Our community... O U R community...

in steem •  last year

I've been rambling with people on steemit.chat and trying to work through some mental ideas. Some of them have been nicely squashed as they were very much outside of my knowledge base. Which is why I spoke to people in chat that I knew would be able to set me straight if I was full of it. They did indeed. Thanks guys/gals.

What I am going to say now may be fluff, and it may be something you already get. Yet it was pretty important to my own way of thinking and it did clarify some things. It was some thoughts I had that I kept solidifying by discussion.

Problems In Our Community

We are always going to have problems and conflict. That is human nature and cannot be avoided. However, the majority of the problems we are having in our community I do believe there are solutions to.

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind before I proceed:

  • Steem/it is unprecedented in many ways. UNPRECEDENTED is very important to keep in mind.
  • By how it is implemented and designed we are Stake Holders (similar to shareholders).

When confronted with something new our minds will try to understand it. The most common thing we as humans will do is to try to put this thing we encountered into the context of things we know or have experienced.

We as humans have been surrounded by markets our entire life. In a market, you walk into a store and you buy what you came to buy. We understand this. It is everywhere.

In a share holders meeting you vote on decisions and you steer a company/enterprise.

Your steem power is actually a STAKE and yes we've all heard and READ this. That doesn't mean we have internalized it or understood it. The vast majority of users likely have never been a stake holder in something so it will be a completely new experience.

We are producing content. We are writing stories, articles, composing music, making videos, making art. In the world we are familiar with we would then put this out there to see if anyone wanted to buy it. This is a market.

In such a place if 10 people wanted to buy it that would be a demand of 10.
If 100 people did not want to buy it that does not make the demand -90, the demand is still 10.

This is how markets work. You do not walk into a music store and start marking down the music you don't like. Which music you don't like is irrelevant. They are there to sell you what you want, AND what other people want. The market does not let you nullify someone elses demand.

In a stake holder situation your votes are as strong as your shares/stake in the company/enterprise. Yea/Nay votes are common, and abstaining (not voting). Votes can nullify each other.

What I believe we are seeing with regards to our conflicts is an unprecedented combination of two different ideas. We have what appears to be a market, but it is in fact a stake holder situation. It really is NOT a market.

So those of us that are coming here and trying to understand it will likely see it as a market, and other people that understand stakes and stake holder meetings, will likely see it as stakes.

Those that see it as a market likely see Steem Power as similar to a Universal Basic Daily Income. It actually is not this.

Those that see it as a shareholders situation likely see it as voting power and stake in the company/enterprise. This is accurate.

This is not about right and wrong though. People are not going out of their way to FORCE change upon it. I believe the conflict is that it is a new paradigm, it is unfamiliar and BOTH parties are trying to treat it as something familiar.

For stake holders in this case are running something kind of like a market in a way that is unnatural for a market.

This means we have a new paradigm here and it is not quite settled and familiar to any of us yet as to where it is going. We are viewing it from different EXISTING paradigms that are in conflict with each other. This I believe is a big part of our problem.

We have something totally new here. Yet it is so new we don't quite internally understand it so each of it is choosing a paradigm we are familiar with and this is biasing our interaction towards this place.

I'll admit I viewed it as a market. So this has biased my perceptions on how it should work. I do not understand how someone can cancel out the demand of another. In a market you really couldn't. You either BUY it or you DON'T.

Yet this is not a market.

In a stake holder meeting what happens is not typically so viscerally obvious to all the stake holders in terms of how it will monetarily impact them. You don't go to a stake holder meeting and have a NAY vote for something you wanted to do instantly revealed to you as a loss in income. So it is unprecedented in terms of stake holder paradigm as well.

Furthermore in a stake holder environment you are not voting on content and creations made by people for consumption. It is usually steering, marketing, and company decisions. You might vote on what type of product you wish to use, which contractors to hire/fire, etc. yet it is not a close to a market as this place is.

