Steem 0.17 Change Proposal Introduction

in #steem4 years ago

Today we would like to present our proposed upgrades to the blockchain protocol for the next hard fork release, 0.17.

KISS, short for Keep It Simple, Stupid, is the guiding principle behind most of the proposals. Simplicity is important for any system looking to gain widespread support and consensus via user adoption. By making the system simpler we minimize the potential for failure, maximize the potential for optimization, build a stronger case for fairness, and can more effectively communicate the system’s value to new participants. With that said, if the system can work without a feature then we propose to remove it.

Encapsulation / Isolation of Key Consensus Components

A second theme in the proposed changes is encapsulation / isolation of functionality by minimizing informational and/or ordering dependencies between different components of the system. In principle all posting and voting is fully independent of the currency with the single exception of the final payout. Also, voting on one post is almost fully independent of voting on every other post. By making some subtle changes to how transactions are processed we can enable major performance optimizations and massive parallel execution in the future. We will not be implementing the high performance / parallel version until necessary, but we want to ensure that the blockchain logic makes upgrading to higher performance code possible without another hardfork.

Separation of Blockchain Logic from Interface Requirements

A major source of complexity on the blockchain is the implementation of consensus features designed specifically for steemit.com. We feel the blockchain should be a neutral protocol that is as independent as possible from a web interface. This will ensure that the blockchain is a fair, equal opportunity platform that can support many different kinds of interfaces.

There are many examples of consensus logic being dictated by an interface concern. These include: comment depth, payout period, and edit limitations. Many of the things we will be rolling back were originally introduced in Hard Fork 0.12 and were never part of the original Steem design.

Simplifications

Removing Over Posting Reward Penalties

During the July rush we experienced a massive influx of people posting as much as they could to get as many rewards as they could. In an effort to curb this “abuse” we implemented a limit on the maximum reward a post could receive if the post made more than 4 posts in the same day. In hindsight this change was reactionary and ultimately unnecessary. It has the psychological impact of discouraging engagement and adds unnecessary complexity to a system. In the spirit of KISS we feel this should be removed.

Single Payout Period

Steem currently supports two payout periods: 24 hour and 30 day. The 24 hour payout period is weighted by the time votes were cast and could be up to 48 or more hours in some cases. The 30 day payout period was designed to catch votes/readers who were not around in the first 24 hours.

Based upon voting statistics, the vast majority of the 30 day payout comes from votes cast in the first week. We also know that there is little difference between weekly active users and monthly active users, especially among those with meaningful voting influence. It is our belief that authors (and curators) will earn more by a single 7 day (fixed) payout period than the combination of 24 (variable) and 30 day (fixed). A single vote on day 3 is worth much more to the author under this system than a dozen votes on day 3 under the old system due to the N^2 weighting algorithm.

The original 24 hour rule was an example of allowing the interface requirement for “fresh/trending” content dictate the blockchain logic. Interfaces, such as steemit.com or busy.org, can use any algorithm they want to select articles to display.

Some may ask why we don’t recommend making the voting period infinite and/or allow multiple payouts. The answer is two fold:

  1. Limited voter/community attention
  2. Scalability considerations

Users will be able to cast votes past 7 days, but those votes will not impact payouts. There are many other technical benefits from this change that enable parallel scalability, but that is a topic for github discussion.

One final benefit of a 7 day payout period is a reduction in variance. Under the current model, those who post the same day as an extremely popular post get much less. By spreading it out over 7 days, the extremely popular posts have less impact on other authors posting the same day.

Comment Payout independent of Discussion

At one point we had considered dividing the top post rewards among the comments. In a past hard fork we modified the payout algorithm to pay all comments at the same time as the parent post. This creates a tight coupling and minimizes the opportunity for a comment to get rewarded, especially if the comment was posted shortly before the post was paid.

Under the proposed changes, all comments and posts would be paid exactly 7 days after they were posted. This means comments have more time to gather votes and late commenters have a better chance. This change also facilitates massively parallel computation by eliminating sequential dependencies among posts and comments.

Removing the Comment Nesting Limit

Many people have requested the ability to reply with unlimited depth. The current comment depth limit was driven by the consensus calculations involving parent posts. With the proposed change to make all comment and post payouts fully independent of each other, we can remove the nesting limit. At the very least, it will be up to interface designers to determine the limit rather than the blockchain.

Allow Editing of any Past Post or Comment

We propose removing the restriction on editing of past posts. It is a user-interface responsibility to show revision history and enable restoration of unintentional changes made by compromised accounts.

Normalize Payout Rates

Under the existing rules, paying one post changes the potential payout of the next post. This introduces an undesirable sequential dependency among posts that prevents parallel execution of payouts. The proposed change would ensure that all posts paid out at the same time will receive the amount of STEEM per vote.

Removing Proof of Work

In our last update we attempted to move to Equihash as our proof of work algorithm, only to be bitten by a bug in the library we adopted. For most of the last month proof of work has not be a factor on the blockchain. Now that STEEM has been launched and distributed, there is no security benefit being provided by miners.

The proof of work difficulty has never been a factor in determining the best blockchain for consensus purposes and has solely been used as a means of distributing the currency in a manner that complies with U.S. regulations . Now that the currency is distributed there is no longer a need to perform this function.

Our long term roadmap includes multi-chain designs that will further render proof of work pointless and unnecessary baggage. Removing it will allow us to focus our development efforts on features that actually do matter.

