How I figured out, why SteemSports is better than I thought, but still, why it will continue to harm Steemit if few things won't be changed

in steemit •  2 years ago

Since the beginning of SteemSports I didn't like this idea. Design of whole game is very cleaver, but imagination just told me, that this might be a beginning of new, very dangerous trend.

SteemSport is voluntary game on open blockchain - Steem

If you have SteemPower, you have every right to decide what you can do with your voting power. If you prefer to buy more Steem, to vote for something what in others opinion will not benefit whole platform, you can literately do that. That is your right, because this is an open platform.

Steemit is a company, which needs to follow certain rules

When Steemit was hacked, @ned needed to make one very important phone call and report what happen to proper authorities - FBI. Why is that? Because right now Steemit has a headquarter in USA, so they need to follow the rules of this country.

There are other rules which Steemit has to follow, like... they need to pay their employees, and to do so, they actually need to think about their business. As a company, they should have a clear goal and vision, what Steemit actually is, and how it will grow.

What is the vision for Steemit?

There is no possibility of creating ideal product. You cannot fulfill all needs of your customer. If you want to have successful business, you need to focus on your goal. So I am asking... what is a goal for Steemit?

Do you think Steemit suppose to have goal to become best blogging and discussion platform? Or maybe you think, that Steemit suppose to best generic browser of any content saved in Steem blockchain? The problem with this question is... that there is not god or bad answer. But this is the a question which has to be answered, and the answer has to be acknowledged by community, if we want to turn STEEM into world-wide success.

Steemit as a generic browser of any content saved in Steem blockchain

Probably, if answer would like this... then there is a planty space for anything (what is legal) on Steemit. Then Steemit can be like blockchain.info for bitcoin network, very helpful tool which can show you everything without hiding anything.

If that would happen, bloggers like me probably would like to find place, which would be focused on delivering best user experience for bloggers and readers. Maybe another project build on top of STEEM, like Busy, or maybe yet another service which do not exist yet.

Steemit as best blogging and discussion platform

But if answer would be, that Steemit suppose to the best platform for blogging and discussion, then we should focus only on that.

As @donkeypong wrote in this article, we should introduce content-type, and in my opinion, then we should move certain things which are not directly related with blogging, to different section or different website, like SteemSports.com or maybe more generic one - steemgames.com.

This doesn't mean, that we do not want to support different platforms like steemsports suggested:

This just mean, that the only reasonable way to support other platform is to not undermine own platform in the first place!

Clear VISION, metrics and data

Google has many services. Without clear focus, after they bought YouTube, their Gmail could look like this:

Do you think that would be the smart move? To be honest, without proper data you would never know.

I really recommend you this lecture from Stanford made by people from Y-combinator, from 21m11s you can here about metrics:

IMO, out North Star, our key metric should be how much time people spent on Steemit. Do you think thanks to SteemSports on trending page, this value actually increasing or decreasing? WE SHOULD MEASURE THAT!, without that it is just guessing whether they are good or bad for platform.

Voting was invented to maximize happiness of voters

Our voting system is far from perfect

As I mentioned in video at the begging of this article (which you should watch, if you haven't), I would like to recommend you videos made by CGP Gray about different voting systems. Creating a perfect voting system is really difficult (from social and technical perspective). But right now 75% of people on steemit do not vote for SteemSports even knowing that they would be paid for that. I think most of that people are not happy with current situation.

With system like ours, where users are discouraged to flag/downvote posts, which they think are not good for platform, we will never have true consensus about what is bad for platform. In my opinion, we should think about introducing downvoting as normal way of saying "this is not good for Steemit".

"Rewards for voting" should be revisited

A lot of problems on the platform we have, because a lot of people came to conclusion, that it is better to vote for anything rather than not vote at all. They are casting their votes with different scripts and services, just to make a profit, because they know, that some people are already very popular on the platform and they for sure will gather big amount of votes.

This has nothing in common with high quality curation

If you found good post, then in most cases you upvote it as soon as possible without thinking whether this is profitable for you or not. You are just happy, that you found something what has GREAT VALUE for you, because you have learnt something new or maybe you have been inspired and now you have an idea which is worth much more than few cents.

