Hard Fork 21 and The War To End All Wars

in steem •  2 months ago  (edited)

Not long now. It has become inevitable as the Great Powers make their final preparations and move everything into place. What will be the spark for this powderkeg? Who will fire that first shot and does it really even matter at this point? The question is - Are you ready for the shooting to begin? If you don’t know what I am talking about then you haven’t been paying attention. Probably just like those poor bastards in the Spring of 1914 who had no idea of what was about to be unleashed.


Of course I am talking about STEEMs Hard Fork 21 and (among other things) the free downvote pool that is about to be instituted. I’ve been here for a couple of years now, long enough to have seen a number of very ugly flag wars. I could name the names, but you either know who I’m talking about or you’re new enough that the names will be meaningless to you anyway. Did we learn nothing from these past conflicts? Our overlords have determined that the gloves are coming off. No longer will you have an economic dis-incentive to flag someone who you don’t like or disagree with. It’s going to be open season and as has been the case in every flag war I’ve seen to date – The biggest stake wins. Is that you? No, I didn’t think so….


There will be some who will try to monetise their free downvotes, maybe they’ll sell downvotes separately. Maybe there will be downvote trails created. Human behaviour is very predictable like that, but the ones I am more concerned about are the ones who are quietly salivating at the prospect of this change enabling them to let loose and try to enforce their own vision for the platform. Old grudges can finally be settled. Maybe the conflict will be out in the open, or maybe it’ll be more like guerrilla tactics where anonymous accounts shoot from the shadows and victims won’t even know who, or why they have been targeted. They may have no obvious retaliation option. Maybe they will make one up and suspicion will rule the day. We won’t even need Kangaroo courts as we can shoot first and let God the Reward Pool sort them out. Oh, the humanity!


Ok, so maybe I am being a bit dramatic. It is deliberate. I am genuinely concerned that HF21 may unleash a seriously ugly chapter in this great social experiment that we call STEEM. I have been tempted to write about the HF21 changes for a while, but the topic has been done to death and none of the big players read my blog anyway. This post is more for the minnows. A warning, or maybe even a guide about how to survive what’s coming. There are a few major demographics to keep an eye on.

1. The Vigilantes


These are the people who have long lamented the use of vote selling services and shitposters who use them to get themselves onto trending. These are the poor fools who have been convinced that the free downvote pool will enable them to right all those wrongs and finally ensure that quality posts and curation rules the platform. (Excuse me while I finish laughing and pick myself up from the floor) These people are the most likely to fire the first shots and target one of the below groups, but they’ll probably make the mistake of using their author accounts so quite likely they will cop the first retaliation strikes too.

2. The Vote Sellers


Primarily these are the Bid Bot owners, but there are other forms of vote sellers too. These people are the ones who have been getting paid to promote rubbish content into trending. Quite possibly their shitposting customers will be targeted by The Vigilantes and that is likely to affect their bottom line as those customers will not keep buying votes to get nothing. There could actually be conflict between the Vote Sellers but I suspect that they might band together and act more like a cartel to protect their customers (and therefore their profits). They are currently one of the most powerful demographics on the platform so their behaviour will be key to how this all plays out.

3. Community Shitposters


There are lots of little communities on STEEM who have their own little voting services to support members. Some of them do have some quality control, but many do not as they focus more on member engagement than blog content quality. This demographic is unlikely to be firing the first shots but they are very likely to get caught in the crossfire. Community members may start getting flagged for low quality posts and they will inevitably ask their community for help to counter the flags and/or retaliate. This is the part where it gets ugly for communities as the debate on whether to take up arms collectively is likely to be very divisive within the community and possibly even terminal.

There are other demographics of course as this STEEM ecosystem is quite diverse, but if you’re reading between the lines you’ll realise that I am most concerned about the impact of flag warfare on communities. I personally have no intention of taking part in any collective flag warfare, so don’t ask me.


I realise that the narrative behind all the Hard Fork 21 changes is quite positive. I concede that there is some consensus among the platforms most powerful, but I am calling bullshit on the narrative. I could take umbrage at other planned changes but this is by far the most potentially damaging. There are some smart technical people behind all this, but if they don’t understand Game Theory and how these changes will REALLY play out then they are the wrong people to be in charge.




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Very interesting analysis. There are so many complexities it’s hard to predict how it will play out. What I worry about is quality content being downvoted because of ideological disagreements.

Posted using Partiko iOS

My question is: Who is the final authority to determine quality content?

Subjectivity is true to all persons.

Hope we are more tolerant that warmonger and warfreaks.

Let us cross the bridge when we get there.


Posted using Partiko iOS

I think it's fair to say that this experiment within the larger Steem experiment could very well go tits up.

However, I'm going to remain positive for the most part and say that I think the Tribes have come at a good time as many of the chip on their shoulder downvoters have been refused access or banished and so there is somewhat of a safe haven in these communities.