This place is unique. It doesn't fit into an existing paradigm. We are creating a new one.

Anytime you explore NEW territory there are going to be challenges. Things will not always come easy. Easy is for the people that come later after the CHALLENGING things have already been solved.

You have the fortune/misfortune (depending on your perspective) of being an explorer. This is a new thing. Those big challenges have not been solved. That is on us to solve them.

Yet a lot of the conflict I believe is coming from ALL of us trying to fit this place into boxes/paradigms of things we are familiar with. They are not wrong. They are just a fragment of what this place really is. Yet when these paradigms are brought against each other there is conflict as they don't work together as the existing paradigms we know.

Our problem is holding onto those paradigms rather than realizing we are dealing with another.

Realizing this I hope will have people more sympathetic to people that "don't get it!". If you realize how truly unprecedented and different this place is then it should be clear that only some prophet or super genius would GET IT initially when they get here. We can't expect people to GET a new paradigm without internalizing it and experiencing it.

Some of the solutions will come in the form of code changes.
Other solutions will likely come in the form of what I have been calling Front End Education.

How can we truly help people transition into this new paradigm more quickly?

Also understanding that the paradigm is not fully formed yet and we don't even know where it will end.

Now some positives

I've mentioned this to some people. Do you realize another truly marvelous innovation here. Mining is not necessary on steem. Yet you are essentially creating currency by using the platform and voting, writing, and replying. You don't need a huge powerful rig, and massive electricity. You can do it just by being you. Anyone can mine this currency. You don't need a PHd or a techy geek friend to help you. Just write, post, vote, and build a following.

Furthermore the payouts when they are low are still even better than what you get mining some currencies.

This I believe has huge marketing potential for getting people to this platform. One among many things, and it is huge but I don't hear many people talking about it.

Steem On!

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Thank you dwinblood for a very good explanation. It helped me see the stake holder side. I will folllw to improve my education.


I'm still learning. I understand Stake Holder side, but when I see steemit I've been seeing a market. That has biased my responses.

This place is truly neither of those paradigms but something that takes from both and is not quite settled as to what it will eventually look and feel like.


I could see the market side but the actions of some weren't market activity. I hadn't thought of the boardroom side, thanks.

Good post.
Conflicts are inherent in any complex, man-made system and the reduction (or harmonisation/unification of the parts) is a goal that can probably never be reached (as that would be a perfect man-made system) however, it is still the goal. Understanding this is important.
Secondly, the conflicts of the system will hit upon the conflicts of the individual and create more divisions and in turn each individual will have a range of different conflicts from the next, creating more conflicts plus both will have differing perspectives on how to manage/build the system in which they both operate. More conflicts.

Understand that no system is perfect and thus will forever require development ( as long as people are willing) and we as stakeholders of any type are all in this together, and perhaps we can all move forward more efficiently and effectively.

Edit: reduction of conflict is possible of course. Total unity may not be perhaps. I think you understood though.


Yeah and I stated we will always have conflict, but I do think most of the things we are currently seeing conflict about here we can resolve.

It may require some out of the box thinking though.


I was just reiterating what you had already said. It is good for me to remember. And yes, there are solutions. I hope that this will truly be unique and not a digital version of what we already have in the mess of a real world. Perhaps in time, it may even become a model that can crossover to skin and bone systems.

Maybe more likely is it will enslave us all and mine us for electricity.


Heh possibly. At the very least this might end up being a seed for something even more profound. We can only hope.

"Those that see it as a market likely see Steem Power as similar to a Universal Basic Daily Income. It actually is not this.

Those that see it as a shareholders situation likely see it as voting power and stake in the company/enterprise. This is accurate."

I see it as voting power and stake in the company/enterprise.
Just being Very Frank


Some people do. Yet not everyone does. :) Though
I liked the pun at the end.


"You have the fortune/misfortune (depending on your perspective) of being an explorer. This is a new thing. Those big challenges have not been solved. That is on us to solve them."

