Do You Care Too Much About Steemit Blogging Rewards? Find Out Here.steemCreated with Sketch.

in #steemit4 years ago

8 months ago, I did a little experiment on myself. I hid all the monetary rewards on Steemit for 24 hours. Now might be a good time to do it again.

Check out that post to understand what I mean: The Steemit $$$ Challenge: Prove To Yourself Why You Are Here

There seems to be some drama on Steemit about an experiment being run related to those with high STEEM Power not voting with their full vote power in order to increase the influence of the votes from accounts with less STEEM Power. I'm quite fascinated by the experiment and am curious to see what happens. I've seen my normal $0.01 vote go to $0.04 which is kind of neat. But... then the flags came. Some high STEEM Power holders didn't want to play along, so they continued voting and some others decided to counteract their votes with a flag (technically a "down vote" as far as the blockchain itself is concerned). The flamewars concerning flags and downvotes have been going on for months, and I've mostly stayed out of it. It's possible I've argued for both sides at different times.

This early in STEEM and Steemit's life, I don't really care.

I'm here for the long term. I think this is amazing technology, and I love how it has kept me consistently writing since I joined in June of last year. I love how I wrote some PHP code to work with the blockchain itself and how much fun I had in the process. I love the discussions I have here. A recent post of mine had 85 quality comments! How fantastic is that?!

So let's move on from worrying about the price. I've invested real money into this platform and technically, on paper, that's a loss to me. I purchased at much higher prices. I'm not worried because I didn't invest more than I could lose, and I believe in the long term prospects here. I have a right to be upset, but I'm not. In my opinion, there's far too much drama over this experiment. I say let it play out and see what happens. If the $$$ causes you trouble, go back to running my 24 hour experiment.

Here, this will make it easy:

Install Stylish and the "no prices" plugin here:

I just reinstalled it myself, and it still works great.

If you're too wrapped up in rewards for blogging you feel you deserve, then maybe take a break from Steemit or take a break from the rewards process via this Stylish plugin.

Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Medium... they don't pay anyone a penny and no one cares. Let's not get caught up in unnecessary drama. Life is a gift. Treat it as such, and you'll never be disappointed.

As I've said many times before, Steem On.

Luke Stokes is a father, husband, business owner, programmer, voluntaryist, and blockchain enthusiast. He wants to help create a world we all want to live in.


This early in STEEM and Steemit's life, I don't really care.

Same here. For me the most important thing is the Steem blockchain. With Fabric it will be possible to build a much larger ecosystem and the blogging won't be the only thing. Current dissatisfaction with some system parameters is pretty much non-problem in the long run.

People just have a tendency to look only what's immediately in front of them and not keep in mind the bigger picture.

If somebody feels bad how Steemit works today, they should go and read the roadmap for this year. It will help to recall what's really happening and what's truely important.

This says it all right here!!

Yep... too much drah-mah! I've been watching the show... and I struggle to get past a pervasive sense of entitlement underlying much of what is being said. I've been blogging and writing for over 20 years and most of it has been for free... so getting a few bucks here is a nifty bonus, not something to feel like I am "owed."

In a sense, this whole scuffle has been cool because the level of comments and interaction per post is WAY up... and isn't that what "community" and "social" are really about?

I struggle to get past a pervasive sense of entitlement underlying much of what is being said

So true! I've written about entitlement before. It's a powerful thing we need to be wary of.

isn't that what "community" and "social" are really about?

Heck yeah! Social media without social is just media. I love social media.

Sorry for linking out to older posts, but you're hitting things I love talking about. :)

I like your writing and your thinking, so I'll go check 'em out.

The sense of entitlement is mindblowing. I personally believe this experiment is fantastic for Steemit.

On a sidenote, the moment I started free writing forgetting about any rewards or pleasing anyone it became a lot more pleasant to write.

There's a lot of study about how intrinsic verses extrinsic motivation impacts creative activity. If we're doing it for rewards, quality and enjoyment will go down. The activity itself my stop completely.

