Proof of Brain? 'Proof of Popularity'!

in #steem5 years ago (edited)

Source: pixabay.

As much as I would like to see blogging and rewarding of content on STEEM following a real Proof of Brain mechanism, being honest I have to admit that in my eyes it still doesn't really work. Instead of that I would call what happens 'Proof of Popularity' or 'Proof of what most STEEM whales like to read', which means whales and popular authors are upvoting whales and popular authors (and especially articles praising the greatness of STEEM). :)

Concerning the latter, yes, actually I agree: the idea of a censorship free platform where everybody can freely express his thoughts and also save some precious moments and memories forever on a (fast and transaction fee free) blockchain (and even earn money by doing so) is just brilliant, but I find it rather boring to read 700 times per week how great we (STEEM and its community) are - I think there is a big difference between being great and writing about it all the time! :-)

Don't get me wrong: whenever I am outside of our 'bubble', together with 'normal' people, I always try to convince them of the advantages of STEEM. However, within our own STEEM microcosm I really would like to see other topics trending. Especially I would like to see more unpopular authors getting some rewards! It's not that there weren't enough content creators on STEEM (which I sometimes read), but most 'curators' simply don't make the effort to seek them. They prefer to auto upvote the same popular stuff again and again.
In large parts I have to agree with @pharesim's recent post.

Where there is criticism is also hope.

What could be done to improve the situation?

  • I think we should try to support 'normal' users who are writing about 'normal' stuff like food, traveling and everyday life. We won't attract the 'masses' by repeating again and again how great STEEM is and then upvoting it.
    Unfortunately, as far as I see, most big curators aren't doing that.
    Of course there are some positive exceptions, and I would like to mention one: most of the time when I see at least some small rewards under a great post of an unknown author, it's @curangel who upvoted it! I really hope this curation project will get more support in future.
    (I know quite some other good curators as well - sorry for not explicitly mentioning you here.)

    I really don't understand some stakeholders who fight so hard to get the biggest (curation) parts of a cake which is getting smaller and smaller instead to try to increase the size of the cake!
    The value of a (social) network is measured among others by the number of its users. Therefore they should recognize that it's worth in the long run to support new and middle sized users to give them a reason to stay and also convince their friends to join as well.

  • I really don't like the 'curation window', be it 5 minutes, 15 or 30! Its only effect is to favour bots and automated voting trails over people who are seeking for good posts, read them and upvote them manually. I don't like to be in a hurry when looking for good content and taking the time to read it. I just don't care when I upvote content which I like.
    I think that regardless when you vote, your curation rewards should only depend on the vote weight.
    It is a myth that a good curator is someone who is upvoting everything fast. And I can still be a good curator when I discover a great post five days after it has been published. Quite often I upvote content which is already several days old, simply because I didn't notice it earlier. Most of the time fast upvotes stem from bots or automated upvoting trails anyway.

  • I hope the the implementation of "Hive Communities" will improve the situation by making it more easy for real curators to find and reward exactly that content they are looking for.

In Steem Monsters Proof of Brain is working!

Amazingly, if there is a place withing the STEEM community where Proof of Brain is already working, it's not the blogging section, but - in my opinion - in the Steem Monsters game!

Of course you need to invest some money to be successful in Steem Monsters, but apart from that it depends on your own skills if you win games, tournaments, money and new cards. If you play well, you earn, whether or not any whales support you, whether or not you are popular: the only thing you need to do, is to use your brain to play as well as possible. I know quite some whales owning lots of expensive cards but are never close to the top of the ranking lists (the proof of Proof of Brain). :)

Well, there are playing some bots, too, and some players prefer to extract their teams from prefabricated spreadsheets instead of being creative, but that doesn't change the fact, that it still depends on myself, my ability to create a good team (and yes, also some luck) if I win or lose.
Actually, I hope the game is getting even more complicated in future, for example by combining three or more rule sets.

Different than the STEEM price the value of my hard-earned monster cards is steadily increasing ...


