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RE: SteemFest²: Bridging the Gap Between Perception and Reality

in #steemfest3 years ago (edited)

As you know my excitement for Steemit has diminished. If it was not for @JustinW taking 10 minutes out of his day to explain what is happening I would probably have continued powering down to zero. Thank you Justin for the hard work you are putting in to make sure the site is up and running. It was great spending so much time with you @LukeStokes. ReSteemed


It was more than great, Randy! Hanging with you and @anahilarski was definitely among the highlights of my time at Steemfest. I really enjoyed getting to know you both better and having fun together as Crypto Traders. :)

I think Steemit is a very early stage, speculative play. They are trying to do some really, really big things. It might be one of those "check back in a year or so" situations to really know what the potential is here. Either way, it's one of the most practical examples of blockchain technology actually improving the everyday lives of people around the world with peaceful, voluntary solutions, so I'm all about that from an ideological perspective. People that have very few opportunities to make money can now blog and build their own wallet value. That's exciting.

I'm willing to hold my Steem Power in hopes of being part of that new future helping others, even if I could make better returns on other more volatile, speculative coins.

Great meeting you Luke.

I agree with you assessment of the few days and I agree entirely with your sentiment and the impression you got from the developers.

it's one of the most practical examples of blockchain technology actually improving the everyday lives of people around the world with peaceful, voluntary solutions, so I'm all about that from an ideological perspective.

This statement sums up why I am so enthusiastic about this technology but as you rightly point out, as an investment, its a speculative play but at the same time, in crypto what isnt? I am also willing to hold my Steem Power in the hope of being part of a brighter future. You got another witness vote :)

Thank you for your support. :)

Yes, I cancelled my Powerdown this morning. I am crossing my fingers that this platform rises to be recognized across the web.

That would be quite amazing, especially for you and I as early adopters and promoters. Here's hoping. :)

If you ever get down again, get a hold of me. This one has too big a purpose. Thank you for all you have done and continue to do.

There is a huge wave coming in. Get ready.

Thanks for your kind words @lukestokes, It was great meeting you. See you next year ;)

Maybe I'll convince @corinnestokes we need to go visit you all in Panama some day. :)

That would be nice @lukestokes ;)

i'm curious if you think their vision is too grandiose. Is the Steem dev team and Ned getting "shiny object" syndrome? I'm still powered up >26k SP, but platforms like sure are getting my attention. It's fair to say that the Steem natives are getting restless.

That's a good question. Some think SMTs and tokenizing the web is a run before walking approach. Maybe it is. Or maybe they are smart enough to change the world in significant ways and this is just the beginning. I'm not familiar with, but I do like that Steem is doing stuff, not just talking about the future.

What I really want is to see Ned give presentations like Brendan Blumer from Build fundamentally and incrementally. I was skeptical when Dan left, but I get it now.

I think the excitement could easily come back in if a few things happened. If I was the CEO, I would (or hire someone to) do the following:

  1. Take the UI/UX of the website seriously. Make it look special. Make it look friendly, easy to use and understand. Make it look at least Web 2.0. Make it exciting and sexy. Yeah, blockchain is under-the-hood, but ppl don't see and experience that. There are very few ppl that actually care about the immutable aspect of social media. Who's your target audience...bloggers or tech nerds?

  2. DO SOME MARKETING! I dont know how many times I need to say it. Every metric is starting to plateau and bots are taking over. Get ppl excited to make their first $5 on here.

  3. Create a Steemit store inside the platform. Let ppl buy stuff with thier steem. It's too confusing to cash out for most noobs. Oh yeah, and change the logo back. Nobody is gonna buy a shirt with a tadpole wearing a Roman helmet.

  4. Make the signup process MUCH easier and quicker. I know this is scheduled for Fork 20, but who knows at this point. Heck, the whitepaper is still missing on the website.

  5. Make it easy to see when i've been upvoted (blogs and comments) like how Facebook does it. Why do I have to use SteemNow?

