Idea on how to save Steem & Steemit......and put it back on track for reaching it's potential

in steemit •  6 months ago

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The benevolent whale, comprised of the absolute best curators with a reputation for integrity

The mega whale already exists in the form of the Steemit account, which could be further bolstered by the other Steemit.inc controlled accounts and delegations from community members.

The idea of a benevolent whale came I think from Dan and Stan Larimer (sorry if i'm mistaken) and the purpose was to nurture and protect an embryonic platform until maturity. I think part of that thinking was what created the Steemit account in the first place.

Thus far the Steemit account has (to my knowledge) largely stayed out of the evolving, day-to-day push and pull between economic incentives, Steemit's code and the community's evolving culture. I always saw the Steemit account as a liability due to the massively centralised influence it could have.

Now, I've changed my mind. The Steemit account could be the very thing that saves Steem and Steemit from the abuse and greed that is rampant. Normal whales have generally proven to be ineffective at moderating the abuse.....for many obvious reasons. Chief among them (I think) is that resource expended being a force for good is at a disadvantage and will grow weaker as abusers grow stronger. Now I could be wrong about that, it's a highly complex situation and I have no data to back myself up, however, the cause is not as important as the fact that abuse is winning and nothing so far has been able to materially address it.

The Potential Solution

Deploy the benevolent whale to do what it was always mean't to do. Apart from some SP that will protect Steemit.inc's ability to continue development, deploy/delegate the bulk of the Steemit account's SP and any further delegation to the most critical job of moderating abuse.

The community can select the top 100 to 1000 curators by reputation and competency, each receiving a delegation of SP from the Steemit account. This power to affect the rewards will then be deployed according to the best rules the Steemians can come up with. Any issues could be openly reviewed by a group of community selected adjudicators/researchers who could help decide in more complex situations.

This is of course a workaround for a poor Steem token distribution and an incomplete governance architecture, but I wouldn't be saying it if I didn't think it could work......at the very least, make a significant impact on all the sickening abuse.

I appreciate that it is Steemit.inc's decision on what to do with their Steem Power but couldn't this be a path to achieving Steem's potential?

Steemit's SP represents enourmous economic potential if deployed in the right way. I once donated 90k SP to a start up initiative, led by @aggroed, called the Minnows Support Project. That delegation, to my knowledge, was used as intended and supported a network of thousands in a couple of months. They worked collaboratively and with integrity to incentivise growth and productivity with minimal abuse. Just imagine what Steemit's SP could generate, if only by incentivising productive use of Steem inflation, cultivating skills and reputations.

Implementing something like this properly will not be easy. Steemit.inc giving over control of a significant part of their SP will not be easy. Nothing worth having comes easy. The will must be found from among us to see it done. Unless of course there is a better idea, then super!! :)


Happy Steeming

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You're generous delegation came at a critical time for the fledgling MSP IMO, which is now a roaring success.
The idea you propose here has validity and could be an incredible force for good as this wonderful platform evolves.
Something needs to be tried to combat abuse to ensure Steemit's reputation isn't tarnished from within. It could hopefully stop the damaging flag wars which make new adopters and old hats very uncomfortable.
Nice job @benjojo
Resteemed.

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Thank you tremendospercy. I've been wracking my brains for a solution ever since I felt the need to take back my SP. It would take an enormous feat of generosity and goodwill on Steemit.inc's part, along with lessons from the MSP on how to ensure integrity during curation via delegation and how to nurture curation talent, but I think they are up to it. I can't think of a better way that is more in keeping with the original purpose of the account that would also give Steem the best chance of success.

The best thing about this suggestion is that the delegation is community guided, compensation earned rewarded for talent and work.....yet everyone benefits. This is not a handout.

I really like your idea and I guess giving power to the steemians specially if selected correctly can influence the economy and promote better quality content and indeed help distribute the influence.

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Absolutely. That's it exactly :)

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I support you on this @benjojo.

Has @ned or anyone in the know given any good reasons as to why the SP in the Steemit account is not being delegated?

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Thank you Steemtruth, I really appreciate your support.