Fair point that the value of these tokens isn't that much at present, but STEEM isn't exactly paying many peoples wages, and actually I think the 'low' price could well be a blessing as there could be less uproar over losing a few cents than a dollars a click.

I think many eyes will be on the larger accounts champion these changes, e.g. @trafalgar. Will he start using his stake to manage the rewards of others? And are other whales going to voice their opinion with downvotes towards him? Will @haejin be targeted, and if so, to what level is he going to go to pressure accounts into not removing his pending payouts?

Good point regarding the bots. Their combined stake is huge and could have a real influence on how things play out.

There could actually be conflict between the Vote Sellers but I suspect that they might band together and act more like a cartel to protect their customers (and therefore their profits).

This sounds rather terrible - safeguarding low quality content so that it remains the most visible would have to be considered a failed experiment.

and might as well get a bag of popcorn while we're at it

Well...if you ask me the trending page shitposters are a bigger issue then Haejin and harder to deal with, which is why people are more likely going to go after him. After the smaller problem.
I just hope the trending page comes into focus eventually.

Ill be flagging "the trending pricks" consistently until it does.

Posted using Partiko Android

Potentially they are yes, but the EIP could reduce any profits from the buyers (some may not care) and they could be discouraged without downvotes. Haejin will carry on regardless though, unless those rewards start to take a dent via the actions of others.

Im afraid what bot owners might do.
The guy i mentioned a few posts ago where you commented, a year ago came into the dtube discord and threatened Heimin and Nannal when he thought they would introduce a change that would be slightly detrimental to bot vote buyers. (Cant remember what it was exactly)
Once the bots get those free downvotes all hell could break loose since, as that guy said, the shittier the content the better off bot owners are and im sure there will be those that will try and fight to take the trending back from absolute vote buying domination.

Great comment and I am also excited to see if the community will rise as one strong voice to get people actively curating. I think this would be our (normal Steemians) best interest.
@haejin is powering down and has not a lot of power left and I do not think he would come back for a war.
As an example @trafalgwr that you mentioned as 3x its stake.

Posted using Partiko iOS

and so there is somewhat of a safe haven in these communities.

I have bought into a few of these tribe tokens, but to do so you need STEEM. They don't pair with anything else, and as you are aware...

BTC goes up - STEEM stays still
BTC goes down - STEEM goes down.

Maybe one day, ALL these tribe tokens will be > than the price of STEEM.

I'm taking to them nicely, and will probably increase my stakes in some.

It was hypothesised a while ago that an SMT could potentially out-value STEEM, and so I assume it could be possible for a SCOT token to do so also.

Steemgeeks is one that I see strong controls present (easier when it's quiet) and a low token count. If schools, colleges, and Uni's latch on there when the next bull / awareness arrives...

!giphy experiment

Posted using Partiko iOS

!giphy fail

Very interesting and I would definitely agree with you. Will there be a war between VoteSeller and active curators ? I think you might be right.
Who is going to win? It will depends on the dapps community I believe, if they back this “regulation” and go with the active curators, voteseller would have to admit their defeat and either improve their way of selecting users or just become active curators themselves (they have enough power to do so).
Let’s see ! Exciting times ahead
What do you think ? @steemmonsters @partiko @actifit @esteemapp @qurator @nextcolony @appics @steempress

Posted using Partiko iOS

I am looking forward to seeing how this plays out. I think there are some other groups that are going to get involved as well and I am hoping that everyone throws a few on the shit that is out there, as there are plenty of targets.

Some of the whales will play for a while and then it will likely be the bullies picking on whoever they feel like for the fun of it and many smaller Steemians will pick up and leave overwhelmed by low token price and random violence toward what rewards they could accumulate at the lower author rewards also coming in.

The EIP is not going to be healthy IMO but since we have no say that will be listened to, all we can do is wait and see.

This is why I powered down and tuned-out from STEEM a long time ago. It's a B.S. situation where what people are doing amounts to one simple concept (which goes totally against all STEEM ideals): censorship. And, censorship sucks.

Now, don't get me wrong - I'm a complete $#!t-talker. I'm just not going to allow some douchebag with more money the chance to hurt my bottom line. I'd much rather talk a bunch of $#!t, then post a picture of my STACK and say, "Go ahead, give my STACK as many of your 100% downvotes as you possibly can! I'll check back on it each day to see if it gets any lighter." :D Since I only have about 25 Steem Power, I could give a rats @$$ if they vote my account into oblivion - it amounts to a few cents, at best. And, that's not going to make one bit of difference to me. I just love seeing these over-invested wankers completely lose their $#!t once they realize I'm not worth downvoting - but they still can't shut me up, unless they spend a bunch of their time and money to do ZERO damage to me. :D

Well we know what I think about all this....

