Open letter to a future Steemian

in steem •  4 months ago
It might seem weird to you that I'm writing you this letter months before you even showed up, but the more I think about my motives here, the more I wish someone had told me these things when I first started more than a year ago. So, even though you might not walk away feeling too motivated from this letter, at least initially, I hope that you take my words seriously and don't repeat the same mistakes plenty of us have made on this blockchain called Steem.



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Anyways, I suspect that if you found this letter written long before you arrived, it's because you are a bit frustrated and confused. There is a good chance that a prominent steemian who was promoting this blockchain convinced you that coming to STEEM was going to be a sure way for you to make money, and of course, some days or weeks into your journey you are beginning to suspect you've were lied to. In truth, yes, that's not how things work, and for the life of me I don't know how people keep on making any guarantees still, more than two years into the project, it's as if promoters refuse to see how setting these unrealistic expectations have backfired so many times before.

Maybe the best piece of wisdom I can provide for you is this: most people won't make much here, most won't become dolphins, they won't become whales and honestly that is not because of the way STEEM works, at least not exclusively, but more because our very nature. So the first idea that I think all of us should discard is this unrealistic expectations if you will. Now, this is not me saying that no one will succeed, this is of course demonstrably not the case, but those who do for the most part, have worked really hard in one way or another, or had the financial means to start out with a clear advantage. But again, that is just the way life works.

If you are beginning to feel frustrated, if you are thinking about quitting know that you are not alone. As a matter of fact, early on my steemian journey I saw many talented people join, make a splash, if you will, and then quit when their expectations were not met. What I found somewhat sad about that is that most if not all of the ones that have left, did so, without ever understanding the real reasons why it was not working for them. Between the endless debates that never seem to go anywhere regarding merit, quality or even talent, at some point in time all the ones who left felt the game was stacked against them.

Why am I saying this? Because I suspect that if you are here right now, you are also writing down on your blog possibly, reasons why STEEM is broken and reasons why it's probably going to fail. You probably feel that your content is amazing, and thus whales and dolphins should be able to see this and reward you for sharing it on here. But, as I simplify the position that so many people have, let me ask you one question: How did you arrive to the conclusion that anyone had to support your efforts? The key word here being had.

And listen, I say this not because I don't understand the effort that someone might put into their content, of course not. I've seen some amazing writers, amazing musicians who are far better than me at everything they do quit too, because they've stepped into this line of thinking and lose all desire to continue. In truth anyone who has built an audience, or a stake here with content, has probably done so in the most difficult of ways, not applying much in the way of tricks. They've probably posted hundreds of times without making a penny, probably gotten flagged by someone plenty of times, and endured plenty of challenges along the way. I for one don't know anyone who has always had it easy, but I'm willing to be proven wrong of course.

I suspect that you will also find this letter at a time when STEEM is a lot higher than it is today sitting at 80 cents. So, there is a good chance you are looking at the trending page, looking at the exorbitant payouts and wondering how in the hell is that a thing. If you let it, these thoughts are going to shift into anger, make you wanna yell at bidbot owners, at whales for upvoting content you find valueless, and of course inspire a lot of posts about how STEEM will fail along the way. This might be some tough love, but it's just honesty pouring out of me; There almost 0 chance anything you have to say is something we've all not heard before. Yes, all the complaints you may have about what is fair and what is not have existed almost since day one, and it's not that no one cares, it's that this is one of these situations where you can't have your cake and eat it too. You can't demand freedom, while at the same time dictate behaviors, and if you are not familiar with the freedom that blockchains represent, then I suspect you've not dug deep enough.

I will tell you one little trick, one thing you can do, but only if you are willing to put in the work. It's so simple that some people don't ever believe it; Become part of the community!. Get on discord, get on steem chat, make friends, network with others, find people who love the same things you do, and participate in their activities. If you don't think about the money, but do a superb job at growing your network, eventually you will do well. But, if you think that with content alone, with the merit of quality you will become a whale one day, allow me to burst your bubble, that will never happen.

Another thing I want to tell you before we say goodbye... Be yourself, that's not too difficult to do, but for some reason it seems to be the case at times. Write about the things that you like, make videos about the things you enjoy, don't worry about niches, what others want to read or hear.... Who cares? - People want connection, we all do... I for one like supporting good human beings with good ideas, not just ideas because those lack soul. If you are genuine eventually you will garnish enough support, and trust me this is probably the only thing that seems to be consistent, even if your ideas are a little fringe or crazy.

At any rate, I hope you don't leave.... I hope reading a letter from this stranger has given your expectations a needed reset. As a good friend said to me once, and I've began to repeat her words. This is an endurance test, and only those who are able to see the good, even when many things are not great, will be the ones to reap the benefits of this blockchain.



Sincerely

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Maybe the best piece of wisdom I can provide for you is this: most people won't make much here ...

You describe very well how it is, however I wonder why/if user experience has to be like that?
Do potential users need STEEM or do we need more users? I think we need them, not reversed. So we should care more about that being successful here will be somewhat easier in future.
We should make the effort to seek more, read more, comment more (not only send bots) and upvote more manually!

Or aren't there just enough STEEM to make it possible for smaller accounts to earn some decent money? As long as the user with the highest reputation in the whole STEEM cosmos earns more than 20000 dollar per month by self-voting (and he is not the only one), and as long as there are no serious efforts to restrict that kind of behavior, I think we shouldn't tell newbies there were just not enough STEEM to reward them somewhat better ...

I think there is a similar discussion when it comes to the inability of new users to upvote and comment more than a few times per day. "They simply should understand that every transaction is eating resources."
Yes, maybe, but we should understand that new users simply don't need us. :)
If they are having problems to create a STEEM account, they will create one elsewhere. If they cannot comment here, they comment under their friends posts in facebook - simple like that.
And yes, we need new users (and retain them), not only new DApps, or where does the value of facebook come from?

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Very good points jaki01 , regarding the last bit rc delegations should solve that challenge and that's in the works. But on your first observation...

I don't have a great answer there... I mean, I do my part, or more accurately said, we at @helpie do. But, no doubt we need more.

It could be that a specific app built on steem will make the ux so pleasant that monetary incentives will be just possibilities of icing on the cake, like it's the case with YouTube for example, but then again that would imply that what we do today, our focus, blogs, are on the way out... Maybe that's it...