As you've said "Steem On", things will sort themselves out. Resteemed

Thanks for your wise words, Luke. I reblogged them right away :)
It´s good to have people like you on board who stay grounded no matter what happens. It´s definitely the right way to align our focus with the long term goals and solutions.
There is enough drama in the real world, we don´t need to build any artificial one here on the blockchain.
Steem on - yes! :)

I am more excited when I see a 4:1 or 3:1 ratio of votes to comments than I have been for monetary rewards. I mean, monetary - really??? STEEM value is low and I have been powering up so it's kind of like monopoly money to me anyway. I'm here for the community and to put my stuff on the blockchain.

YES! I'm the same way. Also taking to account the number of readers to comments. Interaction is better and more sustainable. The money will come if you're deserving of it.

Forgive me for my shortest comment ever but all I can say is "I totally agree!"

Rock on, @merej99!

I'm here to put my stuff on the blockchain.

That's a friggen battle cry if I've ever heard one. That's awesome.

Keep rocking.

I am thankful to everybody who taught me, an old school girl who didn't even know what an email was in 2002, about blockchain, cryptotrading and so much more. What a wacky but lovely community and I feel that I belong. I gained self confidence getting my word out . That's massive because I never liked to go too much public nor personal. I never belonged to the big earning stars but since June I am collecting my steem little by little. I love my wallet! So , every experiment helping to get us moving further and ahead is more than welcome. I can take it ! The Downflags I mean! I put my 💄on , get a couple of pro seccos and sit back :) and see what's next while I keep on steeming.

Hahah! I love it. That's a strong, confident attitude and the world needs more of it.

hahaha back to you ! I mean it ! That's how I walk my Austrian Techno steemit girl walk :)

It's a good thing you helped re-adjust my perspective regarding this when you did! Right now, I'm really just laughing this whole experiment off. I feel more bad about how people are dealing with this. It's not really getting the results that they intended, I think. Some people are being supported by a lot more people than others, and the majority of responses are very negative. For the past few posts, I haven't even been looking at my earnings, I'm just trying to enjoy the healthy interaction that I've been getting lately. That's in large part thanks to you, my friend :D

Thanks Jed! I love, love, love that you've adjusted your emotional responses to your own expectations. Healthy interactions are what it's all about, especially the ones in our own mind!

If posting stories and blogs bring value to you, then do it. Intrinsic motivation is more beneficial than extrinsic motivation by every conceivable measure regarding creative activity. Know yourself, know what you want, and take appropriate steps forward. You can't lose with that strategy because it only depends on you, not on the actions of others.

I just needed a little push, and you provided that for me. It didn't just apply for Steemit, as it really trickled into the real world as well. That's why I'm very grateful of you tutelage, Luke. I know it took some minutes of your day to respond, and I just want you to know that I'm very appreciative of you lending those minutes.

I've actually been preaching the Word of Luke in the real world, and it's being received quite well. Know that you are getting full credit for it :D

Hahah! Oh man. Please don't give me too much credit. Glad the things that have been helpful for me to learn are helpful for you as well. :)

As Marshall Rosenberg talks about in NVC, the greatest thing we can do as human beings is meet the needs of others. Thank you for sharing this with me and letting me know my small investment was worthwhile to you.

Thank you for passing on the knowledge :D This is #payitforward in all of its glory. Heck, I even caught the voluntaryist bug from you! Haha!

Good ideas don't require force. :)

Preach, brother! No truer words :D

Very nice post! Congratulations !!!

You have a great outlook on this issue. I agree with more than one point you made. Like taking a break. It's healthy to take a break from things now and then. For those of us who post daily, it's nice to get a brief "vacation." And like you said, millions of people are posting on "Fakebook" and gaining nothing at all. Steemit is still a great project with a bright future.

I think it has a bright future, but even if it does not, I've greatly enjoyed my time here so far.

I joined for free, have had fun posting/talking with some very nice people. The chance of a few cents occasionally is a bonus. My biggest moan is everybody gets lots of votes, but, when you look, very few have bothered to see what they are voting for.

Yeah, the bot situation annoyed me a lot early on as well. I've seen decided I'm okay with using steemvoter to vote authors I consistently like. I may not read all their posts, but I want to continue rewarding them for delivering consistent value and since I have STEEM Power to vote on how the rewards pool should be divided (even if it's just a few cents here and there), I'm okay with voting for people I like to participate in some of that reward. That's been my justification lately, anyway. I've switched back and forth on the issue as it's not a simple one.

always a pleasure to read your post and get some confidence boost. sorry I accidentally upvoted with 1% (you wouldn't know as you are on your own experiment now lol).