Thank you very much for this posting. There is a lot of truth in it.

Posted using Partiko iOS

Fully agree with your post. I wrote about this as well recently, more support needs to be given for unpopular/new authors who write about general stuffs. But looking at how curation works, it still seems like writing about how great Steem is is still the best way to get upvotes from whales. That is really sad.

Whales and popular authors feel obliged to return voting favours in the game of circle jerking. It is even more disgusting when popular authors shit post multiple times a day leeching autovotes from their whale friends and thus depriving others the pie. Whatever remaining vp from these people are then used to support the so called #newsteem and claiming themselves to be Steem influencer. IMO circle jerking is far worse than bidbots, especially when the circle consist solely of whales and popular authors.

IMO circle jerking is far worse than bidbots, especially when the circle consist solely of whales and popular authors.

Actually, it isn't worse in my opinion (because bid bots also can cause some real damage, for example plunder the reward pool and devaluate the trending page), but I agree that it is a serious problem.

People who are famous for BIG SP meet the trending post. Difficult to find variations of posts with ordinary users.

In various tribes, I have also seen the contents of trending posts made popular by curators and other famous people.

Sometimes I feel surrendered to post good content because there are no "big users" who care about my posts.

Through @Curangel I tried to vote for users who had not been explored well in Steem. I see many old users on Steem that can't earn more than 1 Steem, even with good content.

I see many old users on Steem that can't earn more than 1 Steem, even with good content.


Sometimes I feel surrendered to post good content because there are no "big users" who care about my posts.

Don't surrender, please! :)

Although a good content is very subjective, I still think small stake users who write mundane topics should be highlighted as well. However with curation projects, there are criteria that have to be met, hence why, it's really tricky to catch all the good fish in the net. I am still positive that at least users who consistently write a decent to great content, definitely attracts curators and big users.

Although a good content is very subjective ...

Partly subjective. There are certain criteria helping to evaluate the quality of content, for example:

  • Are orthography and grammar correct?
  • How is the quality of included pictures and videos (that's measurable)?
  • Does the author offer verifiable sources to back his claims?
  • Does a post contain explanations, own thoughts, new ideas?

Curation projects have good intentions (and partly positive effects), but the trend of making whitelists with 'trustable' authors involves the risk to upvote certain users rather often, whereas others get nearly nothing. Actually, I think one should try to spread one's upvotes on as many different users as possible and evaluate content independantly of who created it.

I am still positive ...

Nice, lets hope together that in the end that turns out to be justified. :)

I agree with grammar conservatism. It's still though, personally, when I curate I also look at the substance of the post. Also, thank you for your insight. That helped me evaluate what I did in the past. Hopefully, I'll become a better content curator.

I don't believe STEEM Whales are wish to support each and every quality content creators. Because STEEM POWER is most important factor here. That's why I have tried to implement comment based reward sharing mechanism as $trdo. Sometimes this might get attention later, because, no one wish to see their vote power less than 80% at the end of the day!


Congratulations @theguruasia, you are successfuly trended the post that shared by @jaki01!
@jaki01 got 6 TRDO & @theguruasia got 4 TRDO!

"Call TRDO, Your Comment Worth Something!"

To view or trade TRDO go to
Join TRDO Discord Channel or Join TRDO Web Site

100% agree and it's a breath of fresh air to see a post on how it is instead of one that just gives blind praise just because it gets the upvotes.

Proper curation is somewhat of a fallacy, you simply can't expect the majority to buy Steem and Power Up just to plow through all the garbage that is being posted on the platform to find something they like to selflessly upvote it while they would earn a lot more with a lot less effort just by post2mine & upvote4upvote. The non-linear reward curve really killed the small accounts as it's just way more profitable to upvote posts you know will get more upvotes. Even though it's a good way to fight spam and abuse, the idea that you vote is worth less when upvoting smaller guys is just wrong.

The no curation window idea might actually work.

