Whelp, it's been 2 years since I heard about Steem from James Corbett on @thecorbettreport. It's been an interesting ride for sure. I had no idea what Steem would end up being about when I joined. I don't even think it was about the money, I heard it was about privacy and decentralized ownership, pretty sure that a currency "like" Bitcoin was mentioned, but I didn't know how it would work. The funny part was at that time you had to sign up with either your Facebook Account or Reddit, so there went the expectation of privacy before you even joined.
The trend at the time I joined was long-form, non-offensive, essay style writing. It seemed that everyone just finished their first English 101 skills and were pumping out beautifully formatted Essays on many topics. The longer the better even if the point of the article got lost in the words, that was what was getting rewarded. The guilds had begun to form and they didn't like anything controversial. (No, we shall not debate)
Everyone was talking about Quality Content, which confused me right from the beginning. On day three I wrote a post about how seeking quality content was poor choice as there are ZERO highly engaging models of "Quality Content" sites and it would greatly limit end-users and what type of content creators Steem would attract.
I have been reading articles on how to write good articles, how to get noticed and how to earn. That is not what made Social Media a hit. Social Media is a hit, because you can find people to connect with on several levels. Friends, Family, people who live in your city, people who like to debate a specific topic, etc. So, you aren't just roaming through random content, you are reading and reacting to those with whom you have a connection.
There is no focus on excellent writing on FB, Twitter or any other successful Social Media platform. In fact, all the discussion of excellent articles and writing is actually intimidating and will run casual users away.
Encourage people to post like they would on Facebook, little updates, family pictures. Give people a way to communicate with others in a casual way like Twitter. There are a limited number of Authors out there. Although you may want to attract them, you do not want to run off the casual user. Encourage people to write and to write often. Give people groups, categories, pages and ways to connect. If the users come the content will follow!!!
^ Haha Day three and I didn't even know how to upload a picture, but I was already confused by the cry for Quality Content, which to this day I feel like intimidates new users from engagement. I would have pitched fun engagement from people around the world with all different levels of education, different interests and lots of desire to connect with others. I would have pitched onboarding mainstream and educating them on Crypto. Yet, here we are.
If you are wondering if we were all peaceful and happy back then,.. No the whistleblowers, Sock Puppet Hunters were already alive and well. AutoVoter and a voting site called Steemian were in their early days and we already had a problem with curation and rewarding engaging content. The trending page was ruled by a select few and minnows couldn't get attention or votes. I hated the autovoter and turned off many whales and large accounts with my non-stop arguing and being irritated with the bots. I guess I have changed on that issue. :) lol, we all survived.
In any case, it has been an interesting and engaging journey, I've made 10054 comments and posts and today's value of my account is a tiny bit sickening. :) I'll be back tomorrow and I will keep posting!
Thank you all who came before and after my journey started. It's been interesting, fun and educational, more than anything I am thankful for the education on Freedom, Crypto, and the challenges it takes to "live" our ideas.