Introducing Promoted Content

in #steemit7 years ago

It is time we closed the loop on the Steem economy and provide another answer to an age old question, “where does the money come from?” Starting today authors, advertisers, and evangelists can promote content to be discovered by more readers.

We are pleased to announce a “Promoted Content” section that will soon be available right next to trending and hot. This section sorts articles based upon which articles have received the most Steem Dollars from users.

How does it work?

Anyone can transfer Steem Dollars to @null and include the @author/permlink they would like to promote in the memo. The Steem Dollars will be added to the total received by the post and increase its ranking in the promoted content ordering. will provide a helpful button at the bottom of each article that allows anyone to simply enter an amount and promote the content without worrying about filling out a transfer form.

Who gets the Money?

The @null account is a special account which no one has control over. This means that once money is transferred to @null it is locked away for ever. In a future hard fork we will remove the Steem Dollars, Steem, and Steem Power held by this account from the supply, but until then it is effectively gone.

This means the money is distributed to all stakeholders. Since all payments are made in Steem Dollars and Steem Dollars are similar to the debt of the network, it means all payments made to promote posts serve to reduce the debt load on Steem which increases the value of Steem.

Why view Promoted Content?

When someone promotes content they are attempting to advertise their content. This means they expect a return on investment. There are two ways they can get this return: directly by receiving votes or indirectly by selling another product, service, or idea.

In other words, this content is self-curated in a way that can help readers discover new authors that believe in themselves enough to invest in their own content and build an audience. When you view this section of you will discover a different cross section of content.

The more people that read, vote, and follow users who promote their content the more people will be willing to spend to promote content. The more people spend, then more Steem grows in value. In other words, simply visiting the promoted content page and reading promoted articles helps boost capital flowing into the platform.

Should I vote on Promoted Content?

You should only vote on promoted content if you would normally vote for it.

Just because someone promoted it doesn’t mean it deserves a vote. If promoted content starts to consistently earn more from votes than it costs to promote, then the market will respond by increasing the cost of promoting content. This cycle will continue until the risk / reward of promoting content balances out. In other words, the market will naturally push all profit margins toward 0.

Should I flag promoted content?

Posts that are heavily flagged will not show up in the promoted content list. This means that the community can and should filter the garbage from the promoted content. If you believe the promoted content to be “over paid”, “abusive”, “copyright infringing”, or otherwise “garbage” then you should flag it.

When someone pays to promote content they are paying for voter attention, but they are not promised positive attention. If they get negative attention then their investment in promoting their article will be worthless. It is the possibility of negative attention leading to filtering that keeps the promoted content free from spam advertisements.

If the community adopts a policy of flagging and “removing” legitimate promoted content from the queue then it will reduce the price people are willing to pay to promote their content. Worst case, it could cause people to avoid promoting content all together.

Do votes impact promoted ranking?

Unless a post receives more down votes than up votes the number of votes will have no impact on its ranking in the promoted section.

How long is promoted content displayed?

A promoted post is displayed until its first payout. After that time it will no longer be listed on the promoted page index.

Steemit, Inc Disclaimer

The @null account is a special blockchain level account and does not belong to Steemit, Inc or any other individual. Sending money to @null does not constitute a contract between you and anyone else. Steemit, Inc can and will change how it chooses to display, filter, and sort posts in the promoted section at its sole discretion.


This experiment should be a fun opportunity for the community to test the market demand for paid promotion. Its relevance depends upon the attention the Steem community voluntarily gives to promoted content. If successful it could create a virtuous cycle that benefits everyone involved. If it turns out to not be a valuable feature, then we will have all learned something!


This is a great idea.

I would modify this same idea and create the ability for people to pay SBD to boost regular posts too.

For example say my vote only holds 0.01 SBD per upvote - I see a mind blowing post that I think deserves more say $10 - give me the ability to pay $10 to the post earnings (not the user wallet) to "boost my vote"

  • I think that would be another feature that I would use.

You can but it will only go in the Promoted section as I understand it. I was thinking of paying into raising the profile the old way if that makes sense. So it is like supercharging your vote temporarily and rises through the ranks of trending etc.

I've sent some SBD to the @null account as a test to see how it works.

I love that idea. Many dolphin curators who complain that their votes aren't powerful enough might try that.

Best suggestion ever @thecryptofiend!
That's a brilliant idea. I have encountered so many posts that I wish I could give some cold hard SBD's.

That $10 doesn't go to the author though.

bagus saya sangat suka postingan anda

OMG!!! look at the thread. Dantheman said it's coming!!!

Excellent execution, so the way i understand it, a user burns steem dollars to null account to promote their post only on the promoted section, according to how much they pay for it, then it is free to be organically upvoted from there and rank on other pages. So it is never embedded in any kind of sidebar, and is completely unobtrusive to those who don't want to see it.
Would there be a transparent notice that a post has been promoted on the post itself if it ranks up through the trending page? And would the poster be able to add additional steem dollars to their post after the first injection, to try and outbid other posts for the top spot?
If this works well, it will massively increase the demand for steem based dollars, and reduce their supply, driving their value up.

anyone can promote any article at any time. The sum of all promotions determines the rank.

When you look at the payout estimate it displays "Boost Payments" (should probably be re-worded) so anyone inspecting the payout for a post can know how much paid promotion it got.

what about "Promotion Fees" for "Boost Payments"?

or Boost Promotion Fees ?

anyone can promote any article at any time.

I've send a 15 SBD to try a new feature

And it didn't work out for me!

money's gone tho

Why did you not test with 0.001?