If anything, Steemmonsters really shows everyone how it should be done and I like the idea that anyone can empower themselves. Sadly enough, it looks like some big bully accounts are using their free downvotes to flag genuine steemians that use some of the DEC they earned to get more exposure in the Steemmonsters tag. (Post)

You were actually the first-ever whale vote I got myself over 2 years ago, Thanks again for that!

hallo Jaki01, du sprichst mir mit vielem aus der Seele aber das weißt du ja jetzt sowieso, ich würde mich genauso wie du darüber freuen wenn hier die kleineren mal eine etwas größere Rolle spielen dürften denn die sind unsere Zukunft wenn wir denn eine haben wollen, wie im richtigen Leben unsere Kinder die sind die Zukunft ohne die wird es sehr sehr bald sehr sehr trist werden auf diesem Planeten und vielleicht auch bald hier bei Steemit.

Wenn ja wenn nicht endlich ein paar der dicken Fische mal die Augen richtig aufmachen und ein wenig nachdenken wie Geld vom Himmel fallen soll wenn keiner mehr was leistet sprich Beiträge schreibt.

Habe mir heute ebenfalls erlaubt mir etwas Luft zu meinem Unmut zum Verhalten einiger eignetlich angesehener Steemians zu machen (Post ist unter dem account von don-t in englisch und deutsch veröffentlicht) ich erwarte keine Heiligsprechung dafür sondern wahrscheinlich Schelte aus allen Ecken.

Aber egal wir sehen nach vorne, nicht nach hinten dir und deiner Familie noch einen schönen restlichen Sonntag

vom Andalusier

Don T

I agree 100%. I blogged here for 2 years, and at t his point I just gave up. I turned on an autovoter (set to 5 minutes!) and now I scroll my feed... nothing interests me. Scroll the main feed, nothing interests me. This only interests me insomuch as I agree with you, but I would like to see actual CONVERSATIONS going on. To be honest, I would add one more "bummer" about steemit: No one talks here, they all run to discord. I do not like discord, I do not like chat rooms. Why are those conversations not happening in comment sections where curation rewards get paid?

Indeed, too many topics are discussed in Discord instead here on the blockchain ...

I should not upvote you, because

  • you are popular
  • you write about steem

But I do so agree with you!
Maybe I should add a popularity index to the steem echo chamber Index...

No need to upvote me if you don't feel like doing so. :)

Yes, I earn well (which means I receive many STEEM per post, which are worth less than a few STEEM were nearly two years ago), but many good content creators get nearly nothing, especially when they write about 'normal' things 'only'. :)

many good content creators get nearly nothing, especially when they write about 'normal' things 'only'. :)

They may be sort of like me, more of a consumer, that occasionally post. It seems the curators are looking for what will make them money, curators rarely vote after the first two hours. You vote when you find, read and consume the content, same here. When it was posted does not really matter to the consumer, to the curator it makes a lot of difference.

I think that a lot of the good everyday content, (life/real), stuff is from the consumers, not the content creators looking to make a buck or two, or to build a brand name for themselves. The rewards are nice do not get me wrong, but a lot of everyday stuff is posted just because the poster was just that a poster, not a blogger, they had something they wanted to share. At least that is most of my postings stuff.

Would I like to get 20 steem on a post of mine, you bet I would be over ecstatic with that, heck when I get more than a couple of steem I am very happy. But I am not looking to build a brand name for myself, I am not an entertainer, nor a blogger, or a news reporter, just a guy having some fun reading looking, commenting and voting on stuff that hits my fancy, and on occasion sharing some stuff.

So the especially when they write about 'normal' things 'only'. :) I think is in a lot of cases just a consumer, who had something they felt like sharing, the social side of the media component, if that makes any sense. !BEER

Would I like to get 20 steem on a post of mine, you bet I would be over ecstatic with that ...

But 20 STEEM are worth nothing nowadays ... :) (Exaggeration intended.)

View or trade BEER at steem-engine.

Hey @jaki01, here is a bit BEER for you. Enjoy it!

Very interesting read! You raise some very important points.