All I'm aware of is the statement made in the Steemit.inc 2017 roadmap;

Decentralizing Stake
The Steemit, Inc.-controlled primary account, @steemit, which holds approximately 41% of
the platform’s Steem Power, will be gradually divested of its holdings in an effort to increase
promotion and development of the platform, and this distribution shall further the platform’s
security through decentralization of voting power.
Several methods will be employed, including and not limited to: funding the continued
research and development of steemit.com, the Steem Blockchain’s first and best application,
promoting and publicizing the Steem Blockchain and features, hosting highly available
services for platform users, sponsoring conferences and community gatherings, and
sponsoring undertakings to build applications and increase user adoption across the entire
ecosystem.
This will likely be a multi-year process, but is included in this 2017 Roadmap for the sake of
clarity and understanding surrounding our organization’s plans and goals.
We have several very large initiatives currently in research serving this goal, and the
community should expect further announcements later in the year regarding our firm plans as
it yields fruit.
Ultimately, the goal is to harmoniously align the interests of all participants across the entire
spectrum of people using and trading in STEEM.

I have massive issues with this because A) The focus and implementation of their divesting strategy is not good enough B) It is not happening anywhere near fast enough C) The community isn't central to the decision-making process D) There is no accountability

Abuse of the daily inflation and the centralisation of SP is the greatest threat and it is not being addressed in any meaningful way.

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That statement does not mention delegation? That is something that could be utilised almost immediately and it would not inhibit the stated goals. In fact it would help it without even divesting.

We have several very large initiatives currently in research serving this goal, and the
community should expect further announcements later in the year regarding our firm plans as
it yields fruit.

Did we receive another announcement or are we waiting?

I have massive issues with this because A) The focus and implementation of their divesting strategy is not good enough B) It is not happening anywhere near fast enough C) The community isn't central to the decision-making process D) There is no accountability

A) what would you like to see added or removed?

I think they powered down 7 million Steem a few weeks ago. Do you know what it is being used for?

I wasn't fully across this matter but I know a lot more now thanks to you!

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I understand that they are supporting some projects and individuals with delegation....@surpassinggoogle and @misterdelegation

I have no idea what they are doing with the Powered down Steem.

Primarily what I would like to see is an absolute acknowledgement that the Steemit.inc account was, is and will always be a community resource that Steemit.inc is temporarily providing custodianship for.

Then acknowledgement that the steemit account could be far better utilised for community benefit than it currently is, most importantly in the area of abuse moderation, secondarily in the supporting of positive curation for a broad selection of interests/communities.

Then absolute commitment to a strategy for implementing a community driven and controlled effort to delegate SP to community elected abuse researchers/moderators acting according to community derived guidelines.

Then absolute commitment to a strategy for implementing a community driven and controlled effort to divest the steemit.inc SP into the hands of community members that are earning the rewards by adding value to the Steem community according to community derived guidelines.

I would expect clarity on exactly how much stake all that would involve and I would hope it included at least 90% of the steemit.inc controlled SP which includes more than just the steemit account.

I'm not asking for much am i? Lol. The only reason i'm asking for this is because I believe it is the only way Steem and Steemit will survive. If we don't make a decisive effort to ensure Steem's survival, then all this will only ever be an experiment that was able primarily to enrich a handful of accounts that were early adopters or accounts prepared to exploit it's flaws.

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You make some excellent points and I don't see anything unreasonable.

One potential issue that I see with divesting so much Steem is that anyone with a lot of money e.g. a bad actor or actors could buy a lot of it and we may end up in a worse situation?

We do need a plan and some certainty.

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So the plan for divesting is urgent, but there is no need for the actual rate to be any faster than the time it takes to genuinely earn combined with a strategy for ensuring market stability. There are future steemians talents out there who need time to join in and earn some of the SP.

good one tnx for resteem

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Bagus sekali posting anda saya suka

IDK we already have many curation projects adding up to many millions of steem. Isn't this just a proposal for more of the same, using Steemit Inc's private money?

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I don't believe so. The stated purpose of the Steemit.inc's account was to support Steem. Currently the majority of it sits there doing nothing whilst Steem and Steemit become largely a printing press for a handful of powerful accounts. However, all Steem Power is relative and should a significant stake begin acting to moderate abuse, that would be a game changer. There are so few whales, which is part of the problem of instability in the way the incentives work. By deploying Steemit.inc's SP across hundreds or thousands of accounts, you effectively replicate a much better token distribution. I think the difference is obvious between that and what has gone on before.

