Fighting spam, dealing with losers, and why no one gives a fuck

in steemit •  6 months ago

If you haven't heard of the @buildawhale blacklist, then let me know what island you live on as I can use a vacation.

I spend 10-60 hours a week researching, identifying, and punishing spammers, plagiarists, fraud, and abuse. I do this because I don't want my bot to reward these type of users, nor do I want this platform to have any more of this garbage than it already has.

As I have said before, this is a never-ending thankless job, but most people don't know to what extent I mean and how hopeless it is.

The last few days have been especially exciting. If you would indulge me, let me take you on a journey.

I've said this a few times, so I'll be brief. @buildawhale was built to offer promotion services, discourage spam, and reward quality authors. Much of my spam fighting has been done in the dark behind the scenes but was made public due constant claims that bid bots promote spam and don't care about what they vote on.

Since then, I have devoted a large portion of my time to find and identify these users, stop them from using my services, and try to get their delegation removed and cease their ability to sustain their activities.

I have been very public about this activity so it is crystal clear where I stand. I truly believe one of the biggest issues that need to be resolved on Steem is how easy it is to abuse the system and how many are. It harms the credibility and value of our investment. Left uncheck the platform cannot thrive much less survive.

Here are some examples since I have been here.

Having a blacklist, spending hours researching and finding proof of plagiarism and spam is about the worst thing I could possibly do as a bot owner. Spammers are the best customers on the platform, and no one wants to pay for it or even spend the time. Having our blacklist has dramatically reduced our bidding windows, and has costed me far more in time and headaches. (Before someone takes this out of context, this is just a fact, it is not my position.)

In the last 7 days I have been flagged 934 times. All the result of maintaining and running my blacklist.

Fortunately, a lot of these users have zero investment in the platform and their flags are as meaningless as their posts.



That's not always the case though and I'm not one to cry about flags.

Here you have one user @michaellamden68 that has been just posting porn images and gifs for up to $30 using purchased delegation. His delegation has been removed and he has been blacklisted from further delegation purchases.

He even self-proclaims he steals all the images.

Please don’t get me wrong, I am “man” enough to stand by my posts; yes they are plagiarised, ofcourse they are #nsfw.

Yet his alt/whale friend claims no one is stealing, and he will buy steem power to flag this "censorship".

He wrote a post that a lot of the blacklisted users have jumped on and started to chatter.

Two users suggested going to the FBI and reporting the blacklist and flags to them as fraud. One user spent 29 days posting slander about myself and @buildawhale before I said enough is enough and started to flag him.

This user put in an anonymous tip to the FBI about this fraud.

I've seen my share of help I'm being flagged posts but this one takes the cake.

The one who suggested contacting the FBI even went so far to create a 1-hour video exposing me as having a "magical power manipulate the steemit driving engine itself".

290g2f.jpg

The funny thing, he was blacklisted for spam, posting the same video over and over and screenshots of off chain discussions 7+ times a day.

He has almost no understanding of Steem and decides to contact the FBI because he received a generic comment saying he is on our blacklist for Spam, Plagiarism, or Fraud. He not only contacted the FBI but has posted 50 or more comments related to it along with the lovely video above.

Yet I have continued to research and report spammers. Honestly, though, it is becoming more and more frustrating and nearly at the point fuck it, just do what everyone else does and ignore it.

I realize many people don't believe in copyright, but decentralized doesn't mean you are free to do whatever you want. Even if you don't believe in copyright or plagiarism, there is the fact users are making hundreds or thousands a day off other people's work.

By the same mentality, I should be able to use the latest Hollywood movies and put them on @dtube and vote them up for profit.

Most of the stuff I report is "out of scope" and is left churning. Most of the time the delegation isn't removed and it is left to go on for months or longer.

Most of the users on the blacklist are spamming or plagiarising, like these users:

If you want to see the entire blacklist, it is available as a Github repo.

And finally, some peanut butter & oatmeal if you are into that sort of thing.

Jerry
Source

X48EJ

Why you should vote me as witness

Witness & Administrator of four full nodes

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I spend 10-60 hours a week...nor do I want this platform to have any more of this garbage than it already has.

My question would be:

Then why do you continue with the bid bot in the first place?

We see the effects that they’ve had on the platform. We see them being abused by spammers, plagiarists, and shitposters. You’re never going to be able to get ahead of these people...it’s always a game of catch-up by its very nature. The effort to keep a blacklist is almost completely futile. Anyone can create a new account and go right back to abusing them.