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We should make the effort to seek more, read more, comment more (not only send bots) and upvote more manually!

I could not agree more, that's the way the platform will grow.

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I don't have a great answer there... I mean, I do my part ...

Don't worry, I didn't blame you at all! :)

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Great Read. Yes, anyone NEW here must realize, this is a social media platform like no other.

You wont get Rich quick. But if you focus on Quality Content, Building your Network & Socializing with others, in time you can do well.

The trick is; Treat it like a Business.

Thoughts:

Counter to what the OP says, we at SteemSTEM pretty much guarantee decent rewards, certainly far more than a living wage in many countries. We are an exception rather than the rule, though.

However, this still does not bring the vast majority of users to stay on the platform. Why? Maybe it's not all about the money, I'm not sure. Of all the friends I've brought onto the platform, a grand total of Zero use it to this day - even when I could guarantee, with my own personal help in mentoring, $80-100 a post.

One problem is, when that 80-100 becomes 70-90, one's perception is instantly 'steem is dead, it's no longer worth my time and effort when I compare it to the average hourly income at a full time job' or some other crazy comparison.

Another problem is how activity on steem is directly proportional to the value of bitcoin. If Facebook was entirely dependent on the success of Google, it would probably be stuck in the same perpetual spiral of inactivity we see here.

Another problem is that, for the most part, people don't blog. This is why twitter and facebook and snapchat and tiktok and youtube and all the others are so big. Writing long articles is not a favourite past time for the vast majority. People come on here believing it's something they want to do because they also have opinions or whatever, and the money is a good incentive. But when they realise the money isn't an incentive, they simultaneouslly realise they actually hate blogging.

Twitter offers effortless, sub-minute posting, facebook offers all forms of media catering to each and every desire, youtube allows creative freedom to go beyond text documents, to the point of productions reaching into multi-millions of dollars and beyond, and all of the above stand on their own feet, all while allowing you to sign up in 12 seconds.

I guess at the end of the day, my point is, there are so many obvious glaring things that we take for granted on all the other platforms because what they've created simply makes intuitive sense, but this place is so far designed in the least intuitive and flexible way possible, putting the burden of functionality on 'entrepreneurs' who struggle to promise a working model on a salary of basically $0/month.

What should be obvious, is that these entrepreneurs need to get together and build something far more flexible and functional that can work completely independent of the value of BTC, hell, even independent of the value of steem, making monetization merely optional, independent of delegations and so on.

SteemStem are certainly working on this and partnering with a lot of other initiatives because we understand we can't go in on this alone. We are advertising ourselves without even mentioning steemit.com if we can help it. I dunno. there's a gazillion other things to say but...

/ rant

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but why can’t steem be used in the same way any of the other platforms are used ? Someone can use it as a Twitter, or post gifs, pics, or videos. It’s the expectations people put on it in terms of expected returns and what it ought to be that weigh most heavily on the platform.

how many of your friends have reached financial autonomy using Facebook or Instagram ?

I agree that the app use itself can be made friendlier and more intuitive, but it’s an open source project and there’s no reason why it can’t get there at some point in the future. I don’t hear anyone complain that their posts on Instagram or Facebook are matching their hourly wages in their day jobs, yet they spend most of their time publishing and consuming content on those platforms.

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So true. It is the expectations which people bring which are the the cage which they hold them selves in.

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Taking the monetary picture away, I think the answer to your question is simple. This isn't where the people are.

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If you try to use it like Twitter the cheetah and other bots jump on jou and label your posts as badcontent forever and a day

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What’s the point of promoting a free platform if we are going to tolerate those kind of bots. Doesn’t busy.org exist around the concept of using steem as Twitter ?

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Yeah to build on this, we're aiming to encourage short-form content in the future too, but at the end of the day there are so many mechanisms and expectations to prevent it - primarily because Steemit.com is the main website people know and use, despite it being far from the best - and is designed to create long-form blogs. So yeah I agree it should be open to all forms, but most forms are considered 'bloat'

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With 12 standard full powered votes a day, I find it difficult to assume that the designers of the platforms intended it to be strictly long form content. There is no way anyone can publish at that rate and have it be full form and of high quality at the same time. Not even news papers or production studios with full staff on deck can output at that rate. Nor can anyone be reasonably expected to fully digest 12 pieces of full long format content. Even @ned often posts twitter or Insta style every now and then.

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Well, Steem is different to steemit. Steem allows a high number of votes which is why entrepreneurs should get together and create something that can capitalize on this, but and in terms of steemit mechanisms, when you post on steemit, you go to a new editing page with Markdown functionality and a big square box to write in... this is not what you'd expect from a site that wants you to write off-the-cuff commentary on the go. And the site is described as a blogging website, both on wikipedia and steem.io.

A tweet is not a blog, a blog is typically long-form, no?

Anyway, this is a minor issue. there are existing apps out there for what we talk about, but they lack any support and fade into obscurity, unfortunately. Not sure why.

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Other sites allow similar functionality, the UI and front end designs are different.

The site is still in beta, and will evolve through user feedback and iterations. It’s fairly new technology compared to what we’re used to.

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Between the OP, your post, and @ketopian's below, I think there's a pretty complete picture forming.

I note where you write:

People come on here believing it's something they want to do because they also have opinions or whatever, and the money is a good incentive. But when they realise the money isn't an incentive, they simultaneouslly realise they actually hate blogging.

Yet ketopian highlights how they don't HAVE to blog here. They could post FB content here, and some people do.

The issue in all of this is a combination of 1) Expectations; and 2) the Social Factor.

Expectations people are attracted here with are usually about money, so people do grade the experience in those terms. Yet we all know how long and hard we have to work to earn money here. And that we have to include the Social Factor, which many don't at all, not realizing that they need support from people to succeed here financially, and that they also WANT support from people beyond just money.

The social factor is that if you have support from people with enough SP, you'll make money on here, but will you have fun?

Will you have meaningful comments and relationships that grow out of those?

If you start on here knowing no one, then Discord is probably the best place to start the ball rolling on getting support and finding people interested in things you're interested in who are willing to get involved beyond just posting.

Searching by tags (instead of using trending) and then commenting on posts with active comments sections and a responding OP is also a good way to start the social game. I credit much of my early traction on here to finding great people to follow early on then leaving very meaty comments on their posts, comments they wanted to engage with. Over time they wanted to also see my posts, and the game was on!