Remove Bandwidth Rate limiting from Consensus

In an effort to simplify the core consensus algorithm, we will remove all code relating to bandwidth restrictions from the consensus code. Instead, the same algorithms will be implemented as a “soft” consensus by the witnesses. This means that any witness can include any transaction they like and it will no longer be considered invalid by the consensus rate limiting rules.

Witnesses can then adopt a more flexible policy toward rate limiting without requiring hard forks. In particular, we will utilize custom (non consensus) operations to inform witnesses of revocable bandwidth delegation. This will allow large account holders to sponsor smaller accounts without having to fund the smaller accounts with Steem Power.

Bandwidth rate limiting is a short-term consideration and ultimately irrelevant to the long term consensus. All that matters long-term is whether or not a transaction was included and that gets decided by the witnesses. Collectively the witnesses have the power to rate limit accounts to prevent abuse and they will apply the same algorithm they are applying with release 0.16.1.



After the above simplifications have been made, there are a few new features that we feel will help the ecosystem flourish.

Multiple Arbitrary Beneficiaries to Reward Payouts

For any given post there can be a half-dozen different people who have a financial interest in the reward. The include: voters, author, referrers, hosting providers, blogs that embedded blockchain comments, and tool developers. Whatever website or tool that is used to construct a post or comment will have the power to set how rewards from that comment are divided among various parties.

This means that if you post via Busy.org that your post will share some of its rewards with Busy. If you post through the various phone and/or desktop apps then the app developer will be able to claim some of the rewards.

Independent Comment Reward Pool

Comments have a very different level of visibility and therefore get considerably fewer votes. In the past month only 1% of rewards were paid to commenters. Due to the nature of the N^2 reward curve it means comments are not competing against other comments, but against the top bloggers.

We feel that engaging more people in discussion and encouraging higher quality comments will make the platform more desirable. While relatively few people want to blog, many more are interested in commenting.

If all comments only have to compete against other comments, then more users can participate and comments can collectively garner a larger percentage of the reward pool. We are proposing that comments be allocated 38% (golden ratio) of the current reward pool and that comments be rewarded on a N log (N) curve with some to-be-determined modifications. This should work to allocate more rewards to those who contribute to discussions and drive community engagement.

Separate Market and Rewards Balance from Checking and Savings

Currently rewards are paid as micro-payments into the "checking" balances. These micro-payments suffer from rounding errors and add tight dependency on the order of operations between rewards payment, market operations, and transfer operations. In order to support the goal of encapsulation we want to treat rewards and market operations as-if they were independent “side chains”. User rewards would accumulate in a fund which could periodically be claimed.

This change would have the impact of users seeing their rewards every time they choose to claim them while at the same time allowing exchanges to replay the blockchain without validating all of the voting operations. Advanced implementations could process the votes in parallel to transfers and/or market operations.

By separating market balances from checking balances we can accelerate the market evaluations and allow the market to be processed independently from transfers. Like voting, the idea is to view the SBD / STEEM market as a virtual “side-chain” that can be processed in parallel as the system scales.

Summary

We feel that these proposed changes will set the stage for a more flexible, modular, and simplified protocol upon which many different participants can build. Like always, the community will have the final say on what changes are adopted and which ones are rejected. Please provide your feedback below.

Note: this is not the 2017 Roadmap that we have been working on. That document is far broader and more comprehensive than this 0.17 “next step” plan. The full roadmap will include plans for steemit.com and other user-facing features.

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See!? I told you it was just a matter of time. :)

The one change that stands out to me as a potentially bad idea is removing the four post limit/penalty. With auto-voting what it is today - and many of those auto-votes coming from large stakeholders - I think this would be a terrible incentive for anyone receiving auto-votes to post as much as they possibly can. This may sound like a good idea ("Alright! More content!"), but more isn't always better.

It could also reinvigorate the role of sock-puppets on the platform. This is something that hasn't been much of a problem lately, but could quickly and easily be renewed.

Just something to consider.

The market can adjust though. IMO, the limit is too arbitrary. And some folks are capable of putting out more excellent content.

When the authors that got votes from bots started abusing the power, the rest of community will likely stand out and start flagging, and it will ruin the author's rep. Given that we'll have 7 days to review, it's easier for the "good people" to react. I don't think a wise author will do so, unless she/he need quick money, or the account is compromised.

By the way, it's up to the bots to implement better voting algorithms. Most bots are voting for money, they have incentives to not vote for contents that will be mass-flagged.

With the cultural stigma of the downvote this kind of abuse hasn't been discouraged even with efforts from a minority. Your votes and Dans were the only ones that mattered and they were countered by other whales to keep the rewards high despite the abuse. I'm not sure those same whales will turn a new leaf if somebody like @ozchartart went from posting 4 times daily to 10+ times daily.

That you and others disagree and your point of view doesn't happen to prevail in one instance doesn't mean the system doesn't work. It works when stakeholders actually agree on what constitutes abuse. There is no objective definition.

That said, it also works to an extent even when there is disagreement, in the sense that incentives favor choosing content to upvote that won't be downvoted at all, whether or not the downvoters succeed in driving the post value all the way down to zero.

Most bots are voting for money, they have incentives to not vote for contents that will be mass-flagged.

I will agree with you there. The risk of wasting voting power wouldn't be worth it when seeking ROI, particularly from curation, which is already not that high for most users.

...it's easier for the "good people" to react.

The question is - what can be done when the abusers are actually the larger stakeholders, as was the case a few months back? The other large stakeholders mostly took no action. So, if there is no reaction and other stakeholders don't have enough power to make a difference, the abuse goes on unabated. I don't know what the solution would be, but having the post reward limits/penalties would at least be able to curb that.

