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RE: Blockchain Update 3: Hardfork 20 and Release 19.4 – AppBase, StatsD, and RocksDB

in #steem3 years ago (edited)

In order to eliminate this advantage, the unused portion of the curation rewards will be returned to the rewards pool instead of being awarded to the author, thereby increasing the overall percentage of rewards that will be paid to curators.

In light of this, can you explain why there's still an early voting penalty at all? It seems like if the goal is to reward curators it would be better served by making curation 25% from the beginning, rather than just making votes in the first fifteen minutes worth less than votes coming in later.

(I assume the change to 15 minutes remains and just wasn't mentioned.)

As I understand the original early voting penalty it was intended to allow voters to choose to reward the author more. If that functionality is going away I feel like there needs to be some new justification for keeping the penalty, or it should simply be scrapped.

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The reason for the early voting penalty is to give "humans" fair footing against bots. Without the penalty, users who automate their votes via bots will be able to "snipe" curation rewards by getting their votes in before any humans have a chance.

Personally, I find that spurious - after all SteemAuto and SteemVoter votes can be set to come in at any specific time after a post is created. Nor am I convinced that this is actually a feature of significant value, even if it were effective.

But more so, I feel that anything that takes away from the idea that a vote has the same total value no matter when or where it is cast should be scrutinized extremely closely. Everything that does that makes it exponentially harder for new users to understand what's going on here, and gives a huge advantage to the sophisticated user, which seems like it's the opposite of what we want.

I agree with this - regardless of the method used there will be an "optimal" method of voting and bots will always be better at implementing that than humans.

regardless of the method

Mostly I agree with what you wrote but not this part. Simpler methods give bots less advantage or possibly no net advantage. More complicated methods calling for extreme precision like changing the percentage payout every 3 seconds definitely favors bots.

Making changes to the blockchain requires consensus. Even though you might feel one way, there are others who may disagree. As far as I know, there is not consensus among the stakeholders to get rid of it, as some do see value in having it there. Reducing it from 30 to 15 is at least heading in the direction you want it to go. It is just not getting rid of it entirely due to the people who still want it there.

Just to be clear, this is not "the direction I want it to go." Any change that reduces author rewards is a bad change as far as I'm concerned, because it favors existing stake over new users. I'd much rather things stayed as they are now. I'm just confused at the self-sabotaging character of the change your consensus has settled on.

In light of this, can you explain why there's still an early voting penalty at all? It seems like if the goal is to reward curators it would be better served by making curation 25% from the beginning, rather than just making votes in the first fifteen minutes worth less than votes coming in later.

I read this as "why not get rid of it".

I guess your reply though indicates why it was moved from 30 to 15 instead of getting rid of it entirely. It is a happy medium between people like you (who want to keep it, and have it high) and people who want to get rid of it / lower it.

I don't think you're grasping my argument at all. Moving it to 15 and getting rid of the additional rewards isn't in any way a happy medium. Moving it to 15 is irrelevant; the difference is between having all of the vote value given to the post, and having some of the vote value senselessly trashed.

A happy medium would be giving the additional rewards to the successful curators instead of the author.

The closer the 30 gets to 0, the more it goes towards paying curators the "full" 25% regardless of when they vote.

If I make a run at this from a different direction: I have a fifteen-cent vote, and I want that vote to be worth fifteen cents to somebody when I cast it. Not fifteen cents but only if no one happened to vote on that post in the first fifteen minutes, otherwise less.

By trashing some of the curation, an early vote now makes my one-hour vote on that post worth less than the same vote cast on a post that didn't have early votes, because some of its value won't go to the post at all, it just disappears as if I had never cast that part of the vote. I still lose the voting power though.

How is that not completely insane?

The system doesn't work the way you want it to. That is not necessarily insanity. If you care about 100% of your vote being used, wait until the 15 minuets are over. The system is going to reward curators with a portion of your vote at that point though, because that is how the system works. It is not "your" money that is being paid out. You are only voting to influence how the rewards are distributed.

If you care about 100% of your vote being used, wait until the 15 minutes are over.

That doesn't work. I not only need to wait until the fifteen minutes are over, I need to only vote on posts where everyone else did also, or else some of my vote value is trashed.

The system is going to reward curators with a portion of your vote at that point though, because that is how the system works.

I'm not remotely complaining about that. I think you're still reading this very badly.

Votes do not have the same value regardless of when or where they are cast. The curation rewards change depending on the presence and relative timing of other votes. The author's share of curation rewards changes based on the precise timing of the vote (within the first 30 minutes).

This change does not alter the fact that allocations shift due to the timing of the vote, it just changes how they shift.

If SBD were $1, a vote would currently have the same value no matter when or where it was cast. It doesn't go to the same people but a $0.15 vote is always worth $0.15 to someone involved with the post. This does change that, drastically.

(The broken SBD peg does make votes more valuable when cast early under the current system, though that's obviously much less of a big deal now.)

someone involved with the post

Okay, but I find that irrelevant. There are many different and independent voters (usually) and how the rewards are distributed between them changes, sometimes drastically. The sum of all the rewards going to a group of different independent people is a number without relevance.

If you are concerned about the case where the author is the only voter (or perhaps that all voters are colluding in some manner) and is rewarding themselves for something that no one else cares about, then you would have a point, in theory. Most would find that irrelevant at best and undesirable at worst.

The sum of all the rewards going to a group of different independent people is a number without relevance.

It is literally the value of the action of voting. It's incredibly relevant. In a larger sense it is the value of my stake, which is pretty much the most important thing here.

(speaking about vote penalty only, not about the effects on the author)
Actually, the change did something here. People were less motivated to set auto votes at exactly 0 minutes with this change, thinking from the perspective of curation reward maximizers. You have to act in accordance with how you believe similarly minded autovoted voters would, based on how much of the penalty they were willing to take.

Most users don't even get a chance to vote in this early window anyway, so that's why I don't really see this as a problem. And for those that do, that's where this reverse auction is useful. Otherwise you have this "which bot got their vote in first mechanic" that makes things completely chaotic.

But you're right. This system is probably too complicated. That square root curve for curators is pretty much what motivates this "bot needs to get in first" rush. But I don't really see a way out here. Without those rules, a large staked bot can take all the curation reward for themselves. With the window, others can sneak in before the bot potentially. And changing the curve to be less exponential might work but doesn't address the bot vote at exactly 0 minutes.

Upon looking at this thread I think it got jumbled because there are two talking points here: effect on the author and people that want their vote to go to the author, and why there's a penalty window to begin with (which in the previous change were related as well)