But another part of the social factor is that people downvote here. And when they do, if they have enough money/reputation they take away some of your money/reputation. And they can post mean things about you too, ridiculing what you do.

I mention this because while you CAN post quotepics and one-liners on here like on FB, if you do you're likely to be punished for it by those who feel the platform SHOULD be a quality blogging platform.

Thankfully there are other steem dapps besides steemit. You can just leave a quotepic on something like dLike, I believe. You can just drop an image on steepshot. You can just upload a video to dtube, with maybe a sentence of description so someone knows why they're interested in watching it. And so on. Having to write long blog articles is apparently a steemit requisite, but not a steem one.

However, needing to socialize off and on the platform to build relationships is a requisite for success. Even if you buy a lot of steem to power up, you still won't find this a place you actually want to be if you don't form a community around you or join one. Because we are all social beings. I don't think anything is wrong with that, other than an unwillingness to accept it and adjust accordingly.

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You can post FB type content here but it wont be well received as that is not the development stage the platform is in. For FB content to work you need to have a close network of people who you know. On steem at the moment for the most part people don't know each other in real life and they need something more than FB content to draw them into the new relationships. I think the FB type content is better served on a DApp running its on SMT rather than the top level of the steem blockchain; but time will tell. It is a little chicken and egg with the user base but while we try and have the top level be everything to everyone it is going to be difficult to make the majority happy.

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What's interesting is that dtube doesn't have blog posts, but steemit does have dtube posts. Steemhunt doesn't have blog posts, but steemit does have hunt posts. Etc.

Where is the place that there is only blog content?

I think that's part of why people get annoyed on steemit. I imagine steemhunt folks would feel the same about having blog posts mixed in on there.

The dLike type content (which is a lot like FB I think), is being shown to people looking for blog articles because those people have no dapp dedicated to what they value. So they try to police everyone a way no one else (on other dapps) is doing.

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Yes. I think SMT's will solve a lot of that and we can categorize content into sub platforms. View posts in Steepshot and you only see those posts from steepshot but on the top level viewers like steemit/steempeak/busy you get a mesh of all different content with a broken trending system

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I just hope something is made for blog content that isn't considered "top level." It would seem to me that busy/steempeak should be that, but do they intend to? Does anyone intend to?

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Time will tell.

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ok so i look at some of these posts that people post "photography " some of the most horrific photos get like 300.00 .......then if you look at mine i have some substantial work real photos not some one sitting down to eat with a group of friends ..........i repeat REAL photography ....not a big story line but about the photos i take and every one no one seen them ....so my question is why bother or...how can you claim what you say is true no joke go look at my photos then go look at the ones getting like 150.00 200.00 even 350.00 i kinda agree with the guy up top

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You can consider Steemit a pretty decent reflection of reality in this sense. As a professional musician I constantly see shite get to fame and glory, take jobs they don't deserve and end with massive paychecks I could never dream of. Why? Because the old mantra: 'it's who you know, not what you know'.

Exact same thing applies here. Suck up to the right people and you get what you desire. Be an honest, hardworking blue collar and nothing else, and you rarely get anywhere (unless some twitter video goes viral and somebody boots up a kickstarter to support you)

Some of the greatest work in the world is locked away in museums where almost nobody goes - especially not for a price - to see them. The people are not searching for, nor rewarding, things based on objective quality standards, unfortunately. This is actually not so much a Steem problem as a human problem, imo

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you have to post quality content like this

!popcorn

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Every art abd discipline should have an audience I on the contrary stop by fine photography and art and music and less on crypto related or philosophy, we are all different and thatvis why we must be consistent building our feeds, but curating high quality speaks good of the pkatform as it soeaks badly rewarding low quality, though subjective we all can make thevñ difference of a shit post. Itbis true that networking builds up your possible rewards but high rep should not make you lazy knowing you get the cake anyway, up the ladder to help down the ladder, but it is not that way, usually

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You can consider Steemit a pretty decent reflection of reality in this sense

It is amazing that people expect different rules to apply here to reality. Income distributions on steemit are not fair; but neither is life. Steem is a reflection of the financial inequality which is already present in its user base, nothing more, nothing less. At least with an inflationary system there is a chance over time to reward hard work with upward mobility; which is a lot more than can be said with stratified financial systems which lock the lower classes out of the economy completely.

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Try @steepshot, @xlcaptainblacklx they have a better interface than @steemit and will probably upvote most of your posts.

We earn anywhere from $0.05 to $0.20 per post on @zaclucasrice's account. It isn't a huge amount of money but it's a start!

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Just an FYI, I looked at your photography, and if you'd like more upvotes or engagement you should be using the photography tags that are active and supportive like #photofeed #photomag #photocircle etc..

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I wish I read this before posting my comment lol !

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With respect to photography you need to engage in the communities that value it such as @photofeed , @photocircle, @photomag etc if you want to get noticed. The values in trending are irrelevant as they are paid upvotes. It is like complaining that your photos are not up on the billboards as you drive down the highway. It is not the best photos in those advertisements, it is the people who paid to put them up there who can choose what they are.

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@xlcaptainblacklx agreed, you can't look at trending to get an idea of the kinds of profits photographers are making on Steem. Most of the trending payouts as @intrepidphotos said are from purchased votes. I think I have found relative success here on Steem, but it is not to the tune of a $300 payout per post. That's unrealistic. However, by engaging in the active photography communities on Steem, a good number of my recent posts have multiple dollar payouts pending and my latest has $25. All except one recent post were from organic and community upvoting without paid votes.

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Fair enough but who sees these photos. What kind of following have you built up that will appreciate the work that you put up. Those people earning large amounts have people following them who will give them votes maybe not entirely down to the quality of the post but due to the relationship built over time.

If you were on Instagram and had a thousand nobody's following you do you think that you would be earning money and gaining sponsorship deals? I doubt it. If you had 10 million followers and multiple celebrities on your account you would have companies pushing to give you money.

Content is only one of the factors in earning money. You also have time, hard work, investment and connections. Any of these can help you but all of them means success.

Do you just post photos and expect people to give you votes and money for them? Not trying to sound harsh but photography doesn't interest me so on my feed I would just skip past most of it. What you need is to find people that have an interest in it and willing to support good work. There are plenty of them out there but you will need to catch there attention first.