Hahah. Feel free to remove your vote and then re-add it again at 100% ;-)

ok, I did it. how come I remember that this action was not allowed in the past? weird... learn a new thing today... :)

It's awesome that even though you're at 68 rep, you learned something new like that. I think it goes to show that UI improvements are needed for things like that to be more intuitive.

if you want to learn, steem/steemit always have new stuffs for you to learn. :)

in this case, voting UI looks fine to me. just that I did not know we can re-vote. maybe it's me that need improvement. :)

are you serious? we can do that?

For sure! Just click the vote button again. There will be a pop up alert confirming you want to undo your vote and then you can vote again however you want.

is it always like this or this has been changed some time ago? I knew about canceling vote but not about being able to vote again. just curious.

Yeah, as far as I know you've always had the opportunity to remove your vote as long as it's before the payout period. This ensures people don't game the system and those who vote still have a chance to change things.

As always, well said and with a very calming and neutral tone.

I couldn't agree more with you about the motivation to write that this platform has given me. I love it for that.

Come for the rewards. Stay for having a platform and community you can call home which you enjoy interacting with. :)

Thanks @boxcarblue.

It's funny. When I wrote a post a couple weeks ago about reaching 10,000 SP, I didn't think that I really interacted with this community very much. I didn't necessarily feel like I had become a part of it and so I wrote that it wasn't really what kept me coming back. Since writing that piece, though, as is often the case, I've really thought more about what the word community means, how broadly the meaning spreads out, and how Steemit really is a community of users interacting with each other. Without the interaction and support that we can find here, there really wouldn't be much incentive to come back and post again and again.

The more I think about it, the more I agree with the way you always bring it back to the community.

Well said Luke, well said.

Great write :) I see many people are on the same page with the whole experimenting and flags, they aren't the issue and the problem, we have to focus our efforts on a different place.

Nice script and thought provoking experiment, I will give it a try, I used greasemonkey in the past but will adapt this new plugin to give it a go. Thank you for your invaluable perspective and contributions!

BTW, have you watched that movie That's What I Am, and if so what did you think about it, did you love the message and the characters?

have you watched that movie That's What I Am

No, I haven't yet! Thanks for the reminder.

Perfect family movie, inspiring message and real life/grounded in reality, would make a great excuse to unwind :)

156 views WOOT, great job again Luke!
I thought I would post this here to show people what it looks like without the rewards present.
And in the post
And the comments:

Also for browsing in general, distance yourselves from chrome/google/iexplorer and switch over to Opera or Firefox. Consider using the adblock plugin in tandem with NoScript.
Adblock has a massive constantly updated list of ad domains and sites that it blocks so webpages look a lot less cluttered and you won't have to be scammed into pressing the wrong download button anymore or clicking on ads when you think it's an article or a product among other things.
NoScript is equally invaluable as it allows you to stop all javascript by domain, so a bar will appear on the bottom of every webpage that runs scripts and will need to be whitelisted. What will happen is that you will allow scripts to run from the website itself/the domain and you can block things like and other websites that people run on their pages which will free up memory and subsequently processing power for these very much useless scripts that track you, and as you only have to do it once, whitelisting or blacklisting the scripts you will not even notice it on the websites you frequent.
Also firefox and opera allows unsurpassed UI modifications so if you want you can free up window space and move the buttons in the title bar or go wild and have all kinds of addons that make browsing a breeze, anything you can imagine, from how tabs behave, to mousegestures which lets you close tabs and do anything you want by holding a mouse button down and drawing a simple or complex gesture like left-down to close tabs, left-up to reopen the last closed tab, and so forth.

Flags are uncool. Rewards are one thing, but arbitrarily punitive flags are another altogether. I am not a fan of votebots, but flagbots compound the problem rather than providing a constructive solution.

A downvote was applied to partially counter earlier whale votes as an experiment to reduce whale domination of voting influence. Not intended to express an opinion on the content nor result in a net reduction of rewards or reputation (automated notice)

Rock on with your STEEM Power! :)

Good luck, @smooth. I hope you all don't get too flamed for this experiment you're running. As I commented to @abit recently, I find it quite interesting, and I'm hopeful we'll learn some important things about our platform and the community that uses it through this process. We are in the early, early days of Steemit. As long as we're still here in ten years, that's when the experiments we do know will really matter.

