The culprits on this platform are those who delegate to the bid-bots
As people have noticed Operation Clean Trending is in full flow, where posts on the trending page which have received more than half their votes from the bid-bots are flagged.
Obviously this has upset a few writers who feel they are being unfairly targetted (how else will they get noticed if they don't advertise, they cry).
The thing to understand is that this operation isn't really aimed at them, but at those with steempower who lend their votes to the bid-bots. The writer after all has to pay out a substantial sum to the bid-bots. But the curators make bank.
I refer you to the following post:
The writer who is a whale, goes through a bunch of posts which are worthy of an upvote, but which have earned a range of 4 cents to 47 cents. They praise the quality of the content.
And then they say this:
I like these posts, I think they are undervalued a lot BUT I'm not going to upvote them because I earn way more selling my votes to a bot.
As an example, If I upvote the first post to $10 I would earn about 2 steem but if I sell my vote to a bot I would earn about 6 steem, that's 3 times more.
This person thinks they are being smart by not rewarding good content. "Let's chase the noobs away, that is how to grow steemit" seems to be their mindset. Even though a few seconds thought should tell them that if everyone exits and this platform collapses from non-use, the price of steem will collapse too along with the value of their curation earnings.
Luckily those running Operation Clean Trending can see the bigger picture. In order for Steemit and Steem to succeed and grow in value, the rewards need to be perceived as fair. Otherwise why would anyone join?
As Operation Clean Trending cuts the rewards for posts upvoted by bid-bots, the returns for our whale who has sold their votes starts to drop. It now does become worth it for them to manually curate and upvote a bunch of good content by completely unknown people.