These bid bots are what the “abusers” are able to use to buy their reputations, visibility, and to make a profit. It seems to me that the bid bot “owners” are mostly responsible for the current situation. There’s no ability to abuse bid bots if there weren’t other users running the bid bots...and other users delegating to them.

We can only blame the code to a certain extent. The rest of the blame falls on the opportunists that are capitalizing on those shitty blockchain protocols.

If we were to get rid of delegation (roll back HF18), how many of these high-powered bid bots would still exist?

For the record: It’s the protocols that ultimately need to be fixed - not bid bots. The hard forks that were implemented last year are clearly not working. Delegation, linearity, and the 10-vote target improved nothing. In fact, these things have made the environment/behavior here much worse.

But it’s obvious that this won’t be corrected with the current “leadership” around here. It’s a shame, really.

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Then why do you continue with the bid bot in the first place?

Exactly. It's like Churchill saying "Yeah, we colonized and ruined half the world, but hey - at least we didn't start World War II or perpetrate the Holocaust."

I will of course not blame voting bots opportunistically exploiting a broken system, but it is nevertheless a corruption of the social network as it was intended. Indeed, I admire voting bot managers for their resourcefulness. The same way I admire scammers like Frank Abagnale or even the infamous Charles Ponzi. However, voting bot owners should accept that it's a corruption, instead of pretending to be altruistic - they are not in the slightest. Maybe some are less corrupt than others, but that's not even a backhanded compliment at this stage. Whales and large SP delegation recipients were meant to curate engaging and popular content, to build the network and make it accessible to the mainstream. The curation rewards were meant to compensate for their efforts, plus a much higher price that would be the result of the network going mainstream. Unfortunately, with bullshit that makes even 4Chan look quality trending regularly, it'll never be mainstream. It's heading towards being the next 4Chan-like cesspit, and regular, sane folks stay away from insane shit like that. If you really give a shit about Steem, instead of lining your own wallets, that's what you should do with a large amount of SP delegation - CURATE. Curate, not sell. Imagine how much better Steem would be if those millions of SPs and 10-60 hours weekly were actually used for curating popular content.

Unfortunately, I don't have a solution. A social network with money involved is probably inherently a bad idea. Greed will always take priority over social interaction. Worse still, being decentralized means scammers can not only get away with unethical acts - they are actually incentivized to do so. Over time, what would be unethical is normalized, and that's what has happened with voting bots. The banality of evil. Mind you, I'm not dumping on Steem here, it's become something else quite different from the original intention. It can still a valuable market and can succeed with SMTs and such incoming. It's highly undervalued (relative to other shitcoins), and I will continue to hold Steem. But in its current form, it'll simple not be a good social network (except in some moderated niches when Communities launch).

Getting rid of SP Delegation will not really help. Ex-delegators will just follow votes instead, and scripts can easily track how much voting % is going where and how much curation reward is generated by each different followed account. Not as easy as SP delegation, but the effect is ultimately the same; and the effort is well worth the exploitation of the Steem network for personal benefit. Increasing the voting target to 40 will make it worse, as that incentivizes the people making tons of votes - voting bots in this case. Same for superlinear - the voting bots command a vast majority of SP, they will dominate even more with prior protocols.

So, yes, I give up. I have no solution. The idea of a decentralized social network with money involved is inherently flawed. Well, I do have a solution, but people here will hate it. Yes, it involves governance.

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PS: Superlinear will certainly help with spamming, but that's a different topic. The real problem here, as I have argued before, is the exponentially generous bandwidth limits. It literally takes a few thousand dollars to disrupt the network. (We saw what someone did with a few hundred last week.) No human needs that kind of bandwidth.

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Bandwidth is a problem. Like you, I’ve been banging that drum for a long time...since at least last spring/summer. But just like they did with the hard forks last year, the inmates running our asylum decided to remove that abuse mitigation.

And they don’t care about the results. They just plow ahead with their next (likely shitty) hard forks.

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Do you think bandwith could improve the user retention @ats-david? From my personal point of view one of the greatest issues is the fact that new accounts are not converted into active accounts since more than three months now:

Daily active users: Source: @penguinpablo

What's the matter with those who sign up but don't start being part of this community?

THAT is to me the no. 1 of all questions.

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Usually, their expectations are way too high. They join, expect to make a lot of money, don’t make a lot of money (or any at all), then quit.