I tend to take a more "analytical/critical" approach when I write about STEEM, so I also question the bigger picture. Just like this post you shared.

I agree, a wider array of content type/topic/interests, accommodating more reader preferences and wider distribution of STEEM/SMTs in all those niches will increase our network's value.

I'm also optimistic about communities. When there is a clear separation of content by type, I expect people to find what they enjoy more easily. It will also make it easier to discover outstanding thoughts within a niche, without any noise drowning it out.

I hope not to scare you with this long comment. :) I have no resistance towards your points raised and refer also towards what I read in the comment-section.

For a view from another angle it probably looks like this in the Steemosphere:

People try by all means to persuade other people to behave according to a system that revolves around the currency "attention". The attention span has reached a strange degree at which it is fleeting. When we talk about incentives, we are talking about behavioural adaptations that often unconsciously put people under pressure. The 7-day window, the VP wheel, which should always show exhaustion at the end of the day if one wants to be considered a good Steemian, the distribution of the curation rewards after how many minutes. We treat each other as if we have already accepted that a system that offers mathematical and economic mechanisms must be used in exactly this way, although of course we could behave differently. I see it similarly to you.

I think that in a system where a single actor unites all functions in one function, it will not have an inspiring attraction, but the opposite. The participants will become all the more frustrated, the more adjustments the system requires of them in terms of quantitative participation.

Contents are, as it were, nothing more than mathematical quantities; they are basically not really important in this system, because they are fed by all means into automatisms that oil a mindless computational equation. On the surface a content seems to be welcome, but below it the nature of the platform offers numbers.

Has it ever happened to you (who might read this) that you happened to stumble across a "whale" account and you see that this account doesn't publish comments or replies, but is a silent account that just votes? Did you have the impulse that this anonymous person should please be approachable?

The thing is: A whale shouldn't and can't represent everything in one function. When he starts a community, he is prone to corruption and nepotism. It's human nature to gain advantages by making friends with someone in a position of power. When account holders and community founders make their debut in a position as strong as a whale, and promise to reward good content and punish bad content, one is acting like a monarch. One doesn't distribute ones power to independent institutions, but bundle it centrally. If one does this, one will attract both: Flatterers, opportunists and lobbyists as well as opponents and haters.

You can start with the very best intentions and I'm sure whoever founds communities has only the best in mind. But thousands of years of human civilization history has shown that the most powerful don't see their own stumbling blocks. Which consultant can you trust, who will ask you critical questions that you, because you want to be mature in spirit, do not regard as a violation of your vanity?

The basic idea of a healthy system is the division of powers. Those who belong to the three different pillars are not allowed to have backroom conversations, they must offer voluntary transparency and reporting to the public. They have a liability to bring.

Those who want to make rules must have the mandate of those who consider themselves to belong to this rules. There is a lot of confusion about this here on Steemit, and while you are an enthusiastic supporter of Community A today, you can turn your back indignantly on it tomorrow. The same goes for the curators: today a content producer is celebrated and tomorrow he can fall into disgrace. Nobody likes that, actually. Every one would like to have at least some sort of certainty. But here it's more about the person than the content.

So the community drivers, like the individual users, are not really committed to each other. As soon as an individual criticizes a community (driver), it is defended by lobbyists and the self-interests of other actors as if it needed to be defended. Small accounts stand in front and defend large accounts, as they sense an opportunity to profile themselves.

Where content like firewood is used to light a campfire, but almost nobody sits around it in a circle to hear good stories, we have an absurd system. We have seen on facebook that the individual has basically become a sort of pass-through station to forward this or that content. I think though that the local or small groups see themselves as valuable and do their thing without caring much about likes or dislikes.

My attitude is that not a single one should care about the "masses to be brought in". They would come all by themselves if they found fun, interest and inspiration. It is rather the other way around and I would like to close with the paradox that this could be: Never try to help the weak or please the strong.

You are describing how things partly are ... But how could we improve STEEM in your opinion, what would be the best possible measures? :)


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