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Very good points. Again it comes to expectations. On IG no one would be expected to be rewarded so they happily give away their content for others to monetize.

Re not liking photography perhaps you have just not found the right type of photography to interest you ;-)

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Hey dear sir i wellcome you to my whatsapp group we will talk there ok

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Great point it's also the time you have to spend and the fun you get out of it.

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Very salient points made in addressing ongoing changes on the platform. Your observation about how the mainstream social media giants are able to attract and retain members hits the nail on the head. Ease of use and content discovery are main drivers in keeping on those platforms. Community engagement also plays a critical role in this process. One might ask, what is in it for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., to offer low-key friction entry and interaction for their respective user bases? That's because those users are the product and selling information about those users is big business; and with the exception YouTube in some cases, users receive no compensation for their contributions. Nevertheless, people return to those platforms because of the overall user experience. In my opinion, Steemit should not be about a money grab as such an environment would limit its appeal and severely impact its future prospects. Technicals are very important but if the UI and UX are neglected, then the vision/mission will likely fail. Let's hope the Steemit team will take the points being made in this thread to heart and make a true effort to make Steemit the social media platform of choice.

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Yes ease of use and content discovery ; which is why steemit is dying as a proof of concept and other steem interfaces will take over.

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You guys (StemSTEM) are one of the shining lights on steem. I think you have hit the nail on the head about people not liking blogging. They come here expecting to be paid for simple social media content and then realize that to make an impact they need to produce quality long form written content or quality original creative works (art, photography ,etc) and then hustle like a musician trying to get their first record deal. The reality is that for most people that is unachievable and they leave disappointed. I am hoping that SMT's and DApps like APPICS will solve this for the masses who can onboard a dedicated app which is closer to what they are traditionally used to. This will leave top level steem for long form bloggers and their followers who are interested in consuming that kind of content. As a photographer I have 80k followers on other social media platforms and I can count on one hand how many I have successfully transitioned over to steem.

Again love the work SteemSTEM is doing at a time in history when anti-science is on the rise. I hope to contribute to it next year once I have a bit more time free as I have a background of 15 years developing renewable energy systems and trying to manage clean tech startup companies.

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Gold comment!

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Networking is the most important thing in social media, I've underlined that several times in my older posts. Commenting on posts is one minor step for building an audience, I think the chats are where the action is. It's my favorite means of communication because it's live and easier to reach a wide audience. Thus, Steemit becomes complimentary to the chat networks with the benefit of reaping rewards. When I started my journey on Steemit, I spent most of my time chatting, meeting people and making new friends. I had no expectations of making it big on Steemit, so even if I didn't succeed, I wouldn't have been disappointed. Perhaps it's not easy to have such a disciplined mindset, because people see the trending page with shit posts making hundreds of dollars, while they work their ass off to get noticed with quality posts. I blame the irresponsible people who trend their shit posts for giving minnows a false sense of hope and a promise that may be difficult to fulfill.

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it does confuse people, but that's why a voice of balance has to be just as loud somehow someway...

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Te apoyo amigo

@meno not all people can blog.
To be able to have a success in here one must be persistent and just learn how to share what are their passions in life by blogging in here and then they will discover like-minded people who can help them grow.
It is not immediate because it is a slow process but once you get your ball rolling it will have a snowball effect until one day you are already one of the so=called dolphins.
As pointers newbies must read and comment, dolphins create content and comment, whales can just curate. It will create a steem economy making steem more valuable because it is being saved as SP in the process.

I agree about focusing on community, but why do we have to get on Discord or Steemchat? Why not chat on here?

Also, what if some of us would rather spend time creating than socializing? A lot of creators are introverts and I don’t believe we as a society need to continue to punish them for not socializing.

Also, not all of us want to have our faces all over the web for a bunch of strangers. What’s this a bar or a publishing platform?

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A front end could make chatting on here a little more fluid, but as it stands it's not very conducive. It's like chatting with emails.

Regarding punishing introverts, I don't know what to tell you. There are exceptions, there are quite a few examples I can think of of geniuses who were introverts, Tesla comes to mind, but statistically speaking introverts usually struggle more to get ahead in life, we are after all a social species.

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so why not appreciate each individual for the way they are instead of forcing them to convert, and bully them economically if they don’t. Aren’t we paying now for the disregard society had shown towards Tesla’s efforts?

Yes we are social beings, and just because an introvert contribute through their work and effort instead of chatting or immediate social interaction doesn’t mean they are being anti-social. I wittiness many chatter boxes who act in very antisocial manners.

also, a chat program built on top of the steem engine sounds like a fantastic idea to mobilize the currency.

suggestion:

burn inactive accounts to release the pressure on the remainder of the system and could help appreciate the currency.

I think this is spot on. I actually wrote a post a few weeks back on my favorite discord channels for newbies to start finding support. I didn't learn that myself until after a few months. (Before that I was fortunate to at least learn to prioritize following people who responded to comments on their posts, and being able to invest some in STEEM.)

Now I would say that my community relationships are definitely the most important part of my steemit experience, even though I earn a decent amount for these depressed STEEM prices. There are other places to earn more, but I still spend the bulk of my time with my communities here.

Really I hate communicating in chat. It's so difficult to keep track of a conversation that it literally gives me a headache. But until there are groups on this platform, it is a necessity to get those really wonderful conversations going in the comments threads on your posts.

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I don't like the chat sections myself either. It would be nice if we had something integrated to steemit itself for those conversations. Maybe in the future.

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I think definitely in the future there will be. In the meantime, we really have to buckle down and just deal with discord.

Always love your advice. There should be a regular Dear Meno post.

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That's actually a pretty good format !

Hello, Future.

My name is @NoNamesLeftToUse. I hope, by the time you read this, I've found a name to use. If not, that's okay too, I guess.

Brilliant! This post needs to be trending #1

Dear @meno,
Thank you for writing this letter. I am not a future joiner, having joined this year, but I want to reply anyway :D

All of your words are very true.

...

That is all.

Sorry my reply letter is short.

Um, I guess if I should add more things to say is that I managed somehow to grow my account, truly by networking and being engaged. Like, I pay attention to what other people are doing and saying, and I take active interest in them. This is basic, but yet I see a lot of people fail to do this. Most authors do not even venture outside of their own Steemit blog to visit other Steemit bloggers' blogs, let alone venture into discords.