$204.32 - current highest pending post on the trending page.
1,000,000.000 SP ( simulated )
$ 13.846 vote value at 100%
Sorry the vote sellers win, they and the buyers of votes are not going to loose at all.
10 million SP would put a dent in it at $138.46, leaving the vote buyer with only $65.86.

It will not help what they are hoping it will help.It will only drive more traffic to the vote sellers. They may need to decrease their fee's slightly, but with the 50/50 reward split, they will likely be able to do just that. The vote bots and sellers are the winners in this hard fork, the content creators are the likely losers. But it may work out, it may solve the perceived issues with vote bots, vote selling, and shit posting. I myself do not see it as being a solution, but I do not have a degree in economics, nor do I understand cash/vote economics. I mean the experts in that field would not leave people astray now would they. I am positive it will have no adverse impact what-so-ever on the steem economic ecosystem. We should all want the orcas to be able to make and take as much as they want out of the system. it does after all benefit everyone for them to do well, then they can turn the faucets on and let the wealth re-trickle down to the down trodden.

There will be an adjustment time for the bots, but they will survive.

Trickledown does not work. Proven time and time again. The rest i generally agree with.

Posted using Partiko Android

10 million SP would put a dent in it at $138.46, leaving the vote buyer with only $65.86.

That would be a loss of about 70 dollars for the buyer.

Yes but the reality is no post is likely to be down voted by anything even closely resembling 10 million SP. I guess we wait and see, I honestly do not see the down votes working the way they envision of being used primarily to adjust rewards, prevent plagiarism, and low quality (shit) post. The reality I have seen with out the free votes has been to control what is said, to abuse wrong thinkers, to harass individual, to basically be used as an abuse people tool. I do not see that attitude changing just because the down votes are free.

There is no mechanism to down vote the down voter if they only down vote. There is no mechanism to know who is behind what account that does random down voting. Yes is does not matter how much a 25 rep account has SP wise, they are not going to hurt the persons Reputation Level. They are still going to cause strife.

There might be some of that, but if the rest of the community do something useful, the benefits outweigh the disadvantages. Problem is, that most who want things to improve aren't willing to pay the price to improve them.

"it will turn out worse than before, but it might not".

Sounds like your type of math: idiot.

Game theory is key in our recent times. Especially as anarchist.

Greets ✌️

Posted using Partiko Android

Sounds like the end of August will be a nice time for a Steemit break.

Old grudges can finally be settled

Exactly, I also think it might unlock the worst in people making the platform a lot less friendly overall. I also don't plan to get involved in any of the flag wars. If there is a way to delegate away the downvote I'll probably do that if there is a good group for that.

One thing is for sure, interesting times are ahead. If it will be for the good or the bad we will find out soone enough.

Who asked you @buggedout ?

Who asked anyone of the commentators for any input on anything?

Who asked anyone for anything as far as the vox populi goes!

There is an old saying in this part of Europe that I heard and tend to agree with after many moons of watching, learning and paying the price for my not wanting to accept reality for what it is:

"Give a person a position of power and then you will see their true being" (character or any other word it can be interpreted as)

100% spot on if anyone asks me.

Cheers mate.

Hope all is going well at your end of the screen.

Gods speed my friend.

What position of power? Why should anyone ask you for your input, you obviously can't even be bothered to take part of the conversations that have happened here over the years(3) or what, is there any excuse for asking these idiotic questions implying that somehow these conversations were excluding anyone at all? Didn't think so.

Entitled to be consulted, why don't you.

Rather rude and typical, to just but into a conversation that have roots into topics over 2 years old now.

But OK, granted that anyone can say anything anywhere at any time, that is all just part of this virtual wall of conversation.

Be good, live long and prosper.

What gave you the impression that there was anything private or otherwise make joining an open conversation in public "butting in"? And what position of power in dpos, same kind of nonsense as butting into a open discussion I bet.

Sure mate, read it whatever way you wish to read it, however I will try to give you some food for thought on your comment about "Dpos"

Dpos is absolutely great in a shareholder type of market, it is absolutely fantastic.

In fact it covers almost all the aspects needed as far as the crypto currency is concerned.

However it does not cover the needs of a Social Network.

Maybe back in 2016 and 2017 it was fine as is, we are now at a point where we have branched out with our social networking aspects of this business endeavour and as such we need to adapt to it.

Not interested in a "pissing contest" here, just answering your question in a way that debunks your rude and dismissive ending in the hope that you do think about it.


However it does not cover the needs of a Social Network.

And what are those undisclosed needs?

Here's more food for thought :

We should move past pronouns, they divide and endenger a us Vs them mentality.

I debunked your insipid nonsense that the conversation was private, what did you debunk actually? Absolutely nothing, you only asserted nil substance some more nonsense.

Then ignore me and avoid wasting your time with me, when I was originally talking with the author and not you.