Good curation do not require incentives, because people which programming passion are looking every day on #programming tags just because they love to do that. This same is happening with every other tag.

Without a need to spend money on voters, there will be resources which could be spend on rewarding comments. Every author will be very happy, that people which are giving him feedback (what is not as easy as voting) can be rewarded even more.

Problems can be born only among people which care about something

So... even if you do not agree with everything what I wrote and said, I really appreciate that you actually spent time reading/watching my thoughts. Steem and Steemit is very young, and I believe, that there is great future ahead of us.

Always PowerUping,
@noisy


If you are interested in programming, startups or maybe entrepreneurship, you might want to follow my account. I do not post very often, but when I do... usually they say result is not bad :P

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I really think you should have put the reward setting on this post. It deserves it.

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I believe, that honest discussion of community can benefit whole community in the long run, me two ;) So don't worry :)

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yeah, I agree with you. I think you made a big difference to me because you articulated exactly what I was feeling.....

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and I copied you. I'm upside down now as well.

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i think the upside down icon is a code..........and you know what it means.

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LOL :D

to be honest.. I am not sure :P I had this avatar from the beginning ;)

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ok, but when i see something cool, i have to do it also. I think you're the only one with an upside down avatar...

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some time ago, I created another account - @noisy2 ;)

I thought that I will use it more often, but lately because of my upcomming project I do not have much time for blogging.

If that would happen, bloggers like me probably would like to find place, which would be focused on delivering best user experience for bloggers and readers.

By many different accounts, including several Steemit users, Medium provides a much better user experience for bloggers and readers. It is designed to do that, and it does so (I can only say this "apparently", since I am a medium user only to the minimal extent that I occasionally follow links and read posts there).

Steem/it is fundamentally a decentralized blockchain project/product/platform which means it will always be different from a centralized dedicated blogging platform. That has both advantages and disadvantages. While it does include an element of blogging, it will likely never be as good a blogging platform from the perspective of user experience as something like Medium that is focused entirely on doing that.

Different products and technologies have to find their successful niches where their own distinctive advantages deliver the most value to users, and their distinctive disadvantages create the least problems. This is not always an easy or direct path (nor is it guaranteed there is any such niche at all).

I do believe that additional features could be added to steemit.com to allow users more control over how they view and interact with the blockchain, which parts they may see or not see, etc. I don't know where the developers of steemit.com plan to take things, nor how nor when).

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yeah.. of course I can go and I can use Medium, but as a STEEM holder I would prefer to use any service build on top of steem.

Steem/it is fundamentally a decentralized blockchain project/product/platform

Is it? Steemit cannot exist as decentralized platform. Steemit belongs to a company, which has own database (with users emails/links to facebook accounts/phone numbers/etc).

That has both advantages and disadvantages

Every businessman know that we should focus on advantages which this gives us, and try to avoid limitation.

I do not see any reason why Steemit could not be better than Medium

I believe, that as times goes, technology will allow to do even more in decentralize way. Maybe at some point even DNSes will be totally decentralized. But this not mean, that we have to wait for that moment.

I don't know where the developers of steemit.com plan to take things, nor how nor when

And this is a problem. We as a shareholders of Steem, we should be aware what is a vision for Steemit, which is right now biggest application build on top of Steem blockchain.

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"I do not see any reason why Steemit could not be better than Medium"

I have been thinking and saying this from the beginning..........

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I liked a lot of what I read in this article, and much of the comment I read by noisy. I'm replying to you @stellabelle b/c of the endorsement of the Medium platform as being a "better" alternative to Steemit. I know nothing about Medium, nor do I rank my blogging anywhere near yours or many others I enjoy.

What puzzles me tho is what your motivation for blogging is. If it were making $ Steemit seems like the obvious winner as I see no other contenders that come close to the monetary rewards you get here. If it's about popularity the opposite is true. If it's about reaching an audience of truth seekers and people of above average intelligence you wish to connect with to raise their awareness and provide information to help them live a better life (i.e. more meaning, more authentic, less selfish, more beneficial for the future of humanity), then Steemit should be high on the list, tho perhaps not at the top.

