Yesterday I read some articles about @bellyrub scamming people. It is not like I am a big expert in bots because I used only some of them, but still, I never liked @bellyrub. It was kinda shady and I heard a lot of complaints about it. I hope @bellyrub will be punished and it will be a good example to others. Nevertheless, that's not my main post topic.
I would like to talk about all bots in general, do we need them? Are they making any good for Steemit society? Who gets benefits from bots?
Nowadays, there are lots of different bots and they are very similar to each other. Well, @minnowbooster and @randowhale were a bit different because they changed algorithms from time to time, but as I said - the idea is almost the same.
I always thought that bots' main goal was to help minnows, get their posts to the top, get more views and feedback. Maybe it was in the beginning, but is it now? My personal opinion - NO.
In my previous article https://steemit.com/steemit/@hoodaim/conflict-of-interests-upvotes-vs-flagging-is-there-a-solution I was raising up an issue that hot and trending sections are broken, minnows have no chance to get to the top unless they get friendly votes from whales, unless they are in a group who upvote each other and finally unless they use bots. So let's talk about bots. Isn't that a great solution? You send some SBD to a bot, get upvoted and finally get noticed. Yay! Now you should get to a trending page, get more views and perhaps some new followers. Unfortunately, it does not work like that! All bots (I literally mean all of them) are getting abused by spammers and shitty content writers.
They send 30-50 SBD and get in return 1.5x - 3x of that, depending on how many other participants are using that bot at that particular time. So if we presume there is a minnow who wants to spend 5 SBD, do you really think he has any chance to get to the trending page? Sure not.
And if we talk seriously it is not only about minnows, these guys are raping rewards pool so hard! They just don't give a fuck, they see opportunity and they use it.
Here are some examples that I found yesterday:
- @brittuf - this guy is so full of shit, he writes totally automated posts on how cryptocurrencies change. Screenshot from Bittrex and up to $300 in rewards for one post, is this a Joke ???
I have investigated him a bit - he uses bots like @appreciator @buildawhale and many other small bots. He is not shy to send 50 SBD just to one bot. And then you guys say: bots are helping minnows to promote their content. How the fuck will minnow get to the hot or trending position when he sends 5-10 SBD and it takes him nowhere? Everything is occupied by the "wonderful quality content" authors like this one, who just waste general reward pool.
- @danizaharie. This guy also abuses @buildawhale and @appreciator. Better quality of the content, but the same idea, 50 SBD to get 100 in return and sit in bitcoin category trending page;
- @elizahfhaye again i bitcoin category, example - https://steemit.com/bitcoin/@elizahfhaye/the-world-of-cryptocurrency-jamie-dimon
$250 in rewards ($102 from @appreciator . 72 from @bellyrub, 42 from @buildawhale, $7 upmyvote). Is this article really worth $250?
So what does it all say? From my personal perspective, bots are making more harm than good stuff. There are no rules or limits, which makes it very easy to exploit them. For example, if there would be a limit to send a maximum of SBD $10, it would create a quality competition between writers, who want to get to top positions. The voting power of bots would have a smaller chance to get wasted for shitty content and minnows would have more chances to get noticed. Limitation of one article per day might also work.
Another good idea is to automatically transfer a post, that was upvoted to by the bot to the promotion section. (I think I read it somewhere in comments).
Dear bots owners, please pay attention to the quality of content of your customers, set some boundaries and help steem to become better, instead of helping spammers and abusers to kill it.
P.S. I will use one of the bots to get some attention to this article, otherwise, it will be totally lost somewhere and you guys will not even notice it.
(Image Source: www.shieldsquare.com/web/wp-content/themes/shieldsquare/assets/img/Good-vs-bad.png)