Or, they just can’t figure anything out and get frustrated due to the complexity of the system and the horrid user interface.

Those are probably reasons #1 and #2 for the failure to retain users.

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Generally I believe if users expectations don't meet with what the product is actually able to offer, it's not only a users mistake. Then it's rather a lack of communication.

Why do people expect getting rich on steemit? 1) Because there are a few who're filling their pockets on a daily basis. 2) Because they weren't educated before joining the whole thing.

Have you ever seen the welcome page of steemit? After opening that page I had actually no more questions... 21st Century, blockchain technology, and then... a loooong text, haha! The most important advice comes at the very end, so I wonder how many people have even read it?

The best attitude to have is to expect to make nothing. Have fun. Get engaged. Make friends. If along the way you earn something - bonus!

Yes, that's it. But nobody knows.

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If this was an article, I'd resteem it right away. Thank you @liberosist!

Well, I do have a solution, but people here will hate it. Yes, it involves governance.

I'd love to read more about that part actually. Probably one of the main problems of Steem is that people believe decentralization = absence of governance. That's at least what I've perceived during the past 1.5 years on this platform. But decentralized networks don't work without accountability, and accountability requires a set of certain rules.

Right now the Steem community enjoys absolute freedom, a freedom that includes the ability to rip off the whole eco-system and destroy it from the inside.

The result is: stagnation.

Stagnation in numbers: (Daily active users, stagnant since 3 month now - Source: @penguinpablo)

Now I have a déjà vu. I've got the sensation that we've talked about that already a hundred times. Yes, we did! You and me, and all the others...

That's why Steem needs to wake up. Very soon more players will enter the market and then it's too late to fix it. I really hope that these big promises called SMTs and Hivemind will have any impact. Yet, the system like it's today is totally corrupt - not sure if new features built on the very same basis will be even able to make a difference.

Again, thanks for your massive comment. Really inspiring, and I hope a lot more had the chance to read it :-) Happy weekend!

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You're absolutely right, of course. I'll write up something.

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Nice! Let me know to not miss it then :-)

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The more I see posts and comments like this, the more I'm convinced the solution I'm working on, is the right one :-).

I must agree with you guys, even though I like @themarkymark, I would just cut the bot all together, and find a better way to reward quality posts.

Cg

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If there is no struggle, there is no progress.

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Off topic but related to the opening Churchill quote; they did something worse, they spread their religion! ;)

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Ha, that's an entirely different can of worms.

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sorry, i hadn't meant to make a comment...why is there no delete button???

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Its not the fault of the bot, its the fault of the people abusing it imo.

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People will always try to abuse things that's why bitcoin was invented and decentralised so if we can't build bots that are abuse proof or at least to a reasonable level i.e 99% then they should not exists and by there very nature they are a magnet for bad behaviour

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The other big issue with bot abuse is that it is simply related to how much money one has to start with. It is catch-up because most of us can't really afford to use many of the bots. So as soon as the spammers get going, they can simply stay a head because they now have more money than most people trying to play more fair.

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Two words: steem censorship

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What's the problem with censorship? Life would be chaotic and stupid without censorship. Newspapers, magazines, webpages... all rely on censorship to have things make sense and be organized. Without it, newspapers would be cluttered with ads no one had to pay for, fishing magazines would be full of articles on knitting and raising chickens, and webpages would make no sense.

Where people get the idea that censorship is 'bad', I have no idea.

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Well the question then is who is the one in charge of censorship? Isn't the idea to have a decentralized platform? If you are a fan of censorship then that is bringing in a "centralized" concept onto a de-centralized community platform. When you choose a censorship "authority" then they will be the ones controlling the content that is produced - which is against the idealism that the blockchain/decentralized network is all about is it not?

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Why do you say that censorship is "centralized?" I'm sorry but that doesn't make sense. It is an activity that can be centralized or not; it is not inherently centralized.

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Property owners are in charge of censorship of their respective property. If you own or have control over the page or property, then you have a right to censor it. Would you think it's 'bad' if you were forced to listen to every Jehovah's witness who rang your bell? Of course you would, because it's your home, the JW's are on your property, and you have the right to censor them.

Is your home 'centralized'? It's an irrelevant question, you are the property owner and you have the right to dictate the terms and conditions of the speech that goes on in your property, just like the owners of a fishing magazine can choose to allow knitting articles or not. That's how property ownership and censorship works.