The choice of where you choose to spend your time probably says more about you than the platform. I mean no offense, but these are my thoughts. I'm hoping we can discuss this in more depth at the upcoming meetup.

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I am frustrated by the low quality of writing on Steemit. However, I will say that it has improved greatly in recent months. I think I expected too much too fast. I am looking for a solution to my "creative jobs problem". This means I am looking for a way to earn income by writing, creating art and videos and doing social media. I invited a lot of Medium writers here in the beginning. I also know some professional writers, who write for the New York Times, etc. The general consensus among professional writers is that Steemit is a scammy, casino-like, sleazy place where low quality schemes like steemsports, etc. make a lot of money. All the writers I got in here have left, saying they won't bother with such a low-quality place. The word 'scam' was used many times to describe Steemit. This reputation was caused by the huge payouts that I benefitted from in the beginning. Also, the unfair rewards which are based on whale approval is hugely distasteful to most writers i know.

So, I am here because Steemit solves my problems better than any other platform. I'm also still here because I find that I learn more about technology in Steemit than on other platforms. I am a big reader, so I still spend quite a lot of time on Medium because frankly, the quality is a lot better than here. But I'm optimistic that Steemit will continue to evolve. I have a more realistic outlook here and I realize it will never be Medium, because the people here are different and more experimental (which I think is good). Steemit is like a blogging petri dish, whereas Medium IS the blogging platform of recent times.

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I see, thanks for the detailed reply. Glad to hear your perspective has grown closer to reality. I agree with your characterization of Steemit as a "blogging petri dish". I like that better than saying "Steemit is an experiment" b/c the word experiment implies much more rigidity of construction than something growing in a petri dish.

As for comparison to Medium I would not say I am "well read", in the sense of reading a wide range of material and so I do not have the skill or inclination to assess quality by the same metrics you or Medium users do. It sounds like the allegations coming from the likes of Medium users do not share the same honest objectivity when assessing Steemit, who probably don't appreciate the experimental nature of the platform or the goals it's trying to achieve.

Most of my reading is non-fiction and thus limited from an artistic perspective of writing. For example I have very little appreciation of poetry. Never-the-less, I consider my vocabulary and command of the language to be considerably above average, and have few problems with the mechanics of expressing myself through the written word.

That's one big reason I like this platform, the diversity of topics and talents is quite broad. Would you say Medium can make the same claim? Are there many philosophers or technical types on Medium, or would you characterize it as leaning more towards the literary, artistic mindset?

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there is every type of writer on Medium. There's an entire category dedicated to decentralization that I follow. Also, I am a contributing writer to many publications like Hacker Noon. Here's a sample of my article in that publication: https://hackernoon.com/scarjo-robot-forces-us-to-consider-robot-replica-issues-ae447fc65fb9#.d8h3h9ysv

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I tend to notice that crypto people are a bit more suspicious than other kinds of people. I also notice that they don't tend to investigate platforms like Medium because they are full of bias. For example, if you search Medium for the word, 'bitcoin' you get a huge amount of results:
https://medium.com/search/publications?q=bitcoin

Medium is still sort of new, so people don't understand how it works. It has been very successful in creating a huge amount of niche audiences. People on the platform still engage in wars, but it's so successful with creating niches, that people tend to focus on their areas of interest. I met a ton of intelligent and amazing people on there. I sort of view it as a learning platform more than anything.

A lot of big blogs have moved to Medium. Check out the Trezor blog which is hosted on Medium now:
https://blog.trezor.io/

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as far as I know, Tesla is on Medium

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Just to butt in here, pessimistic as it may sound, I think the vision for Steemit (the centralized service, not the blockchain - I believe the distinction is clear to you all) is advertising. From the FAQ section "How does Steemit, Inc. earn money?":

Over time, Steemit will allow advertisers and bloggers to promote content by buying and burning Steem. Steemit can benefit from sales of Steem to advertisers in the cryptocurrency markets or offer advanced services to these advertisers and bloggers.