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I was going to ask if you were familiar with @fulltimegeek and @stellabelle's delegations to chosen community members, and how effective that has been at increasing the reach of their SP far beyond what they could achieve as individuals.

It appears you have dreamt their experiment bigly.

I strongly support this plan. Such delegation might not only curb abuse, it would also disperse rewards to many authors that face a desert of upvotes, due to the focus on ROI and profiteering by those with significant SP presently.

Little could improve the retention of users better than that.

Further, as a delegation, that SP would remain in the toolchest for Stinc to use as necessary to combat hostile takeover of witnesses and catastrophic forks which could result. Any benefit to the accounts that were availed of such delegations would be as curation rewards, which aren't being attained by that SP now, so would not harm Stinc. All capital gains from rising price of Steem would remain the property of the SP owner.

Thanks!

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I really appreciate the support. Thank you.

I was aware that @stellabelle had started a new delegation initiative a while ago though I did not know about @fulltimegeek 's. I love these kinds of initiative because they are about giving, empowering and unleashing potential, which as you say, is far better accomplished by many.

I tried to come up with a win-win and if we can scale it up, led by Steemit.inc, the potential is huge.

The community can select the top 100 to 1000 curators by reputation and competency, each receiving a delegation of SP from the Steemit account

this, one million percent, but also use that as a PROJECT almost like the TV NETWORKS do where they have a show -- it could be a live stream, regular daily or weekly roundup where someone concentrates on it and pulls together all the opinions, voting up and down, use the content created as the very thing that promotes the steem blockchain network.

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I really like your ideas here. It is imperative that those with Steemit.inc delegated power have the support of the community through transparency and accountability. Initiatives like the ones you suggest could really help!

beutiful

I don't see a problem.
I like Steem just fine the way it is.

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I think your glasses may have become fogged sir.

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I don't need glasses to see how much money I've made on Steemit in the last few weeks.
(by my standards...a lot. Enough to pay rent and buy food)
I like it that way. Sleeping on the park bench and eating pigeon food wasn't much fun.
You want to "fix it"?
I don't THINK so.

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There can be no doubt that Steem has been a revelation and a marvel. It has already accomplished great things. But it could do more for more people. I'm glad you are happy and doing well. I'm thinking primarily of those that aren't or have turned away from Steemit because of the abuse....and there are thousands. Still this might not be the solution, who knows. I want to save, not fix steemit. Saving it means improving the situation, nothing is perfect.

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No one has more enmity for bots and how they mine rewards than you, IIRC. Surely allowing Stinc to delegate it's unused SP so that more folks might find the pot at the end of the rainbow as you did wouldn't hurt you any, and would help to counter bots.

Have you seen the results of @fulltimegeek and @stellabelle's delegations?

It's all good.

generous delegation. makes us gain insight and invite us all to declare prevention or extermination of the harassment itself. I am with you and always support you
regards
@kopong

Thanks @benjojo,

I wholeheartedly agree that there are serious problems on this platform and commend you for seeking a viable solutions. I do have a bit of commentary to add and do contend with one aspect. I recently commented on another users post addressing unhelpful bots (from the community perspective) / automation endemic to the platform. Upvote bots and vote farming (buying upvotes with the intent of distributing the SBD of the post rewards as a system) are two sides of the same coin I believe. My colleagues and I have been fighting on the latter front through the @steemflagrewards program.

I have heard various permutations of arguments defending the use of bots. Witnesses like @jerrybanfield have expressed intent to fork suck a mechanism into Steem which I believe would be a dire mistake.

I know some of my views may be a bit on the fringe and perhaps are tangential to your post but I ask that you hear me out and evaluate what you believe is relevant.

I think one of the deciding factors on whether a automation or bots is good depends on the motive of the user and whether they consider the wider scope of impact. I fear many do not take this sort of thing into consideration when it comes to profit.
My reasoning for not desiring bid bots in the system is it has a tendency to put other users at a disadvantage especially considering when bid amounts exceed the weight of the bots upvote. Also, I consider the impact these services have on curation. If we have high powered bid bots that can easily bring a sub par post to trending, isn't this counter to the efforts humans are putting in towards manual curation of quality.
One ideal that I hope would be realized on Steem is that of users having an equal voice where it doesn't matter if you are a plankton or a whale that if you bring quality content that you will receive a fair reward. I think bid bots get in the way of this becoming a reality because the one with the deeper pockets can just buy upvotes irrespective of the quality of the post.
On the flip side, automated solutions can and have been used for good. They can be used to filter content by criteria, autofollow mutual follows, and facilitate comment contests among other things

Ok, to explain on the point I believe your plan may want to be reconsidered. That point is the numeric reputation system. The reason I say this is I know that reputation can and has been bough on this platform. It is not necessarily meritocratic and that is why I believe using it as a metric is problematic.

