Don't use vote-selling bots: use @promoted instead. A bot that upvotes you when you burn money!

in #steem7 years ago (edited)

We have all seen the rise in power of the dark schemes that are selling their votes. @randowhale, @booster, WhaleShare come to mind first, but I am probably missing a few. These exploits work for a simple reason: you get an about equal return on your investment 7 days later, and as an added bonus you get more exposure in the hot / trending tabs, which usually results in even more generic upvotes/money. Fantastic...

I'm sure I'm not alone to believe that we need to reduce these exploits. And offering a better, more honest alternative could be a solution. The promoted tab in is supposed to be what people use to promote their posts. Many users probably don't know it, but the price you pay to promote, gets burned. This is a good, sane way to promote posts on STEEM, and it grows the reward pool. Today, instead, people use the vote-selling bots that give a better near- instant return on investment.

Introducing @promoted

I ended up doing this because my genius friend @fabien recently created the account @promoted, and was looking for someone to run a voting bot with a twist... Instead of selling the votes, it upvotes if you promoted your post normally and burned your SBDs. The bot doesn't make any profit, it just boosts you if you burn money. As an added bonus, you also appear in the promoted tab!

Bot Details

  • Maximum: 10 SBD burned => 100% upvote
  • Minimum: 0.001 SBD burned => 0.01% upvote
    Very easy to understand I believe.
    EDIT: Actually, we are constantly changing the settings for the best, soon the @promoted account will post with more information

How to get upvoted by @promoted

Just use the promote button at the bottom right of the post you want to boost.

Step 1

Step 2

Voilà. You will receive your upvote within the next 10 seconds.

At the moment the bot upvotes give much less (about 15%) than the promotion amount. That's because @fabien delegated only 40K SP to the account, which is very low compared to other voting bots.

Helping the cause

  • use post promotion instead of vote-sellers
  • delegate SP to @promoted (feel free to contact @fabien about it)
  • run your own similar bot -> github source

Current Delegators

fabien2017-07-09T16:07:5181522927.660326 VESTS0.43209491860150334
robrigo2017-07-10T17:42:335000000.000000 VESTS0.02650143551650834
ekitcho2017-07-10T18:38:1550000000.000000 VESTS0.2650143551650834
arhag2017-07-10T19:35:0052146098.000000 VESTS0.27638929071690493

If we manage to raise the power of @promoted, and offer a better alternative than the vote-selling bots for users, they will burn their SBDs instead of sending it to people manipulating the current hard-fork's weaknesses for profit. By using the promote button, the burned money will go back into the reward pool, to everyone.

As usual, feel free to comment about how this makes you feel, good or bad.


For the record, Whaleshares doesn't sell votes. We don't sell anything. We are a community and only release the whaleshares token through contests and by rewarding people who have helped us. Beyondbit was created purely to fund various projects and aren't "sold" or traded on the exchange by us either. The tokens that are traded on the exchange are ones people acquired through these means that chose to trade them. We believe in libertarian free-market capitalism so decided that they are free to do with them as they wish. All we get out of it is curation rewards so essentially it is a means of delegating curation while creating synergy between Steem and Bitshares, 2 similar blockchains with different use cases that we love. With that in mind, saying that this doesn't earn a profit when it will clearly make profit off curation rewards is also misleading. I see no problem delegating the curation of your SP to benefit the community as this is exactly what we are doing too and think this is a wonderful idea that might actually get people to use the promotion feature. Would have been nice if you didn't condemn us as "vote selling" when we have never sold a single token and promote yourself as "non profit" when you are earning the same curation rewards we are though.

Many good points here

Very, very good idea for 4 main reasons.

  1. The promote feature is not that great and is haphazard, you can spend 50 SBD and get nothing in return.

  2. It was very difficult to tell exactly HOW the promote button helped your post.

  3. It was underused because of the above two points.

  4. This initiative now gives people a reason to use promote, plus there is direct correlation with their investment and the vote they get.

In its first incarnation, @randowhale was great, because 2 SBD, even at the lower end of the voting power, gave a good return. However now it seems unlikely that you will even get your 2 SBD back.

Anyway, I'm not against vote buying, but I am for fairness, and that's why I like this, is it is fair, and at the same time helps the overall system.

Well done!


Yeah i just used 1 dollar and it was all i had and only got .35 cent... the randowhale is much better.. but its like sustainability you gotta make sacrifices..

I like your bot! I will start using promote feature now!

I'm sure I'm not alone to believe that we need to reduce these exploits. And offering a better, more honest alternative could be a solution.

I don't know if I agree with your opinion on the good/evil that these vote selling bots present. I'm curious to know why it's any worse than any of the other things that happen surrounding whale accounts with large votes.

Why do you see these as a problem? How is it any different than whales voting for their friends constantly, huge curation trails, or gratuitous self voting?

At the moment I'm fairly indifferent on the morality of selling votes/voting power/delegation, and interested to see how the markets evolve. I however don't see anything worse happening now than in the past year.

Edit - Just to add a comment about this bot itself - glad to see the others getting more competition and you've got a nice twist. I do however think the post promotion system is somewhat worthless - and I doubt anyone even really reads it for the most part. Would love to see data on trending page views vs promoted page views.

