Steem Budget Proposals Whitepaper!

in #steem5 years ago (edited)


When we begin reinvesting 200,000 Steem every 28 days in projects promising to help Steem grow through a decentralized governance system featuring budgets, proposals, and voting, we can expect the value of the Steem we hold to increase exponentially without it costing us anything in upvotes, curation, author rewards, or inflation! Will you please read the next two paragraphs because the excitement will build in seeing how easy this is to get started with?

What Do We Really Want?

Are we all hoping for Steem to make the greatest difference in the world and to get the highest return on our investment? Absolutely. How do we make that happen? We make the difference and get the ROI by increasing the value that Steem provides to everyone using it. Every action dedicated to building the value of Steem gives us what we want. A transparent budget proposal funding system designed to reinvest some of the new Steem created every day in projects that grow our community is very likely to add massive value to Steem as it has done for Dash and therefore give us what we want.

Executive Summary!

How much of a return on our investment will we get when we make about 200,000 Steem every 28 days available to any member of Steem submitting a proposal that offers to add value to our community? If the results from Dash are any indication, we may be looking at a Steem price 20 times higher than it is today within a year of adding a budget proposal system alongside smart media tokens, communities, and a mobile app.

To make the 200,000 Steem available, we can remove Steem power interest and reduce top 20 witness rewards by 50% or increase inflation by the same amount. While any suggestion of change is likely to trigger fears and quick dismissals, after further investigation, we find this change is likely to give us exactly what we are hoping to get and be worth the discomfort of trying something new. Would you read the rest of this post or the same text in the whitepaper at because this will empower you to help us make budget proposals a reality today?

Dash Price up from $11 to $300+ in 1 Year!

Dash price increase by year.png

The digital currency Dash attracted me as an investor for my first all in cryptocurrency investment in December 2016 which purchased a Dash masternode for $11,000 at $11 per Dash. Dash’s budget proposal system is the primary reason I invested because it made it easy to see how Dash was funding its own growth and predicted a bright future because every speculative increase would increase the real value of the budget available. Learn more about Dash’s budget proposal system using these links.

  1. See existing proposals at
  2. Learn how the budgets, proposals, and voting work at
  3. BitShares has a similar system with worker proposals at

Within a month of investing in Dash, I was promoting Dash in all my videos and submitting my own proposals. Within 4 months of using Dash, I had submitted 7 proposals despite having almost no other relationships in the community. The first several of my proposals failed with the fourth and fifth succeeding. Dash budget proposals gave me over 70 Dash in exchange for advertising Dash on Facebook and YouTube along with making a new series of tutorial videos which I completed before the proposal was funded. Most importantly, these proposals gave me a way to immediately add value as a new user without having to build a following, spend months hanging out in chat, setup a server, or get approval from the Dash team directly.

The Dash I was given was a small fraction of the total budget which funded many more projects like mine every month including integration with an exchange, sponsorship of YouTubers, travel to conferences, new app development, exclusive partnerships with Dash by third parties, promotion on a cryptocurrency radio show, and hundreds more projects designed to add value to Dash.

What makes all this amazing is the fact that Dash is only a small improvement over Bitcoin and now has no other feature besides budget proposals and the relationships resulting from successful proposals that give it value above another blockchain. Dash has a fraction of the transactions that Steem has and appears to have less wallets despite being older than Steem and having a market cap 10 times higher than Steem. Dash’s “instant” transactions cost a significant fee and are limited to once every 15 minutes or so while Steem and many other blockchains do nearly instant transactions all the time. According to some, Dash is not truly anonymous because the private send feature can be traced while newer cryptocurrencies offer anonymous transactions every time. Nothing about Dash is unique as newer cryptocurrencies do everything better and older cryptocurrencies have bigger followings … except the budget proposals.

dash budget proposal screen.png

Every month 7,000 or so Dash are available in budget proposals which today is worth about 2 million dollars. Few other digital currencies, companies, or agencies anywhere make it so easy to access so much money with transparency as to how to apply and who gets funded with the purpose of reinvesting the payments into projects intended to build the community. Dash’s budget is almost completely responsible for Dash’s success because every effort in the budget proposals multiplied with everything else the Dash community was doing. How much would we benefit from adding a budget proposal system into Steem? If the results in Dash are any indication, making this one change is likely to produce our best chance at giving us what we want.

Dash Budget vs Steem Author Rewards.

New users join Steem every day and try to make a contribution via blogging. Often the projects new users develop to promote Steem add incredible value right away including meetups at universities, new app ideas, suggestions to improve Steem, and translations to languages beside English. The massive effort made by new users to get started often is usually rewarded with almost nothing while the very best get a few hundred dollars and some Steem power delegations that can be taken away at any time. A budget for project proposals that is community funded will give many talented developers and entrepreneurs the ability to contribute immediately without needing to spend six months to build a following or sending hundreds of messages begging for upvotes!

One new user’s journey with Dash and Steem shows the power of budget proposals to make effective collaborations. Max Keiser at or @keiserreport joined Steem in June 2017 making posts earning 3,344.52 Steem Blockchain Dollars or SBD along with 3,772.92 Steem paid in Steem power which is much more than most users on Steem earn in the first few months. Initial posts featured Bitcoin, Gold, and Steem. As rewards continued to build with one post earning over $1,000 at excitement about Steem was high until …

In August 2017, @keiserreport received 2,000 Dash equal to $660,296 USD today for a Dash budget proposal at This budget proposal provided funding for a nationwide tour in the USA sponsored by Dash. Since then, @keiserreport has understandably lost enthusiasm for Steem. Most new posts by @keiserreport are about Dash. Almost all the rewards we paid @keiserreport were powered down and sold.

keiserreport dash posts.png

We lost the opportunity to build an effective ongoing relationship with @keiserreport to a competitor with worse fundamentals and we are missing more every day. Will we learn from this and build in a system that has proven to be incredibly effective at promoting collaboration because this will help boost the effectiveness of everything else we already have?

Why Add Budget Proposals to Steem?

Allowing any Steem user to create and submit proposals to build our community will attract many new users and empower our community to fund our own growth consistently. When we combine this with our incredible innovation in smart media tokens, we are likely to MULTIPLY the benefits together. Multiplication of our efforts will give us a blockchain that becomes a clear top 5 choice for an investor hoping to gain value.

BUT JERRY don’t we already have author rewards, witness rewards, the crowdsourced marketing protocol, and countless projects designed to help with this? Yes we do. None of them offer the following together!

  1. Makes the funding easily accessible without having to go to any individual or central authority.
  2. Provides clear directions for success that any user can easily understand and follow.
  3. Allows every user to participate in making the decisions about what gets funded.
  4. Shows outsiders with no previous knowledge of Steem exactly where the money is going.
  5. Proves the process works with case studies featuring hundreds of users receiving funding.

Addressing each of these five points is critical for a funding mechanism within Steem to maximize participation, excitement, and results. We have nothing that does this today, based on my experience going through every single process we do have to get funding for ads for Steem. Despite me having the largest real following here mostly from new user signups and being one of the top 200 holders of Steem power, I have found the process of receiving funding for a project designed to build the value of Steem extremely challenging. If it is hard for me, it is probably impossible for most while being too easy for a few. This equals low participation which equals low value for Steem which equals not getting what we want. Budget proposals enable us to get what we really want by increasing participation, consistently building the value of Steem, and thereby raising the true value which will guarantee a price increase in time.

Read the Whitepaper for More!

The first use case and who earns the most Steem sections do not appear in this post because that made it too long to submit. For the full text, the whitepaper is available at

Where Does the Money Come From?

We have two basic options to fund the budget. First, we can simply increase the inflation rate if we prefer not to change any of the existing systems. Given that we currently are already paying most of the new Steem to those that already have it, we probably are better of adjusting the existing payouts without raising inflation.

What appears to be the best solution to raise the money for the budget is to reduce the passive rewards paid out in Steem power interest and to divert 50% of the top 20 witness block production rewards to fund the budget proposals. This will make about 200,000 Steem available every 28 days to anyone paying 10 Steem to submit a proposal without having to increase inflation. If you are about to start telling us why we cannot do this, would you read the entire post because I will address every concern made to me in person when talking about this proposal?

Below I have demonstrated that we can do this just like we changed the 100% inflation to 9% and we changed the power down to 13 weeks from 104 and we changed the author rewards to linear from curation and we changed the … you get the point!

We Already Made Changes Bigger Than This!

There were a lot of reasons not to make the huge changes we have already made such as reducing inflation or changing to linear rewards. We made them anyway because we felt it was best for all of us. When we add budget proposals, we will open a system that will fund hundreds and soon thousands of projects to grow Steem every month. In exchange we shall demonstrate a new set of beliefs that will free us from thinking we have to prove Steem is worth holding with 2% interest on Steem power and free us from believing that we have to pay top witnesses 260 Steem power a day or face them quitting without replacement.

How Do We Maximize Our ROI?

As @starkerz made so clear in his talk, we each get the best returns by the price of Steem going up. Investing 200,000 Steem a month in projects to grow Steem in a way anyone can audit that has no central authority dictating who gets it will guarantee that the price goes up to match both Steem’s true value and takes on an additional speculative value which in turn will raise the true value more. How does that sound compared to 2% interest on Steem power worth under $1 and paying 20 witnesses 260 Steem power a day at under $1 per Steem instead of 130 a day at $2+ per Steem ?

Who Will Decide What Gets Funded?

Proposals receiving the most stake weighted votes will be paid out in Steem in the order of percentage of approval making room for thousands of proposals to be submitted and hundreds to be funded every month while guaranteeing the largest stake holders the choice as to which proposals would receive funding. For example, if @freedom, @blocktrades, @hendrikdegrote, @thejohalfiles, @minority-report, and/or other top Steem power holders decided a proposal should be funded and voted on it, funding would be nearly guaranteed.

No downvoting would be allowed on proposals to ensure those with the most positive support win regardless of who disagrees just as is the case in the witness voting system. Dash’s one fatal flaw in its budget proposal system is the ability for no votes to cancel yes votes while requiring 10% net votes from masternodes which allows those downvoting to effectively have twice the vote of a yes voter and ruin projects that might add a lot of value. We will avoid making the same mistake here and simply fund the projects in order of which receives the most approval in vested votes.

To keep voting as simple as possible, the voting will be handled the same as witness voting where proxies will handle budget proposal voting also. Like witness voting, delegated Steem power will not count towards proposals to ensure those with the actual stake make the decisions rather than those renting Steem power delegations.

Votes will be limited to approving funding for 100,000 Steem to ensure a variety of projects are funded and that top voters along with popular project creators are not able to dominate the budget decisions every month. This limit would allow for one voter to approve many smaller projects collectively worth 100,000 Steem or a few larger projects with the same total payout. Every vote a user placed on a project would count towards the limit whether funded or not encouraging users to work together to vote in the best projects and vote on smaller projects to maximize the limit.

While this system will still allow those in the top witness, investor, and author positions to easily receive funding, it would be clear how that happens and it will reward more active participation which will increase the value of Steem dramatically.

What Types of Proposals are Possible?

Successful proposals would include funding for new app development, adding new features to existing apps, integrations with third party websites, sponsorships with influencers, writing contests, help with marketing, creating advertising campaigns, receiving reimbursement for Steem related travel, hosting Steem meetups, presenting Steem at conferences, producing new tutorials showing how to use Steem, sponsoring Steem related events, launching Steem based businesses, and many more innovative strategies to spread the word and educate about Steem.

Making a successful proposal will be ten times easier with this system than the grind necessary right now to build a new app, update it, maintain it, and report on it. For example, I have spent $10,000+ advertising Steem and am ready to ask for the next $10,000 to continue building on what has proven successful in introducing millions of people to Steem and bringing thousands of new signups. Where do I ask for $10,000? How about asking for witness votes and using the rewards? Making a pitch directly to Steem? All of these have proven to be ineffective at allowing me to be of service to our community with the least resistance. To make this all better/worse, I have the single largest following on Steem not achieved by follow/followback. If this is my user experience, it is likely much more challenging for everyone else.