I understand. It is hard. Is daunting, or unnatural, or you just donno who to look at or what to say. But if I can do it, anyone can! Cuz I started not knowing ANYONE on the platform, and now I have heaps and heaps of friends :D

And I'm really ordinary :)

Anyway, thank you for great letter. Oh, but I do acknowledge that Steemit post-HF20 is a bit more difficult for newcomers to grow and interact with. The RC is a bit stifling for newcomers these days. I had no such barriers when I joined in January 2018. I used my unlimited commenting abilities to expand my spider web and commented everywhere :3

Okei. That's all from me.

Hope you have a great day,
@veryspider

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I agree with you regarding RC being a barrier, I found steemit just prior to HF20 and had quite a bit of commenting and voting freedom at the start. After the HF, it was difficult to find that I couldn't vote or comment as freely due to low RC, however, I believe it was around this time that I started interacting A LOT more on discord and I feel as though I've met some really good people there (very supportive and encouraging people) so I do recommend engagement via discord or chat especially since commenting there doesn't eat up your RC. Besides, it's a great place to find like-minded people who may be interested to see and read the things you're posting,

It takes time to get a following and you need that following to make money. If those that follow you votes for you eventually you can make money. The thing is it still is not that easy. There are still too many bots upvoting and you also have those who write post regular on similar topics who do not bother to "follow" you or upvote your post. So how long does one really need to commit to make an income? Better yet if you are here to share knowledge on a certain topic and more interested in that and a bit of extra change would be nice, well if no one really follows you or reads your post well then what is the point? As a noob/beginner puts up a post and if they do not get anyone taking notice then with the thousands of posts that keep getting posted it is only a matter of 10 min. and your post is lost to never be seen. Buried deep under all the post that comes after you. Another way to help make some income is to support each other by upvoting and resteem those post one connects with so they can share. If the person who wrote the post takes a few minutes to check over comments and upvotes the thought out comments then that would help as well. Too often I have seen people post and bots or others upvote with no upvote from the person who wrote the post. Thanks @meno for your thoughts.

Beatiful letter :) I agree with you meno. I also wasn't making $ until I started to talk with people, engaging with community. Very good feelins in this letter. I'm sure It will help new people understand a bit more.

Very encouraging! Thank you and I'm looking forward to Steemit's bright future!

Thanks for the advice. I'm new here and learning how to make it. Thanks for mentioning discord and chat. I need to connect with people.

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Very true!

PS: I saw you're completely new / haven't earned anything. I upvoted a bunch of your other comments to get you started! Steem On!

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Oh, thank you so much for the support.

Apparently, I am not a future Steemian, but this post struck me. I joined the platform as what most thinks. But I believe in perseverance. I have tons of posts unrecognized when I joined a year ago. I endured posting even most are unnoticed but I am thankful to @surpassinggoogle who always supported my post. Many of my friends joined Steem, and still many of them are posting.

Everything you said here made sense actually. For almost 16 months here, I realized a lot of things. My perceptions has changed. I am beginning to grasp what blockchain is about, and so did with Steem, after having no idea what it is then.

Now, I stopped encouraging people to join Steem because even myself is still struggling. I don't want to give flowery words only to bring more members. If they are willing to struggle and eventually bear fruits off their perseverance, then that's great.

Great open letter to the community these days... Your approach on the community is great as we need to look at this as an experience that adds value through relationships and education not by the monetary or tokenized rewards we receive. I think this is where the value lies and am willing to invest my time and stake and helping build them to demonstrate that mindset. Great job and thanks for sharing!

Thanks for your post @meno. I started here back when Steem was about 4 bucks to give any indication. I tried to get a friend of mine who was really into cryptocurrency and he wasn't really interested, saying he looked into Steem but he looked at it like a typical Cryptocurrency and not a social media platform that is on a blockchain so he ignored it in the sea of crypto out there. There isn't anyone else I know who would be interested. This letter you wrote might explain it to some but it probably won't get them to start it.
I have no intention of going anywhere. I still go here for the content everyday. I don't have any other social media accounts (other then linkedin). I just think this is more fun and exciting.

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A Great attitude is more than half the battle

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Hey, @meno.

It's sad that so many people have been duped into coming here with the thought that posts are paved with STEEM, to revamp a common cliché. It's borderline criminal, actually, how STEEM has been portrayed by these self-proclaimed STEEM evangelists. And the fact that their videos continue to be found on YouTube even after they've been called out on it is also a shame.

That said, people know better. What in life has ever been so easy. Yes, there were some pretty amazing payouts early on. But for as many of those that there may have been, there have been tens of thousands of payouts (if not more) at less than $1. Hardly a ratio worth touting.

And yet, STEEM is still the place you can come with no stake whatsoever and start building one. And, if you choose to (a wise decision), you can increase your stake through fiat after jumping through some hoops. So, even if it's some amount over dust that you're making, it's still more than virtually anywhere else.

So, back and forth we go in our attitudes and our thinking. Round and round we go—where we'll stop, nobody knows. But hopefully, it ends with more users, more dApps, SMTs, commerce on the blockchain, a vibrant digital global economy, plus whatever comes after that. And, oh yeah. STEEM to the moon.

Yes we all crave human connection and it should makes us think more how we can nurture them: video, meetings, steemfest, one to one chat. Happy to find you in here :)

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I think we all still in the process of learning to understand more about blockchain technology. In the beginning most of Steemian might think that Steemit is an easy way to get money, but we all come to the point to realize that it is totally wrong. We still be able to get money, but we have to be able to add value to the platform to have it, otherwise we all will not get anything and the steem price will continue to fall. The problem is, not all of us willing to understand, they just ignore abouy others and being greedy. Well, we cant stop this kind of steemian, it is their choice, it is about us, who have vision about tomorrow and the future, who suppose to do something because we are the one who will continue our journey, moving forward, while the others will be left behind.

According to my honest opinion,nobody should join steemit money.Still,I have found most of the people come here for money.I keep telling people that there is no possible way to make a handful amount of cash from steemit except you invest a large amount of money and have a solid understanding about the platform.

Still,nobody likes to listen.They think that steem is a place to make some easy money.