Now, when the GOVERNMENT does it... that's a different story. We should have freedom FROM government limitations on our speech. The government has neither the right to force fishing magazines to include knitting articles, nor prevent them.

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This is a confusion of Censorship vs quality control. Not putting knitting in a fishing magazine doesn't make knitting content completely unavailable, you just have to look at the knitting magazine. This is the marketing strategy of private enterprise.

Censorship is generally referring to government control over what people have the legal ability to view. If a private enterprise had a monopoly on knitting and then hid it, that could be seen as censorship I suppose.

The idea of censorship being bad plagues my every day life, given that I live in a country controlled by an authoritarian regime where you can go to prison simply for the intention of handing out stickers promoting women's rights on women's day.

The reason it's bad is because a small group of powerful people get to dictate what is right and wrong by promoting what pleases them and censoring what doesn't.

Anyway, as pointed out below, this is seemingly totally unrelated to this OP so better leave it at that!

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There is a huge difference between censorship and governance. I loath the idea of someone telling me what I can and can't say, but I don't mind being held accountable for my actions!

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Where does censorship fit into this?

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thats like saying the car manufacturers and gunmakers are to blame for people who abuse them, and thus they should be punished.

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What is?

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saying the bots are being abused, so its the bot makers fault, and the bots therefore should not exist.

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You may need to read my original comment again.

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Okay well i may have slightly misread, but still, you are seeming to suggest he should stop with his bot due to the bot being abused... which seems a bit extreme. The bot has positive attributes for steemit and for the creator of the bot, it doesn't solve anything to not have a good bot, letting the bad bots over power?

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would you like to do public welfare through blockchain

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awesome your comment sir,,,
i agree with you.....

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For the record: It’s the protocols that ultimately need to be fixed - not bid bots. The hard forks that were implemented last year are clearly not working. Delegation, linearity, and the 10-vote target improved nothing. In fact, these things have made the environment/behavior here much worse.

I completly agree - let's stop talking about fixing it - here comes my proposal for a solution:
https://steemit.com/utopian-io/@steemhq/how-to-make-steem-great-again-the-exponential-author-reward-method

I realize many people don't believe in copyright,

This is real? I never heard of the concept of being anti-copyright, what angle do people take where stealing a painting and selling it as your own is A-OK?

The rest of the post - hilarious. I also experience a whole world of hilarious anger backlash in steemstem, where people blatantly steal content and then deny it despite the overwhelming evidence in front of their faces... What a world.

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They deny it because they have no ethics or values ​​by any side. I do not understand how there can be such people, taking advantage of the work of others

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If they are aware of it and don't believe in it then they clearly do have ethics... just, weird ethics that don't relate to the real world. Seems bizarre shrug

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I mean copyright reform is one of the things the pirate parties have in their program.
Ill say this much, i cant see how copyright violations have anything to do with ethics - we know for a fact that piracy helps the actual holder of the copyright to sell more copies. The positive effects of, for instance, videosharing plattforms on sales of theater tickets has been studied.

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Is this real ?

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Cheetah is one of the bots I know that upvotes a plagiarized content. And it's useful. But like what you've said creators will always deny it.

Hey themarkymark,

As a legit user of voting bots I really appreciate your efforts and I have upvoted your witness in appreciation.

I don't care about the copyright laws, but I get where you are coming from.

So,.. Regarding the FBI. First I highly doubt he reported it at all nor that they will care. Still, the drama factor is hysterical.

Keep caring!

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The FBI thing is hilarious, it's a good troll but if that person thinks for even a second that the FBI cares that shitposters are abusing Steemit ... good grief man get a life lol.

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For me I haven't use bid bots because I'm still fairly new here and I don't think i have enough funds to purchase it. Maybe in time...I'll be able to do that as with others. Now, about copyrights, yes that is important in terms of originality and ownership. I would hope that people would understand and learn to cite information that is not their own. The credit should be given where or to whomever it is due. What is wrong with citing anyway? It shows integrity and that one is creative enough to bring something to the surface with the intertwined and combination of his or her thoughts and ideas on something. On the other hand, involving legal authorities for a decentralized platform i think is defeating its purpose. Don't you agree? I'm only giving my two cents as I understand what's been portrayed here. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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It is very Important thing for our work
I am upvote you brother

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yes i'm agree with y whatup

FWIW @postpromoter is now using your blacklist and now that you've shared it in the GitHub repo I'm going to be making it available via a public URL and adding it as the default for all new voting bots that use the Post Promoter software.