I am Very Fortunate to be able to Explore this new thing and up to the challenge which I am confident WILL be solved...in time.


Especially if we all help and share our ideas.


This definitely IS a beast of a different color. There are many things about this platform that have huge potential and are something we've never seen before... and that's part of what makes it a (potentially) great opportunity.

But whereas Steemit is unique and defies standard definitions and boxes... let is not lose sight of the common threads that tie us ALL together-- because we have to deal with them here, just as much as anywhere else. These would include human nature, human greed, planning, cooperation, envy and numerous others... and they apply, regardless whether you have a taco stand or a Steemit. What's my point? The road to disappointment and failure is more often paved with the effects of human foibles than with actual bad concepts, ideas and projects.

So we have a new "beast." On this we agree! Front end education-- yes, that sounds promising. I also believe continued and continuous community building is essential. If this truly is going to present itself as a "social content" platform, we need to be... well... SOCIAL. And that means we need to have the social tools in place, when telling others this is "the greatest thing EVER." I'm sure there are things in the works to that end... we need to be able to look people straight in the face and give a good speech when someone says "Why should I bother with THAT, when there's everything on Facebook-twitter-instagram-snapchat-YouTube?" Being a slightly polished version of Reddit with a better attitude and pictures isn't going to cut it with the broader population...

I know it's not that, but that might be what meets the untrained and undiscerning eye.

Thanks for another thoughtful and informative post!


Spot on. I agree. There are a lot of things we can do to make this place succeed. Marketing, UI, etc. Some of the problems are more challenging because they are so NEW and never dealt with before. Yet I believe we can likely solve most of those as well.

Yet, I think understanding just how UNPRECEDENTED this place is would help people have more sympathy with why someone might not "get it." We all need to help each other "get it". Hell, we still need to determine what "it" is. We have some glimmers, and some ideas of what "it" is, but I think "it" is potentially more than we currently realize.


here is a thought...

What IF the CEO/Founders which I am sure most of us know who I am referring to. Please add to post if needed. But they could be waiting for the right time, the right people, and the right marketing to move Steemit towards a Healthy, Fully Functional, and Properly Funded ROLL OUT of beta?

Anyone, anyone, anyone...


If I were in their shoes that is what I'd be doing.

I actually don't think we are quite ready for a large influx of people yet.


I rather take it slow and steady even if it takes another year TBH. But heh, that is NOT my call. I will continue to do my "thirds rule strategy" which is dividing my assets into 33% of each, STEEM, SP, SBD. That way I will be equally ready for whatever comes.



Precisely! We need to define what "it" is. Or, rather... we need to look at what @dan & @ned thought "it" was from the start, and now perhaps tweak it to reflect the input of the actual social content creators actually operating in this space.

To me, "it" is a magnificent framework to build something "never seen before" on. The challenge is reconciling decentralized vs. centralized... and not throw the baby out with either tubs of bathwater; instead, make them work together.

We can have the social blogging platform. We can add a crowdfunding type platform. We can add the world's first serious alt coin peer-to-peer marketplace-- an Etsy/eBay type thing, based on Steem. We can add our own YouTube type thing. And there are loads of other possibilities.

But here's the thing... and that's where the decentralized/centralized comes into play... they can all be developed independently by the network, BUT they need to all integrate under the Steemit umbrella... so when someone goes to their Steemit page, "everything is right THERE!" Why? Convenience. Attractiveness. If people have to install and run 17 separate skins, scripts and apps to "make it work" it's already "too complicated" for most casual users. Everything needs to be accessible from your Steemit home page... and that page controls all your "financials," too... the same "wallet" that gets Steem for a blog post pays a tip to a musician on the video "branch" and collects Steem for the piece of art you sold in the marketplace.

What am I driving at? Lots of talk about alt coins becoming the "future economy." So why not "shoot for the moon" and actually create Steemit AS "the new economy," rather than just a coin people use in it?