What other back-end options do you think there could be that could address abuse vs. unwillingness/ineffectiveness to mitigate it on the front-end?

I would say the same stake-holders are still "pod voting" The accounts change, but the behavior doesn't. No changes to the system will stop a few accounts that vote for a handful of accounts each day.

Maybe the builders of the bots can build a feature where they can vote on some of their fav. accounts on odd days, and different accounts on even days.

The question is - what can be done when the abusers are actually the larger stakeholders

Downvote, and it is still effective in shifting the incentives even if you aren't a larger stakeholder.

Consider a whale who has a choice of where to deploy one of his or her valuable and scarce 40 (full) votes per day. Choice A will get downvoted and Choice B will not. The incentives then favor B.

Unfortunately this isn't an instant gratification solution, but because it takes time for incentives like this to work, but they do work.

Is that whining I hear? Jk ;)

I have the same concern. We may need to allow more active downvotes on these types of contents.

Or, we could just avoid the problem as much as possible by not willingly opening things up for abuse. If users want to post more than four times, they can do that. They just won't earn as much. And chances are, if they're posting more than four times per day, the quality of their posts probably won't be that great anyway and probably won't be deserving of large payouts.

The four post limit/penalty doesn't seem to be a big deal in need of a "fix."

It has the psychological impact of discouraging engagement and adds unnecessary complexity to a system.

I don't think it discourages engagement. It discourages abuse - in the form of sock puppets and spamming. This is anecdotal, but I haven't seen many complaints from users who think that this needs to be removed. The limit doesn't mean that a user cannot earn - it only limits how much can be earned after a certain number of posts. With a stake-weighted system that can be and has been abused, I don't believe the limit is an actual problem.

if they spam post the bots will run out of steempower eventually or garner flags from pitchfork wielders

You're right. We may ask this first; how many articles/posts does a professional writers create per day?

Not all posts are going to be (nor should be) professional writers. Approaching it from that angle impairs the growth potential of the system to reach a much larger audience from the start. There are many different use cases for this blockchain, professional writers being only one of them.

Multiple Arbitrary Beneficiaries to Reward Payouts

Am I the only one that almost peed when reading this?

All in all, thank you for your hard work and most of all, thank you for being transparent and bringing this out to the community as a proposal and open discussion.

I am personally good with most of them and a bit so an so (might need more time to think on) about:
Switch to 7 day payout instead of 24h
The simplest and most logical way to reward everyone imho would be indefinite, with a 24h payout cycle.

Removing the 4 posts limit, comment nesting limits and separation of posts and comments rewards plus multiple beneficiaries etc.
I think this adds a lot of complexity to the operations and might turn out to be very heavy computationally wise especially as we scale. Also opens the door to spamming by overflowing the blockchain with data.

What I didn't see mentioned in the proposal. maybe it will be in the roadmap

  • the faith of SBD (will it stay, will it be removed as it's outdated etc.)
  • more blockchain based operations/more development on blockchain based operations (like surveys.polls for ex.)

Reading through all the items mentioned, i think that a more streamlined (TL'DR-ish), layman description of the suggestions would be welcomed by the less tech savvy.

Also opens the door to spamming by overflowing the blockchain with data.

This is a common misconception. The 4 post limit is per account. However, nothing prevents people from creating an arbitrary number of additional accounts (potentially thousands, and there are already people with thousands of accounts) to spam. Spam control is already handled by other mechanisms which are more effective than this one.

Also, even the 4 post limit doesn't prevent spamming with a single account, it just reduces rewards. Someone who wants to be malicious or annoying can still spam.

Also, even the 4 post limit doesn't prevent spamming with a single account, it just reduces rewards. Someone who wants to be malicious or annoying can still spam.

true

This post was about blockchain features, not website features.

true and thank you for pointing it out. I removed the Adds part which was exclusively website related. Other than that I consider all other items blockchain related.

  • Escrow is fully functional at a blockchain level.
  • SBD can also be heavily managed at the website level by controlling which payout options we expose.

duly noted.

I like it how you are making a distinct and clean space between blockchain (database / protocol) possibilities and presentation / UI features. This way you are making it possible for multiple interfaces to coexist over the same blockchain. Or even over the separate / side blockchains....

It shows vision :)

I'm excited about the independent comment reward pool. It will increase engagement tremendously and I believe it will do a lot to help grow the platform.

At the same time, however, we should expect to see many more low-quality and bot comments. The community will need to find a way to combat these spammy replies.

Downvotes. Downvotes for everyone!

Yes! I want to downvote those crappy comments. :-)

Excellent update, thank you. There's a lot here and clearly the team has been working hard. We all really appreciate the updates and the discussion. I like that we're trying things out, testing what works and what doesn't, and we're willing to remove something we previously tried if it doesn't work out as expected or doesn't benefit us all as imagined. Being willing to be "wrong" is such an important aspect of gaining new knowledge on what ends up being "right."

Curious: any talk of changing the voting power? Initially Dan proposed a pretty serious change there and it was ultimately rejected by the community. Is that topic still active or is the future approach going to be voting guilds where many things get voted up automatically not by individuals but more so by bots?

I also would love to see changing the voting power revisited at some point.

I'm not sure this will please the main stake holders. It would be like taking their power away which was not in plan when they put their stake in.