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this brings a smile to my face...

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U guys are awesome! Thanks for protecting the community!

But I spend many hours looking for the best things about Steemit and I try to reward them, even with little ... with what I can.Instead of fighting all this time that makes Steemit a bad platform, why do you powerful whales not help the many small projects that try to reward quality? These projects are very important for Steemit's growth but they do not have the right attention. I could give you many examples ...
Spend time and resources with the worst part of Steemit. Try, instead, to focus on the best part ...

Any chance you could outsource finding plagiarizm? Like at @utopian-io model: i found a spammer, prove he is a spammer beyond reasonal doubt. You (or other moderator) quickly check it, added into bloacklist and upvote the founder.

You are doing the right thing. I have voted only for two witnesses, you're one of them. Keep going! You have our support we like the way you think.

Keep on fighting the good fight.

That guy is a joke.

It seems to me that all these problems started when they made it possible to delegate steem. When you couldn't delegate, the whales had to take responsibilty themselves for what was upvoted (so they followed curation streams or followed well known curators or did the curation themselves). Once you delegate it's out of your control what the steempower is used for.

I could completely understand if you gave up the fight or even joined the dark side. It must be tiring and thankless dealing with spammers, plagiarists, scammers and low-effort posters.

It makes my head hurt how much profit you pass up by being a good guy only to be attacked ....

PS.

If you have magical blockchain powers, can I have a pony? ;)

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I'm not struggling, but it is definitely not the most financially sound path. I have a hard time stopping because I do give a fuck.

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Hang in there. Wish I could help but my votes and flags wouldn't move the needle.

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Just keep making cool shit.

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.23 cent votes is pretty good! lol You have some power. :)

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Lol I agree. I wanted to upvote that comment too, but I should conserve as my vote goes <.01 when I drop below 80%

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And the world needs more people like you who do.

Thank you @themarkymark for caring enough to devote a good portion of your time and energy to it.

You have a witness vote from me.

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If you have magical blockchain powers, can I have a pony? ;)

Not sure if the Pony were real stuff after Steemit spam elfos overpopulation. ¿Did you think in unicorns instead?...

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Hmmm good point. Unicorns probably have better resale value ...

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Not all that much.

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lol...yo said pony!!! lol

A black-list is much better than a white-list as greed leaves a white-list open to be abused in the future. The black-list is a better function to curb abuse as it completely stops abusers.

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I think they both have their benefits. White-listed users would presumably be very unlikely to decide to turn to random spam - that's why they're whitelisted. And blacklisting can never completely stop abusers because abusers can just open another account, and another, and another, getting increasingly bitter and thus more spammy. It can stop accounts, not abusers.

A balance of both is the best option, but the more manually dependent these systems are, the harder it is to scale anything up... Without hiring a factory of staff for $1 a day.

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The difference is that a whitelist bot can still be abused if it only offers better upvotes for white listed ppl. A blacklist kicks out an abuser but takes more time because you have to identify an abuser before you can kick him in the nuts.

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I am good with good posters getting a better chunk, I just hope the list stays under review so abuse doesn't slip through the cracks

You have to give value to who deserves it, your work must be exhausting. and with constructive criticism. we should improve and be original about our publications: "YOU ARE AN EXCELLENT ANTIVIRUS, OF STEEMIT". I hope you keep fighting in this daily battle of this platform, greetings, I follow you and I support you.

Decay factor should be applied for voting, to avoid selfvote or abuse.

Isn't half the problem that there is a market for this sort of crap? Because it is being fed by those who continue to use it. Same as any other bad thing out there. Consumer-driven society.

You're struggling against pockets of the not-so-positive side of human nature, and so no wonder it feels overwhelming. (I'd imagine the people trying to stem the tide of drugs, child porn etc feel the same way.)

The suppliers aren't going to stop because they have a profitable market. The buyers aren't going to stop because a)there are things to buy and b)they simply don't care.

Self-gratification and damn-the-rest is a terrible, but more and more prevalent attitude these days. Everywhere. (Although there are also people doing good out there - and hope for better things.)

Is what you are doing, this grinding away, enough? Worth it? Only you can answer that. But it has got to be doing some good at least. Fingers crossed.

you're kinda funny too Mark, i don't have whale power only 21,000+ Steem here (trading to get more soon), but the little that I have, will put it into my witness vote for @themarkymark.