I agree with you. Thank you for the post and comment.

A down-downvote was applied to partially counter earlier whale votes as an experiment to reduce whale domination of voting influence. Not intended to express an opinion on the content nor result in a net reduction of rewards or reputation (automated notice)

I figured you'd be swamped by hateful comments by now. The fact that you're still checking your comments and replying to some speaks volumes to me. Do your thing, @smooth. The results from ten years from now will judge you, not the people complaining today.

hmm... ten years? a little bit too long, don't you think? :)

As of February, Facebook is now 13 years old. My business will be 10 years old this summer. If we're not thinking long term, we're thinking too small (IMO). I invest in long-term investments because those provide the greatest consistent returns.

[nested reply]
well said!! and really cool business you've got there!

These spam comments add no value to the platform.

I dont necessarily disagree. It was suggested to me to include them, so I have, but I'm on the fence myself.

I agree with Luke and have changed my position from short term/against this effort to much more interested in the long term/lasting effect. I do implore you to please remove the up vote for yourself, I wouldn't be bothered by the comments as I believe it's completely warranted, I believe people should know the motives for bringing down the hammer.

I applaud the effort you take to calculate each and every vote, that is by-and-large admirable in it of it's self, but like I said, I don't think you should vote for your comments even if they get hidden/flagged or in an attempt to keep them visible since it distributes rewards to what many consider spam, please consider that.

The upvote is only placed after the comments are maliciously downvoted (usually by @htooms) and are tuned to avoid having the comment hidden without contributing to a reward. Due to rounding sometimes the reward sometimes goes to 0.01, though I'm not sure if that will actually get paid out (I think 0.02 is the minimum?). Also I have disabled the comments for now, but might or might not turn them back on.

I was a bit perturbed by all the comments showing up with 0.01, and I apologize for doing rounds on your comments. I think you should re-enable comments so that people know why they were downvoted, right now it's minimal impact I think, now that the steem world is saturated with information about the experiment and peoples opinions about it, but who knows, maybe a new person will be turned away by the downvote without explanation and information cannot hurt. And again, I think what you're doing is great, especially considering the time and work it takes in calculating the votes individually, keep up the great work sir!

If anybody is interested here is the proof that it's not wanton acts but conscious effort and fairness:

A level headed person keeping this experiment in perspective! 🤝
I love your positive energy Luke, following you now; I hope you'll return the gesture 😀 @scan0017

I know this may sound offensive, but In my experience, every time someone asks for a follow I end up being disappointed with the result. I know, that sounds harsh, but it's something I've tested again and again. That said, you're reviewing Scotch which seems interesting so I'll give you a follow, and we'll run the test once more. :)

Thanks for the follow, much appreciated.

Powerful @lukestokes !
Thank you for the opportunity 😀
I have unfollowed Steemians who got weird and aggressive towards the world with their posts - I promise you I'm all smiles and good vibes.
If my posts are worth reading, tremendous!
I'm glad you get any benefit at all from reading them.
I am here to delight and entertain; I sincerely hope to put a smile on your face at least once a week.
Thank you brother 🥂

Many people taking a break or taking issue, like myself, don't care about the money, but the principle and the platform. To many new users getting messed up by these bad actors' drama.

"bad actors" is a matter of perspective and timescale. Some users may be getting messed up by this and that's truly unfortunate. I remember when the reputation system was adjusted and some people were having their posts hidden for no good reason. Thankfully, over time, those with higher reputations repaired the damage. I've introduced many people to Steemit and it's not just the drama that keeps them away (many of them don't know anything about it). It's much, much more than that. The network effect of existing platforms, their desire to not post much online anyway, etc, etc. Figuring out all the reasons people don't come to Steemit and say will require many experiments and some of them may be unpleasant. I will not agree with all the experiments. Until I have enough STEEM Power to influence them directly, I don't really have much of a say in the matter. Until then, I enjoy what I have and treat everything as a gift.

As do I. My whole point was simply and clearly that many are not simply worried about payouts as implied here.

