Proposed Upgrade for Blockchain Incentives
Now that we have stabilized the STEEM inflation rate we would like to start the discussion on growing the reach of Steem into more websites. Steem was created to be a decentralized content platform that would maximize the distribution and network effect of its cryptocurrencies (STEEM and SBD). Part of being decentralized is encouraging many independent websites and/or competitors to hosting Steem content (such as steemd.com, busy.org, and mobile apps).
Currently, there’s a “put it on Steem and only on Steem” feeling, however, we believe we can structure the blockchain incentives to make every content site across the internet desire to integrate with Steem. Bloggers shouldn’t have to choose between Steem and their current platform. Steem should be a no-cost, potentially revenue generating, addition to any blog. Developers and service providers should be able to make money providing users access to the Steem blockchain.
Encourage Competing Websites
All businesses depend upon a revenue stream to stay in business. Someone looking to create a competitor to steemit.com must have a solid business model to justify the expense in hiring developers to build, deploy, and market an alternative. We would like to propose a very simple change that would enable a large number of businesses to flourish.
Every post will be able to specify how it’s rewards are divided up among up to 5 different accounts. When you use a service provider to make a post, they can automatically construct the transaction to pay a commission. If you use steemit.com, then x% will go to the author and the rest will go to Steemit, Inc. Steemit, Inc will take a percentage so that competitors have an opportunity to compete on price (or charge the same). The funds we receive will be redirected into a community driven development fund that can help bootstrap new features and services.
Many popular websites choose to use 3rd party providers, like Disqus, for hosting comments. With the new commission feature, these websites could embed Steem comments and collect a percentage of every comment reward.
There would be two options for embedding comments:
- Host Steem comments directly
- Use a 3rd party provider like busy.org or steemit.com to serve comments
When a user makes a comment the payout will get split 3 ways depending upon which interface they use to construct the comment.
- Domain (e.g. Infowars, Zerohedge, etc)
- Service Provider (e.g Disqus, busy.org or steemit.com)
Segregated Reward Funds
Right now all content shares a common reward pool proportional to the total votes it receives. Top level posts see and receive an order of magnitude more attention than comments. This significantly dilutes the potential payout for comments.
Top level posts are also restricted to “original content” and people who post links to other blogs don’t get the same kind of rewards. We want to encourage every blogger out there to submit their blogs to Steem and to embed a Steem comment section on their blog.
If we are going to have these different kinds of content, then we need some means of normalizing rewards among the different types. To achieve this we would allocate X% to original content, Y% to link sharing with brief summary, and Z% to comments such that X+Y+Z equals the current reward fund.
By segregating the funds links are paid out relative to other links, while comments are paid out relative to other comments and blogs to other blogs. This in turn should increase the total percentage of the pie paid to comments and links without encouraging comment or link spam. By increasing rewards for participation in discussion and for submitting links to be discussed, we increase the incentives for bloggers to integrate Steem with their existing blog. We also increase opportunities for normal people (non-bloggers) to participate in the platform through link sharing and commenting.
Today bloggers have many reasons to say no to Steem. With these proposed changes, every blogger would have a huge incentive to add Steem comments to their blog while also submitting a link to their blog to Steem.
Different Curation Rewards for Different Content Types
Comments should not have curation rewards because those who are reading have already found the discussion by other means. Links should not have extremely high author rewards because they are almost entirely requests for curation. Blogs should have very high author rewards and lower curation rewards.
You can see how different content requires different division of rewards to properly handle its unique properties.
The upgrades described above are presented for community discussion only and not as a final decision. Please let us know what you think and how we can make Steem more appealing as a platform for developers, bloggers, and discussions about content.