As someone who has witnessed communism collapsing (it would have worked if only people had been altruistic!...) I'm convinced you can't build sustainable success on an assumption that a lot of people will behave as anything else than maximizers.
You can have small, tight communities where social stigma might prevent people from bringing out their basest instincts but a "faceless", anonymous community, like mostly any online community, cannot expect people to behave in an altruistic (or even simply honest) way.
It's the famous "tragedy of the commons" - people will go the easiest way to maximize their ROI and when they screw the original intent of the platform up ...
This is when some serious "out of the box" thinking is most needed!
What I see in the above post and in so many others I've read over the past year or so is a frustratingly 'inside the box' thinking!.
Inside the box thinking - like this post does too - means looking at the system in a static way: we have the people that we have and behave in a way which we all agree is not excellent, so how do we tweak the incentives of the system to make them behave better?
I'm convinced this type of thinking is doomed to fail.
Nobody could save communism, the "new Man" that our manuals were touting back when I was in school , you know, the one who would altruistically take from the society only as much as his needs are and would on the other hand give back to the society as much as his capabilities permit ... never materialized !
Instead "old Men", those who were taking from the society as much as they were able to get away with, while at the same time giving back as little as they could get away with ... were everywhere and overran the system.
Outside the box thinking implies looking at the system in a dynamic way
From a game-thory point of view, the current system is not robust, we are seeking a Nash equilibrium which simply does not exist.
The only way out of the conundrum that has been proven to work historically at scale is to emulate Christianism
Think of the Christian religion in its first centuries. How could a religion which was preaching non-violence and was saying "if someone slaps you on the cheek ... turn the other cheek!" overcome the persecutions and the mass killings of the late Roman Empire ? How could it spread over the whole world not with the sword and not with money but ... with love ?
If you analyse that and understand how the Christian religion has managed to survive and thrive despite openly rejecting the "an eye for an eye" talmudic principle then you are contemplating a path of salvation for Steem too.