Where are your votes going?

in steemit •  last month

Do you vote purely manually or allow others to use your votes? I used to use some services to automate some of my voting, but gave this up as I decided I wanted more control at the expense of less convenience. The ones I used were:

  • Steemvoter offers automated votes where you can set the percentage for each recipient. If you don't pay then they can use a full vote from you each day on one of their various accounts.
  • Streemian is no longer operating, but I tried using some voting trails there. I noticed on steemd that some of my votes were going to posts I wouldn't really want to support, e.g. dodgy 'natural' remedies.

I bring this up because I notice some prominent names are voting up posts by this guy. He buys votes worth hundreds of dollars on each post and ends up on trending where he attracts lots of minnow votes and comments. Some people suspected he was not who he said he was, but it seem he has proved this now. I don't even care much about what he posts, but this sort of over-promotion does Steem/Steemit no favours. It sets wrong expectations and is not representative of the best content here.

Posts

I have flagged some of his posts, but that only removes a few cents. I did comment to say what I had done and why. He actually responded and was pretty polite about it without really justifying what he does. He says things like:

For me this is a closed subject. Do with your blog whatever you want, but do not go into the neighbor's yard just to waste your precious time with small criticisms.

Well part of the point of Steemit is that the users do the moderation and one of the listed reason for flagging is "Disagreement on rewards". He is enriching the vote sellers and reducing what others can make, so I think my flag is valid, if ineffective. I just wonder if some big accounts have allowed their votes to be used on this without realising it. Or maybe they are quite happy about it. Does anyone know either way? I won't name any names, but you can do your own research.

On a slightly different topic I was chatting to @slobberchops when he pointed out some of the impolite comments you can see on Facebook. Would people insult others so much here where they risk getting flagged? I think people should feel free to criticise at least. I don't think I've flagged anyone for insulting me. I only tend to do it where I think their actions harm Steem in general, e.g. spam or milking rewards.

There may be times when I want to automate my votes, but I'm going to look into a DIY approach for this. It shouldn't be too hard to write a bit of Python to do this and leave it running on a Raspberry Pi. Then I can fine-tune the rules to whatever I want. I expect someone has already written this. A Pi would only cost a few pounds a year to run and it could be doing other things too, e.g. ad-filtering.

Finally, I saw this article on Yahoo about blockchain projects that mentions Steemit and DTube. They emphasise that these are hard to censor. I've seen others talking about Minds also being resistant to censorship. It seems a lot of so-called 'alt-right' people are using that. I've had an account there for ages, but I don't use it much as the Steemit community is much better.

Enough of my ramblings, Steem on!

I'm Steve, the geeky guitarist.

Spam comments may be flagged. Beware of the Commentphant!

Authors get paid when people like you upvote their post.
If you enjoyed what you read here, create your account today and start earning FREE STEEM!
Sort Order:  

I use steemauto.com for all of the accounts I have control over currently. It is a nice tool and functions well most of the time best of all it is free. Although you can donate to the cause.

It only uses posting key to log in with steemconnect but to authorise it you have to use your active key one time.

I only use the claim rewards tool and the fanbase part of it. It a list where you create the accounts to vote on how many per day and what percentage of vote you use per account.
Its pretty easy to set up.
The only thing I would prefer it had was a option to upvote comments. I have a few great friends on here that only comment. I always have to manually upvote them. I hate it when I miss voting for them. As well It would be nice to have a flag option to automatically flag people too.

@lovenfreedom is working on some code to make our own system. When she gets it done and tweaked we will allow others to use it.

From an idealistic point im with you 100% - But the way the current system is setup makes it to where this is basically the thing to do.

If whales self vote, people cry foul, they get upset, they think that plutocracy is taking over the system that could have given them freedom and financial fortitude. But, they feel to see that "freedom" means that all people are free, not just a few, and this includes whales to upvote themselves.

Since the system of incentives is currently broken, and people tend to love the populist conversations with cult like intensity. They pitchfork against these whales, call them names, insults and what not. A nuanced conversation is a thing for the weak and feeble.

So what do whales do? What would say.. @sirvotesalot do, if people are "hating" him for self voting, for trying to make money on his investment.