I'm not really sure how to respond to your actual letter without sucking up, something I really don't like to do, so we'll try to avoid that.

I... appreciate the sentiment. I've had the same thoughts on the system, though I haven't implemented them (mostly out of laziness if I'm being honest with myself), and I've made sure to toss on that disclaimer when telling friends about STEEM/steemit. You're probably not gonna make money. Post if you like posting things, and if you get money that'll be nice too.

Which is basically my perspective on steemit. I joined because I looked at it and saw its potential, I stayed because I enjoy posting and interacting. Money is a side benefit - a very nice one, but a side benefit nonetheless.

To be honest that's basically all I have to say unless you happen to want to hear me blab on about some random side tangent because I tend to switch topics midsentence, specifically when I run out of things to talk about which can be rather annoying, though not quite as annoying as those really really really long run-on sentences, though you've probably never seen one of those before.

Oh by the way, I am in the process of convincing a friend to join steemit - he's of the artistic variety, knows a considerable amount about the doings here (from me) and mostly wants the incentive to draw more. Let's see if we can draw him in! (No pun intended)

Your words of wisdom resonate through entire steem ecosystem even if one accepts here in writing or not. Very well written

It would be nice to get articles like this out to a wider mainstream audience. I know that it might sound slightly discouraging but in my mind it's realistic. More realistic than some of the shit being spouted as an advertisement for steemit.

While it might turn a lot of people off the ones who it would attract would be far more likely to stay in my opinion. They would be coming to the site with eyes wide open and hopefully willing to learn how to be successful from the ground up. There are a lot of supports on here for those willing to grow the only problem being how hard it is to find a lot of this information especially in the beginning.

I do feel we need a welcome pack of sorts for new members that will lay out all the information to get started successfully and grow an account. Basic instructions and guidelines to use the site. Links to the different communities layer out by there genres. Links to the most important discord chats for beginners. Etc....

These are the basics that it took me about 6 months to learn slowly and painstakingly with a lot of missteps and mistakes. I would do so much differently if I was starting again and it was nearly all a lack of knowledge. All of which is out there but so hard to find. It was almost enough to make me leave the site in the beginning only for how stubborn I am as a person. I don't like to fail and I don't like unfinished puzzles.

All it would have taken was a well layer out introduction post containing the basics linked to me in the beginning to save a lot of headaches, heartbreak and about three months of time as I learned one piece at a time what could and should be done.

Just something to think about.

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Awesome post dear @meno. You have a great mind and heart and so so deeply care for this place. Can't wait to meet you next week <3

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Yes, we have a wine and fancy cheese appointment, don't forget ;)

Posted using Partiko Android

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Anything that involves cheese and wine is permanently burned into my brain :D

I gave you my largest upvote. Unfortunately it's only $0.05. I wish I could give you more.
What you said is just spot on. I invited several talented musicians to join this community. I saw them posting quality material, unfortunately after a while they became inactive and I don't blame them. This community is exactly how real life is. You don't go too far if the system doesn't like you or you are seen as an outsider.

I can give a stupid example, I never get an upvote from Dtube and many of my videos are quite entertaining. If I get an upvote from Dsound, it's 1% upvote. So I don't usually use those apps. Unfortunately many Steemians rely on those apps and they wouldn't earn almost anything here on Steemit if it wasn't because of those apps.

I organise probably one of the most entertaining contests here on Steemit, the dance contest since July 2017 and apart from a few generous Steemians I never got any help and support. Now a community that doesn't like to dance, what kind of community it is.

Anyway I'm different from anybody here and everybody can say the same.
Thank you for sharing this great article!

Networking and make a lot of friends is the more important thing in blockchain, especially in Steemit.

How very truth. I see many talented people in here who fail to engage with others, without understanding they're shooting themselves in the foot precisely because of that lack of interaction.
For me, no one had to told me that. As I think it's pretty obvious that I cannot expect to receive something back, if I don't do anything for others myself.

From the start, I have done exactly what I used to do in other Social Networks and that seems to be working for me.

However, I quickly realised that I needed to stop picking fights with whales, no matter what I think about them.

While in other sites, a flag doesn't bother much, there are some whales in here that won't simply flag a comment in which you disagree with them. No, that's not enough for them. They flag every post and every comment you did for the past seven days, just because they can.

Oh well, if that's how they behave, better to stay away from them. As such, I never visited the Trending Tab again. I pretend it doesn't exist. 😛

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Well, this post of @meno deserves to be on Trending, the #1 even, organically

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I found it without going there. 😉

This would naturally get there, if there wasn't so much paid crap. Right?

We need to find a way to clean that trash. But as I said, I am not picking up fights with whales anymore. Been there, done that.

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"Fighting", as a "concept", most of the times only results in people losing both / all.

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One way to possibly slow down that type of posting is to fix the downvote. Bots do not like to lose money. So if when a person wanted to down vote a post do to excessive rewards, the down vote needs to go against the curation portion of the reward. The Author would still get his 75%, (or50%), but in a disagreement with rewards the curators would get zero. How many bots and vote sellers are going to cater to a serial buyer in that environment. Who would be curating steepshot photo post with no meaning/words of why the photo.

A content creator who does not use bots has no control over who votes on their post, so a reward dispute flag should not harm the poster, just the voter. If the post is downvoted for any other reason, then the rep hit/reward hit on the creator is fine.

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This is... an interesting idea, though it would be rather frustrating for curators to lose their stake when the poster starts annoying people.

Still, if people understood how it worked, it would offer a great incentive to putting more effort into curating posts.

As far as I can see it looks like a great idea, though I'd have to hear someone's take on the other side of the issue to really consider it.

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Maybe the 50/50 Rewards / Curation would not be a bad idea.

That way, those folks would earn less by upvoting their own comments than if they upvoted for other people's posts.

BRAVO, @meno! I really do not have much to add except I may bring it up Tuesday on @thesteeming pile!

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thanks brother

it's true what you say that most people wont make it. It is not from lack of effort but lack of skills ,people skills. Look around at who is here and is growing. Surprisingly it is not the ones who have great writing skills, but the ones who understand people. If you have a thick skin and can get on with people whether you like them or not you will make it here.

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thick skin is a must!

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Thick hair helps also. Just sayin.

A friend of mine did just as you mentioned. Thought his content was amazing, and left a few weeks later as it didn't get its 'just rewards'. He now calls this place Steemshit.. lovely eh?