I believe the vote-selling to be less of a trouble than past exploits (voting games for example), but it is one nonetheless. It is unnecessary service that only exists because a hole in the system exists. @randowhale added a random factor in the thing, which was smart, but I don't believe people use it for gambling when there are dozens of more entertaining gambling methods online.

Self-voting/friend-voting is easy to detect and is a consequence of the brutal change on the last fork. It's pretty bad in my opinion but it can be fixed easily by changing back to another non-linear reward, or something 50% HF18 + 50% HF19. Community can point fingers too but I don't think this is a viable long-term solution, we don't want to have useless contents just to 'flag' abusive users.

Curation trails I'm unsure about it. I don't think it's great for promoting the best contents but in the end this is how the world works... L'union fait la force. Still, I don't use it personally.

About the exploits on STEEM, I believe that this will be an ongoing cat-and-mouse game. We improve the mechanics of the STEEM game with updates, then someone will find a new exploit, until we find a solution and make an update, for someone to exploit again.

It is very similar to online game cheats that need to perpetually evolve to not get detected, and how anti-cheats need to perpetually improve their detection as well.

It is unnecessary service that only exists because a hole in the system exists.

Hi mate, sorry that comment suggests a real ignorance of market mechanics. Voting bots exist and are incredibly successful because they are necessary ie because there is an incredible demand for them. The fact is, it is incredibly hard as a Minnow on Steemit, HF19 may have even made it worse as people sit on their VP now. For many people just starting out, the only way to get anything from a post is from a voting bot.

Having said that, I think people milking the voting bots for every drop by upvoting their own comments is a real problem. This is why we introduced the selfgoat on MinnowBooster. If you are upvoting your own comments, people are going to see a picture of a goat licking it's own ____ all over your comment section.

At the end of the day, a post can only get a single vote from any one bot. I think comment upvoting in general is a much bigger problem and drain on the rewards pool, and should be removed all together and replaced with a tipping system.

Either way, I think this bot from @fabien is a really cool idea and finally makes the Promotion feature actually worth using. We welcome the competition.

Full disclosure: I am a mod on MinnowBooster Discord server and have around 170 Steem invested in the project and 200SP out on delegation. I earn a daily slice of revenue from my invested Steem and daily dividend payments from my delegation.

Well said. I'm still not sure I'm concerned with people selling votes (it's probably the best incentive to power up I've seen to date...), but I understand where you're coming from.

Best of luck with the new bot and it'll be interesting to see how this all unfolds :)

I do however think the post promotion system is somewhat worthless - and I doubt anyone even really reads it for the most part. Would love to see data on trending page views vs promoted page views.

This is what I've been saying since the first time I saw Steemit. The promoted posts feature is a complete waste of money due to the current way it's setup. If they want anyone to put money into that, they need to figure out a way to get eyeballs on the promoted posts. You're better off running a Facebook ad to a post and having an outside monetization method on the post to make money from it then you are throwing away SBD on a promoted post here. Maybe if they made promoted posts as sticky posts in the trending section then you'd see people pumping more money into using it. Or make the default page after you click a tag go to the promoted section instead of trending.

I tend to agree with @jesta to be honest, but this really could work if you were to get a mega crap ton of steem power behind it. I'm willing to try it just to see how it plays out, and you do get the added bonus of being on the promoted page, but I think the attraction of the other bots is not only the instant return but that it is (potentially) worth it. I just promoted my post for 10sbd and got a (just barely over) $1.00 upvote from @promoted. There will likely be some residual votes from being on the promoted page, but that probably was me literally just burning my money. Most people (especially noobs who don't have anything to burn) are not gonna be into that. I'm curious to see how this progresses though, I think in general it's a good idea and a good thing for the platform.

I agree with you, but I cannot fund this myself, I'm far from being a whale. Anyone can delegate SP to the account to help the cause (or run the bot yourself)

A lot of people were already using the promote feature regularly, we just gave it an extra boost. It isn't much yet, but it's better than nothing in my opinion.

I used these bots weeks ago, and I can tell you that I'm at the bottom i have a loss, do not waste your time and money making the rich richer. Thank you for this wonderful initiative, unfortunately there is no way to stop these bots unless some pretty influential whales take action. Yet steemit is a decentralized network and it is normal for people to provide such services, the only way to stop them if we do not buy these votes.

I couldn't agree more. For the current state we just want to offer a saner alternative to greedy bots. If they disappear, I would see no reason to keep running @promoted.

If any whales want to help, they can delegate SP to the @promoted account. We are making a public list of the delegators and will give the curation rewards back to delegators.

I used this now.. It's cool!! @heimindanger

Where upvotes from promouted bot?
I made several translations, but 0 upvote!

resteemit SERVICE! We're offering resteems to over 2400 followers for only 0.25 SBD or 0.25 STEEM per resteem. Our resteems generally do better than Promoted Posts. you can simply send 0.25 SBD or 0.25 STEEM now and the link to your post to @wayforhappiness and we'll resteem it right away. Resteems get you more views, more followers, more engagement on your post, and usually more money. We've had several repeat buyers who love the service. Thanks!

Awesome it is a very good idea from @fabien to improve the value of Steem in the long term.

However, I think the most important improvement is to give a custom vote close to each user's SBD burning. If someone is burning 4 SBD he or she deserves to receive an upvote close to that value. Calculating it is already possible and as long as SP pool allows it , that could be used.

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