Option a) Shutdowns to the outside world and becomes a straight out spammer pressing the farkit button.

Option b) Delegates to a bot

So you see, delegating to a bot is nothing more and nothing less than self voting, but it removed the stigma just a little bit. Enough, so that people pitchfork against the ones who are buying the promotion services, and thus the delegators to the services can be shielded from the social pressures.

Now, does this make it right? Does this make it wrong? The answer is somewhat subjective, but I think if we had a diverse system for investment, it would balance out the scales a bit more.

·

I just think it's short-sighted to just exploit the platform at this stage. If it does grow then we all benefit, but those who abused it earlier may well get judged on what they did. Maybe they don't care. Steemit is too small to even register as worth using to the big players of social media. I'd like to see that change, but we are getting off the right path to making that happen.

·

delegating to a bot is nothing more and nothing less than self voting

It is, but its less obvious as you say. My recent delegation to @helpie that gives me a bigger vote could be a seen as a way of self-voting but this is deemed acceptable? On the other hand, @helpie votes people with 'good content' for nothing if they are accepted into the 'group'.

Where do we draw the line? If I also delegate to @qurator and @silvergoldbotty simply to gain daily self-votes am I then exploiting the system?

·
·

As the system operates today its not designed, or let's use the word "conducive" to make any type of manual curation profitable or sustainable. So, i will say the controversial thing...

If given the choice to support a good article writer, the new shakespear or a good human being... i will chose the latter without hesitation.

Helpie to me is an effort for good people who care to pool their resources together and shift the distribution a little bit so it does not syphon to the top with much velocity.

Now, this phenomena to me is due to many factors, but the one that helpie is fighting back on, the battlefront, you could say, is the inability to cooperate meaningfully.

So, what we are doing in helpie is supporting you... via your content, but the distinction is key.

That conversation is completely aside, and should not be conflated with whales self voting.

My position on that matter is this... everyone is free to do what they want with their stake, the right response to shit content is flags.

Nearly all my voting is automated and I absolutely love steemauto as a way to do it since it allows to save up a huge amount of time. I nearly exclusively upvote people form the health / vegan / running / fitness communities on steemit who do good things for the platform (voting distribution). I honestly don't care so much about actual content as long as it is halfway decent.

I see awareness around voting as a big issue on Steemit, smaller accounts tend to think their upvote does not matter while bigger accounts often vote based on what they get in return or sell their upvotes.

I don't really like the direction Steem is going with the SMT's and believe the communities feature would be far more deneficial for the platform right now.

·

A lot of us have people we trust to put out good content, so automation may play a part. It is a lot of work to curate, but I enjoy reading posts. I've delegated to others to use my voting power more effectively. They can spread the votes wider. I don't mind losing curation rewards.

I really hope communities can give things a boost.

Hey, @steevc.

I still manually curate everything. I read posts, and if I can find something to say, I do that. I have yet to try any automated service, though I have been thinking about it more lately. The thing is, I like reading and commenting, so the upvote is just part of the process, if the post causes me to read and comment.

From what I can gather about the account you site above, it is authentic, but as you say, an exorbitant value gets attached to his posts which generally are motivational or inspirational, which some people have a problem with, too.

I don't mind the motivational/inspirational. That's fine. However, very few posts, in my opinion, are worth anywhere near $500-$800 or more. But then, since he bots his posts up quite a bit, how much of that has he already spent? It's the false sense of earnings I don't like, and the blame isn't necessarily with him or the vote sellers, but with the system. A simple amount on the post showing the bot votes, or a net amount, or even the word, promoted, would be great.

Looking at his account, he's been here less than I have, but already has a significantly higher rep and is a smaller dolphin. I don't know if he's invested or no, but it's not at all farfetched to say he's managed that through vote bots alone. I just know, on it's own, that's a lot of growth in something like seven months time.

·

His rep is mostly from those bought votes, so it means nothing really. Okay, so he gets lots of comments through being on Trending. Maybe that's what he wants. I don't think there's a massive profit when you buy votes unless you get lots more from voting trails or elsewhere. I just wonder if some people have allowed their votes to be used and don't realise they are just encouraging behaviour that is not so good for Steemit. I really don't care about the content of his posts, but I agree it's not worth that much. I want to see a good share of the rewards going to others who choose to not buy their votes.