Still.. I get him on to vote my content up occasionally... and have to remind him that if he comments.. I'll reward him. Some just don't catch on.

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its almost a script they follow...

Thanks for sharing your earned wisdom, being a Steemit vanguard.

Your suggestion of being a part of the community is spot on. Holistic growth is a marathon activity and not a sprint. Organically interacting with real members of any social group, on or offline, is how one gains status; hence, it works for Steemit. This platform is a great test of how we currently interact with each others creative content.

It's quite simple, all we have to do is share our "steem" with each other. If you read it, upvote it, for you obviously spent the time to consume it.

Generosity goes a long long way here.

UPVOTE UPVOTE UPVOTE

It's how we earn on Steemit. It proves that our content was seen.

Doing things properly on Steemit also require our posts and replies, along with other minor interactions. The posts and replies expose our thoughts and ideas to others who might relate and are generous enough to UPVOTE and share some steem.

All work require time and energy, which is something some do not always have at their disposal.

Consistency is overtly helpful.

A tree is because a seed persisted.

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A tree is because a seed persisted.

I love that!!

I just found out, there are still people who want to pay attention to this problem. I only spent more than two months in Steemit. There are many things that make me difficult. There are a lot of weird things too. I sometimes see a lot of weirdness. Posting a few words and photos under resolution get high rewards. This is what is called smart, interacts a lot. There is even a high reputation for giving an example by just posting one word with great rewards. This is steemit. For me is not good at interacting, it feels like a fool. I reasoned that recovering RC from 0% to 100% did nothing in Steemit. This waiting period is the reason that in fact, I have lost enthusiasm. Very good letter, I like it. I only see a few people who want to pay attention to this.

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You hit the nail on the head @meno. "Become part of the community!" This is the best, and only, reason someone should become involved with Steemit. The @freewritehouse, and @mariannewest / @improv got me out of a long 'writer's block' phase with their 5-Minute Freewrites. Now I am reaching more readers than I ever could without the bedrock of success... COMMUNITY! Well written - an Open Letter I will refer others to, and re-read myself from time to time. Thank You!

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We're glad to have you. I'm very proud of the writing community we've built. If you just have fun here, then the money is a bonus and fun. If this is your JOB, well, then it's not going to be fun, and you'll quit.

Posted using Partiko Android

Hi there sir, i’ve heen here in this platform for 9 months already and to tell you the truth I’ve been thinking of quiting already, but the help of my sister and the community that I am in, I was able to stay and manage to continue my journey here, to be honest I never withdraw more than 10 steem because I’m still hoping that there a bright future for me in here, and I want to thank you with all my heart for doing this open letter It motivates me more to share more of me here on steemit,, 😘😘😘😘

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hey there, you are welcome... thank you for reading...

Listen, you may want to delete the duplicate replies, it must have been a glitch or something.

:)

All the best

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Ohhh I’m so sorry maybe there’s something wrong with my connection....

En todo proceso existiran las contradiciones, las defensas de mi posicion y los defensores de otra posicion, expectativas que se esfuman si parten de una ilusion como manera de compensar una necesidad, es aqui donde tener como centro un objetivo que lo podamos medir a corto, mediano o largo plazo es lo que permite continuar con la resistencia, obtener nuestros logros y alcanzar lo deseaso.

It's just not easy to make money on the internet in general. Why would steemit be any different? You have to offer some value if you want to make money

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no argument from me there bud... it's just when we invite people, or when we promote this place, we set sometimes unrealistic expectations, and thus create the very FUD we never need.

People want connection, we all do...

Good point of making out of Steem, this is social networking blockchain. We need to network more, people are always people and most love those who loves us. I hope I can vote this more but I am quite limited because of giving most of my support in economic crisis like Venezuela.

Great read @meno

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i think that is the best place for you to be inserting yourself Hiro!

:)

So far I've made two good friends in @sugarsugar and @fuzzmaster who got me involved in the steemit fantasy football league. @sugarsugar is a fun writer and i enjoy his adventures in Waverndia!

most people won't make much here, most won't become dolphins, they won't become whales

I think, it would be a over expectation to wish to become whales without any major investment , if someone starts now ( unless, he has brilliant content and puts a lot of effort to build relationship for at least more than a year).

Coming to dolphin, yes, it should be achievable, based on what you advised. However, what I point out is that, slowly more and more dapps are evolving which provides means to earn decent amounts at least. So that is a lot of encouragement and based on what I see, we are going to see more and more such dapps and new communities, which will attract people.

Very well said! I have worked pretty hard my entire life, so when it comes to being myself and posting stuff that I enjoy, I've always approached it with not caring whether or not I get paid, but about connecting with people, having fun and building communities on top of communities. Not only that, but I find creating my content easy, even though some of it is hard work, but nothing compared to real work where one must clock in.

I do this for the joy and the fun of it regardless of what's broken in the system and I don't plan on going anywhere. I may explore other avenues, but I happen to like it here. I've seen a handful of people that joined around the same time as me and they have disappeared. It is absolutely an endurance test especially when it comes to the consistency of posting frequently. It can take a lot of you but in the end it will be well worth it. I hate to see people power down and quit because it makes me feel that the end is near and once again I was "late to the party". I have hope though! There's just no way this can be the end because there is so much positive stuff going on around here too that it may just be worth sticking around! A decentralized platform where witnesses make decisions creates a fine line and it will always create issues.

This is very nice. Hopefully everyone who is interested to join Steemit and those who recently joined will read this piece of wisdom :).

Thank you very much, @meno for this amazing and touching letter!

I really feel the same feelings as you, and I appreciated very much your letter today! :D If only one big change comes in the future for Steemit community, and we all remain finally happy and successful here, that will be amazing for our future!

As you can check my page, I am frozen for a few days. Why?

Well, I have been reading this week a lot about this topic here on Steemit, and I have felt uninspired.

I try to be positive but it is really hard for me, my only thought is to pray, be positive and waiting for a big successful change!

I wish you the best!

@Supernova55

Great advice! Resteemed.

Become part of the community!. Get on discord, get on steem chat, make friends, network with others, find people who love the same things you do, and participate in their activities.