Budget proposals will allow each of us to use the unique skills we have, ask for help in funding, know exactly when the money will come, be able to immediately cash out to pay for our projects, and demonstrate to anyone wanting to look exactly how the entire process worked.

In other words, it would make running a legitimate business or other operation in the Steem ecosystem possible, and, hopefully profitable.

When Will Proposal Voting and Payments Happen?

At every 28 days about 200,000 Steem generated from what we were getting in interest and witness rewards will be available for payouts to the proposals. This total number will show at the top of the page along with a number of “funded” proposals which require at least 1 MV in votes equal to about 486 Steem power to be eligible. This will open a “voting window” where 28 days of proposal votes and submissions will take place allowing the Steem power of a user to vote on proposals. These proposals will then be ordered by approval percentage the same as the witness list is. Anyone viewing the page will be able to see the most upvoted proposals first and those with the least votes last. An option on the page will also allow sorting the opposite order and by newest proposals first along with an archive of past proposals by month in an optional sidebar.

To build this reward pool, every block will put a portion of the rewards that were going to interest and the witness into a budget pool which will then empty after the exact amount of blocks in 28 days. Any remainder in the rewards pool after a payout will remain there and be able to be paid out in the next budget. The calculations for this should be simple enough to handle in one block but if not the processing could be split into successive blocks until payouts finish.

At the end of 28 days, the proposals will automatically pay out the STEEM from the budget reward pool in the order of those budgets approved starting with the budget with the most vests in votes and continuing down to each proposal until the budget is empty. The code will check the proposal value against the available budget and pay if it is available. If not, it will skip to the next budget all the way down the list. This will allow small proposals to be more likely to get approved while huge proposals will need to be towards the top in order to get funded if other huge proposals are in. For example, let’s say the budget is 200,000 Steem and the approved proposals go through until 10,000 Steem is left. Here is what happens with the proposal cost and the result.

20,000 = skip
15,000 = skip
11,000 = skip
1,000 = paid. 9,000 remain
10,000 = skip
5,000 = paid. 4,000 remain
5,000 = skip
4,500 = skip
3,500 = paid. 500 remain
100 = paid. 400 remain
500 = skip
200 = paid. 200 remain
250 = skip
10,000 = skip
100 = paid. 100 remain
50 = paid. 50 remain
5,000 = skip
50 paid = stop

Then we start a new budget period fresh and do it all over again. No multiple month proposals will be allowed because that allows for inactive proposals and voters to keep deciding which proposals get paid which is a huge limitation in the existing witness system. Ongoing projects will have to submit updated proposals every month featuring results from the previous month and a specific plan for the new month.

How Will New Proposals Be Submitted?

On the budget page, an option to submit a proposal will allow any user with a Steem account on the active key permission to pay 10 Steem in exchange for making a proposal. The 10 Steem will then be added to the budget that month allowing for additional funding from users submitting proposals. 20 Steem will be the minimum payout allowed with 20,000 Steem the maximum proposal amount to prevent popular projects from taking the entire budget all in one month. Each account could be limited to one (or more) proposals per month to limit spam and reduce the amount of total proposals.

Each proposal will allow a user to submit what will be like a post on the blockchain with the addition of a specific amount of Steem requested for the proposal. Edits will be allowed in everything except the amount of Steem requested and the URL up until 24 hours before payout after which time no edits will be possible. Comments will be enabled the same as on posts. 1 MV of votes will be the minimum threshold required for a proposal to be approved to prevent proposals with no base level of support being funded.

New projects will be accepted up to 48 hours before payouts to allow voters time to review every potential proposal. Votes will be accepted up until the payouts process with votes being able to be made and removed without limitation when under the 100,000 Steem limit in total proposals voting.

Any proposal submission will be able to be canceled by the author up to 48 hours before payouts which will automatically remove all the votes also. An author canceling a proposal will not receive credit for a new one and will not be able to undo the cancellation. Canceling a proposal will not make a spot for a new proposal and the only way to submit again will be to wait until the next budget.

Expected Outcome? will have a good chance to be the most viewed page on within a few months of release as users obsess over submitting proposals, voting proposals up, discussing existing proposals, reviewing past proposals, and planning new proposals. New users and those having given up at being an author will shift attention away from obsessing over author rewards to focusing on budget proposals as most users with no following see that earning Steem in by adding value to Steem through a budget proposal will be easier than by posting. This provides the double-benefit of creating an outlet for programmers and those with other talents that do not translate well to the long-form blog format, allowing Steem to benefit from huge, untapped potential in the largely-IT centric cryptocurrency ecosystem. As word travels rapidly about this new addition to Steem, will become one of the top backlinked pages giving us a huge boost in Google and in sharing on social media websites. Millions of people will first discover Steem through talk and ads about the budget proposals which will produce consistently outstanding growth.

As soon as any investor in Dash sees our budget proposal system, we have a good chance to convert a lot of investors in Dash to investors in Steem along with bringing in hordes of new speculation about what the return on the investment from these proposals will lead to. When combined with the excitement and possibilities of smart media tokens, speculators and traders will start to predict the price of Steem going way up and begin buying and holding. Volume on all exchanges will consistently grow alongside huge price pumps and dumps as news related to budget proposals and smart media tokens continuously triggers waves of excitement followed by selloffs.

Things Will Go Wrong!

This is no everything is perfect fantasy. This is the future I see for us complete with some ugly realities. Some budget proposals will be total scams or honest submissions saying I just want money while adding no value to Steem. This could require adjusting the price of making a new proposal. Whales will vote some up in protest to the change and may earn thousands of Steem doing it unless other votes push better projects higher. Every month we will probably waste at least 20,000 Steem on projects that fail to deliver value and are dumped immediately on an exchange lowering the price of Steem temporarily.

A few projects will be voted in amidst huge controversy as top upvoters disagree on which projects should be allowed. Epic arguments will come out in comments on proposals and spill out into posts talking about scams in the budget resulting in more flag wars and a few users powering down and leaving Steem. The usual circle jerks among top voters, authors, and witnesses will happen as projects are submitted and voted up by the same people every month voting for each other while newer users shout at the unfairness. In other words, a lot of what already goes on on Steemit...will continue to go on.

Competition will be so high some months that great projects will fail to get funded while other months those with over 1 MV in voting power will literally drop in little projects at the bottom offering to do almost nothing and clean up hundreds of Steem. Critics never signing up will point to this system as proof that Steem really is a ponzi scheme and make convincing reports showing how the budget just gets paid back to those at the top, much like the author rewards today. Authors having failed before will try again and fail to get funding and swear to everyone Steem is complete crap.

So Much Fun!

All of this attention will add immense value to Steem and multiply with the existing efforts we are making. Our budget proposal system when combined with smart media tokens, author rewards, witnessing, curation, and projects like will give every type of potential Steem user something to be excited about and participate in.

In two years, we will look back and be extremely grateful that we added a budget proposal system in alongside smart media tokens and credit both of these as reasons Steem pulled out of the $1 price and launched into $10 first, then $20, and finally $50. In five years, we will have more wallets than Bitcoin and hundreds of times more transactions. Most new users in the cryptocurrency world will come in through Steem and never need to ever use Bitcoin.

One day a flip will happen and Bitcoin will go the way of all the apps and websites we have stopped using because we no longer needed them. In ten years as Steem overtakes all of the other top websites in the world, maybe we will build a garden of Eden where we live and give up needing to go online to feel like we are connected. Or maybe a dictator on Steem will take over the world and put us all into worse slavery than we are in now …

Everything that happens will be a beautiful journey together and allow us to more effectively collaborate online in building Steem which is a gift to the world offering freedom from the grind and a fair share for artists. Would you please do whatever you can to make this possible because we will benefit unbelievably from adding a budget proposal system in an upcoming hardfork?

All The Reasons Not To.

Thanks to Steemfest, I shared this idea before posting about it and got some amazing feedback. Most of the responses were positive ranging from “that sounds good” to “OMG best idea ever!" Some responses expressed confusion which I hope is cleared up now. A few voiced objections within a few seconds of listening and explained why we could not do this before hearing any of the details.

I will address each of the objections I heard here and demonstrate beyond any reasonable doubt that not only will implementing this budget proposal system help add value to Steem, it will also help us stop believing that Steem has no value and therefore needing to prove Steem really does have value. We will be empowered to take action that is based on the belief we recognize Steem has a lot of value and we are committed to building that value every month!

Will Investors Stay When We Remove Interest?

The primary objection I heard was that removing Steem power interest removes the incentive to hold Steem power voiced something like this.

We cannot reduce the Steem power interest because then there will be no reason to hold Steem power. Those with Steem power need to keep up with inflation and the interest helps with that. If we take it away, people will start powering down and selling leading to a lower price and perhaps a crash. With a crash and more power downs, we will be open to an attack in witness voting where the blockchain could be forked.

This argument is based on a fear that lowering interest will upset those with a lot of Steem power and lead to a sell off. The belief required to have this fear is that holding Steem power or just holding Steem provides no value to an investor outside of interest and then removing the interest will remove the incentive to hold and lead to power downs. Further, you must believe that the interest is a key holding consideration for those holding Steem.

The fact is that holding Steem power provides some of the greatest benefits of holding any cryptocurrency from voting to lending Steem Power via delegation to potential curation and witness rewards IF Steem has value. If Steem does not have value, what difference does 2% interest make when the price could drop 50%? Bitcoin is up 700% this year without paying interest. How does that compare to 2% interest on Steem power?

bitcoin 700 percent yield.png

Who is here for that 2% (or less) yield, again? {crickets chirping}

When we look more closely at this objection, we see that there is no point in paying interest on Steem power because if Steem has value, interest becomes irrelevant as the price increases. If Steem does not have value interest is also irrelevant because the interest will not cover the losses.

Steem is not, and should not try to be, a competitor to your local bank’s certificate of deposit.

Do We Believe Steem Has Value?

What we believe has value has no need to prove it has value. Look at Bitcoin. Does Bitcoin pay interest? Bitcoin does not need to pay interest because it is a store of value. We see it as valuable and therefore no one needs to incentivize holding Bitcoin. Does holding gold, silver, or platinum pay interest? No. It is a way to store value and therefore no interest is needed. I heard a lot of talk about Steem being a store of value at Steemfest. If that is what we want, now is the time to act like it has value which means giving up trying to prove it.

As we can see from the logic above, if we believe Steem is truly a store of value, then no interest is necessary to keep investors, authors, and proposal winners holding as much Steem as possible. If we believe Steem has no real value, then the games we play to try to incentive holding Steem are simply proving our belief that Steem has no value.

In dating and relationships, we can see this very clearly. When we are single and know we are attractive and have value as a lover, we tend to attract a partner that feels the same by simply being our (confident, outcome-independent) selves. When we are single and feel insecure about our worth and question our value as a lover, we tend to work hard to compensate to prove a different truth than we feel AND we attract a partner that feels the same way. Healthy relationships tend to be founded on trust and have no need for games to maintain faith and excitement. Unhealthy relationships tend to be founded on fear and constantly have drama from the games played to manipulate and control the other.

Our Relationships on Steem.

Let us look at our rules for a moment to see the truth about our community as it is today. We force ourselves into powering up and endure a 3 month withdrawal period instead of creating enough value for Steem to render powering down undesirable. We pay interest on Steem power to try to prove to others and ourselves that Steem has value. No one I have ever pitched Steem to has gotten excited about the interest, because we typically associate interest with boring investments like bonds.

We pay most of our new Steem back to those that already have the most in the form of interest to Steem power holders, witness rewards, and payouts to mostly top authors to help encourage ongoing participation out of fear that if we stop, they will leave us.

Our relationship with the value of Steem feels insecure. The first step in doing better is admitting we have a problem and that yes, we are struggling to believe Steem truly has value. Our entire approach to those holding Steem and participating feels like we believe we do not have true value here and we must put systems in place to prove our value and force people to stay. What we have gotten in return is a Steem price that is nearly the same as when we released, a lot of users with influence that never invested, and new users every day joining for a promise we do not follow through on.