I wholeheartedly agree that competency should be the determining factor. Perhaps, take subject matter experts in respective tags and assign the duty of confirming the veracity and quality of posts that pertain to their knowledge.

I am struggling to find the exact piece of literature but I vaguely recall something that may have been by Twain that essentially expressed that in writing at least, it is good to have experience with a topic. For instance, if a writer has experience as a fur trader ( I think that was the example used) that they would be able to more vividly describe the experience. In like fashion, a curation experienced in something will be able to identity content that is true to the nature of what is being described.

Some tags are more general than others but to those that have any degree of specificity in an area of experience or potentially technical in nature. It would help to have a curator that had experience in the respective tag(s). Therefore, I believe identifying curation specialist for at least popular tags would be a great idea.

I hope we can work together to help clean this place up. I've taken a hard stance on a lot of issues and believe I have not succumb to greed but it is indeed disheartening to see those that have employed deceptive methods motivating by greed to be the ones to get ahead.

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I do not think the reputation figure means all that much either. When I refer to reputation, I mean genuine standing in the community.

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When I refer to reputation, I mean genuine standing in the community.

In that case, I am in full concurrence.

Just FYI, a lot of those vote farmers had acquired great reputation through their system which is one reason I look at that value with a grain of salt. It's sad to see such exploitation attempting to become mainstream.

Upvoted and resteemed, good buddy. Thanks for taking the time to clarify.

By the way, any thoughts on tag(s) curation specialist? Seem like a good idea?

From what I've seen sp delegation has been used to grow many projects here. Utopian is one big example. There's so much focus on quality content and rewarding it, which is a good thing. However, that should be balanced out with the number of curators who can reward those creators. So, i think the delegegations should go to those who apply to be curators and they should be checked for integrity and reputation manually and agree. Then, someone should curate the curators to make sure they're curating quality content. It would be like a curation pyramid with different levels of sp.

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Yes it is interesting to imagine how best to support the curators through transparency and accountability. Levels of trust determined by accomplishments and earned reputation of some kind will be necessary. The more precise the community guidelines for how curators operate are, the easier it will be.

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Yes. I've posted this before saying that you can learn a lot from Google in this regard. They learned to reward the best content with higher search rankings. They have contractors who contract with thousands of curators of their search results. That and very complex algorithms that analyze content and site trust factors.

i like your way of thinking.
that's actually the initial goal in creating steemit.
You're one of the good whales.

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Thank you, I appreciate the support.

This idea, if implemented, would become an experiment on wealth redistribution within it's own microcosm. One's opinions on whether this would work are inevitably tainted by one's philosophy of market capitalism.

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Almost every transaction between humans is wealth redistribution. The question is, is it appropriate? I'm not sure anyone has ever seen a free market in action :)

Good post!

If I recall correctly, Steemit Inc also set up @misterdelegation, which seems to delegate to 'projects' yet only have has been delegated out.

Personally I think all unused SP is going to waste. The moral boost from receiving delegation is massive and it also boosts the community . I would love to see more delegation going on

I think we have a lot of reason to question the Steemit organization. The stake held by the Steemit account was originally intended to be distributed with account creation as a way to help bootstrap the community. It wasn't supposed to have such a permanent centralizing impact. By switching to temporary delegation rather than permanent distribution and keeping such a large stake centralized contrary to its original purpose, Steemit invites suspicion that they've betrayed the community's trust and are no longer aligned with the interests of other stakeholders.

I hope they address this somehow, because the centralized distribution and prevalence of shortsighted abuse by large stakeholders certainly make Steem less appealing to potential users and investors. So far I've seen little evidence that those who control Steemit have much understanding of or even interest in the serious problems with the system. Every day we go with so much profitable abuse of the system gives abusive stakeholders more stake and makes them more difficult to uproot. The survival of Steem depends on the interests of its stakeholders being aligned with its long term success.