That's the best piece of advice. At the beginning of my Steemit journey, I did not spend much time on Discord, now I think I should have spent more time over there. Thank you so much @meno for sharing this!

hai im newbie to steem.thank you for your post.i respect your worry but i think its about people attitude.

You got a 75.66% upvote from @booster courtesy of @ngc!

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We all needed this letter!

Congratulations @meno!
Your post was mentioned in the Steemit Hit Parade in the following categories:

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We certainly need some good news!

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Hi @meno I'm a bot, and wanted you to know that I've upvoted and re-steemed your post to help you with your promotion efforts! -exp

indeed, on social media blockchain steem, we must communicate with other users. However, I saw many of my friends' accounts getting flags when making comments on the post. I don't think in Steemit there is no freedom to comment on other people's posts.

@timcliff is reesteeming such type negative post for us. Although it is true what @ mena has told here but we want to believe that steem won't fail

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Like it ! Upvoted and Also Resteemed.

Thanks a lot !

Wow, awesome. Great writing, I like it. I always write in steemit everyday, to make my write better.

Everything you said is true. All the Bla Bla the said About steemit was not true when you want money from it.
I am changing that mentality about steemit
Seeing it as a place to share your ideas not for money

I'm brand new. I signed up excited at the idea of earning for blogging, but I'm not real impressed with the setup and many of the other blogs. The quality is a bit low.

I'm brand new. I signed up excited at the idea of earning for blogging, but I'm not real impressed with the setup and many of the other blogs. The quality is a bit low.

Def not a get rich quick Scheme, so, how long till I’m rich?

Haha

Great article thank you for sharing.

This is very motivational. I'm going to re-steem this. I wish for everyone to find Steemit from me to read your post. I Think it will help many people, in the long run, understand their worth. And in the end, that is what matters. Thanks for taking the time to write this. You now always have my support.

Hi @meno I know it's disrespectful to write here, in this publication, but I do not see another way. My name is José Coraspe and together with my colleagues I have a group called Primera Fila. This group will give a pop music concert in December and I had an idea, absurd from some points of view, in which I ask some people to make a video clip inviting people for that concert, and as Steemit has been a great help for us I thought about asking that help from the most influential people of this platform, and for me you are ... I know it is absurd but nothing I lose with trying, I hope your answer ... We are from Venezuela

It's nice to know that a large majority of others are going through the same dilemma. I have told myself on multiple occassions it doesn't seem worth it, maybe I should just give up. But for me, it's now turned into more of a hobby than a means for "making an extra dollar." And in the long run, I guess each post you do is another investment in the platform, no matter the outcome. If you have a few spare moments here & there and enjoy the potential of having your work seen by others all over the world, then why not stick at it?

Make it a habit, not a chore.

This letter is really helpful and encouraging, thank you for all the advices.

All I can say is WOW! I'm about a week into my planktonhood and you dispelled many of the thoughts/feelings I've had and you sorted them all out in one post!

Fact is that this community is amazing, and I've already made a few really good connections who have guided and helped an absolute stranger in ways that no traditional social platform would.

I'm. Not. Going. Anywhere.

Thank you, THANK YOU!

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Yess, future steemians will definitely thank you for this. Biggest challenge for me was the "Niche" thing.. Oh this made it soo difficult to keep up as my mind and thoughts wander with different kinds of thoughts and ideas and never have one or 2 things that i wana particularly write about . It was difficult to come up with topics and would spend hours just making 1 post that would only end up making cents.
One thing i have to really work kn is joining and participating in communities.

Posted using Partiko Android

I think this is an honest letter and I wish someone had told me thess things a few months ago. But nevertheless we'll keep on trying to get on the top!

TODO EN LA VIDA SON LA OPORTUNIDADES Y STEEMIT ES UNA ALTERNATIVA PERO CON MUCHA PACIENCIENCIA, ADELANTE T FUERZA.

Concisely captured my thoughts, and I am new here, and already see the potential and the benefits and none of them have to do with money.

People leave and then go back to Facebook making nothing. It’s really odd.

Posted using Partiko iOS

Great message to a new Steemain.

Excelent post. It covers a lot of the issues and misconceptions with steem that people have quite concisely. I have booked marked it to use when I see people going though the existential crisis that comes after the first couple of months on the platform.

I wrote a response last night to @therealwolf to his question about why are people still here? (https://steempeak.com/steem/@therealwolf/why-are-you-still-on-steem). I think it is relevant to some of the issues you raise so I am going to post it again here

I have been here since last December so not quite a year. Steem is down 90% in that time. I am still here as a content creator ( a photographer ) ; because all of the centralised social media outlets are slowly clamping down on post reach. I spent literally years building a following of 80k + people in social media only to watch the reach whittled away by algorithmic restrictions which required one to pay to promote to your own followers. The real breakthrough here is not the potential for rewards (which are nice) but the concept that the users control their own network (following) on the blockchain. No one can come along and simply demand money and take the network away from you until you pay.

The people complaining about how hard it is to get ahead here have never seen how impossibly hard it is to make a living from a small influencer dividend on traditional social media .

Sure trending is broken and content discovery is abysmal but these are fixable problems . All the social media blockchain clones will have to deal with the same set of problems when designing their platforms. And getting new tokens onto exchanges will only become harder as established players croud the maket. Steem has learnt some hard lessons in the past two years ; and tweaking social financial algorimithic systems is almost as difficult as running a counties finances . Small changes have large impacts . The direction we are heading however is the right one. SMTs will drive a dependency on the steem blockchains sucess in a way most don’t appreciate. It is the people and their companies which ultimately bail out the banks in a financial crisis . The too big to fail model. In the same way it will be the DApps which will ultimately ensure steem does not fail as they depend on it for their business model.

Anyway I am still here posting my work ; even if less people look at it than I would hope. Because if I have learnt anything in social media over the years it is that success is a result of consistency over long periods of time (assuming you have something worth sharing in the first place !).

Thanks for the information man! Kudos!

This post has received a 5.00% upvote from @aiyanna!

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hello @meno !!! I would like you to know that your post is somewhat like a purpose for me to read. I was just scrolling about contests to join here in steemit since I haven't earning much as what you have stated and each day I am losing hope. Thank you for this letter !!!! It has helped me more than you'll ever know. Thank you very much !!!

I upvoted your post.

Keep steeming for a better tomorrow.
@Acknowledgement - God Bless

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