In summary, it seems most of us are struggling to believe Steem really has value which is why we behave the way we do and feel so insecure every time the price drops. When we ACT AS IF STEEM HAS VALUE, the rest of the world will follow our lead.

Adding the budget proposal system will prove this to ourselves and everyone else that we know Steem has value and that we are willing to continuously reinvest in building that value. On top of that, we prove by adding budget proposals that WE TRUST the top witnesses and WE TRUST top Steem power holders to continue making valuable contributions and holding Steem with less rewards in the short term in exchange for much more value in the long term because of a higher Steem price.

After we look at what our belief is about the value of Steem, we are ready to cover the rest of the objections!

Will Top 20 Witnesses Will Keep Contributing?

Every top 20 witness gets about 260 Steem Power every single day which is more than double the average that the top 10 authors on Steem receive in addition to having the ability to earn more from posts, create projects that make money, witness in other blockchains, and/or keep a day job. Not one top 20 witness has an account created after October 2016 meaning every top 20 witness today has been on Steem for more than a year. While this means there are no newer witnesses in the top, it also proves the loyalty of the top witnesses through a lot of our previous changes including approval of hardforks that reduced rewards and interest!

Given most top 20 witnesses already have some of the highest income earning potential on Steem, is it reasonable to ask the top 20 witnesses to GIVE 50% of the guaranteed rewards to pay for budget proposals every month? Adding 50% of 260 Steem a day every 28 days to the budget will produce 130 Steem times 20 witnesses times 28 days which equals 72,800 Steem just from top witness pay alone every 28 days. Meanwhile every top 20 witness will still get 130 Steem Power a day PLUS the option to submit projects to the budget with a very high likelihood of approval. Many witnesses already have ongoing projects that would be eligible and nearly guaranteed to receive funding via the proposed budgeting system. (@jesta with, @goodkarma with Esteem, @furion with,, etc.)

Can we be fairly certain that most top 20 witnesses continue at the same level of service even with half of the rewards because of an ongoing commitment to Steem? Maybe a better question is how many witnesses do we want working for us in the top 20 that would immediately cut back service upon reducing the rewards? How many witnesses working hard at the bottom and getting less than 30 Steem power a day would be happy to step in and get 130 Steem Power a day if one or two top 20 witnesses disabled in protest? Steem is blessed with far more than 20 highly qualified and dedicated witnesses, but currently the “Steem witness market” bears a striking similarity to a labor market with a very high minimum wage stifling competition and innovation.

steem witnesses below top 20.png

It comes back again to whether we believe Steem has value. If we believe Steem has value and the price will continue to grow as we continue to add value to Steem every day, the rewards we are paying witnesses now become huge as the price increases. When Steem goes to $10 in a few months after adding budget proposals, communities, and smart media tokens, we will be paying witnesses in the top 20 even with a 50% paycut $1,300 every day in Steem power. That adds up to about half a million dollars a year. Would a cut to half a million be reasonable with the other half open to the community? Will we be better off acting as if we expect this to happen and accounting for it beforehand?

I get it. Nobody likes a paycut. I did not enjoy getting 260 Steem a day last week as a top 20 witness only to mysteriously lose 20% of my votes while at Steemfest and get reduced back to 50 Steem a day despite using all of my witness earnings to fund ads for Steem. With budget proposals, the most active witnesses working on Steem full time would be motivated to submit projects every month which would mostly get funded at an equal or higher reward than 130 Steem a day.

For example, in hosting Steemfest 3 next year, @roelandp would simply submit budget proposals for up to 20,000 Steem as many times as needed until the entire conference was paid for. How many hours of time and energy would he save not having to worry about funding outside of making proposals? None of the whales then would need to contribute to the cost to have the conference and instead we could have more money to reimburse those traveling which could also be done directly in the budget. The budget could easily pay for all of Steemfest and we would barely notice the difference.

Do We Already Have Funding On Steem?

Before hardfork 19, an amazing project on Steem often would receive thousands of dollars in upvotes to get started and go forward. The problem was that complete crap posts and circle jerks were also receiving huge amounts of funding while the average user received almost nothing and had little chance of changing that. Within a few weeks of joining the community, we funded my Steem ad campaigns with as much funding as I had received from submitting my seven Dash budget proposals over 4 months. If I was a user with no following, that probably would not have happened because no one would have seen the posts or trusted me with the upvotes.

After hardfork 19, funding new projects with author rewards has become extremely difficult with linear rewards. The only practical way for most to get funding is to make posts consistently which now are lucky to earn $500 for an incredible idea. While $500 is good money to earn on a blog post, $500 is a fraction of what we need to fund projects that will add the most value to the Steem blockchain. $500 is also a lot more than most great posts make even among top authors, and the effort that goes into such a post can represent days, or even weeks, of high-level effort. Writing this has taken me a week's worth of effort making posts combined with hours of edits by @lexiconical to make sure this was truly a worthwhile project that read smoothly.

$100 is about the average a top author on Steem can hope to earn today with one post per day average or fewer posts with more upvotes. To produce at this level for me means spending hours of time to research and write a post or making a video first and then spending $20 to $50 for help in transcription and edits along with 10 to 30 more minutes to edit the post. Meanwhile, this only works for me because I have the largest real following on Steem and have invested over $50,000. Despite my best efforts as an author to contribute every day, I am open to downvotes on a regular basis regardless of what I post.

Worse than the downvotes, my rewards stop immediately if I stop posting. I did not make a post for almost a week before this as I worked on writing this massive whitepaper which is over 10,000 words. From looking at earnings, I take a risk putting so much effort into one post versus just taking the auto votes on many smaller posts where I am virtually guaranteed $50 per post on autovotes but there is no guarantee on a larger post of larger rewards. At the same time if I post about a project too much, readers and voters get annoyed leading to even more downvotes. If I attempt to help in other ways, such as engaging the community in chat, assist new users directly, or do anything other than post, my earnings will be zero until I return to solely working on my own content creation. This very format encourages burnout and “Steemicide” as @stellabelle has talked about.

Being an author on Steem is an ineffective method for raising money for a project beyond an initial idea and occasional update. Unfortunately, author rewards are the best chance most of us have to get any funding for our project.

How to Raise $10,000 More for Steem Ads?

I have been obsessed with advertising Steem on Google, Facebook, and YouTube because I know how powerful online advertising has been in building my own following to over 2 million online. In my first five months on Steem, I have averaged a few thousand dollars a month in funding raising using every method available and I can tell you with certainty there is no good way for me to raise $10,000 more to fund the new ads on Steem despite having done a great job according to feedback on the previous $10,000 I was given and have now paid to Facebook and Google. To make matters worse, it should be easier for me to do this than for 99.99% of other users because of my focus and following. If I cannot raise $10,000 easily in my position to help promote the growth of Steem, it is unlikely that most of us can realistically raise $1,000 or even $100 for an amazing project to benefit Steem!

Our existing systems to reinvest in Steem are not effective in allowing new users to participate at scale. Smart media tokens will not change this because they are designed to empower anyone to add the value of Steem into an existing community. Unfortunately, smart media tokens offer no way to finance promoting themselves which will make it difficult for those that would benefit most from using a smart media token to learn about it or be motivated to give it a try. If our release for smart media tokens was any indication, the excitement might peak for a few days at release and selloffs from those waiting for a peak will bring the price even lower than it was before smart media tokens were out. We need one more part in this system to make it all work.

Budget Proposals x Smart Media Tokens = Liftoff!

With budget proposals, those wishing to launch a token will be able to fund the development for that with a budget proposal. If we expect companies to handle the integrations themselves, I think we are going to be very disappointed as we see almost no adoption. If we expect direct collaboration with Steemit to pay the companies to build the tokens in, we open ourselves up to criticism for funding some integrations but not others, all while missing the opportunity to allow these collaborations to be public. Further, this would result in the fate of the project being centralized at Steemit, Inc, which could stretch their resources thin. The real opportunity using a budget to fund smart media tokens would be to entice more companies to do the same by making integration profitable (and easier) via community funding. In the NYT example, how many more companies would integrate smart media tokens after watching the proposals, seeing them go through, and seeing the finished results?

Use Case #2: NYT +Smart Media Tokens!

Let’s say the New York Times would like to make a smart media token but wants to hire a new developer to lead the project. They could then make a proposal for 20,000 Steem to give them the financing to get the project started and have everything setup. A second proposal could help finish the job the following month after which they would be ready to launch by month three. We pay 40,000 Steem to help them pay their costs in launching the smart media token. They then drive millions of dollars of purchases of Steem through their new NYT token which empowers users to have influence and earn more by contributing to their website. Everyone wins.

Budget Proposals = SMT Salesforce!

In addition to companies being able to get funding to integrate smart media tokens through the budget, thousands of our users will think of incredibly creative ways to get paid to sell smart media tokens to the companies that are most likely to use them. We could afford to fund hundreds of sales pitches by individual users about smart media tokens every month for probably for less than 100 Steem each. An example proposal might include a promise for 100 Steem to pitch a local newspaper on integrating smart media tokens based on the owner being a friend or getting a meeting with one of the top decision makers. How many of these thousands of sales pitches would be successful and spawn new smart media tokens? Even if most failed, the few that worked would pay for all the others.

Funded Proposals = More Users!

We need a way to fund growth on Steem that is transparent and easy to get started with because this will MULTIPLY with our existing efforts. A user successful in getting a proposal funded will be more likely to post and refer friends. Those friends may launch their own smart media token. Buyers of that new token may invest in holding some Steem. Traders noticing this extra volume will buy and hold more often. Readers following cryptocurrency prices will see the price grow for Steem will get excited and sign up. Authors forgetting about Steem will come back to start posting again as rewards go higher. The posts made by these authors will get found in Google search and bring new users in that submit budget proposals.

The key is we need to multiply our efforts together in a way that helps make it easy for any of us to get the new Steem created in exchange for making a valuable contribution. In multiplication, adding a new multiplier is way more effective than simply making the existing ones larger. For example, if I multiply 10x10, I get 100. If I add 10 to each I get 20 and 20 which multiplied is 400. Adding 10 to each represents working on what we already have. If instead I add an additional multiplier of 10, I get 10x10x10 which equals 1,000. Adding another 10 in to multiple represents adding something new. We do not have to be math geeks to appreciate that 1,000 is bigger than 400. Adding budget proposals allows us to multiply our existing efforts which will also multiply the value of Steem.

The idea that the methods we have now are working well to fund new efforts is only valid if we are happy with the results. The Steem price today is about where it was when we launched more than a year and a half ago, while Bitcoin is up over a factor of 10 in that same time-frame. Does that indicate we can improve at reinvesting in our own growth?

Adding budget proposals to Steem will give us the most effective fundraising mechanism we have ever had and soon the most effective in the entire world of digital currencies. Budget proposal funding will multiply everything we are currently doing to provide funding in Steem such as witness rewards, author rewards, curation rewards, and

Will We Be Safe From Attack?

Another fear is that if we remove interest and lower witness rewards we will open our network to a hostile takeover where witness voting would fork the blockchain. This assumes that the witnesses and voters we have in place already are not interested or capable of doing this, and are rather just waiting for the right time to strike. The security argument is based on the belief that the people we have today are the only ones we can trust, which is a popular tactic among centralized governments and corporations. It is ironic to see the same strategy used when so many see blockchain technology as a solution to these same problems.

Over the last year, we have seen more people come and go in Steem than stay. If our community truly has value, we will continue with whoever is in the top witness positions without any big problems because everyone has the best interests of the community in mind. If we are out for our own gain and are just using Steem to get what we want, then this community is one where we must watch our backs and truly offers nothing of value to the world.