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I completely agree with you. I would have preferred a permanent distribution but it has become all too clear that is never going to happen. If the majority of steemit stake is delegated for countering abuse, it would be a hard thing to ever revoke. The community wouldn't stand for it. My objective is to stop the rot asap and give steem a chance for all the good that is here. If that doesn't happen and soon, once a much improved alternative is available, I will advocate for the community to migrate to it and steem will wither. It is truly horrible to witness how much of an advantage the worst people get from abusing the system. It makes me numb when I think about the horror that central banking printing has made possible.

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Hopefully the stakeholders in Steemit have (or gain) the foresight to take care of their investment, but they haven't instilled much confidence so far. I think there are a few protocol changes we'll need to get through to help align stakeholder incentives and make the network sustainable, starting with a longer vesting schedule and curation rewards for downvoting. If current large stakeholders (including Steemit) can't be convinced that change is necessary, a fork may be required to save the community. Hopefully that won't be necessary. Regardless the first step is education about the economics surrounding Steem and what it will take to keep it alive. @bethwheatcraft started the #fight4steem tag to help in that effort. I doubt Steemit is going to be a leader in this at all. They'll probably only move on it in response to community pressure.

It's great to see creative solutions being offered to solve the problem of the unfair advantage of early Steemians abusing their large stakes. They don't seem to realize that they run the risk of not being able to power down quickly enough if they continue to hurt the community and potentially scare off new Steemians.

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Having an advantage because of early adoption and early risk is reasonable I think. I was an early adopter myself and though I paid for some of my Steem, I also benefited from early rewards etc. I hope I've added value to Steem and I continue to try to do so. However, there is a big difference in that and the abuse that is happening, a lot of it from SP that has been grown from within or bought with the power to abuse in mind. Many early adopters have stopped participating or have divested already due to the abuse. The point is that there is a community here worth saving and there are ways we can improve the situation enormously. It requires the majority of Steemit.inc steem to be deployed in the hands of the community and I just don't know if that will ever happen before it's too late.

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Agreed. And Ned's move last week doesn't help the situation.

I thank you @benjojo for this vision and idea that you share with us.
The issue of abuse seems so complex.
Because beyond that there are communities in the community as well as those who do not take it without really giving back (an abuse?). Happy to read you because as I evolve on steemit demotivation can settle.
But even people like you who are fighting for positive change offer strength.
There is also this system of which you speak.
The upvote bot ??
Good thing?
Minowsupport are part of it?
It is true that it is a great opportunity for some but not all understand the principle or the functions (me for example);)
Anyway it is a good thing that you raise some of these points and more.
Thank you again
Take Care

P&U

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It is my pleasure. There is so much here of value and worth fighting for.

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You right and you're not alone. Be sure 👍👊

Thanks for posting this. I am a photographer who has been on the platform for about 8 weeks now and have seen a lot of promise but have also had my work stolen repeatedly in that time. This idea of the benevolent whale (or dictator) can work. Its a fine line however between ending up like Singapore or ending up like Zimbabwe. What do you think of the model that APPICS is proposing where they have curators who get voted in for each of the top 20 trending tags , and they get delegated a large amount of the currency (the equivalent of steem power on APPICS) so they have a "curation" vote power on behalf of the platform.

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The benevolent whale only works if the actual power is distributed, deployed according to rules that have broad consent along with integrity being maintained. The benevolent whale is NOT a dictator, but the opposite because of the broad community based consent and benefit.

I don't know enough about APPICS to comment with any conviction but I like the sound of elected community members being endowed with the power to moderate abuse and positively curate good content. I suspect it will only work if there are hundreds of curators rather than 20.

Well i have been here in 2016 and and am back and can't remember nor find my passkeys. I left cos it was beginning to look like the real world i have been avoiding

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I'm sorry you lost your keys. Managing them can be a real challenge. Let's hope we can do something about the abuse together.

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Thanks mate, you are kind with your words....following you now!

Interesting solution. "Steemit's SP represents enormous economic potential if deployed in the right way."

That's the thing, we all seem to be waiting patiently to see where this train takes us.. most don't realize the underlying implications it could potentially have on working populations. A token-reward economy based on trust and sharing.

Thanks for being a part of this

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Its my pleasure. The potential is eye-opening isn't it! That's why we cannot afford to squander the opportunity Steem has presented. We need to fight to make it what we need it to be.