What they are referring to isn't to take power away from large stake holders , but rather bots. Bots can vote all day every day and with a 40 vote soft limit it is impossible for any human with a job and/or life to compete with that. If we were to lower that limit then every human could use their full voting power and have a better chance at reaches the same amount of votes as the bots. I hope Dan and Ned will consider revisiting this idea as nobody is exchanging curation rewards for their authentic attention with the current system and that is a real fail for the attention economy. Those who pay more attention should be making better curation rewards than those (with the same amount of SP) who are offline.

Don't personify the bots - those are indeed humans with jobs and/or lives who are competing—by operating those bots.

Paying attention isn't what's being rewarded—it's surfacing good content. It doesn't matter if you washed your clothes by hand or used a machine.

Why should those with lives and families and a bot curator be paid more for surfacing content than people who actually read the content and also have lives and families but choose to be more attentive to the job? There's a reason people pay a dry cleaners instead of using the washing machine. But if we only care about cheap clothes (content) and would rather be lazy about the quality then use the machine.

Isn't the change @lukestokes is talking about the one where you could if you wanted to, vote 8x more with 1 vote and it would drain your voting power by 8x?

there was a confusion about that as it doesn't allow you to actually vote 8x stronger. There was a post about it specifically but i can't remember which one.

Ah, right.

Did andu sell his account btw? :P

replying here due to comments nesting limit
yup, andu sold me the account. My previous one is @anduweb. Some KISS-ing right here, cutting off a couple letters.

:D alright thanks for the info! I knew andu from some time ago, was wondering where he went haha.

replying here due to comments nesting limit

what a relevant issue ;D

Why not to make some steem weighted poll about each proposed changes with 3 options to answer: 1) agree, 2) disagree, 3) don't know?

Thanks to @xtar in Golos we have special poll site for that.

Even though I don't understand a word on that website, I would fully support a blockchain based poll feature.

Words don't matter). Number before brakets means number of voters, and number inside brakets is a summ of their Golos Power.

Overall....OUTSTANDING direction, simplifications, and some improved frameworks.

Thoughts:

  1. Really like ALL the KISS clean-up and simplification. Old unused features will become caustic over time. They are a liability, so it is good to get rid of them.
  2. I like the 7day, versus 24hr rewards.
  3. BUT... why can't there be a rolling-30 day payout for upvotes after? This would promote quality posts which are relevant over longer periods of time. Exactly what we want! Just because the metrics show most payouts occur in 7 days, does not mean it is strategically optimal for the platform or usages. For example, what if an author wants to write a novel. Each post is a chapter in the story. Why shouldn't a year from now, when a new fan starts reading the book, a payout can be earned from chapter #1 and so on?
  4. I like the independent comment reward pool and the effort to encourage more interaction by members (I think that is the strongest aspect of Steemit, an active community with a LOT of interaction).
  5. But, 38% of the rewards seems WAY high... Until we get more people eased out of being shy, it might promote lower-quality/higher-quantity comments. Perhaps start lower and ramp up from there? Just an idea.
  6. I don't understand the "Separate Market and Rewards Balance from Checking and Savings". Seems like an overly complex system to be added without a clear benefit. Does this basically add another 'account' for users to view/manage and understand? We already have Steem, Steem Power, Steem Dollars, and Steem Savings... This would add a Steem side-account? Whoa there cowboys/cowgirls. Let's refer back to your KISS principles.

And as always, thanks again for your continued work to make the platform better. I appreciate everything you guys/gals are doing and the fact you engage the community on future change proposals!

why can't there be a rolling-30 day payout for upvotes after?

Because our usage statistics indicate that this would account for 0.85% or less of all rewards. Also see my recent blog post "Building Lon Term Value from your Blog" for the real answer to long-term rewards.

Yes, but you are conforming to the current metrics and not the desired end-state.
I have a more detailed post on this concept: Advocating for Long Term Steemit Payouts https://steemit.com/steemit/@mrosenquist/advocating-for-long-term-steemit-payouts

The comment reward will bring massive engagement. I believe this along with the arbitrary beneficiaries rewards will be a game changer.

You're right. But your posts have a lot of engagement already, ha ha.

We are proposing that comments be allocated 38% (golden ratio) of the current reward pool and that comments be rewarded on a N log (N) curve with some to-be-determined modifications. This should work to allocate more rewards to those who contribute to discussions and drive community engagement.

Finally. Thanks steemit team! I think this change will be one of the best ones on our road to mainstreem attention!

Great updates/upgrade suggestions!

More rewards for commenters, I've been thinking this for a long time. Not everyone can put together an article, even subjects they know about, and/or some don't want too. Everyone can comment. This will be big.

Yes, that's exactly how I feel, I am not a good writer, but somehow I think I do make good comments, even though I do think 38% is too high.

It probably is high..., but with the low Steem price, and trying to get the masses in, I can see how they want it high right now.
I am more of a commenter myself.

This means that if you post via Busy.org that your post will share some of its rewards with Busy

This feature looks interesting but how does it works? Who gets to select beneficiary, busy or authors?

Ya, this is awesome to here. As a developer of autosteem, this means that in the future there could be more pro features that have an associated cost, and a reason to keep development going beyond the free use for steemit. more integration and services could rely on steem as its transaction base. Awesome news!

the software that constructs the transaction. In this case busy.org's JavaScript code.

That's great. Does it mean platforms like medium could have an instant revenue model by just integrating steem? If so, this is huge!