In summary, creating a budget proposal system from the interest and witness rewards pool poses no greater risk than we already face today. In fact, creating a budget proposal system will most likely reduce the likelihood of a hostile takeover as the excitement builds and the price of Steem grows. The higher the price of Steem, the more resources would be required to assemble a “hostile takeover” by purchasing an influencing stake. The more joy we have in our community and the more we believe Steem has value, the more stability we will continue to enjoy.

Who Benefits Most Keeping Things The Same?

Most of the interest created from holding Steem power goes directly to the @steemit account resulting in over 1 million new Steem power added to the Steemit account every year in interest. This means that Steemit in fact will lose out most by changing the interest. Next, the largest holders of Steem power such as @freedom, @ned, and @blocktrades would lose out on hundreds of thousands more Steem power paid in interest with this change.

At first, this might look bad until we think it through. Would @steemit, @freedom, @ned, and @blocktrades prefer to earn 2% interest on Steem power or would each prefer to see the price of Steem go up? An increase of just $0.03 in the Steem price every year would be more return on investment than getting 2% interest on Steem power. Adding in budget proposals is likely to put the price up at by much more than 3 cents.

Who really wants to keep things the same? The “haters” and the critics benefit the most from not making this change. Everyone that has powered down and said Steem sucks has a better chance of being right when we avoid setting up a mechanism that has proven extremely effective to help blockchains fund their own growth. Every commenter on Steem, Facebook, YouTube, and Reddit saying Steem is a scam benefits when we decide adding budget proposals is too much of a risk or that we have more important things to do.

Those hoping we fail benefit the most from our own failure to help ourselves and empower new members of our community immediately to add massive value by submitting budget proposals. None of us that love Steem and want it to grow come out ahead by keeping things the same. Will we take a leap of faith on making this switch with the objective to help us reinvest in our own growth?

The Price of Steem on Budget Release Days.

Another very logical concern is that if we pay out 200,000 Steem every 28 days, the price will take an epic dump as Steem paid to proposals gets immediately sold on the market. However, if we look closer, we will see that is unlikely to occur.

Currently we have so few transactions on exchanges that our volume is so low that most traders do not even notice us today or make trades in Steem.

volume by cryptocurrency.png

Even if all the Steem from the budget does go out on the market, it will get the volume going which may trigger some new interest in Steem including some big buys and trades. The additional trading will generate exchange fees, encouraging new exchanges to support Steem, and current exchanges to continue listing Steem. If Steem truly has value, buyers will know to wait until budget release day and be ready to buy up a lot of the Steem cheaper, which will boost the price back up.

In Dash, the budget releases do not seem to have impacted the market and the 200,000 Steem rate is almost exactly the same as the 7,000 Dash rate when adjusted for about 7 million Dash being available and around 200 million Steem in circulation. These numbers can be adjusted by the community before implementation for Steem’s individual needs; nothing is set in stone.

What we have currently is resulting in lots of Steem being released on the market as buyer interest is overwhelmed by constant selling pressure from those fearing Steem will drop even lower based on the belief it has no value. If we work on building the value of Steem, there will be much less temptation to sell and a lot more buy orders. Having the confidence to allow 200,000 Steem out on the open market every 28 days is a sign that Steem is valuable enough to handle any temporary price drops and actually may lead to a price increase from the extra volume on trading days.

Finally, 200,000 Steem at today’s prices represents only 8% of a typical day’s trading volume in Steem. Even if the entire 200,000 Steem from budget proposals is immediately dumped on the market each month, total selling pressure will only be increased by 0.27%(albeit mostly at once). This is hardly likely to cause any catastrophic results.

Is There Time To Build This?

The final argument is the “too busy” excuse we use when we do not have time to do the things that we love or when we are afraid trying something new. I used to be too busy to eat better, exercise, listen, get a massage, be a good husband, go to AA, see a counselor, take a deep breath, and to appreciate the world around me. That made me so miserable I could not stand to live like that anymore. I either had to die to escape the pain or start making time for what mattered like taking my dogs for a walk instead of writing another post or filming another course.

When we see the biggest opportunity to make an improvement in our lives, we are only hurting ourselves and those around us when we delay action. I know because I spent a lot of years of my life being busy and producing nothing of value all the while suffering and hurting the people around me AND knowing in my heart there was a better way to live. Today if I am busy I cannot stand the pain for long. I spend hours every day with my family, walking my dogs, volunteering, and taking care of myself and those around me by preparing healthy food, reading inspirational books, and listening to music especially by Deadmau5.

Every day new users are joining Steem and quickly getting frustrated with our inability to help produce the rewards. We fail to upvote posts that took hours and brought in thousands from Google search. We give all of our upvotes to amazing projects only to see that the costs were not even covered. We have great ideas only to realize there is no way to pay for it. We see authors, investors, and witnesses earning huge rewards every day while most of us would be happy to make a few dollars a day in exchange for an hour or a few hours of service.

Every day we are losing almost as many users as we are gaining. The data does not look good right now as almost every metric that counts is down such as new user signups, daily activity, and price. Unlike Facebook’s viral growth where users came and stayed, most of our users are joining and leaving in frustration. We are looking at another epic drop that we can easily jump out of by making it easy for anyone to come up with an idea to help us grow, fund it, and execute.

We Need This Budget Proposal System Today!

We can change everything by building this budget proposal system, finishing communities, publishing the mobile app, and launching smart media tokens. No budget proposal system and we are unlikely to see communities or smart media tokens take off because of lack of user adoption/retention which will be the same reason nearly every cryptocurrency community fails. When instead we add budget proposals as a priority on the to do list for Steem, we are looking at a shot to the moon as the proposals and smart media tokens combine to make Steem a top choice for investing in 2018.

What If Things Go Wrong?

A realistic worst-case scenario would include a roll-back to undo these changes in a following fork. Steem has already proven additional hard-forks are manageable.

It is riskier to do nothing than it is to try.

Will You Please Help?

Would you please help us make this a reality because we can absolutely add massive value to our community by making it SIMPLE and TRANSPARENT for ANY USER to obtain FUNDING for projects that ADD VALUE to Steem? Every upvote, resteem, share, comment, promotion, suggestion, conversation, and thought about adding budget proposals to Steem will help us all bring our budget proposal system into a reality that we each will love participating in!

Jerry Banfield with some images, minor additions and edits by @lexiconical


I'm probably the only person able to comment on this yet, having read it already.

It's amazing. Make sure you actually read this one, even though it's very long!

If we do not wish to see Steem suffer the same exchange-delisting fate as Bitshares, we must seriously consider Jerry’s proposal. If we choose to reject it, we should have solid reasons for our decision as a community and the ability to show that we gave the idea its due consideration.

This is Jerry's most important post yet.

I agree that this is Jerry's most important post yet. A Budget proposal system allows people to come up with all sorts of improvement concepts and let them compete against each other. Steemit really has no buzz going around apart from steemit itself. Nobody is using reddit or and except for the Facebook promotions and YouTube from Jerry and maybe few more people, we have nothing going on on social media.

According to Google trends the interest peaked around June and currently we are at about 50% of that peak. We really need that buzz and a budget proposal can seriously help that. I've seen lots of crypto related video ads on YouTube. We should totally do that for steemit.

though I agree to your points, what about user engagement ? I think the user engagement of Stem may be more than facebook during its glory days. Though user retention may be twitterish. (i meant very low)

Yep. You nailed it. Only a MMO is more engaging than steemit. Not only the community is the single best mass online gathering on the face of Earth; you also get STEEM for your contributions. Even when it's just a few cents, it's still a incentive and it creates a push for quality. Facebook never had a push for quality. Likes or bad comments or downright trolling had no objective consequences. Steemit fixes that.

Quality requires a certain kind of commitment. That could affect the retention. Sometimes I feel like posting something and then back away thinking it might not be good enough for the community. There is a pressure to be great. Also the community has a very small set of interests. Cryptocurrency, individuality, philosophy, travel, technology, psychology, free markets, libertarianism, economics..... things kind of fall into a small set of categories which limit the audience. That's not entirely bad. I mean we don't need liberals and SJWs here, do we?

Some might just make an account and leave it being unable to connect with the community well. I personally hope steemit will never be cursed to grow as big as Facebook as it would diminish the quality of people on steemit. I think steemit has a vibe of productive elitism to it. That's what attracts me. There is no room for cheap stuff. When people have nothing much to contribute, they may simply decide to stay in the sidelines.

good points. The retention seems to a problem because of bad UX. What I feel is the company is more focused on the blockchain and give the UI part to organizations like busy.

I got used pretty quickly. There used to be some problems with things not getting posted or getting double posted etc. DTube can do hell a lot smoother and better. The recent improvements are nice except for the logo.

At the end of the day it's the fundamentals that matter the worst. Overvalued companies never end well. Undervalued ones at least have a chance and they don't risk being a disaster. Steemit is pretty young. It'll improve. I'm more interested in getting new valuable users. Maybe we'd find good UI designs from them.

I'm pretty sure steemit UI is much better than reddit.

over value company

like snap ? :)

I also think UI is fine but when it comes to the UX, it has basic flaws. for example, look at the empty space to the left of this post.

I consider SNAP, TWTR, Uber to be more like charties because they bleed money while providing a service to the customers. I meant the companies with high P/E like Netflix or a crypto like BTC.

The empty space and the long comment threads breaking into different pages are both things to consider. Best discussions can get into multiple pages and most people are going to miss them because they won't be clicking to view the rest of the discussion.

Comments should be given more space. It makes reading easier and instead of reducing the width of comments significantly, they should try some lines connecting the discussion like a thread. That would be really helpful.

It was nice to chat with you. Upvoted and following!

checking the video @vimukthi

also see this :


This is an incredible post by Jerry. I find it remarkable that he is perfectly right to be able to write this pitch and the accompanying white paper, having experience it already with DASH. I'm quite grateful that Jerry has made his investments of time, effort, experience and money so that he could put this masterpiece of thought together. There is no question that we need this idea of budget funding. It's difficult to argue the downside. Thank you for reviewing the post/white paper and encouraging Jerry.

What will it take to actually implement this?

Now you've made me feel bad that I wasn't able to push through, so I'm going back to finish reading it. You're just mean to me, lol.

Ok, took me about an hour extra but I finished it.

Hey Jerry, unfortunately had no time to chat about this with you @ SteemFest.

I like your proposal in the way that it is an idea to promote steem out there. But I think 200K steem is quite a lot of money, without any promise of delivering. I am not sure that Dash money has grown so much thanks to their budget promotion fund, so basing the fact that Dash has a budget promotion fund and correlating it with its price rise is imho a bit fast to draw conclusions, and then copying it to Steem, with totally different characteristics. I mean Bitshares has a worker proposal fund but that price has also not skyrocketed.

I would opt for a referral program where measurable / verifiable onboarding of new users bring a reward to those who invest in bringing quality new users on board to be honest. This could be in forms of paying an X % of the onboarded users rewards' for the first month (or first x posts). A user could opt to buy-out this rev-sharing and then that buyout reward would go to the referal program manager.

Btw. wow such lengthy post :) Thanks and lets keep the discussion on!

I checked out dash central, I mean projects like this:

Rake in 600 dash === 210,000 USD, has 60 views on Youtube...

Having said this, proven methods like social ads and e.g. the way you spent part of your rewards to fb / goog ads is another form, which I do like. This could still also be combined with a referral program to pay back those investments.

@roelandp . . . . lol
just sayin´. . . .few months ago:::

Peanutz don't want to hear any of that. :)

I mean Bitshares has a worker proposal fund but that price has also not skyrocketed.

Conversely LTC does not have such a system, neither does XMR, and they have both also skyrocketed. I think there is merit in the Dash budget system, and even value it can add here, but the claim of a price correlation is nonsense. There is no good correlation.

Great points, and importantly, this doesn't require a hardfork :) Instantiating something like this in the blockchain guarantees that we will either be stuck with the errors, or stuck wasting valuable engineering bandwidth fixing the mistakes that will inevitably be in it. There are plenty of features already baked into the BC that can be leveraged to solve problems like this.