  6. Referral system. The Steemit community is already amazing. Straight up. Why don't we have a referral system that the inflation pays out for? Sure, it could be gamed and the team would need to think through that, but why not incentivize growing the community base? Or will the bots take over?

Whitepaper URL:



We're not ready for marketing yet. There is plenty of other work, building, and strengthening we have to do first. Bringing more people here would be worse for the system until we're ready.

I think the request for marketing, is to help grow the STEEM price so we can get paid better. But we shouldn't put the cart before the horse on this issue.

Marketing should wait. STEEM price can remain cheap. Let's finish building, and THEN market, and then the STEEM price can grow huge at that time.

Well said. It took me a while to realize the value in having patience here. We have an amazing thing already, and it's tempting to want to see it marketed around the world right away.

Great comment, Ash. I can't speak for Steemit, but I'll give my answers based on the information and perspective I currently have.

  1. If is just a reference example for SMTs, is that the best use of their efforts? If their visions is 1,000's of sites using the STEEM blockchain and this is just one example to show what's possible, does it make sense to really polish it? From a certain perspective, having it just a bit off almost begs the "I could build a better site that that..." comment which might be what they are going for. They want people to build their own. They want a lot of people to build their own. In some ways, I think the future of the STEEM blockchain is each of us running our own personal client which connects to the blockchain directly via many full API nodes. Less centralization. More decentralization. That's an exciting future, but it's foreign to almost everyone. They are trailblazing here and not everyone is going to be comfortable with it. Some will be like those who asked Henry Ford for a faster horse.

  2. I hear this one loud and clear, but think of it this way: If they did have a massive marketing push over the last 6 or so months and had a million accounts instead of 400k, would the performance issues we all experienced (and they had been working on for months), have harmed or helped the brand? If 2x or 3x the number of people were upset by the site not working well, could that have sunk them completely? This is something I'm trying to put into perspective. Marketing makes sense once the product is ready to be marketed. They are being patient, and they have the contact info of everyone who signed up. I heard @sneak say this multiple times, they will be using that contact information in the future. Marketing will happen. That's something I was doubtful about in the past, but I have more confidence in now that I know what they are doing with the notification system they are working on.

  3. @ned addressed this in his fireside chat. From his perspective, it's much easier to build a commerce platform with a bootstrapped currency once the market cap of the currency grows large enough to bring stability as a useful store of value and medium of exchange. This answer bums me out a bit because I want alternative market solutions right now, but it may be completely correct. Also, the beauty of the platform is that anyone can build their own marketplace right now and/or wait a bit and fund it with an ICO of an SMT. I've tried to get thousands FoxyCart merchants to use bitcoin since 2013 and the reality is they won't until their customers demand it. Customers won't demand it until the market cap grows and it becomes part of people's daily lives. As for the logo, art is subjective. Love it or hate it, it's way better than having STEEM and with the same logo, IMO.

  4. A different solution as proposed by HF20 is key to enabling the growth we all want. Why do you say the white paper is missing? It's right in the menu:

  5. That's part of the new notification system they are building out. Again, as an investor and user, would you rather they focus on notifications or keeping the blockchain from freezing up? Having talked directly with many of the developers about what they've been working on, I have a better perspective on how they prioritize, and I agree with it. It's easy to point figures from the outside, but in many ways we're doing so from a position of ignorance. From what little I heard about the notification system they are developing, it will be superior to what Facebook offers. We'll see (and yes, they could help with informing us more, but again, they have limited human resources at this point though they are growing the team).

  6. I think this was mentioned also as something that's coming in the future. To me, this relates to number 2. If they grow too quickly and swamp themselves and the blockchain then does this whole party end? I'm okay with slow, steady, measured growth.

The roadmap concern is a good one, but I'd much prefer a team that is flexible with changing realities than rigidly sticking to a plan that no longer meets the long-term goal of "tokenize the web." Maybe we'll hear more about that vision in the future and those who feel it's too large of a vision and just want a blockchain social media site can look elsewhere and turn to competitors.