Yes, I understand that. By hiding the money symbols, that can be more clearly understood. The hiding of posts or the damaging of reputations would then be the clear focus of what's wrong with the current experiment.

And to me, crushing a newbs verification post or flagging a haiku challenge is indeed "bad acting."

I agree there, for sure and hope those individual examples are remedied so people are made whole. But every action has some form of negative consequences, right? The Janists sweep in front of their feet before they walk to avoid killing a bug. That's a bit extreme. We all recognize our actions influence the world around us. Driving somewhere pollutes the earth. Exercising tears muscle and hurts, but leads to long term benefits. There is no perfect good in this existence, though we'd sure love for there to be.

If an experiment leads to future changes which benefit future millions who might someday use this platform, what level of negative consequences are we willing to accept?

I'm not disagreeing with you or justifying negative actions, I'm just thinking through our own expectations.

I hear you, but to me, when it comes to compromising individuals and their efforts and hard work, such talk rings hollow, and of utilitarianism.

From a purely non-emotional standpoint, this experiment has been very disorganized and does not seem like an experiment so much as some whales who are practicing a misguided form of altruism.

Punishing individuals for success is never beneficial to any community.

That said, all is fair in love and Steem, and there is nothing stopping individuals from banding together and trying things like this. There is also nothing stopping people from speaking out.

Flags are generally meant for crappy or abusive content (though there are no hard, fast rules for their use) and users feel shitty when their post gets dinged by bots.

The free market can handle this. We don't need a disorganized experiment with no stated timeframe and no real controls in place to make everything "fair" according to a few people's conceptions. This is, of course, my perspective.

That said, my whole point in commenting here is that contrary to what seems to be implied in your post, most people taking issue with this do not care about the payouts--they care about mainting a high quality platform that rewards value, talent, and hard work, instead of penalizing it.

:)) Thanks for the laugh.

This early in STEEM and Steemit's life, I don't really care.

I'm here for the long term.

It surprises me how intelligent people, with both technical and soft skills, fail to realize a very simple truth: there's no fucking guarantee that there will be a long term Steemit! This so called "long term" commitment is based on what's happening now, right now. How do you really see Steemit evolving as a platform if this behavioral trend will continue?

Your suggestion to hide the rewards on Steemit is both hilarious (that's why I thank you for the laugh) and worrying. Why would I hide something that I was called for? Steemit slogan is: "blog and get paid". Why would I want to take this out of the picture? If I want a Medium-style experience, then, for God sake, I go on Medium. If I want a reddit-like experience, I go on reddit. It's so obvious that my mind is literally stopping and I just start laughing, that's all I can do when facing this non-sensical advice.

I've been a long term advocate of Steemit, I'm a witness and I'm running a seed node, and yet, I can't tell I'm happy with what's happening here. And it's not the code. It's the people. It's the moral standard that is degrading and that it pervades everything.

The experiment was an abuse (please be advised that I even supported it in the beginning). One of my posts, which was published before the experiment started, and which had only a few hours until payment, was downvoted. Why? To extend the payment window with another 8 hours in which they will downvote even more of it? There was no communication, no methodology, no timeline, nothing. It was just a few people deciding to countervote other people, under the pretext of "giving minnows and dolphins a chance". That would be hilarious, if it wouldn't be frightening.

I'm not upset at all, I'm just observing what's happening and how the quality of relationships is rapidly degrading here.

no fucking guarantee that there will be a long term Steemit

Do you have examples of blockchains which no longer exist? Seems to me it's a reasonable assumption that the STEEM blockchain will stick around for quite some time because it would be quite difficult to remove it completely, but we can certainly disagree on this. I never asked for a guarantee about much of anything. Not even sure such a thing exists.

my mind is literally stopping

Yeah, I kind of picked up on that. :)

the quality of relationships is rapidly degrading here.

IMO, that's based on your perception of the relationships you are personally connected to. You probably have a lot of evidence to support your claim as I'm sure not all relationships are improving. I'd also argue not all relationships are degrading. I'm having the opposite experience and have for quite some time. We all have our perspectives and opinions on what's best for the platform and community. I'm glad we can share them openly on the blockchain.