Removing Over Posting Reward Penalties

During the July rush we experienced a massive influx of people posting as much as they could to get as many rewards as they could. In an effort to curb this “abuse” we implemented a limit on the maximum reward a post could receive if the post made more than 4 posts in the same day. In hindsight this change was reactionary and ultimately unnecessary. It has the psychological impact of discouraging engagement and adds unnecessary complexity to a system. In the spirit of KISS we feel this should be removed.

Anyone thinks that the "Mute" button will be used more often, at least on Steemit? Posting often and with stuff that's not so relevant would cause perception of "time-wasting" to rise and regulate itself through more mindful following / muting.

The down vote should be used to discourage behaviours you consider bad for the platform.

Yep, but I think the market would account for it. If folks abuse the privilege, then they get muted and their payouts decrease. If they provide 6 great articles a day, then more power to them. Not many are capable of that though.

It depends on the type of post. Long form blogging, yes, few will be capable. Other types of contributions, it may be easier. People can and will decide who to follow and what types of content they want to see. That doesn't mean all of it will necessarily get high rewards, but the rewards shouldn't be arbitrarily decreased based on a fixed quota.

Another way to look at lower rewards for people who post more is higher rewards for people who post less (since the system, at some level, is zero sum). Why give extra rewards for posting less? I agree with removing this rule and letting followers/unfollowers/muters/voters/downvoters decide what is best.

Agree. That is a better solution to spamshitposting than an arbitrary fixed limit. Along with downvoting as @beanz replied.

"Multiple Arbitrary Beneficiaries to Reward Payouts".

If this features can support third parties revenu model, it could be huge. If the financial interest can be a apply on projects like SteemQ or Thirsty Media or any Steem Projects targeting video or music producers, COuld we include song writers, performers, artists directly in the payout video or music discover payout model?
I support this proposals.

I though it was going to come to this :) , keep up the good work @dantheman and @ned you have your first startups formed :) I saw Thirsty's page the moment it got started @senseiteekay UPS, lol big ups , @pnc I'm following you :) so no worries there. I've been missing my updates on how the Thirsty is going.

The comment section of sites like Reddit and YouTube has always been my favorite section; that's where you find everything you were thinking while reading the original post or when watching the YouTube video. You almost always know that what you just thought of is going to show up as a top-rated comment there, so yes, increasing the incentive to make the comment section on Steemit more attractive and great - that I am all for. :)

and I thought that the white paper was a fun and entertaining read.
KISS...I got that part...
yup...good plane.

I'm new here so forgive me If my question is silly but how does steem prevent spam when it is totally free to transact?

Welcome, then!
Bandwidth usage is limited by how much Steem Power is in the account that is attempting to transact. If the bandwidth limit is hit, then the transaction will not be processed.

More specifically, we can treat bandwidth like BTC transaction fees. There is nothing in the Bitcoin protocol that necessitates transaction fees, but all miners require them. Similarly, we can have the witnesses track bandwidth for individual accounts and rate limit them without needing the bandwidth information to be a part of the consensus state or the Steem protocol.

I'm not a huge fan of this. It further concentrates power among witnesses (and by extension the largest SP holders) by giving them discretion to decide who and what transactions to allow and when to allow them.

If bandwidth allocation is defined by the protocol as a function of SP then witnesses who refuse to allow transactions within an account's defined bandwidth allowance are clearly engaged in censorship and abusing their position, but leaving it discretionary, all bets are off. Witness could create all sorts of arbitrary rules, including demanding fees as abit mentioned and without a well-defined protocol rule there is no standard to evaluate this against.

This is effectively taking a property right (fair share of system bandwidth) away from SP holders, especially the smaller ones.

Witnesses already have the power to censor like this. Consensus limits are only for overages - there is nothing stopping witnesses right now from censoring e.g. every post from @ned if they were to all collude - this is nothing to do with bandwidth rules.

However, as long as some honest witnesses remain, voting out the misbehaving ones is a straightforward matter.

Witnesses already have the power to censor like this.

Yes I understand the technical side of it. However, the political side of is far more complex.

You are introducing a rule that says that certain forms of censorship are okay. That is a very gray area and can easily be subject to great political conflicts and sliding interpretation.

However, as long as some honest witnesses remain, voting out the misbehaving ones is a straightforward matter.

The issue I'm raising specifically with regard to the property rights of all SP holders and their access to a fair share of bandwidth (which arguably provides the foundation for the entire value of STEEM) is that: a) large holders can have different interests from small holders, and b) what is "misbehaving" becomes vague and subject to a morass of political reinterpretation and influence games under this proposed system.

If large holders, and the witnesses they elect, decide for example that only people with more than 100 MV are allowed to make more than two transfers per week then small holders have no recourse. Or that only people with more than 100 MV can transact without fees. Etc. This can obviously be done in less blatant ways by witnesses and their large stakeholder supporters making smaller and more subtle changes over time with little scrutiny.

The simple and clear rule that blocking transactions that conform to the protocol rules is censorship and always considered unacceptable (except possibly pragmatically for a short time as a temporary bug fix pending a hard fork) is a clear line that possibly can be maintained as a core value by the community and stakeholders. I'm far less comfortable with a rule that says that blocking valid transactions according to witness discretion is okay under some circumstances but not others, especially when it implicates the core value proposition and property rights of SP holders.

Exactly. Perhaps we can also introduce a fee, then we witnesses will be rich!

Haha! I do enjoy a good sense of humor, you get my witness vote :)

Offer people a stick of gum today or a pack at the end of the week and most people choose the stick of gum now. People want instant gratification. 7 days is too long to keep "average" people interested. If one payout period is desired, I'd be a happy with just the 24 hour payout period.