Great reply, Luke. The whitepaper link is broken...both that i've found (listed below) are broken and it's not on

And these are broken:

---and--- (from their previous post earlier this year using the @steemitblog as the official announcement) -

Both yield the same result.

Now, I agree with you that it create the "I can build something better" mentality. I guess i'm impatient and with a medium size budget ~$50k, a really slick website could be built. Something to impress people. Sure, if receive 3x the users as it did this year (which was still very impressive) it would have caused more network issues, I get that. For now, I'll be patient, but i sure hope to see an killer update form them early Q1 2018; competition is coming.

UPDATE: I see The Steem Shop is included in the sidebar. Good addition.

Ah, thanks for clarifying! I see there's an issue for that created here: I bought it to their attention as well. Hopefully it's a quick fix.

i'd also add the link:

It is referenced in Google as well as on the official @steemitblog article (as well as a few others). Both links should be fixed.

Yeah, my hunch is it's a related issue and when one is fixed, they both will be. I'll keep an eye on it.

You have hit the nail on the head. is one example of a STEEM website. Instead of investing in; they want to make STEEM better so there can be 1000's of websites built using STEEM.

Chances of success on that path are very very low. At least 95% probability this strategic vision and goal will never be realized.

They are more than "swinging for the fences". They are trying to hit two out of the park home runs in a single at bat.

If they happen to make it, the sky is the limit for price of STEEM.

They are going down HUGE risk and HUGE reward path. Usually doesn't work out. Very infrequently it does.

I agree with you and yet... they currently have the one of the fastest, most used blockchains ever. They also have the only functioning social media website paying people for comments, posts, and upvotes via cryptocurrency. On top of that, new apps like DTube, DLive, DSound, ChainBB, Busy,, and more are being being built and maintained right now. The momentum and progress is quite impressive when we step back and look at it all.

I'm willing to hang on for the ride. Worst case scenario, they make a huge dent in the space and other competitors pick up where they left off. Either way, I think we'll all benefit by more decentralized tools improving the world.

I'll potentially be back after I watch STEEM price bottom in 6 months below $0.50, and see how the SMT vision is progressing.

There will be lots of time and opportunity to re-invest in STEEM in 2018, if any part or all of the SMT vision turns out to be real.

hahaha, a tadpole wearing a helmet, sooo funny. The idea of having a store is awesome but someone needs to build it. I'm on a site called Fine American Art, it also has a social community. The cool part of this site, one can buy cheap prints of photographs of my paintings with frames. Add their art to clothing, mugs, accessories, etc...I would like to see this happen with our art community using SMT .....I'm not rich or a tech to build a Print To Order platform on the blockchain. But I would support anyone who could do this!

I want a wordpress like blog...where I can sell my print to order art with Red Dust Art tokens...

but why? what's the point of Red Dust Art tokens? Why would anyone want or use them? Why not use actual money like Bitcoin Cash or Dash? (can't use BTC b/c of the tx fees).

Gotta have a rly good use-case to create your own token. Otherwise it's gonna be a lot of work and you have a worthless token to manage.

Ash, have you seen this talk? It may change your perspective on why someone may use a random, niche token.

Bitcoin: Money as language & the multi-currency future

watching it now. I realize that tokens are expression and language. I get the incentive structure of having your own coin (especially if you have a following). I get that you can create money and attempt to bring value to it. I completely support all of that, but I also realize that money is the most desired commodity and over time, there's little purpose to have millions of tokens. That's not taking away the idea of "airline miles" or the reasons to purpose "Ashecoin" if i've built my own economy and wanted to reward holders.

ok, the example of paying a token to [email protected] makes a ton of sense. Maybe it's not worth much, but at least it's something that can create a community. Thx for the share :)

It's one of my favorite talks of his. I watch it every once in a while to get a feel for what's possible and what a future version of humanity might look like.