Is it makes any difference?
It's not about money for me

There now needs to be a separation of the downvote and flagging system. Even more so now than before, post values can be inflated by promoters and then the post will get flagged, losing reputation in the process, for not being worth that amount.

A promoted post is displayed until its first payout. After that time it will no longer be listed on the promoted page index.

So why is the "promote" button still available to older posts? (posts that paid out one time but are not older than 4 weeks) That would drive user's to burn SBDs on older posts without benefit! (I was ready to promote one of my older posts to give it a second change!) BTW why not include posts that have paid once? Many would like to give a second chance to older posts and it would stream new money to steem !!!

@dantheman There's a glitch in this where it tells the user that they can't use their active password on that page and it appears that the transfer did not go through. This caused me to issue a "Promote" twice, since it appeared that it did not go through the first time. =/

One interesting question. Assuming I have submitted a link with a smaller SBD amount what happens if I send the same link with more SBD to @null? Will it just take the new SBD transfer and overwrite the old one or it will add the SBD sent to the amount previously sent ? Or maybe the second transfer with the same link will be completely ignored by the system at the moment?

It will add to the post and push it up the ranking.

Ok, thanks for clearing this out. Maybe that information should also be added to the post.

Bring on the big money!woo this is good for everyone!

not sure how I feel about this. I am trying to get my head around it. Could there another post explaining the origination of this idea? For example, what made this come about?

People have been sending me spam transfers just to look at their posts. This gives a better outlet to serve a market need. Also, this is the ad model of reddit.

This is better than the ad model of reddit Dan, at reddit you pay the company to place sidebar links, which are separated from the main content and shown to all users. With this system, advertisers pay the entire steem platform by burning steem dollars, and get featured on thier own queue, which users can choose to view, or not, and upvote these posts by quality just as a normal post, but with a headstart of visibility.

This is really excellent news! I yesterday asked if someone knew what was in the pipeline... nobody knew anything... :)
I am curious if there are more things like this in the works! Perhaps the price recovered today a bit because of this announcement?? I hope people will burn a lot... ;)

I have seen that @dantheman . People send anywhere from mirco-SBD or STEEM and more asking for Dan to check out there "New Post." So this should serve the community well but I don't think it will keep you from receiving "bribes" @dantheman .
full $teem ahead!

There should be a decrease in the use of bribes though. Those bribes just show people are willing to pay to promote their posts. But spreading 1 tenth of a cent as far as you can doesn't get any interest from the lucky winners of that tenth of a cent! This is a much better platform for people who are willing to pay because far more people can see their post (not just the handful of people they bribed).

true that @beanz but there are a lot of newbs and hard heads out there.

Awesome enhancement!!

I think I found a glitch though.

How long is promoted content displayed?
A promoted post is displayed until its first payout. After that time it will no longer be listed on the promoted page index.

I was not aware of this until I read this post. As soon as I saw the "promote" feature when I got home, I spent some SBD to promote 2 of my posts that had past the 24 hour payout and were on to the 30 day payment window. They are now showing on the promoted page.

I'm not sure what happens now. Will they sit there for 30 days? Should this have even been allowed? Based on the description, it seems like this should not have been allowed for a post that had past the 24 hour payout window.

[Edit] There is a post about the glitch here.

I suppose the way round it would be to have everything on the Promoted page until the 31 days are up. It may well be how it works now since your posts showed up.

This is an interesting feature, we'll have to see how this experiment pans out. Reddit never got me to post or comment, just lurk. I only made an account there in july so I could join Steemit, and I find their ad model uninspired, from a digital ad ops professional's perspective. But if the goal is to make a general dolphins/whales feed to promote the talented who may not be getting recognized, it could work. We'll have to see how the community games it?

Aside from monetary ways of increasing value to the platform, a useful and valuable feature would be allowing us to prevent individuals from spam transferring us. I'm very against censorship in the world, but I think the option to censor our wallets from spammers is a legitimate form of censorship that does not infringe on anyone's rights and is the digital equivalent of closing a door on a salesperson. I think everyone on Steemit got that one spam transfer about flying a balloon around the world

Hey I least you do see the spam* Steemdollars they send you, so I think its a great move!

Thanks for the elaboration. I was a bit hesitant when I first read this post, but after thinking about it some, it's actually a brilliant way for people to promote their posts as well as increase the value of SP/STEEM/SBD. Thanks for sharing! I'm excited to see where this new opportunity leads Steemit! :)

Ok, I can clearly see that. Good points.

" Also, this is the ad model of reddit." I loled :)

This is an interesting idea @dantheman, I will try and see how it works!

If memory serves me right, in a similar form, this idea has been proposed by an average-powered user more than a month ago (I'll never find the post again, please forgive). Glad to see it implemented.

I suggested something similar a while back but I'm sure someone else probably thought of it too.

Can this be done for Liquid Steem?

You can exchange your liquid Steem for SBD on the market :)

Right. SBD makes more sense because promoted posts compete agianst each other. You want a stable value. Imagine you could promote a post with STEEM and then the market value of STEEM drops 20%. Someone else can outbid you while paying less.

Im more inclined at looking at it as a burn mechanism due to the high inflation.

Burning SBD is essentially the same as burning STEEM, because it reduces the amount of STEEM that can, and very likely will in the current environment, be created by converting the SBD to STEEM. Essentially the burn comes out of virtual supply rather than current supply, but it still happens.

Excellent point.

Coin Marketplace

STEEM 0.27
TRX 0.11
JST 0.034
BTC 43996.29
ETH 2361.42
USDT 1.00
SBD 5.27