Love the comment reward pool and a lot of the other stuff seems great!

I agree, I think it could be bad for user retention as people want to test the site and turn their rewards into usd asap to see if its legit.

It took me a couple weeks to take the time to figure all that out anyway. I don't think it would make that much difference.

I'd probably pick the pack of gum at the end.

You're not an "average" person IMO (take that as a compliment). I'm trying to think from the perspective of average people, which is necessary for large scale adoption.

Lol. Flattery will get you everywhere 😂

Beanz is not the average person, but can think like one!

<3 All perspectives are worth knowing

Agree on that point.

I want the multi-pack

I agree with Einstein. Any changes should not make the operation too simple so as to attract those who would take Steemit for granted. It needs to stay just challenging enough to detract those who are not willing to appreciate what this platform has to offer.

In the spirit of KISS, we should consider making author rewards 100% liquid Steem. Those who wish to power up will still do so.

I think 100% Steem Power and let people power down if they choose.

Strongly disagree, both from a perception and usability point of view. Trying to lock in new users to an investment when they haven't asked for it (and quite possibly don't want it) shouts scam and Ponzi scheme, and makes it far slower and more complicated for new users to do a first cash out to convince themselves that this system is actually real. With 7 day payouts and then another 7 day delay for first power down this means 14 days (plus exchange delays) for a new users to see their first cent, and that's assuming their early contributions are even rewarded at all. Plus it requires them to learn more about vesting and unvesting.

Social media users and bloggers are not investors and don't want to be (at least not initially; once they grow familiar they may decide they do). They should be paid rewards in easy and accessible liquid tokens, not "shares of stock".

This is not the way to improve the STEEM price. Making the token (and more broadly, system, team, development effort, communications, vision, transparency) more attractive to investors (who want to be investors) is the way.

I'm going to have to agree with @smooth on this one, This is not doing much for acquisition of new users and retention. We have to remember, a lot still have to learn the "crypto" market too, not just Steemit's market and ecosystem.

Yes an Yes and Yes(@bitcoinparadise , @smooth) , @danteman I get the fact you want to see people grow the platform , but many will come for their daily bread and will live of the stories of whales.
make change possible , let people earn , not on the basis of trust me , it's good for you to make my platform great. but on the basis of this will spark a real change. YOU matter not your Power , Power grows as you do :) , that way you will have real community and leaders. I'm getting too philosophical for my own good.

Starting a new venture is hard , business is hard too, don't kick people into it , posting is a venture and Steemit has a business element to it, trust me if the people weren't here , no retention would ever come, the crabs that leave the bucket are free to leave because they are on top, the ones below don't have a choice.

Here it works in the reverse fashion, ones that leave are the most fed up , be it because of personal choices or platform issues. And the brave ones that stay at the base , supporting their community , get only to see the frying pan last.

Don't put people in buckets and be careful with the liquid steem , many are hungry and many will get addicted.

Payout tokens are the most complex part of the system. While I see the need for all 3 tokens, being paid out in all three is very confusing. I would love to have the option to be paid in STEEM only as opposed to STEEM and SBD. I'm OK with the 50% power up as my own choice but I think powering up should probably be completely voluntary... If you want blogging platforms like Medium to adopt STEEM as a revenue system, well their users aren't going to understand why their $5 payout is locked away and can't be taken out in parts larger than 1/13. I think curation should still be SP only since you need to have SP to curate, so curators will already understand the purpose of SP. Perhaps comments could be paid in STEEM only while OP authors would have the option to be paid in SBD.

I'm beginning to wonder if we should keep SBD or not if we are to integrate with other platforms like Medium. If their userbase is not on steemit and they get SBD then when will they learn the speculative value of STEEM?

SBD for authors and STEEM for commenters would be easier to understand than 3 tokens for everyone.

But honestly if you want people to hold steem long term you need to create incentives for doing that. Right now curation isn't a good enough incentive because the vast majority of users feel that their vote is pretty powerless. At one point when the steem price was around 30c my account was worth around $2k yet my vote wasn't worth 1c on a new post. For somebody self employed who doesn't make 2k in a month (before expenses) I can't imagine how I can afford to compete by powering up. A person of my income is probably (possibly idk) the average user too so the masses are just not all the investing type.

I don't know if you have future power up incentives up your sleeve but I hope you will revisit the idea of reducing the voting soft limit or come up with some kind of solution for bot voting because that's the main reason I see my vote as powerless even at $2'000.

I never thought I would hear you say to remove SBD! :) What if it were marketed this way... all rewards paid in STEEM. Then you have a choice: Gain more influence by powering up to SP, or cash out/earn interest by getting SBD. This would seem to give the user a choice they can grok.

I'm not saying remove SBD. I still strongly believe in the value of it as a smart contract and as an introduction to cryptocurrency. But I would like the OPTION to be paid in STEEM rather than SBD since I don't really hold SBD for very long anyway.

I think that could work. But I would prefer if they added incentives for lower power ups. They don't even have to be monetary incentives. People go crazy about HATS on Team Fortress 2 and there are all sorts of games people will pay just for gimmicky things.

If that were the case every newbie would have to learn more in order to use the platform rather than less.

This depends on your point of view. If you are aiming for short term profit, then KISS means liquid Steem rewards. On the other hand if you are aiming for long term investment, then KISS means Steem Power rewards.

People should invest when they are comfortable doing so, and have made a conscious and informed decision that this is the right thing for them, not by default.