Thanks @lukstokes, I really appreciate your work here. I love collecting data, seeing the patterns and trying to figure out how I can put this to work!

You're welcome! :)

It seems SMT is not for us common folk.

I feel the same and since I heard so much about it at the fest, I really would love to find out more, especially how we can make this work for us so called “common” folks.

That's how I feel but isn't that what SMT is for? Create your own token for products. If I were to build a Red Dust Art Gallery and have a stable of artist under me than my tokens may have more value....I still don't understand how the smart media token system works.

Nobody is gonna buy a shirt with a tadpole wearing a Roman helmet.

Oh my gosh, now I can never unsee this!

You should continue power down on the basis of facts at hand. It sounds like we are 12 months away from any significant turn around or changes. You can always buy back in then. Stay in and powered up if you want - but it will mostly be on the basis of hope and promises. Those don't always pan out.

But whatever they are doing, even if its good for the community, still we could not hide the fact that the platform is all about the whales and their friends of friends. To become friend of the whales or somehow become favorite is now the goal of everybody, if not all. But unfortunately, whales are not here for that anymore, they are here for the monetary benefits that they can inherit from the platform. Its all about growing and increasing their stakes, making them more rich. If a year ago, somebody could earn good rewards for free, now if you're not a friend or favorite of whales, you can't expect a good rewards anymore not unless if you're going to buy upvotes.

You mention at lot of valid concerns here, but I also think you're mentioning an aspect of reality that human beings haven't developed a workaround for yet. It's kind of like saying predators still hunt prey. It's part of nature that those who have want more. We just happened to notice a big difference between those who have $10 and gain $0.10 and those who have $1,000,000 and gain $10,000. The math may be the same, but it feels different. Also, whoever has money can more easily make more money. Again, no way around this unless we enforce systems which will ultimately cause investors to leave and destroy the value in the platform. Generosity can't be demanded. It has to be learned and appreciated through life experience. There are more options than buying up votes, but building relationships with influential people and providing value can't be avoided.

If you have suggestions on how things could be improved, I'm listening. A lot of study of game theory went into this platform and continues to drive its economics. If we ignore that and suggest changes without understanding, we can actually threaten what we have here.

As always sir @lukestokes, you always have a good point. If all these whales have the same heart as yours, lots of people will adore steemit. Anyway, you asked for suggestions. Could it be possible to change the system by giving equal value for all the members irregardless of its stake? I think not because the platform might lose its value because the rich will go away. The HF19 which gives minnows more power was a good idea, but unfortunately, the same thing happens to all the whales, their value had increase tremendously. In effect, it was the same, nothing changes but the fact that SP drains fast.

A year ago, there was this experimentation headed by few huge whales in the platform. An experiment that no whales will be allowed to vote giving minnows it's value. Was that successful? Everyday there is 50,000 rewards that will be distributed. Is it true that if it happens that only 1 person made a vote on that day, that 50k will be value of his vote? If that's the case, what do you think about the idea of giving a day intended only for minnows to vote (no other people can vote but minnows)? There are seven days in a week, if 2 days will be given to all the minnows for us to vote and be voted by the same minnows and share the 50,000 rewards among those who voted, what do you think will happen. For 5 days whales will monopolized the rewards and 2 days will be for the active minnows.

The minnows would most likely self-vote, right? As those minnows become whales, would they act any differently than current whales? By that, I mean it may not be the size of someone's wallet that matters but who they are as a person. We'd probably see the same level of greed and generosity in both minnows and whales. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised to see more generosity in whales because they mostly understand how benefitting others increases your own wealth. Whales, to me, aren't immediately bad by default. If their votes and actions are overly selfish, I can see that's not helpful. But, could it just be a matter of perspective? If I get one person to give me $1 for an exchange of value is that fundamentally different than getting a million people to do it?

A day without whales sounds quite interesting, but I'm not sure it would effectively solve the concerns you have.