I wouldn't suggest hiding the rewards permanently because, as you said, that would defeat the purpose of the platform which separates it form other platforms. That's why this is a temporary process, one that is quite interesting. You might want to try it for a while and see if it changes you in any way.

my mind is literally stopping

Yeah, I kind of picked up on that. :)

+1 for the irony. I wish you would be just as quick in picking up other clues as well. :)

When I say the Steem blockchain may not be here, I'm taking into account how this specific blockchain works. It is based on DPOS, in other words, it needs witnesses which are required to implement a certain consensus. It needs peope to agree on stuff. I'm sure you know the protocol, so I'm surprised you're asking me for examples. There are plenty, by the way. Some blockchains are simply made obsolete and the devs / users are moving to a new architecture, such is the case with NXT / Ardor. There are tons of other blockchains that are simply on autopilot, with nodes being shutdown randomly, until they cease to exist.

Given a case where you need consensus to run the network, it may go down really fast, if the relationships quality goes below a certain level. I'm saying it again: I'm a witness, I run a seed node and I ran a few writing challenges and campaigns here on Steemit in the last 4 months, so I'm all for contributing and evolving. I'm doing my best to support the network. I think Steem is a promising technology and I (still) think it will be an interesting business to be part of.

And yet, the way things are evolving in the Steem ecosystem is quite toxic. There's no communication, no visible leadership (people mistake decentralization with lack of leadership, this is wrong on so many levels) and a general approach of "I don't really care about what you think, I have more SP than you, so I'm entitled to whatever I want to do here". Almost every day we are facing some subtle form of abuse (flagging being probably the most visible). It's like the boiling frog example: small increase in temperature, until the frog dies. Small increase in abuse, until we will no longer be a censorship-resistant, cutting-edge social media thingie, but a large, meaningless content factory, ran by a mob-like clique.

For a while, it's healthy to disguise this in the "we're in beta, let's break things apart" sentence and move on, but there's a certain threshold at which you start to question the ROI you get just by witnessing all this drama.

We are, obviously, free to agree to disagree on this one.

P.S. The very fact that I'm still here, voicing my concerns, is proof that I care and I want improvement. The alternative is to simply, silently leave. Or just stop posting and commenting and milk the shit out of this until it dies.

The fact that you (and others) are still here, with all the criticisms and frustrations gives me hope that this blockchain will be here and active for quite some time. Many other blockchains don't actually support a product. Those who have chosen to make Steem their preferred blog home have a motivation to keep it alive. Yes, something better may come along down the road, and I'm all for that.

Thankfully we don't need perfect consensus here. Just enough to keep things going. I also like that anyone can be a leader, even people like me who aren't witnesses but like to share ideas. We all lead through our words and actions and everyone is free to follow however they like. It's a beautiful thing.

Downvoted to counteract the upvotes from bots and other whales.
More info here:

Hahah... I should have kept the stylesheet on. I watched the price drop around $10 just now. Too funny. Rock on, @abit. Do your thing (as if anyone could stop you), and I hope it ends up being valuable to the entire community.

Question: does your algorithm combat specific votes or does it just look at the overall payout and knock it down if it's too high? I'm happy to see 300+ votes on this post and am curious how much of that is from whales and how much from regular accounts. Also curious about the "bots" comment. Is this an experiment against all bot voting and if so, what does that have to do with accounts that are not whales but still use things like steemvoter to vote up their favorite authors?

Yea, I agree. Chill out and keep blogging. And just ignore the Fraggles;÷)

I agree with your outlook 100% and definitely follow the same attitude.

On the other hand, this is coming from one of the wealthiest users of steemit and someone that got in on the ground floor.

People that just started posting and seeing their rewards drop suddenly might not be so relaxed as us!

Keep in mind that for much of my investment I paid $1.00 per STEEM. I've watched it slowly over time go down to $0.07. I broke the 300 mark by posting almost 4,000 blog posts and comments and building a following of over 950 people.

Disappointed and pessimistic I think it was the humane thing as too optimistic, because the two things are mutually come alternately. But for me the spirit of undaunted....
And thank you to your friends @lukestokes who have been willing to take the time to write a great post and have given suggestions directly to me @zikri

Now that Dan has quit, I feel foolish for my optimism.

utmost greatness!