Flagged because this post is nonsense that does not add value. The idea of a budget system is not new, and this post brings nothing to the table. Claiming that we need it today and then proposing a complex and contentious hard fork is the worst kind of ignorant and as @fulltimegeek stated, you do not have the right level of understanding of the system to be proposing hard forks. Once this post slips off Trending it will disappear and will have brought nothing to make Steem more valuable. The $320 that is currently being allocated to reward this post is lighting money on fire and I won't sit by while that happens.

For the record I actually think some kind of budget system for Steem is a good idea and I've supported it for most of the past year, but this half-baked "proposal" (not sure it even rises to that level) doesn't help us get there.

DASH MASTERNODE OWNERS VOTE TO BURN THE CRYPTO MONEY INSTEAD OF HIRING ME TO MAKE MORE VIDEOS! lol few month ago...: this should ring the alarmbells . . . .

You're not technically inclined enough to be promoting a hardfork of such magnitude. You've lost my witness vote.

I'm long EMP, but cashing in on steem in the meantime.

I stand 100% behind this proposal as I already told you at steemfest Jerry.

We are all stakeholders, co-owners and co-creators of the platform, but we need to start acting like it too.

I doubt an increase in inflation would be very attractive. But there are certainly funds to spare. As you said, a majority already goes to those that have the most, and these are also the same people who will benefit the most from work being done to improve the platform and thus increase the value of the token.

Hey @fredrikaa! Great hanging with you at SteemFest!

I too like the idea, at least parts of it. A Dash Central style app is a great idea, but there is no reason for a hardfork (which would be required to alter the Steem distribution algorithms). This can all be done using existing Steem features and would also benefit from leveraging an SMT (or two). Also for anyone wondering, the way hardforks work is not by tacking things on to them. That only makes it harder to come to a consensus. The Steem community has been moving steadily toward more specific and limited hardforks. They are not an opportunity to cram in more features (which requires more testing, more development resources, more risk of breaking the blockchain, etc.). That isn't friendly to 3rd party developers and isn't good for growth or value creation. The Steem community of witnesses and developers are trying to push updates that make this a more broadly applicable, performant, and developer friendly platform on which to build applications and that's definitely a very good thing for everyone. Applications are the best way to solve important problems. Steem on.

Community Liaison, Steemit

@andrarchy, As @snowflake, appears to be saying - wouldn't a change to the distribution of funds, away from witnesses and towards budget proposals, be one that is fundamental enough to require a hard fork?
how could that level of change possibly be covered by an app?
or do we have our wires crossed here? :)

The actions required to push through a hardfork, and fund a proposal system are fundamentally the same: getting enough steemians to agree that capital (in the form of Steem) should be committed to a specific purpose (proposals). An app that enables people to voluntarily commit funds to proposals they like, store that Steem in escrow until the goals have been met, and then transfers the funds to specified accounts is a good idea regardless. Basically it would be like kickstarter on Steem. This would be a much more dynamic and sustainable system that could adapt rapidly to changing circumstances. In fact, it could also be an insanely profitable business because as Steem has feeless transfers, the platform could undercut platforms like Indiegogo and Kickstarter dramatically. It is also achievable very quickly. I don't think anyone who believes that doing this through a hardfork understands how difficult and time consuming the hardfork process is. It also requires a TON of engineering bandwidth--bandwidth the Steemit Team certainly does not have. An app like the one I describe could be built in a month. So why not try that first? All of the people who think it's a great idea can fund it and seed it with capital right now. A hardfork will take 6 months to a year assuming you can get all the witnesses and Steem developers on board, which you probably can't because this is a major change to the cryptoeconomics of the protocol which would threaten to disrupt the entire system. I am simply proposing a solution that is achievable in contrast to one that will be time consuming and practically impossible to accomplish. Blockchains are not designed to be changed willy-nilly.

I see, ok - thanks for explaining. Is there a good link people can reference so that they can learn what's involved in a hard fork - so as to optimally make use of the process?

My pleasure. Hardforks are a highly technical process. They are done through github here: The blockchain is intended solely to be a sustainable and decentralized database. It is not a viable place to look for solutions to specific problems non-engineers believe they see on sites like It's like wanting to change iOS because you want a feature on your phone. Applications solve problems, the operating system (in this case Steem) is designed to maximize the number of valuable applications that can be built on it. It is simply the wrong place to look. Limited use case features like this diminish the value of the blockchain, they don't enhance it. What I'm suggesting is an app potentially worth billions that could compete with kickstarter and indiegogo. The alternative is a proposal to throw a wrench in the cryptoeconomics we have spent the last 2 years perfecting.

Yes, I appreciate that hardforks typically are for the purpose of altering the mechanics of the blockchain. I am a system architect and engineer - but have not worked on blockchain technology first hand. As far as I gather, the only reason that the hardfork was mentioned in this post, was, I think - as a means for adjusting the witness payout percentage.

Hardforks are a highly technical process.

Oh C'mon give me a break! The only technical part is to have 20 witnesses all agreeing on getting a 50% haircut.

That's not true. There is a lot of coding and testing. The requirement for getting it right is extreme. The release and testing cycles are very significant and expensive.

I'm actually in favor of a budget system, but for it to happen realistically means it needs to go on a roadmap and get carefully designed and carefully implemented. That is likely years away, considering that team is already busy on things that are already on the roadmap for the next year at least.

All of these posts calling for this or that fast and radical change to the system are a waste of pixels IMO. That's simply never going to happen. It is sad to me (and my confidence in the content voting concept) that people continue to vote for them.

@andrarchy is right, there is a lot that can be done within the existing system. There's no reason, for example, that 10% of the reward pool couldn't be voted daily into a multisig account controled by several respected community members and allocated to budget items. That can happen in a week or two with some web development.

It is not a viable place to look for solutions to specific problems non-engineers believe they see on sites like

If this is the general consensus within steem developement team it is pretty worrying...I really hope it's not and it's just your personnal opinion

Do you think bots solving the problems is better? Because they are currently showing all the holes in the steem blockchain.

Of course this is just my personal opinion. In the end the only thing the devs look for are github pull requests and stakeholder/witness consensus.

Limited use case features like this diminish the value of the blockchain, they don't enhance it.

Wait...are you saying that having the STEEM blockchain fund its own projects/growth aka being a true DAO is a limited use case or did I miss something?

An app that enables people to voluntarily commit funds to proposals they like

That's like tipping, good luck with that!

and practically impossible to accomplish. Blockchains are not designed to be changed willy-nilly.

That's very disappointing to hear, the reason I've sold all my BTC for STEEM was because I saw a team of developers that were very reactive and not afraid to take risks ( How many forks on steem again?) But you guys sound like bitcoin core now...this means the curation reward system is never gonna get fixed, time to reconsider my investment I guess.

Steem is able to iterate faster than any other blockchain, but that doesn't make it an easy thing. But these are just my personal views, everyone should of course evaluate the situation for themselves, push the proposals they are passionate about, submit pull requests and consult with the witnesses. I'm just throwing in my 2 cents.

Likewise mate!

I'm far more concerned with the what rather than the how. On one hand, it seems to me to be the biggest problem for the platform with generated value leaving the ecosystem through delegated rewards that correlates poorly with contributed value (often through vote-buying). On the other hand, this (or something very similar) seems like the biggest opportunity. It is hard to imagine who would come out poorer at the end of the day except for those with only a short-term interest for gains.

Anyways, I look forward to share my take on this as well in the coming days. Hoped I would have found the time already to sit down and write my thoughts. But for some reason, the beaches here are more tempting than sitting inside on the computer.

Take care Andrew and cya at steemfest3!

I think the idea is to have a seperate pool for proposals . If there is no money dedicated to these projects they will earn about the same as they earn on steemit which is peanuts.

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I Know You Will Love To See Photos

Comments aren't ads. Demonstrate that you understand this (stop begging in your comments, and let me know you've done so) and I will reverse my downvote.

You have repeated this ad 13 times on Jerry's post. Actually, one of them you actually wrote a few paragraphs which had similar content as one of your posts, and then ended it with more begging; I didn't downvote that one.

This one, I downvoted 100%. The other 11, only 1%. Cease this behavior and let me know, and I'll remove this 100% downvote. Note that you should let me know before 7 days have passed, since votes cannot be changed after 7 days (i.e., after the post/comment pays out).

#libertyteeth the purpose only is to make followers you know that . I am new to steemit and don't know how to make followers so I think this will be a batter option .

I'm pretty new too. It's not even 4 months since I started and do you know how I went from 25 to 48 reputation and 219 followers. First I started commenting important, valuable, sensible things. That alone got me ~170 followers under 3 months.

Then I started making my own posts few times a week. They were somewhat long and informative. I also share links to other people's work. That got me ~50 followers and didn't even take 3 weeks.

Steemit is a community where rewards are split according to the contributions. It's not all fair. You could work hard and only get few cents because all your 30 something upvotes were minnows and another someone can earn few dollars because of 1 whale. But that's not the point. The community is the point.

Steemit has the single greatest large online community on the face of Earth and the actions like yours can only ruin it for us. Spamming isn't a contribution. It's an annoyance.

Don't start thinking of steemit as just some quick way to make few bucks. If that's what you need, go start a blog. Steemit is about sharing value. If you all you do is make few short posts and spam it all over the place; Honestly just go and Fuck yourself because steemit probably isn't for you.

Here, have a 100% upvote before I change all my 1% downvotes to 100% downvotes. He is unrepentant when shown the correct way to behave.

He can still repent before 7 days are up and I'll reverse them, but, he'll need to do a really good job of explaining how he learned why what he's choosing to continue doing is wrong.

Don't presume to know what I know. First, there is no "only purpose" of Steemit; there are many. Second, "making followers" is not a goal in and of itself; @vimukthi did a great job explaining how to properly interact with the community here.

If you are new, you should read the Steemit whitepaper; do a search here for things like, "how to be a good steemian"; "how to write a good steem post"; "what not to do in comments"; etc.

Begging for anything is never looked on as a productive, community-focused endeavor. Not for upvotes, follows, comments, likes, or "will work for food".

What gave you the idea that you should behave this way?

Explain to me how you have now determined that this behavior is inappropriate, and that you won't do it again, and be sincere and know that I can follow up via you comments page -- Steemit is an open platform -- and I'll remove my downvotes.

They're all now 100% downvotes, as well, based on your response to my helpful advice.

Yes we are hoping to make steem the greatest crptocurrency and give competition to the well known social networks -- by getting rewarded for the content we share.

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A great company will leverage its assets and reinvest them to develop new profit / value creating products / services. Should these proposal projects move forward, this would be a GREAT example of Steemit leveraging its assets to create new value in the real world, the profits of which could be put back into the steemit ecosystem, creating a buying demand for Steem, If we could build 10's or 100's of profit making companies on the steem blockchain using fresh capital from these proposals there would be enough buying pressure in the steem price to over power our friends who have been sitting aobve the market over the last few months with their huge sell orders.

Well said, my friend!

I know the problem of steemit and the token steem !

The problem of steem as I already said is that is related to dollar price and not to bitcoin price, if someone invest in steem he will not earn more bitcoin but less, so of course people will invest in bitcoin, if the price go up in bitcoin not in dollar things change so !

@clixmoney is it possible that Bitcoin Cash would become the NEW Bitcoin since the transactions are quicker ??

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I think the idea behind steem is for it not to be a speculative cryptocurrency like most others, but a cryptocurrency with some real utility. The fact that one of its components is pegged to the USD gives it a higher chance of mainstream adoption. I think we should be shooting for "regular" people not crypto enthusiasts and surely not just speculative investors that want to buy assets low and sell assets high.

Steem creates a platform that allows people to produce something relatively tangible (content) and be able to earn on the quality of their work.

not the quality is mportant for steemit, the most important is how much you invest in it, if you invest a lot and buy a lot of steem power you can upvote yourself and earn good money, but if you can't invest even if you have a good content you will not earn good money anyway, I am posting for almost 6 months on steemit and since I didn't invest I still earn cents !