·
·

I don't know if it's worth checking into whether or not he's bought STEEM and powered up, but he does have over 7,000 SP, so it's coming from somewhere, and I'm not aware of anyone who has amassed that amount of SP since January, so something's going on. I've seen reps going pretty high in short periods of time thanks to bidbots. SP, not so much, but maybe the other folks I've stumbled upon weren't powering up their earnings.

At any rate, as long as the illusion exists, people are going to do it. And if they actually are making some healthy earnings, they're not going to quit. However he gets those upvotes and comments, they really look impressive to the untrained eye. Annoying to the rest.

Just looked more closely. He's been powering down, too, so there's a couple of thousand STEEM sitting there. Wallet history doesn't go back far enough for much of anything else, other than the bot transactions and his earnings.

·
·
·

If a few people withhold their vote or flag him then he loses his profit even if he still gets more rep. This platform gives us freedom to do what we want, but the community can still police it. Many are dealing with some of the smaller abuse, but they are scared to tackle the big fish.

Sometimes I wonder if we are targeting the right people. Let's say vote sellers are the drug dealers and the buyers are drug users. Why are we choosing to target the buyers that we think "goes a bit over board" Instead of aiming for the sellers?

There should be a certain responsible as a seller and I think we haven't found a way to make that happen. But sometimes this "fighting" seems endless because we don't aim at the source.

I'm not saying buying votes should be removed, I even use it myself (within certain standards) But instead of teaching the people that buys it through sanctions I would find it much easier to teach the small handful of sellers.

Just my humble opinion.

I've not looked into any of this automated stuff. I split my time between new posts and my feed to look to good content and vote accordingly. I'm here to read interesting stuff and reward accordingly - if only a teeny weeny little vote.

·

Just support whatever you think is good and keep commenting. We're building something amazing here, and it can be fun too :)

I have been using Steemvoter for a while as I have had less time to use on Steemit. I pay for the service so the votes are not used for anything I wouldn't have voted for.

I like paying for thing.

I curate manually and have much the same policies as @kabir. I tend not to vote for those who use bidbots and posts which already have a decent payout. I try to encourage newbies and those creating good content but going unnoticed.
The chbartist bidbot use is well OTT. Sickening!

I never visit the trending tab anymore it is just so broken as for my upvoting i do use SteemAuto and am actually a part of a trail which i am having a great time with, perhaps you could start a trail of your own.

·

I'm not too sure about trails. I seem to get vote masses of tiny votes from some, but I don't know who makes that happen. I'd rather have readers and commenters.

·
·

That's understandable though SteemAuto allows the creator to decide who gets upvoted from the trail so you could in theory only allow those with 1000 SP to receive upvotes but i have not tried it myself though.

For now I am sticking to manual curation. It helps me keep in touch with the posts that I need to comment on. If and when I have sizeable following, I might switch to auto upvotes but for now I'll just manually curate.

PS: On an unrelated topic- have you heard about steem based musing.io?

·

I looked at musing when it started. I think it was creating a new post for each response, which I didn't like. We have to be careful that 'dapps' don't flood the feed.

·
·

On the other hand the questions logged in as non-posts are just comments on one huge post (musing-thread) . Is it possible that this is their way controlling the post traffic generated from their website?

If you ever do a post (a critique or a promotion - your choice) on them, I would love to read your detailed feedback :-)

Have you tried steemauto @steevc. I was having a conversation with @abh12345 last week about this and that is what he suggested.

I still do all my voting by hand and will continue to do so until the value increases such that I can spread it around even more. For now I prefer manual voting so i can manage my voting power and make sure it doesn't drop too much and still upvote those I want to, as much possible. 😊

·

I haven't used it. They don't seem to say if they use your votes for themselves. They need to be up front if they do. I think some of the other dapps need to make it more obvious where they take a share. My VP is right down at the moment and I'm letting it recover a bit.

·
·

Form what I understand steemauto is completely free and thet don't use your upvotes for anyone else but the people on your personal upvote list.

·
·
·

That's good. I wonder how they fund their Web site and whatever servers they use.