Thanks for being our James Bond against bad actors and running a campaign to blacklist them, etc, etc.

LOL

10 Complain posts on trending page is also called "Spamming". 80% know about this, and nobody will give a fuck till Steemit collapses Or Something better then steemit comes..

There is a reason why Dan left Steemit for EOS, something far better. He is smarter than all of us, he knew what will happen, as steemit is now in the hands of some greedy psyco bastards who claim to be different, but are infact like "George Soros, etc." who dont give a fuck about the community, but making bucks, controlling and wants to stay in power, by allowing this shit thats happening currently, then complaining and still dont give a damn about changing it.

23552520.gif

Everyday there are 10 complain posts, 10 steemit posts, few one liner/single pics posts, and it will continue..

I wonder what the fuck goes on during the fests/meetups.

I do appreciate all the effort you are putting into to this.
So, it doesn't go by unnoticed.

I acknowledged your input to sanitise steemit thats why I voted you for a witness. Though you may not be acknowledged by all, however, it will surely pay back ultimately. Keep it up.
On bidbots, I do not see anything wrong with the usage. If the whales invest their cash on steemit because they have ot, what stops others who dont from spending their earned rewards to power up. I dont know but am just thinking alowed.

Hey themarkymark! Always appreciate this kind of updates. Your effort on fighting for spam and fraud is always appreciated.

Keep on going!

Joy

Reading all of this makes my blood boil! Here you are, trying to remove bad actors from using your bot. People who obviously should be knowing that they are clearly engaging in ILLEGAL activity (plagiarism) and they have the audacity to slander you... :-/ Where is the logic in that?

That comment saying to report you to the FBI just takes the cake indeed. Just plain ludicrous!

"magical power manipulate the steemit driving engine itself". ftw

Honestly, you should be already on the dark side. This fight is too hard to win if you play it fair. Just go beef up and then hit hard :)

I love peanut butter and oatmeal... much more fun to spread peanut butter than smear someone trying to do good work. Carry on good sir.

As regular bot user, you have full support from me. Only bot owners can fight against spam spreaded with bots. Keep doing good job!

Just make sure to get to the gym and enough sleep now and then.

Thank you for your awesome work on this @themarkymark! The time and headaches you're dedicating to this cause are very much appreciated by those of us who want this platform to thrive and strive to create quality contents here! Keep up the great work!

Spam. Shallow random content. Yes.

I joined SteemIt a few days ago. And I'm already thinking of leaving. No, not because my posts get little attention. That is normal at the start. Rather, because I can hardly find anything good to read here. I have to scroll dozens of post titles to find just one worth reading to the end. Most of the content seems to have been given 5 minutes of creator's attention -- at best.

Please tell me that I'm wrong. That I'm a newbie missing something obvious in this game.

Truly appreciate your efforts and share the same concern. You as a bidbot has/had been doing a great job. Your meticulous efforts to keep Steemit an ideal place to be for Original content to be duly rewarded and get acknowledged with the right kind of support from the bidbots is a wonderful practice and I absolutely appreciate that! Great Work!

Thanks for spending so much time to make Steemit spam free! I recognize the YouTube post as something I've read before, but it's a good article I thought? Nevertheless, I'm sure you're finding all the bad guys. I can't believe someone posted porn images on here. If we didn't have people like you, Steemit wouldn't be successful!

I really don't give a fuck...

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You dont give a **** by actually giving a **** :D

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But you still care enough to make a comment?

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Exactly my thoughts.
If you don´t give a fck, then please just don´t give fck. :-D

I'm not new to Steemit, but i still don't quite understand how this works. You have whales, upvotes, downvotes, sbd, std, ect. And most frustrating is his one. I just upvoted your post, finally some useful stuff, and it went from 411.50 to 411.44??!!@ wtf

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Post rewards will fluctuate with or without votes as Steem price moves and as reward pool is used.

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ok. i thought that i was doing you harm by upvoting when actually worth was going down. nice to know that. thanks

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Glad you asked. I had a similar experience yesterday.

You're doing a really great work and steemit is an awesome platform thanks to users like you. And yes I think steemit is awesome, though there are many spammers, but they are everywhere :)
Steemit is not yet popular enough, so there are mainly users from "crypto world" and it's not a secret that most of us came to crypto for making money. So I think steemit will become much cleaner over time, once we'll attract more talented bloggers and writers...