We have to take it from the perspective of the total newbie. A token which you can sell for money is undeniably simpler than a token which represents influence and needs to be powered down over a period of 13 weeks to be withdrawn as money.

Are there any plans to implement filter on tags? Or it is all about website client side and has nothing to do with v.0.17?

That is all client side, tags are not part of consensus.

You guys are doing a great job, thank you!!! The proposed updates respond to a lot of functionalities required explicitly by the community over the past weeks, so I am sure the majority will highly appreciate them.
I am already a huge fan of the content reward pool - that will automatically improve the (constantly critized) view rate and encourage people to read content and interact. Really nice!!

One short question regarding the 7-day-payout-extension: will this have any influence on the curation rewards? If I am right, currently the curation rewards peak (highest rewards given) is around 30 minutes after publishing.

Looking forward to reading the roadmap!!!

I like all of the proposed changes!

how much? :D , why

I love that the main idea, make it simple, is embedded into one simple word;) I like all the changes, although I'm wondering how the 7days payout will affect the community - this seems to be the biggest change for the normal users.

The trending or hot pages can continue to be determined by algorithms that keep the content "fresh". Seven days as opposed to one allows people to get the up-votes from people who would have otherwise missed the day-long window.

My post that earned $20 roughly ended up being something like $17 after the 24 hours waiting period, wouldn't final payout decrease a lot if there was a 7 days wait ?

User expectations are extremely important. That should be fixed.

I think throwing the author and curation reward together on first view was a mistake. In the name of KISS it should be the authors reward that you see first, then when clicking to see the details you see the curation rewards added.

There is a GitHub issue open for it. It is going to be a complicated change to calculate the curation vs. author rewards in realtime though (on every active post). It is something that will need to be implemented at the blockchain level in order for it to be done efficiently.

https://github.com/steemit/steemit.com/issues/87

Agreed. And create the nice big pot for curation instead of the comments!

No the payout won't necessarily decrease based on increasing the payout window. It applies equally to all posts. On the margin there is no change. Price fluctuations may work in either direction (likewise vote changes).

I think it will increase rewards and views, posts only last as long as they can actively be voted on within the first payout period. It should help curb abuse by making people wait longer 2

A lot to digest, but so much goodness. I like the idea of maintaining a neutral blockchain that supports different implementations of the UI.

Fantastic update, I think I like most if not all of the changes. Most of these were community ideas at one point or another and all seemed to have strong support. Great job dev team.

Allow Editing of any Past Post or Comment

Oh, I like this feature. It was always a mistery for me that I can't edit my own posts even if I found there typo or just want to update a broken link or something.

None of this matters if users keep leaving. They leave because normal account controls were removed, conversations are cut off at 6 replies, and voting\bots favor the developers\insiders.

  1. Demand Edit and Delete be re-enabled so users can control their own content .
  2. Fix the 6 reply conversation limit.
  3. Make bots harder to run and less powerful, nobody likes automated nag messages or having join "bot clubs" to make curating worthwhile.

Users will continue to leave if user friendly features are ignored and power is centralized toward insiders with each change.

Yes another point I was making , you got it right :). If the platform requires you to go school again most wont even think about it, It's good we are getting the best people , but if you can't make it off the ground what use will wings have.

Support growth and learning, creation and genuine curiosity and Steemit will soar, support numbers and money and people will leave, those who stay , you don't want.

If you make it hard to earn rewards and let only economists and "powerful" people give you value, you won't be the place where the best news and stories go , they will find their own place.

I saw a millionare yesterday and he makes the same amount clicking a button compared to me after I do two hours of writing, two hour of revising, 4 hours of comments and promotion and another day of the same.
Now who is a beast and who is playing for peas.

And how can we compare economically.

We can't.

But I see that he is here and has no money other than the Steem Power , so he believes in the growth and development of the platform and the ideas it cherishes. Or likes big numbers and is going to leave 3 months after he stops caring.

I am not sure that I like the 7 day payouts proposal. But if somebody could educate me as to the benefits of it (in lay man's terms), I think I might get comfortable with the idea.

Anyways, it's great to see you guys working so hard on determining the future path of Steem and Steemit. Really grateful to be a part of this community :)

less spam more views and possible upvotes for each of your posts

I think it will give your post more opportunity to get rewards as long as people change their voting behavior to vote on content that is a few days old.

It may slow posting speed without the 4 post soft limit by encouraging people to leave posts at the top of their blog longer

That's true. I hadn't considered that.

Interesting thought but only if people don't use resteem or if resteem is separated from the blog (I strongly support the latter). But this is a UI issue not related to the post.

If nobody changes their behavior then there will be little to no change in rewards (other than taking a bit longer to be paid).

It would allow people to promote their posts outside of Steemit. That, in turn, promotes Steemit. I'm not sure I like the longer payout either (would prefer having an an option to select one or the other), but we can try it.

"Removing the Comment Nesting Limit"

Oh god yes.... I think I just commented...

Something I would like to see, and I believe it has to be changed at the block chain, as well as steemit, is to add a link to a thumbnail image to be used in a list display of posts..

  1. So that a writer can choose, easily the image to be used for the thumbnail.
  2. That the writer can link to a thumbnail image to save on bandwidth from the image hosting site as well as throughput from steemit.com (which images are routed through to create the thumbnails)

so far we have to do that ourselves, get a picture downscale it, upload it and place it as a link , you need entry level photoshop and html , then you can build a preset worflow and automate , it will take you 5 minutes for 3 images tops. I use www.steemimg.com for image hosting and the markdown guide should do the rest.

