I've got some bad news Steemit, or it will be if things continue as they have. Many of you know my story and follow us here. We are one of the top original content producers on this site. Steemit has been good to us thus far, we've never written anything to complain publicly. It's not perfect, but it wasn't worth complaining about as we understand this is a new thing, and will adjust and change over time. Due to this experiment, dropping Steem price and other factors our payouts have dropped significantly despite gaining popularity and reputation within the site. So despite rising followers and support, we're making less than ever to the point where it's getting hard to justify spending the time to write. Ever since this experiment started, we've suffered for it as have many others. Let me explain further.
I live in one of the cheaper parts of the world, in southern Mexico in sunny Acapulco where the minimum wage is about 5 dollars a day. The falling prices and payouts of Steemit previously have effected us but not to the point where we would have to stop. We are now facing that decision. This experiment has effectively got whales to stop voting, which is really anti-Steemit in many ways. It seems now that more people are making money off of comments like "Thanks so much for writing this" than they are original content. That is not going to encourage people to produce original content.
As one of the top original content producers on this site, I am one of the people actively sharing my life with the world, which evidently is interesting as I gain followers daily. I spend a few hours of work on a post like the last one I shared, where I pour my heart into sharing a story that isn't easy to tell. Recipes and things like that do take less time, but the stuff with the real value and content does take several hours a post, on a good day.
I have many reasons for sharing my story, the biggest one to try and prevent people like me from going through the same things I've had to go through. My current life economic situation makes it so I can only afford to take the time to share my story if I am being paid for my time. Our story will eventually be told, but Steemit has allowed us to do so sooner and support ourselves off of it which really matters at the end of the day. In many ways, our payouts on Steemit have made the difference when we literally had no other income. It has the potential to be this for many people, and that's something people need to consider. Most of the time, I get appreciation for what I do and what I've been through, but experiments like this seem like needless manipulation of that appreciation. I get just as much love as ever and more so, save from the whales who are too afraid to vote.
So if things continue and I keep making less than 3 dollars a post while others are making a dollar for a two sentence comment on someone else's post, I'm not going to be able to afford to keep going. I can't justify it when I could spend those same hours blowing glass to make more cash. Or really anything. I love that Steemit has given me the chance to share our story but that stops if this is the new reality. If commenters make more than content producers, the content producers will leave. That's how you kill Steemit. I'm not interested in seeing it's sudden and immenent demise, are you?
I understand that Steemit in it's current form is not perfect, but this experiment is not working as many seem to think it is. Sure, the commenters are happier but they aren't going to have anything to comment on if people stop producing. So many big names have stopped producing already or are producing way less because they weren't making enough due to other factors like falling Steem price. Some have stopped during the duration of this experiment. I'm one of the few content producers that lives in a place cheap enough to justify the payouts we'd had up until these last few days. With experiments like this, if they become the new reality, Steemit is going to change drastically. People will not spend the time to post when their commenters make more off of their posts than they do, for simple replies like "Thanks for this, I totally agree!"
So if you don't want to kill Steemit, reconsider this experiment and it's true effects on the Steemit ecosystem. What makes this great is that anyone has the chance to try and tell their story, whatever it is, and earn something for it if people find value in it. With this sort of active manipulation, people are not going to be inspired to come here to share content. They just aren't. Any many people like me who ONLY share on Steemit will be shut out completely, which isn't right. It's worth pointing out that there are active articles that have more money made in the comments than in the article. I am having a hard time understanding how that's going to help Steemit, when we're only incentivizing consumers at that point.
I also want to point out that this doesn't fit the parameters of an experiment. There wasn't preplanning, no talking before, no heads up. People are being forced to participate and whales are being forced to stop voting, as content producers get flagged if they do. I didn't realize it was happening until a day in, and it really seemed to explain my sudden drop in payouts. There wasn't a clear definition of parameters: what's the goal, what's our hypothesis? None of this was defined and that's worth pointing out. This feels more like an attack on the Steemit ecosystem than an experiment. If it's successful, I think Steemit is done, as sad as that is. It might still exist, but it'll never be what it once was.
Ask yourselves, what does this promote? Attacking the whales in essense attacks the fundamentals of Steemit. The idea was that those with the most invested are supposed to have the most say in how the reward pool is distributed, which makes total sense. This is one of the fundamental ideals of Steemit, so why are we trying to break that? Of all the issues of Steemit, I'm not convinced the whales are to blame like this experiment suggests. Yeah, there is room for change in many aspects of Steemit and I'm all for exploring those. Trying to say the whales shouldn't have a say is fundamentally anti-Steemit and I won't support it. I'm not sure of the motives behind the experiment, but I can say the effects are damaging and will get much worse if it continues much longer.
So take this as my public protest, this experiment isn't working. It's manipulation that is going to change the ecosystem completely and it already has in many ways. Consider what makes this site great, the content producers and the ability to become one and both of those are being lost here. If we stop rewarding the people adding value and start rewarding the people consuming it, how is Steemit to continue? How will anyone justify spending their time to produce original Steemit content as I have?
At the end of the day, the earnings is what is paying for the content. Steemit doesn't exist without the content and we need to remember that. I love to share my story, but when I have to worry about paying my bills and feeding myself, spending 4 or more hours a day writing is NOT an option for me unless I can make a certain amount, not even in cheap southern Mexico. That effect is magnified for those living in the United States or Canada. It'd be one thing if this was happening naturally, but this is artificial manipulation that is having a really negative effect on Steemit. How many more content producers have to leave before things change?
So think on it, Steemit. We're not done quite yet but we will be forced to stop and pursue other things if this experiment continues as it has. I know I am not the only other content producer out there faced with this decision. For me, Steemit is my only means of making money off of my story. If I stop making money, I stop telling my story until I can afford to do so. This is my reality, sorry to say but this is also the reality of many others here on Steemit. So if you want Steemit to be great, reconsider this experiment and it's effects.
I know this has caused me to look for Steemit alternatives, how many have felt encouraged to do the same?
Thanks for reading, resteem this one if you agree, please.