...and we're basically waiting for the dollar to collapse and the real value of it to rear its ugly head...

Hello, can someone tell me how this works 😅😅

Great platform for people who are starting new in blogging . They will get wider audience because of seo ranking of steemit . Well But i doubt when steemit will be famous and start eating through the google ads revenue . Google might lower the seo ranking of steemit

Hello @fredrikaa
We all need to support this proposer 100%
Steem will rise beyond imagination

Yea, what you said. 👍😀🍺

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Comments aren't ad space. Begging tends to get you downvoted/flagged, which affects your reputation. Demonstrate that you understand this (stop begging in your comments, and let me know you've done so) and I will reverse my downvote.

Good call!👍


I don't like the idea of more inflation. It is right where it is and I strongly recommend it staying there.

What I like is you thinking big with your 200,000 STEEM every 28 days proposal and reducing witness rewards (at least slightly) to make things happen.

What you probably have not realised right now, or underestimate is your own ability to fundraise for the exact same purpose.
It will probably take 2-3 years to reach your proposed amount, but I think you as a highly trusted witness can make it happen on your own.

Let's say you create a new account @jerryfundraise or some other clever name.
You encourage people to send you SBD or STEEM whenever they can afford or want to help the cause. The money will be used 100% for supporting such projects you see fit for this purpose.

If you get 2000 people to donate 5 STEEM per month, thats 10,000 STEEM every month to reward such projects. Of course you can do posts with this account too, for additional posting rewards. I am sure a lot of people would help to get this started.
I am offering this right now. If you do, you have your first 5 STEEM/month donated by me. Please mention me, if you plan to make this idea reality...

I read so many article on steemit where people comment and rarely make the small effort to vote on a comment. If people won't invest in a simple act of giving an up vote, how will they do this buy giving STEEM. Also, your proposal would limit the number pool of people from whom the STEEM could gotten from, since many people have not made investments in STEEM to have any to give.

People who don't make an investment in STEEM (however small it may be) don't stay for longer than 2-6 months, because they get zero visibility ragardless of how good their content or comments are.
I am talking about established accounts, who have been around for a while or at least invested a few hundred bucks.
But you are right. From an accounts perspective, most people will not be able to contribute anything other than their small upvote.

Make it 5 Steem/Month by me as well ;)

Yes, @jerrybanfield. With all due respect, raise the funds yourself instead of advocating the abandonment of sound economics and stealing rewards from top witnesses!

I have a 1000 friends on facebook. I promoted STEEMIT privately to three people. ALL are inactive. In order to be "somebodY" you have to spend hours and hours and be ok to not get paid. 6 months of work and I manage $1.00 per post! My work is really no different than anyone else's. Circle Jerking, paid bots is the name of the game. No rewards for new users (or pennies) really doesn't give people the interest to stick around. Time is money, and if it doesn't look or "feel" like facebook then they are not interested in switching. The only reason I stick around is because I happen to enjoy posting. Most people are more interested in WEALTH. If there is none, or it takes up too much time; then bye bye.

I think you've accurately described why Jerry is proposing this change! There would be many ways to earn rewards on Steem that would NOT be writing blog posts.

@bearbear613 put it like this, from what i've seen you post 3-4 posts per day so let say if everyone on this platform will post 3-4 posts per day ...make math and nobody invest in platform like real money... i think you see my point... btw steemit isn't facebook

Actually I am trying to figure out your point. Most people put up 1 post a day; get 0.03 cents if they are luckly and wait 7 days for a payout. They aren't going to stay. They know NOBODY and have to work really hard to understand curation blah blah blah. I happened to enjoy it. I happen to post 3-4 a day and was ok with getting 0.03 cents because I enjoy the platform. Fast forward 6 months later and now I am averaging $1.00 per post because I happen to join great communities. Communities is key to survive now. Tribalism. Why? Because whales can sit pretty! It's like any boss. They don't give a shit about little ol me! That's alright, because I enjoy the platform without getting noticed. I dont cry about it because I have actually made some interesting connections here. At the end of the day, however it would seem 3/4 people (including myself) said screw it we don't enjoy Steemit. I only stayed and I couldn't give them a boost (because I am just a minnow). They would rather post for free on facebook (and continue to do so). I'm just trying to figure out your point. So you would rather everyone be posting once a day for 0.03 cents rather than 0.12 cents?

"They know NOBODY and have to work really hard to understand curation blah blah blah" work harder don't expect someone else to do things for you, stop complaining and if rather prefer to post on facebook or somewhere else for nothing is your choice. I'm on steemit for 4 months now and guess what i spend a lot time going through steem communities, helped others, comment on other posts, made me visible and now everything i got is in my SP and i'm delegating that SP to continue to help and not to run away with what i have made...

I'm not complaining. I don't give a shit either way. I'm explaining why expanding will be difficult. That's all. That's great you put time into this.. so did I and I'm happy with my "reward". 650 SP is just fine. I don't plan on spending anything because in all honesty $650 is good for 2 weeks of food for me and my family. That's 6 months of "work" lol! If I invest $50,000 real money into the platform I am not going to do shit ALL. I'll upvote my post and promote I'm giving away $5.00 upvotes. it's that easy. However, I don't believe STEEMIT will survive without ADVERTISING MONEY. Stop beating around the bush with these little cookies to "earn" Steem. You want to make money? CLICK ON AN ADD; get upvoted by the advertiser. Boom STEEM $10.00. If you like post's about emotion and feelings and opinions then do it for the love of it. Because like Jerry said he works all week for a post that maybe will get $100-$200. My wife makes more than that tutoring 4 hours a week.

The way the site is designed it does not really need advertising money, I mean it would certainly help if they did it.... But look at the economics of this site, basically money talks. So lets say Apple wants to promote their new IPhone on Steemit all they have to do is create an account buy steem power create a post, vote on their post and depending on how much steem power they purchased the post would be on top of trending list, which is basically the same thing as buying an advertisement... I mean if this site ever gets to reddit level I would not be surprised if the trending tab is nothing but posts created by corporate funded accounts... I am not against additional advertising which would have to be purchased with steem, but the only way to attract advertisers is with user growth....

Steem is ripe for direct advertising in memos, at least while ever the price of steem is cheap. You can send out 100,000 directed adverts for $100.

People could down vote such posts couldnt they?

yes, but downvoting just like upvoting depends on steem power, so if a user with not much steem power tries to downvote someone with lots of steem power it wont make much difference, but yes you are correct if lots of people decided to downvote a post like i described above it would eventually be hidden if the downvotes surpass the steem power of the upvotes

So much truth. The propose is heading to the right way.

Awesome idea Jerry and kudos for going to such effort with this detailed post. Personally I would like to see Steem become more valuable as a currency. Please somebody build a "SteemBay" auction site or Etsy style platform. If there was a real way to exchange Steem directly for items that would be fantastic and bring a great deal of additional value to holding Steem.

Your suggestions of platforms such as "SteemBay' are excellent. Not only would it bring added value, but it would surely attract new Steemers. Probably hundreds of thousands of new Steemers.

The other day, I had posted a link to Fishpond online bookstore (

Subsequently, I became involved in some conversations about starting up a book exchange on Steemit. If we have a SteemBay platform, all Steemers can exchange / buy / sell anything, without having to deal with fiat currency or PayPal (PayFail, as I call it) or any such outdated payment systems.

I like this idea. Steem silver rounds and some were given to different members for winning contests, etc. Not only do I think there should be more of these, I think they should be available in the Steem Market. Individuals can sell their own goods in the market and it should be as easy as possible for new people to have a cryptocurrency wallet on their phone to pay for these goods.

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I believe you are onto an inspiring idea to help grow the platform further.
Indeed, there are tons of potentially undervalued ideas and suggestions that could make steemit way better than it is at the moment, yet getting the proper attention and the funding could be the breaking point for such initiatives.
I've recently seen grow to a large and hopefully long term successful project, it had a great idea, it got the proper visibility, and the proper backing. Most projects don't get that.
So I think what you're proposing, is a great idea if properly implemented.
Thanks for your effort (and @lexiconial) on this lengthy and well written paper ! is a great example of how successful aligning people's economic (and game-theory) needs (we all gotta eat) with doing positive work for the community can be.

Utopian means you can give back via open-source and receive something fair for your efforts that makes them feel valued...just like Jerry's budget proposal idea in this post.

yes absolutely! which is exactly why utopian came to my mind while reading the paper.

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I really love this idea. Definitely upvoted and resteemed, and you already have my witness vote.

My only addition or counterpoint is related to the proposal winners dumping their steem into thin markets to pay for their expenses on the winning proposal. Instead of distributing the fund wholly every 28 days, could we do more limited releases every 7 days? It could be setup so that proposals only qualify for the next release when they have been up for 21 days (giving the same window of time for proposal review to happen) and Steem feeds the pool for 28 days before being released (each weekly release distributes all the Steem that has been in the pool 28 days).

I know it would complicate things, but it would still provide the same level of funding and proposal oversight without recipients having to develop sophisticated trading strategies to pay their expenses without crashing the market.

" Instead of distributing the fund wholly every 28 days, could we do more limited releases every 7 days?"

The only reason I can see not to do this is to keep the process more simple (which you noted yourself towards the end of your comment.)

In other words, this sounds like a great idea to me. Perhaps projects could simply be submitted on a rolling 28-day payout basis, leading to an over-time averaging out across the whole calendar month.

I never quite understood why STEEM didn't have budget proposals and an elected committee like bitShares considering bitShares came first and it's basically the same technology. It's like this functionality was deliberately stripped out in the STEEM implementation. I do think this is something worth exploring. Thanks Jerry for starting the conversation.

The idea, and it is stated in the white paper and elsewhere, is that voting on posts could be used for any sort of project that would add value to the platform, largely negating the need for workers/budgets/etc. We did see some of that early on, for example, voting on proposals to fund billboards for advertising, promotional videos, and such. It hasn't entirely worked out that way and the reward system has become more narrowly blogging and content focused.

Ok, I've read this twice and I found my doubts being answered paragraph after paragraph. It's important to evaluate worse cases and of course this makes sense.

There are only two elements to this that I can think of that might help it be a little more effective in my opinion, even thought I would not know the technical challenges this would present.

Maybe to avoid any kind of massive dumps on payout days, the payout could be made in the form of Steem Power directly. I don't think that is currently possible, if it is, I would not mind being corrected.

But this would surely dampen the effect that one day a month payouts might have in the price of Steem. If we think about it, it would take them 13 weeks to cash in completely if they simply wanted out, thus it would probably not make a difference on the valuation of Steem at all.

We could assume that experienced traders would want to use this expected drop, and I'm not sure we would want that predictability.

The other aspect I see that could be possibly added would be to effectively assign a % of the budget to ongoing projects, after initial submission and approval.

For example, lets say that since manages to save the day more often than not, its witness and developers could tap into a small percentage every month for their continued development of Busy... I don't know how effective it would be for them to submit a proposal every month to secure financing for their efforts, it might not be practical.

This of course could change at any moment too, if a project that was supported by this budget would lets say fail to continue, then the financing could be stopped. (Maybe thru a voting system)

I'm going to give this post a couple more reads, I'm sure that if the caffeine was a little stronger this morning I could add a little more to the table.

Maybe to avoid any kind of massive dumps on payout days, the payout could be made in the form of Steem Power directly. I don't think that is currently possible, if it is, I would not mind being corrected.

I am pretty sure it is possible. I purchased some STEEM Power from, using SBDs -- so, I know that STEEM Power can be delivered to one's wallet. I really like your idea, something like, "a ~3 month CD is your payout" (except you can withdraw weekly, prior to expiration, and will have all funds at expiration).

I think an ongoing project that wants money should easily be able to spend less money than they want, to create a proposal... Especially if it's nearly similar to the previous month, it should take a few minutes to write it up.

STEEM Power can be delivered to one's wallet

It is possible to power up to another wallet even in the GUI. Click 'advanced' after choosing power up.

Cool, thanks!