I think the first image is the thumbnail for the post.

And good idea on the sharing side, you have some ideas all I was thinking of were solutions and how to make it happen. But it's a interesting addition, I'm thinking it will come later , but sooner is better.

Thank you for the reply, however, you completely missed the point.

It is not that the first image is the thumbnail, it is the first image is used to create the thumbnail.
The first image (or the image placed in H1) is the one used for the thumbnail, and is run through a resizing script on steemit.com

steemimg.com saves, automatically, three sizes of your photo. One is a thumbnail.
But, the only way, currently to use the thumbnail sized image, is to place the thumbnail sized image as the first thing in your post.
Which will usually jack up the looks of your post.

I want to thank you for your laborious work. I wish the all creative achievements team. Thank you for such an informative article.

Instead of 38% to Commenting, why not 10% to commenting and 28% to Curation? We need more curation on this blockchain, not commenters, although more of each is better. @fyrstikken provides some good analysis on this, and we are in a situation where bots need to be created, and perhaps people following bots! Give 28% to Curation pool to get people reading!

Yes right, that is what we are missing here, I was going to say a reward for reading, but that is rewarding in itself and if you implement a change , someone is bound to game it , people would just auto scroll , spend time on a post , get the reward, comment pool should go to curation, but it's good as it is now as a author reward, I don't think it should be forced, people should share their thoughts freely , not for rewards and because of incentives. If you like a subject and want to express that , yeah do it . Most people find it hard. And most don't read so you get 30% comment content and 1% reward pool, because the people with the Power vote for posts and don't read comments, if they read the posts that is.

Trails would be logical to occur, since good people would follow good content and share their findings because it's helpful , but in this mechanical fashion, if you want people to read stop the race for rewards. :D impossible right.

hey guys, today when I finally have time to read this. I thought I should print it out as there is really so much discussion here. then I get this in preview:

holy xxxx! 98 pages!! it is longer than a masters thesis! I did not print, it would be un-environmental.

print it as a PDF and read it on your phone/tablet :)
I sometimes use Send to Kindle (if you have a Kindle) for posts that are longer and I don't have time to read right at that moment.

good advice! also seems a good excuse to get me a Kindle! :)

:D:D , yeah I love the helpful comments of people who don't know how good they got it :D ,
kindles are great , if he gets you one maybe you an work towards one for me :)
@andu , thanks for reading , giving you a follow :)

keep steeming and we'll all get you one :P (through your posts' rewards)

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I like the KISS strategy you mention. Just like the heart of a physical machine, basecode is more reliable / scalable / reusable when kept to a bare minimum of simple yet powerful tools.

Thank you! Resteemed

I like it Ned, thank you for the update. Comments are a valuable part of the community. I also like the 7 day payout and it would benefit the users who help to distribute Steemit content across the web. Resteemed

Possibly the most exciting post ever.....to be closely followed by the full roadmap post! ;)

All the changes sound brilliant. Fantastic work.

I have no words!! :)

Can someone please tell me, does eliminating proofs of works mean eliminating mining as a whole, or just that method of mining?

It would eliminate mining (unless you consider the social posting/commenting/voting aspect to be a form of "mining")

Removing Over Posting Reward Penalties

I'm unsure about this. While I do understand it's limiting, I've had over a dozen encounters with new users who posted about 10 times in one day. And of course those posts were pretty empty and could have been combined into one. The fact that I have to explain that it would be more profitable to post a max of 4 times per day (which was always appreciated) means that there will be a lot of attempts to spam the system for every opportunity.

Personally I don't see a problem with being able to post as much as I want but only getting rewards for the best 4 posts. If we are to remove the soft limit, what will be your next solution for the issue of spam?

Independent Comment Reward Pool

This is brilliant. I would hope though that there wouldn't be curation rewards for this, as upvoting comments comes a lot more naturally to users and the aim should not be to go through the top comments seeking out favourites before they're noticed.

If we are to remove the soft limit, what will be your next solution for the issue of spam?

System-abusive spam (in the sense of overloading the system) is already handled by SP rate limiting. Each SP owner is allowed only his or her fair share of system bandwidth. To use more you would need to buy more SP (I needed to do this for my trading bot).

Annoying spam is handled by not voting, downvoting, not following, unfollowing, or muting. The soft limit only affects rewards anyway, so not voting for garbage or downvoting it is the direct substitute. The annoyance factor still exists with or without the soft limit; only rewards are affected.

Great proposals that totally make sense to me. Way to go!

let see what happens!

Removing the Comment Nesting Limit

Good, the comment/reply limit is annoying and seriously discourages interaction.

Removing Over Posting Reward Penalties

Yessss! now I no longer need all my alt accounts to post! (oh, wait, I still need them to not make a salaad out of my blog list!).

Single Payout Period

I wonder how would that impact in the not-so-popular posts being buried under 100 posts in less than a few minutes.

Comment Payout independent of Discussion

Anything that encourages FEEDBACK and users ACTUALLY READING the articles is good, you should add a separate flag system for that too (perhaps deletion rights for the article author?). I've already seen a "comment bot" replying in english to articles in spanish (this thing of facilitating botting is really a mess).


Can we do something about the UI at steemit? I've nearly 40% of the laterals of my screen "white", a wider canvas perhaps? (or at least place some ad fields in there!)

This post is purely about Blockchain features, not the UI. We have teams working on each in parallel.