing part, that is funky to say the least...

I am back To comments after 4 months of Break @meno

The only way the Steem blockchain and Steemit survive is if they take away self-voting, and bots. If they stay, the powers that be at the top will bleed the Steem blockchain for everything's it's worth... and then it will surely die.

Another factor that will contribute to the death of Steem is Smart Media Tokens, because their will be so many different shitcoins for so many different things, that no one will be focusing on Steem and more, and it will die just like Ethereum is.

I don't see a future for Steemit, and don't worry about the clones, because none of them can survive either on the model prior to hardfork 20, because nothing is free in this world, and eventually they will bankrupt their platforms as well.

It was fun while it lasted, but with the extremely slow growth if any at all, and only the whales jerking each other off, I don't see Steem living passed years end.


the end of steem has been called for this very reason for two years, so i dont know what to tell you.

Take away self voting, people will make alt accounts, take away bots, people will do back door deals.

I mean, i get your point, but its not implementable.

(just for perspective, checkout the no-bidbot allowed platform)

look at how awesome the trending is.


Take away self voting, people will make alt accounts, take away bots, people will do back door deals.

These things would slow it down considerably though.

Plus, I don't think it can survive, because they are going to run out of real dollars soon, hence the purpose of hardfork 20 in the first place.


I don't really know of course, but I doubt it. Take a look at weku, no bots, ridiculous circle jerking with comments over 1000

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