Also read the Privacy Policy in detail if you haven't already. It's pretty standard stuff, but in the context of this platform that is disappointing.

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in my opinion, after last hardfork, pressure for adding to STEEM additional source of revenue is not so strong anymore. If steemit would go into direction of substeems, then maybe promoting post would be even more profitable.

"Rewards for voting" should be revisited

You made a point what I am thinking. The oritinal design for "gamable curation for better contents" became "profitable curation with lazy and collusive upvotes".

IMO, curation should not give financial profits. Without this, people (not bots!) still can gain psychological satisfactions, which will actually lead us to better society.

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I guess initial idea for rewards for voting was introduced because of two reasons:

  • being paid for something what you are doing on facebook for free - in theory that sounds like a good PR phrase
  • there was a big problem with lack of interest in voting for worker proposals in BitShares

But Steem is different than Bitshares and IMO, it will never have problems like bitshares have... mostly because decision that those money for post will be spent, that decision was already made. You can only influence, how those funds will be distributed.

In Bitshares everyone wonder whether it is good idea to spent money in the first place.

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Oh Puhlease! peeps like steemsports and it's innocent fun. Some people want to rub all the gilt off the gingerbread. If you're worried about a business stop the porn LOL!!

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I already unapproved witnesses, which are supporting porn. Personally I can understand, that some people want to watch that stuff, but I think this is not the best business idea, that this kind of content should be supported by wintesses.

With porn situation is slightly different. Porn by default is hidden, unless you change your settings about #nsfw tag. So, new users are not directly affected by that.

we should introduce content-type

our key metric should be how much time people spent on Steemit.

we should think about introducing downvoting as normal way of saying "this is not good for Steemit".

All interesting proposals. Thank you for writing this. The TIME SPENT and the ATTENTION PAID, is the KEY indeed! This is our currency in life, the real basic economy of human living, before there was even money. Our time, and what we pay attention to, is at the base of our whole lives.

What's more accurate measure of someone's valuation is there than the amount of time and attention they are willing invest in content. If you're willing to spend your valuable, previous, limited time on something for longer a duration than something else, it means you must value it more.

Great post man. I only now just inished reading it from when you linked me earlier and I cannot disagree really. You're onto something here.

Thank you for the support and also showing me I'm not alone in my train of thought in regards to these guys.

Really great post and very important questions. It is clear that steemsports seems to be a different use than blogging. @steemsports post original content in one view, by their commentaries, but they are more brazenly a money making venture for the sake of it than bloggers are presumed to be. Maybe this exposes a contradiction in the blogger's image.

I think this is a great moment of challenge for the platform and I welcome the serious and balanced way you've thought about it. Many seem to view steemsports as a use which is against the "ethos" of the platform, if one can be said to coherently exist. For example, the founding document of Steemit, the white paper, lists the following [from pg 5]:

The Steem community provides the following services to its members:

  1. A source of curated news and commentary.
  2. A means to get high quality answers to personalized questions.
  3. A stable cryptocurrency pegged to the U.S. dollar.
  4. Free payments.
  5. Jobs providing above services to other members.

Because steamsports they are quite popular, it's hard to argue with that on a platform on which the power of voting is a sacred pillar. But I wonder if it's a snowball effect of popularity as opposed to genuine interest in the games. The real question is, is there a difference?

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But I wonder if it's a snowball effect of popularity as opposed to genuine interest in the games.

Most of Steemit users came from crypto-community, which has much higher tolerance for risk. Without being not afraid of risk it is really hard to stick with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. This is obvious that among such group of people any kind of betting is more popular than among group of average Joes.

Because of auto-upvotes there is big problem with "snowball effect", because people can leave the platform, but their votes will go for those betting games for ever. Because of that it is very difficult to measure what is real current interest of whole community. And because of auto-upvotes we will have really big problem with promoting new good authors on the platform... because they will not have chance to be more popular that someone who is auto-upvoted by people which are no longer on the platform.