Hi @smooth,

sorry for my noob's dumb question:

1. What happens when we powerup to another account, will it then stay in the other account when the option to powers down happens in 14 weeks?yes?

  1. Can we powerdown to another account? yes?/no?/(in blockchain but not coded yet in Steemit?)
  1. When you power up to another account the other account then has full control of the steem power and all of the usual rules about powering down apply (13 weeks, etc.)
  2. Yes you can power down to another account using vesting withdraw routes. That is implemented in the blockchain and CLI wallet (and maybe Vessel?) but not in

Well this is good news then, it would be done with SP...perfect... I guess you might be right, on your second point. I could see it, how it could work.

My brand and website is "all-in" on Steemit and Steem. We have completely quit YT over the shenanigans it was pulling and are focused on bringing my audience over to Steemit. Simply put, it's going to be hard to get my full audience to make the jump and so we will have to build a new audience. I am not worried about this task as I have found that it's easy to build an audience if you provide good entertaining content.

My goals are to bring as much of my audience to steemit as possible while continuing to build a new audience. I also want to integrate Steem into my brand and website as much as possible. Maybe even issue a homestead app for the community built on blockchain technology that may even include its own token.

The homestead community has exploded here on Steemit mostly because of a couple of people curating good content from creators exploring the waters away from Youtube. With our large audience on facebook and youtube as well as other locations in the social media world, we can continue to drive people into this market.

I'm totally open to putting together a proposal once requirement details become more concrete.

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Bravo @jerrybanfield! I generally support the idea here and while I recognise there is potential for new imbalances to be generated by it, I feel that the overall concept is one that increases balance to the Steem Eco-system.

I am currently planning a new front end for Steem that, in it's own way, attempts to tackle some of these issues too. If I were able to submit a proposal (with high visibility) to get funding to create it, the chances of me creating something that is both desired by the community and also funded enough to be completed quickly and efficiently would be exponentially higher.

In a way, this whitepaper is a challenge to the 'big investors' to decide whether they value creativity and expansion through technological/creative means or whether they value personal, short-term gain in the form of interest and witness payouts. It is clear to many that Steem's culture reflects our present world's political system quite accurately and sadly it is well known that in national politics, short term personal gain is almost universally chosen over visionary change that benefits all (although it is usual for the short term personal gain to be dressed up as some kind of visionary change that benefits all!).

In short, are the 'big investors' here to support the maximum potential of the platform, or not?

Even if all the Steem from the budget does go out on the market, it will get the volume going which may trigger some new interest in Steem including some big buys and trades.

In my own perception, I don't think trade volume is a figure that is going to fully indicate to people whether or not to invest. If I see a high trade volume I want to know which direction it's going in and if I see it is going out then that is an indicator of loss of interest/value. I may see that as an opportunity to invest - or not. The value of having projects funded should be something that grabs investor attention and should generate more mental gravity than a relatively small boost in trade volume.

TEZOS received over a quarter of a billion dollars of investment before it even launched - apparently largely on the back of it being a token that includes a mechanism for self improvement within it's architecture. This amazing fact may have dubious causes, but the reality is that by including a mechanism within STEEM for funding projects that enhance and promote STEEM in the wider world - the potential for self improvement is greatly enhanced over what (as I understand) even TEZOS offers and it has the potential to effect far more than just technicalities within the blockchain too.

If I consider a SWOT type analysis of all of this - which will take many pages to do in full - I think the biggest threat to all of this might come in the form of discord created by projects being funded, but never delivered - with people regularly creating new accounts, submitting projects, getting funding and then leaving. Here's an idea for you..

For software projects, how about integrating Utopian into all of this so that payouts are made proportionately in relation to metrics gathered from the Github repository for the project? Or at least showing the development status of the project in real-time by presenting Steemian's with Github stats for the repo in some way - so they can see that the budget is being used to create value and not wasted.

I'm sure there are many great ideas that can be added to all of this. Only we know where it will all take us ;)

Love to all!

p.s. In the spirit of constructive criticism, I suggest editing this post a bit further to remove the sections that are pretty much repeated a few times unnecessarily.

It is clear to many that Steem's culture reflects our present world's political system quite accurately and sadly it is well known that in national politics, short term personal gain is almost universally chosen over visionary change that benefits all (although it is usual for the short term personal gain to be dressed up as some kind of visionary change that benefits all!).

With all due respect, this is why I removed my witness vote for you, @ura-soul. It is exactly none of your personal business why or how people wish to use this platform. If it’s for quick, personal gain, or otherwise, that is each individual’s prerogative. Ironically, trying to prop oneself up to decide what is “best for all” is what actually resembles modern-day politicking.

Many of us, as serious about the platform as yourself, understand that for the platform to flourish, the market must be as free and unregulated as possible. Changes are made by individuals and groups acting freely and not by top-down impositions and arbitrary redistributions.

Let each Steemian earn as he can and act as he pleases.

Thanks for explaining here. I have discussions of this nature in the compassionate anarchy group on fb almost every day. I am not stating anywhere here that 'I know what's best and you should think/do as I do' - I am not describing a situation where I regulate things either, any more than anyone already adds features to the system. The system has already been designed by others who are not me and those features affect us all - it's not really fair to pick on me when I comment on the situation as if I am the controlling entity when we are all already fitting into a mold that was created before we arrived.

Every decision made on Steem affects the whole eco-system to some extent as everything is connected. This is considered in numerous ways in the original design of Steem and balance has been sought. Nothing in my words here suggests an over-riding of balance or of controlling anyone - if anything it is the other way around.

I am unclear as to why my support for adding a fund for projects that might benefit the eco-system on many levels by opening up funding to a wider audience - allowing their creativity to be tapped into and further enhancing everyone's ability to enjoy the platform and add to it's greatness.. is being interpreted as evidence that I want to control people. If you read through the witness chat from yesterday, you will see that I briefly re-iterated the observation that the witness voting system reflects national politics and every commenter there agreed. I wasn't controlling anyone, they agreed because it is a demonstrably accurate observation in many ways. I feel it is peculiar that you are claiming that I think in ways that promotes top-down control when what I am actually saying is effectively that top-down control is a problem and we need to take steps to stop it. In this case, the top-down control is of the form of witnesses receiving vast funding, while other creatives who might aid the network more find it difficult to receive much at all.

Why not generate the funds through effort and production, instead of trying to take them from someone else. Especially witnesses on whom the survival of the platform depends? That’s is what I don’t get.

And as @andrarchy pointed out, why suggest a hard fork when apps can be developed to implement these things?

I did explain to @andrarchy that the hardfork was suggested (as I understand it) because of the idea of adjusting the amount of Steem paid to witnesses, since AFAIK (from reading the Steem Whitepaper and considering how the mechanisms work) a hardfork would be needed to make that a reality.

The current situation is that developers, for example, are expected to dedicate significant amounts of their lives to creating solutions for Steem with no guarantee of remuneration for their efforts and no guarantee of even receiving feedback on the designs before they get started. From a project management and even capitalist standpoint, this is far from ideal and stops a lot of creativity before it gets started. When there are ample funds available to improve the situation, it makes sense to consider the options for doing that.

I am a witness and I know already that the top witness slots are being dominated currently by those who are favored by just one account on Steemit - which is an account that is actually anonymous. So basically, we have a situation where the entire infrastructure's future is being decided by one account (@freedom) - so it is that the current situation is one of top-down control already in some senses. The purpose of having witness voting is to ensure that the 'market' for witnesses reflects the wisdom of the crowd and not so much the wisdom of the plutocracy. Do you consider that plutocracy is an ideal method of organising a culture? To me it is exactly what you say you don't like, which is top-down control.

By effectively democratizing a way of rewarding creative ideas that help the value of Steem to increase and that enhance the co-operation in the community, we serve both major elements that form Steem (Currency/Capital and Creativity/Community). In a political sense this seems to me to be a direct drawing together of what some people pigeon hole as 'capitalism' and 'socialism' into some kind of balance. I see almost every day that people who are rigidly into the thinking of one side of these political groups or the other will fail to see where I am coming from because they put me into a box that I don't belong in and assume I am saying something that I am not. Staunch socialists and/or communists will accuse me of being too pro-capitalist and staunch capitalists will accuse me of being a communist.. lol

Those who already get where I am coming from just find the whole thing either amusing or tiring. What I seek is real balance where no-one is being overpowered.

The motivation for funding creative projects from the witness fund, for me, is as follows:

  1. The amount paid to top witnesses is quite large - I think in the region of $50,000+ each per year. This is on top of their earnings from posts and any 'background benefits' they receive from donations intended to sway their decisions around hardforks etc.
    Given that the actual job of running a witness server takes a tiny fraction of most people's time, if we were to calculate an hourly rate for work done then they would be being paid a very large amount per hour - probably over $150 per hour. Witnesses are not the developers - they are not required to know all the ins and outs of the code. The developers have the really important role here and it is they who are most fundamental to the network.
    Lowering the amount automatically received by top witnesses will not inhibit their ability to fulfill their service to the platform and will stimulate market forces to promote creativity.

  2. The witness system is intended, by design (top-down design from it's creator btw) - to facilitate an automatic process of witness 'shuffling' in the cases where it is necessary. I actually don't understand the fear that 'top witnesses will leave' when that actually doens't make a massive difference to the daily running of Steem. The system automatically replaces top witnesses with other witnesses in that case and no-one will notice the difference in the sense of day to day activity.

  3. The new schematic suggested in this thread is one where the same top witnesses can achieve the same funding they get now, or more, by claiming project payouts - so those who have projects (which many do) may even gain more and like the system more than the current one.

  4. The idea of 'taking the funds from someone else' can easily be reversed and be said to be what the current system already does - the Steem funds are divided among users and witnesses - so is it the case that users currently 'take the funds from witnesses'? or that witnesses currently 'take the funds from users'?
    It's not really either, it's just that the schema defines that a certain amount will go to each group and that the percentages involved can be changed if it is found to be beneficial - a change which can be manifested through the mechanism of a hard fork. The issue here is whether the funds are best used to give to witnesses or whether the new idea generates better value for everyone who owns Steem. I know that Jerry repeated himself quite a bit in his post, but I think he did make this point clear.

  5. By using a model of direct funding for new projects from the blockchain, rather than donation - there is a strong statement made that Steem supports innovation and that steem values creativity as the cornerstone of it's success. The steem whitepaper goes to some length to explain that one of the key features of Steem is that it overcomes the problem of donation systems that require people to decide whether or not to give their own money to others because the money WILL be given to someone - so the problem shifts to WHO to give to and away from whether or not to give. That is a fundamental feature of Steem and Steemit since the beginning. The project pool simply leverages this intelligent design in a way that can improve the experience for everyone in a way that everyone has a voice in. There is no overpowering in that, that I am aware of.

The current situation is that developers, for example, are expected to dedicate significant amounts of their lives to creating solutions for Steem with no guarantee of remuneration for their efforts

This is life. Sorry. But it’s the nature of reality itself. Who owes you a guarantee?

As for many of the other points about top-down power, what kind of platform did you think this was when you got into. It is, has been, and hopefully always will be, a stake-weighted voting platform. Those most invested have the most say. No one is forced to be here.

no-one owes me a guarantee and no-one owes steemit any exciting projects that enhance it's value. ;)
i find it odd that fair exchange is valued in wider society, but not here.

As for many of the other points about top-down power, what kind of platform did you think this was when you got into. It is, has been, and hopefully always will be, a stake-weighted voting platform. Those most invested have the most say. No one is forced to be here.

trying to prop oneself up to decide what is “best for all” is what actually resembles modern-day politicking.

I am not suggesting that stake weighted voting be nullfied. Can you see the interesting interaction between the two quotes here? Stake weighted voting can be dominated (and IS being dominated) so that one party literally gets to decide (via delegation) what is best for all. That person is not me.

The other aspect to consider is that 'Stake' is not just about money - stake is also time and effort, which are typically considered above money in the hierarchy of value used in capitalism. By not respecting time and effort, the productivity drops and ROI drops too.