Look at the original comment that you barged into, it was directed to the author, a person I know and consider a friend, which you can conclude at the end of the comment.

So, you do not know anything about the personal nature of the comment, nor any of the matter that stands behind the comment, yet you talk down to me.

"That's nice".

Wish you all the best.

Ending this noise you are making here.

So much for those needs, and keep spinning your wheels trying to establish any kind of validity that those conversations that took place over the span of three years were private, which somehow is a private conversation you were having in a fucking public place.

Thanks for sharing on Pimp Your Post Thursday

Game Theory = Human Nature. To understand one you must understand the other which is something that "geniuses" rarely are capable of. It is either one or the other. That is the problem with every change that happens to Steem, it is all trying to deal with human nature. Every government through history has proved that it is almost impossible to assuage human nature.

There really are never any truly easy answers it seems.

It's an experiment as u said. And only by trying we'll know the outcome and improve upon it if needed.

Posted using Partiko Android

There are two types of people in the world.
There are those that believe human nature means "petty, selfish, greedy, jealousy, pride" then there are those that understand that human nature is the ability to rise above those things and far beyond them, as is demonstrated by humanity in general. Yeah there are some people who embody the first version of human nature, but for every one of them there are others and more that embody the opposite and that's human nature.

Here you are, cautioning that humans are petty, selfish, rash, etc. Obviously, absolutely nothing would ever satisfy you, every type of improvement, and kind of change, it all would fall by the wayside before Human Nature.

I am interested in seeing if the HF 21 helps with the massive adoption of Steem. Honestly, I think it will. For one, the only reason I use Facebook is for local community groups like crime watch groups. If the change gives more power to the individual AND the group he choose, then it will be a change for the better.
I look forward to seeing if we have more adoption.

Spot on... unfortunately.

I don't get why such things are implemented... once again it's proof that the ones taking these decisions have lost touch with the 'base', with the Wild West out here. It's only going to get wilder.

Even now people don't know how to behave, how to use their downvotes properly... this is going to be very, very ugly...

shakes head, utterly disappointed

Here are your ENGAGE tokens!

To view or trade ENGAGE go to steem-engine.com.


Waiting for the glorious attack on Gallipoli!

Eh, I've been here for a month or two and I'm really amazed by how hard people try to get a piece of this cake as big as possible, even though it's mostly crap and apparently decaying, shrinking and sinking. I pretty much abandoned the idea of peeking here to see quality content (posts like this are about the best you can find, which is extremely sad), I'm only curious to see the new, lower lows.

I also liked when one of my comments complaining about bots/bidders having the most power got a random bump from one of the "social justice" bots, which together with another such vote granted me probably majority of my account's worth. That was pretty ironic.

Congratulations @buggedout!
Your post was mentioned in the Steem Hit Parade in the following category:

  • Pending payout - Ranked 7 with $ 66,04

So I guess a war is really brewing, and no UN treatises can calm the different countries involved 😎🚀

Posted using Partiko iOS

Hi @buggedout

I'm one of those people who are seriously worried about consequences of HF21.

Flag wars are definetly something that many people seem to be concerned with. Luckily I never got involved in any. I received number of random downvotes but none of it ever has been permanent. (lucky me:)

none of the big players read my blog anyway.

Yeah, whales do not really care about "regular joes" that much :(

Right now we're witnessing all those who are powering down and selling their steem, because they lose their faith in Steemit. And in my opinion majority of users believe that current 50/50 reward system will make rich richer, and poor poorer. And that it's targeting authors.

Regardless what's the real reason behind some of those changes will not change the fact, that many of those people are opendly quitting steemit.

I'm here to stay, however I'm worried about the future of this platform. The biggest issue I see is non-linear reward curve, which will make upvoting comments with small 0.03$ vote hardly possible.

So culture of rewarding people who engage with us will probably receive a huge blow (or perhaps die completely).

There are some smart technical people behind all this, but if they don’t understand Game Theory and how these changes will REALLY play out then they are the wrong people to be in charge.


My impression is that people behind Steemit and HF21 do not understand their audience. That's the biggest problem.


TERRIFYING, @buggedout. I have always ignored the flags, both in a emu head sand way and a choosing not to get involved. If HF21 becomes what some say it will, I guess Im out, but then I have said that before and Im still here. Noted what you say about communities, that's an interesting one. I run @naturalmedicine and we do auto upvote community members. Its a way of giving back and supporting Steemfolk. We dont reward shitposters. We are only a small community but do our best... be interesting to see how this affects us.

found it in #pypt discord channel, going to read it later. This is a long read for sure..

Posted using Partiko Android

Thank you for this interesting viewpoint of the potential, shared during the PYPT curation show this past week!

Thanks for engaging with posts presented on PYPT

  ·  2 months ago Reveal Comment