Just thinking out loud...


I agree. I also see fragmentation as one of the biggest problems with crypto. A lot of reinventing the wheel. They'd rather get into the pump and dump fray and build a new coin (usually inferior tech wise) than embrace and build upon something that already exists.


Patience. Including the patience to allow for organic (rather than inflated) growth till the base is solid. It all takes time... and building something worthwhile and solid really takes time... we're looking at a 5-10 year time frame. Bitcoin didn't "become Bitcoin" in a few months...

Fragmentation IS a major issue... not just in crypto. People lose patience-- or think they have a "better tweak"-- so they rush off and start "Green Pea Soup Coin." Meh...

interesting view, but a little schematic.


Expand/Explain if you can.


in time. I studied Political Economy, and I was a stakeholder. so I understand your model, probably. it seems too simple to me, considering just market and stakeholding. there's also the community thing that has its dynamics and could be important in the future - not now, honestly. but I have to think about it. I'm not in the tech part of the game, and can't understand most of it. :)


Cool well if you have more pieces to add I welcome them.

I am trying to REACH people, and MYSELF to potentially help us understand each other better, and maybe have some inspiration that leads to some solutions.

I'm not doing it by myself, and it'd be much better to grow up what this place is rather than tear each other down.

So if you have some cool additions I welcome them. Together we know a lot more than any of us do by ourselves.


Details would be pointless speculation at this stage.

Thanks for the follow. I will read you in the future!

We are creating something completely new, indeed! This was a long but interesting article


Yeah, let me tell you something not so secret. Now you see why I didn't spend too much time on Twitter. :)

What a great post!

Gotta admit I only really see the market side, and I think like this too:

"You do not walk into a music store and start marking down the music you don't like. Which music you don't like is irrelevant. They are there to sell you what you want, AND what other people want. The market does not let you nullify someone elses demand"

Here is my idea for a solution - https://steemit.com/steemit/@sift666/how-to-fix-the-steemit-flagging-and-downvoting-issues-in-two-easy-steps

You got me thinking about the other side - I still don't relate to the "stake holder" side but it's always good to understand the opposition.


The problem is that the entire system at the code level is designed as the stake holder approach. So we won't be able to force it into the market mentality, and we won't be able to force a market into a stakeholder mentality. We have something new, and I believe a lot of the conflicts arise from perceptions about those two things and people trying to push it into one of those two categories. It doesn't really fit into either. It is something truly new, so we have a new set of problems to go along with it, as well as need to come up with a new way of thinking.

This post and the comments/discussions has been one of the best I've come across and I've seen a lot of great posts. This makes sense. As an artist/content creater I would love to know what the benefits we have. The good news is the stake holder know what benefits they are getting and that keeps steem going. The market needs to understand what their benefits are to put in their hard labor. We all know that investors would be content to make money off of an inexpensive (the cheaper the better) marketplace.
Much of the conflict would cease if realistic details were given to the HQ content/authors/artist of their benefits. Educating the marketplace would energize positive tutorials giving new people a roadmap of what the perks are to join Steemit and produce content and how to get these rewards. When rewards were in the hundreds and for some in the thousands people were seduced to come over and quit their job. Not anymore. Telling good content creators to be happy with a few cents and not getting recognition makes for negative buzz. New people who have a negative experience will share their unfavorable incident with an average of 12 other people. In turn, each of those 12 people will mention the occurrence to six others. This means that the one person with the bad experience will discuss it with 12 others, and each additionally to six individuals. Do the math: (1+12+ (12x6)) which totals to 85 people who will have a tarnished view of Steemit because of one negative experience. It will be far more with the internet and this cannot be ignored. Finding out what these benefits for the marketplace is momentous to keeping steemit alive or investors will leave and go elsewhere.


Well said. I don't have anything to add to this YET. If I think of something I'll reply again.