You wrote in an earlier post of yours:

For me, anarchy and capitalism appear to be at odds since capitalism is the private ownership of land/things for the purposes of building capital which in turn creates an imbalance on the Earth which results in money being equated with power and thus 'market forces' have the practical effect of those in society with the most money becoming the de facto 'rulers' over others - albeit without a constitution or clearly defined boundary being involved in some cases.

This decidedly not a Voluntaryist position as it precludes someone from using their property as they wish. If an individual wishes to amass capital via their body and property, that is an entirely legitimate goal, as long as they are not initiating force against anyone else.

The state is what makes trade violent.

It seems we fundamentally disagree.

These “other creatives” you reference can do what the rest of us did, and work. They can also propose helpful changes to the system, and enact those changes. If the democratic process/template in place here results in top witnesses losing funding, so be it, I guess, I just think the attitude of “they don’t deserve so much” entitlement is extremely dangerous to the platform.

It may be true they are “overpaid.” I don’t tend to think so, but it may be true. It’s the attitude I am referencing that I see in so many Steemians. This platform is not a handout center, but a stake-weighted voting platform. If you want more say, increase your stake. I could be wrong, but that’s how I see it, at present.

This decidedly not a Voluntaryist position as it precludes someone from using their property as they wish.

Voluntaryism requires the ability to volunteer. If all the land is already owned by one person who doesn't want you to volunteer, then what good is your ability to volunteer? The land on earth is currently, as I understand it - majority owned by the Crown Corporation and at the very least is majority owned by a tiny percentage of Earth's population. Balance is missing.

If an individual wishes to amass capital via their body and property, that is an entirely legitimate goal, as long as they are not initiating force against anyone else.

How does someone amass capital reliably without initiating force, when we experience a situation where those with the most capital have already amassed it precisely through force (of state, war and theft) over thousands of years? The current situation is one where massive imbalance already exists and it will not be balanced voluntarily, since those with most of it have no intention of changing the situation in any way at all. Voluntarism holds many answers but it does not address the legacy of massive imbalance as far as I am aware.

These “other creatives” you reference can do what the rest of us did, and work. They can also propose helpful changes to the system, and enact those changes. If the democratic process/template in place here results in top witnesses losing funding, so be it, I guess, I just think the attitude of “they don’t deserve so much” entitlement is extremely dangerous to the platform.

how much they 'deserve' is somewhat subjective - but it can be calculated too. my training and skillset is largely in designing systems for business and thus assessing exactly these questions. typically, business systems are designed to serve ONLY 'the elite' and I know for certain that this is the root of much suffering and hardship that I myself have experienced and been put through as a hard worker.

I am a professional software engineer (among other things) - I make software. I, like every other engineer that I am aware of, when asked to make projects for money - do some analysis, give a quote - then start doing a design and then make the solution. I am typically paid as each stage of the process is completed in order to allow me to be supported as I work on the project. In contrast, the current situation with Steem is that new projects are largely carried out in secret, with no community feedback (partially to protect IP rights) and with no payment - which means that the situation on Steem is actually less supportive of creativity currently than traditional capitalist culture is. Steemit Inc. is not funding outside development, to my knowledge. So there is a barrier to the network expanding that can be removed relatively easily. The funds don't NEED to come from witnesses, I am not rabidly attached to that idea at all - it just looks like an ideal candidate. The money could equally come from a reduction in post payout levels, but I think that the numbers involved probably suggest that the witness option makes more sense to me.

It’s the attitude I am referencing that I see in so many Steemians. This platform is not a handout center, but a stake-weighted voting platform. If you want more say, increase your stake. I could be wrong, but that’s how I see it, at present.

I am not 'many steemians'. I did not say anything about handouts. the project pool is for projects, not handouts. currently the stake weighted voting process rewards subjectively valued posts. the idea of also rewarding subjectively valued projects is not a shift in ideology at all, it's just a shift in focus intended to reward creativity and hard work! ;)

How does someone amass capital reliably without initiating force, when we experience a situation where those with the most capital have already amassed it precisely through force (of state, war and theft) over thousands of years?

The state. Yes, as I said. The state, and not the market, or people with money, is the problem.

Do you honesty believe it is impossible to make money and own property without violating someone?

Your example about someone “already owning all the land” in the real world as a result of state force is not analogous to Steemit. Steemit was started as a risk venture by some individuals and joined consensually by users. No one is forced to be here and being forcibly violated as in your real world example. To compare the two is ridiculous, with all due respect.

That’s excellent that you are a software engineer. I just disagree that the whole blockchain should be forked to accommodate this idea when it could be accomplished by other means as @andrarchy pointed out.

In other words, less begging and more innovation.


@jerrybanfield thank you so much for getting this conversation started and with almost 1500 upvotes so far and counting would appear to have a consensus from the community. We plan to launch a Smart Media Token and our goal was for the ICO to be the funding for further development and growth. We launched an internal rewards system to raise funds and reward users of our platform until Smart Media Tokens are ready. With the help of many we are bringing several people to Steemit now. I wish we had a way to track just how many as it could help us narrow down our focus on growth... Our concept is simple when we help other grow we will grow. We now have over 125 members and keep making progress at with phase one being completed soon and many phase to projects under way. We look forward to phase three in 2018 with more integration with the Steem Block Chain and Smart Media Tokens.

Thank you so much for bringing this concept up and presenting it in such a way to move mountains. My prayers are with you as you forge down new roads and as always continue to show the whole community great love and respect. Thank you

I am in absolute agreeance with this proposal. It is almost impossible for the few Steem developers to ever keep up with the constant need for improvement that Steemit needs.

It is a brilliant way to go about and I have found no real holes in the proposed solution.

It would be in the best interest of the community for this to be the case.

As someone who has gone all in with Steemit and seeing dismal results thus far, I am still sticking around for I sincerely believe that the platform itself is sound and will eventually come around.

The biggest pain for me was how slowly improvement is being made on the platform itself, and it seems your proposal is definitely the best one I've seen.

100% upvoted and resteemed. Every Steemian who cares for the success of Steem would be in agreeance.

God Speed Brethren.

Wow...... A lot of info here Jerry.... Thanks for this post. I didnt read it all but i will come back to it......

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Man Jerry, I like you man and the fact you are proactive and trying to work on solutions is great but to be honest with you I don't think everyone will agree on it. And by everyone I mean the whales that were here 1 months before I heard about STEEM. The fact of the matter is the distribution was messed up from day 1 and we are still dealing with it and may always be dealing with it. There have been a lot of improvements but some of the ways to solve it aren't going to happen.

You are 100% correct though that DASH succeeded from a great marketing structure. They set aside money to get the word out.

You are a smart guy Jerry. Why not get a group of us together and originate our own blockchain like this one but have a fair distribution and grant everyone who has obtained a certain reputation an equal share of Power? And we can have "air drops" and money set aside for marketing and community proposals like you are talking about! It will be amazing!

You can still blog on the STEEM blockchain as well!

What do you say Jerry? Are you in?

It is hard but not impossible. If steemit inc., witnesses and whales do not respond then why not. Distribution is still a very controversial issue even the air drop, ninja mining, ICOs or forking what-so-ever.

Another idea would be similar to design an SMT based ICO (e.g. similar to @stackin idea) with backing from few top users (witnesses, whales, developers) to make a financial model to generate $200K a month for budget purpose. May be start with $20K. "Be the change you want to see in the world"

I agree that distribution can be very controversial but I never hear people complaining about Monero distribution or even Litecoin for that matter which had a small premine.

That is a good idea to have a small group together to fund some of the stuff but again it would be a lot of people committing capital to it that they could use to increase their holdings. It might pay off in the long run but there is always that worry that it won't for people.

Between the Steemit and Steemit2 accounts there is like $73 Million Dollars and I'm sure they have a lot more accounts. Also the founders have a lot of personal accounts worth a lot of money. But let's just Focus on the Steemit account.

A million dollars would go a hell of a long way to help 3rd party development, marketing, community building.......etc. It would be a small fraction of their holdings and could propel this platform a long ways.

But some would say we shouldn't expect anything from them and shouldn't expect them to give up their money. But the fact of the matter is most tech startups give a way a service for free and ride on venture capital for years not being profitable. Steemit has been wildly successful as far as startups go. Huge profitability and the founders have made mad cash.
The platform is pretty cool and will always survive. But we still need STEEMIT INC for it to Thrive

Yes, I agree that their model of distribution is like startup. They may have more than 100 millions of STEEM and they will be the most benefited ones from the proposal. The problem is the funding comes from major changes in blockchain (witness compensation and interest) which can face resistance. Another model of funding is directly from STEEMIT INC (77M SP) or interest from that SP.

It is easier for them to do airdrops of STEEM Power or liquid STEEM to these proposals and actually issuing SBD which is a debt against STEEM might be an option. The system can probably support more debt than it has now consider the SBD held up when STEEM fell to $0.07

Create a FB kinda deal smt token launch on the Steem blockchain with an Ico hmmmm I’m in! 😀

That would be the easiest ways to do it and @ned actually replied to one of my recent posts talking about the distribution issue and said the same thing. To use an SMT to start another community / website.

The issue with it is that to fund the project a ton of STEEM would have to be purchased an injected into the system for it to have any value. So if STEEM overall was suffering from a distribution issue already and no one could obtain a large amount of it without paying millions then it becomes cheaper to fund a team to start from the existing code and do a fair distribution from the beginning.

I guess is getting shut down by the Russian Government as well so a lot of those community members are in limbo over there as well until they move it to another domain. I sent my Golos Gold that was over there to Bittrex encase that website goes down for awhile.

There are a lot of members of these communities that would love systems like this with a more equal starting point.

I concur Streemians are putting in excellent work, new arrivals paid exceptionally low. More need to be fully invested to create a fair share value.

Enjoyed this proposal Jerry, nothing ventured, nothing gained. Exceptional paper even though a long read @jerrybanfield a lot of thought has gone into this.

Some of the ideas here, look like the system already implemented by @smartcash. Maybe a joint effort would be a good idea here.

Reinventing the wheel always takes longer...

I was totally thinking about smarcash too.

I need some people checking stuff for me. Lately, I have been low on time... So if you wanna grab some quality time, have a word with @jerrybanfield and join the cause @smartcash. There is also a Slack Channel at Cheers!

Work will be rewarded with my vote.

Hi @jerrybanfield, an interesting idea. Well worth exploring further.

My only query would be on using the weighted voting system, which would effectively mean a small number of the mega-players could chose the proposals they liked all the time.

I understand the rationale for that, but it still has that consequence.

Maybe to mitigate that how about some sort of two stage proposal voting system. For example in the first round everyone that has held an account for more than 30 days, and has a rep of at least 45, votes on a one person one vote basis.

From that first round, say the top 30 proposals would be voted for on the usual weighted voted method.

The numbers and parameters could be altered but that is just the general idea.

Just wanted to say I really like your two-stage voting idea.

The first could be gamed by an account having many bots, like some angry whales I know.

The second could be gamed by having a lot of SP -- again, like that angry whale.

So, the angry whale could game both of those voting configurations. However, very few are whales with many accounts. (Or, am I wrong here? Do most whales create extra accounts? I really don't know...)

Anyway, my examples weren't meant to be so pessimistic -- the first round is "one man, one vote" and the second round distributes funding based on weighted votes.

I think an addition to your idea would be: the only accounts eligible to vote in the second round, are accounts which had cast votes in the first round.

It still wouldn't keep the angry whale from benefiting; he could use his bot army on the first round, and then use the same army (and their SP) for the second round.

Perhaps a third round, to vote on the voters, but again, it seems the only two criteria are "number of votes" vs. "weight of votes" -- I can't think of a third method.

Well, perhaps multiplying by the account's reputation (with some weighting; perhaps, 1/10th of rep) might help, but again, whales with bot armies who have been here a while have had ample time to get their army's rep up as well. No clear answer. I really like your idea though! :)