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I guess we should should down vote the posts of bots which do that in that case, as @dantheman seems to suggest here. In particular

If you do not earn any positive reputation by contributing to the discussion then your votes will be ignored in our ranking algorithm.

I'll get my pitchfork! But really, it does seem in the hands of us all individually do this ad hoc, if we think the popularity by auto-upvote bot is a problem. I do, as an aspiring "new good author" 😁

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As soon as the market realizes that auto-voting for the top grossing authors fails out BIG TIME in profits to voting on the "less competitive", "niche" type content creators, whom churn out posts that get between $4 and $10 (vs. the $40-$100 that most of the auto-votes seemed to be geared towards), the distribution of Steem will take a healthy turn and so will the profits for the "little guy".

It's kind of funny, and I only just figured out the "real game" to voting just recently (I scored fifth highest curation ranking, out of thousands of active voting accounts, over the last week @ steemwhales.com) - the real way to make money curating is to do about the opposite of what most other voters are doing -

STAY AWAY FROM THE HIGHLY COMPETITIVE CONTENT!!!

Seriously, I can't emphasize this enough. I went from making 3 ~ 6 SP per week by curating mostly "popular" authors to 60 ~90 by going "down a tier", or two, by focusing my votes on more "niche" type authors.

It makes sense, if you think about it. It's like the business of trying to blog on keywords that achieve a good search engine rank (SEO, or "search engine optimization"). Most of the "easy money" that's made in that avenue is done so by focusing on the "niche markets" - the less competitive keywords. Only the people who're willing to work overtime on getting an edge over their competitors can make it within the war-zone of high competition keywords.

Curation here on Steemit is no different, only most of the market hasn't figured that out yet. For once, I'm ahead of the curve!

Oh, and can you keep this little conversation a secret between you and me? ;)

This is a genius post and I really appreciated you taking the time in your video to explain your opinion. I agree with you 100%. I have often lied in bed at night asking the question, "What is Steemit and where is it going?"
I also think that Steemit is a petri dish for entreprenurial ideas. Once the ideas completely wipe out the blogging content, it's time to find a new home for that idea. Blogging is not betting, and no marketing slogan for Steemit has expressed betting, so.........

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sidenote ... not meant to distract from good discussion... but

I have often lied in bed at night asking the question,

Oh @stellabelle... you should never lie in bed .. you should always tell the truth :)

I upvoted your post because I understand your concern but honestly I like @steemsports and would like it if they posted 10 times / day.

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As I said, I am not saying, that there is no place for SteemSport. It always depend on answer... what steemit really suppose to be: blogging and discussion platform or generic browser of steem blockchain?

Could you explain what is in your opinion the best thing in steemsports?

your post has been reesteemed. Thanks for your attention on this.

Yup, I knew I liked you. I have not once voted on a post because I thought it would make money. I vote on what I like, period. It would seem that the huge reduction in curation rewards after the hardfork would have encouraged more people to do the same but it almost seems to have had the opposite effect. Because people are getting less they are targeting what will potentially give them more. Unfortunate.

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Yup, I knew I liked you.

:blushing:
Thank you :)

but it almost seems to have had the opposite effect. Because people are getting less they are targeting what will potentially give them more. Unfortunate.

To be honest, I didn't notice that. In my case it is quite opposite (I am not sure why). I remember, that at the beginning I voted pretty rarely, because I treat my vote as something very pressies:

And I feel, like now I am more like:

:D :)

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I'm following you now, you'll have to post more ;) Especially since I'm liberal with my votes but I've become stingier with my follows LOL

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Kidding about the having to post more, (sometimes the problem with the written word is that you never know if you're giving the right inflection) I am stingier with my follows but when I find someone genuine they're stuck with me ;)

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But you are right. I could right a little bit more. Maybe not a post a week (that was my original plan), but at least once a 2 week would be not bad ;)

What a great post, Noisy! I'm deeper getting into it right now.
Thanks for sharing :)
Upvoted & Followed.

I enjoyed reading your perspective and actually agree with most of this post and video. However we need to take a look at "flagging" vs "downvoting".

As long as there are rules for flagging, it is not the same as a simple downvote.