·
·
·
·

They do get donations for that and a lot of people including myself have them on their auto vote list which helps them to pay for the server. A while back they explored the option to charge some kind of fee but it did not come to that so for now it is all free to use and it has been working very consistently for me. There are a couple more options out there for auto-voting. https://steemdunk.xyz/ (paid) & https://steemautomated.eu/ (free) along with Steemvoter.

·
·
·
·
·

It's great if they can live off donations. Steemit is a great platform to experiment with business models.

·
·
·
·
·

Your balance is below $0.3. Your account is running low and should be replenished. You have roughly 10 more @dustsweeper votes. Check out the Dustsweeper FAQ here: https://steemit.com/dustsweeper/@dustsweeper/dustsweeper-faq

·
·

My VP is right down at the moment and I'm letting it recover a bit

That's why I do mine manually, so I can be back at 100% when I want to start again the following day. 😁

·
·
·

If I do my own autovoter I may make it adjust the votes to keep my VP at the level I want. I'll share whatever I do here.

·
·
·
·

That's a clever idea @steevc. What fun to be able to do that. 😁

I'm not sure if the insults were serious or being taken lightly, being an office worker you have to be careful as emotions don't always come over in text. The aforementioned argument was about my recent album review that I also placed on Facebook. It do this to try and promote the platform.

On another note, I find I got some crap today from another Steemian because I didn't follow or check out some other people who he was trying to introduce to the platform. Whether it was a serious dig or not, I'm not sure at this point, but it did make me see red.

I don't follow too many people as I am very particular about who I follow, as this is my choice and not someone else's.

'Biting the hand that feeds' spring to mind' in this case as said Steemain did receive a vote from me for his excellent article, but I can't do with pushy rude people so took the vote away and un-followed him.

We need talented people on Steemit such as this unnamed person, but they need to learn some respect or regardless of their talent, their support may dwindle.

I wont say anything else more on this subject.

·

I hope that other Steemian just misjudged you. How well do we really know people when we have only seen a few comments from them. I'm generally pretty careful in how I respond to anyone as I don't like to burn my bridges.

·
·

I don't like to burn my bridges.

Me neither, I wont call anyone out and I'm just going to move on.

The reaction from this person shocked me a little, this is not Facebook and actions merit repercussions.

I prefer manual curation and tend to read the post before voting. Vote buyers? They can buy any amount of votes or set any wanted payout for their posts. Do they really need my additional 1 cent? Perhaps a person who has only 20 votes will appreciate it more than the one who has 200+ votes...

·

I like to see the rewards spread a bit further. I'm not sure it's great for Steemit at this stage to have most of them going to a very few people.

I vote manually, I don't want others to decide for me.

I am always taking my time to read and reply on what I am interested. Never used any of the options, not because of control, but because I like to be surprised and find gems out there.

I vote manually because if not... what its the point?

Uneven reward/wealth distribution is a indeed damaging this platform, like it does to any other community.
I see rich getting richer, poor becoming more poor and middle class shrinking.

·

Like life? We can choose to use what influence we have here to change the distribution, but it can feel hopeless when others can give many $$ with a vote.

Interesting thoughts. That would be cool if you could self automate your votes. I think a lot of people are turned on to Steemit by the thought of sustained rewards in the form of curation, but since your vote is tied to your name, you still want to make sure you are voting on good content. At the very least content you are interested in. I look forward to hearing if you make any progress with the Pi-voter!

·

You need a lot of sp to really earn from curation. I don't worry about how much I make from it

·
·

:) easy to say when you are a dolphin. Seriously though, if this were my full time job I would be on the street. I am lucky that I have a decent job and I am able to use Steemit mainly as a creative outlet and a way to meet new people. I understand what you are saying.

I do manual curation, auto curation and a little vote selling assuming there is anything else left (there often isnt). I know it's not an excuse but I'm only a small account.

I have been insulted on steemit, in fact very vigorously by a group, because I dared to point out that they were pedalling opinions as facts; that made them really angry. It wasnt nice but it was a while ago and I can laugh about it now ha ha, though I don't think any flagging occurred.
I definately see much more abuse on other platforms (not aimed at me but as a spectator), Reddit is pretty bad a lot of the time. Overall steemit is a much nicer place to be.