I spend 10-60 hours a week researching, identifying, and punishing spammers, plagiarists, fraud, and abuse.

Wouldn't it be more rewarding to close the bot and invest that time in manually curating posts that resonate as qualitative high with you, as it was ment back in those old days? Everyone has a different opinion on quality, even changing on a daily basis, but by creating the opportunity for abuse there will be abuse, out of despair, greediness, necessity or even out of kindness not to go an even darker route. Are spammers annoying? Yes. Do I judge without knowing the background? I do, but not being conscious about the motive, or that I could be in the same situation too, lacking the skills, opportunities or peace of mind. It never is pure black or white.

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I agree. If people with bigger voting power curate post of better quality, the junk will tend to be less prominent overall.

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Solid point. However, they have every right to choose to Steem how they want. If creating an opportunity for use gets misused, it's not the same as creating an opportunity for abuse.

If I dig a well for everyone in my tribe and someone taps it for their tribe, should I shut down the well and just go get my own water?

Further, I can say for certain that there wasn't a way that it was meant "back in the days" that I'm aware of. I will read the whitepaper again.

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If I dig a well for everyone in my tribe

I would compare it to an enormous dam, messing with the ecosystem, the wildlife and destroying tousands of small towns and villages.

If creating an opportunity for use gets misused

My point is that nobody knows what misusing according to the bot creator is, because he takes the money first and punishes later.

But the bot creators are pioneers. One day someone will come up with a smart AI-Solution because he spent 10-60 hours a week into that instead of manually cleaning the mess of his botchy bot.

Further, I can say for certain that there wasn't a way that it was meant "back in the days"

The motive was to create first and to curate later, I'm not talking about the white paper but @dan's vision:

https://steemit.com/steem/@dantheman/curation-rewards-and-voting-incentive

Sooo muuuuch hate, dammit!
D.

@themarkymark I dont think any TRUE recognition for the value of what you are actually doing will ever really be warranted, but the mere fact that you continue regardless says a hell of a lot about the kind of individual you are.

This platform is absolutely riddled with this crap and it is so utterly refreshing (and hope inspiring) to see filtering like this transpiring. As a member of this community for almost a year, it becomes down right infuriating to see the utter trash that gets posted and the sheer blatancy that accompanies it. Especially, when there is so much GOOD CONTENT being drowned out by that!!

Anyway, I think what you are doing and what you stand for is truly admirable....so bugger them all!!

Oh... and perhaps you may consider one of my peanut butter and banana muffins instead... hahaha...

20180422_173025.jpg

I published the recipe on my feed earlier so dont forget to upvote it... HAHAHA KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Great post and great work!
Thank you!!
👌

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You got a 3.41% upvote from @minnowvotes courtesy of @blocktrades!

You have more drive to clean up the community than I do. That is for sure. Tireless thankless job that never ends (and doesn't pay) sounds like the worst kind of 9 to 5.

Steemit should use some of their resources to pay employees to build these lists. There must be thousands of people working at Facebook or Google focusing on this type of task (especially with copy write issues) but very few will do such a job for no compensation.

Thanks for doing what you're doing. As a creator, I sincerely appreciate it. I'll definitely keep up-voting.

Even if copyright didn't exist, it's unethical to make money off of the someone else's labor in such a fashion. It pisses me off to no end that people think it's okay to post a feature film or even someone else's vlog and claim the rewards without credit or sharing in the spoils. Someone spent their time - which they can never, ever get back - and their fortune to make a product and those lazy bastards just take it for themselves. There's a reason thieves are burned alive in societies without a functioning justice system. Everyone knows you're hurting those you take from and also know that if left unchecked, thieves will steal everything.

They must be checked or ejected from the platform.

Hats off to you!

Hi @themarkymark, i removed from my witness curie and i put you because i see you have my same values..

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Why you are excluded? You cannot be my witness??

Hi Mark I have a question for you. What should I do when I stumble across an obvious comment spam account that thru symbiotic voting leads me to other comment spam accounts obviously owned and run by the same person?
Example: same comments and all three accounts are new and upvote eachother's posts.

I've very bullish on this platform. Hopefully in the next year or two things will improve. It is nice that steem is going up. :)

its good

You are doing the right thing.

Thanks you are not giving up - it is tiring I know - you do a great job - at least you get a bit rewarded for your work. Yesterday I felt the experiment failed called Steeemit - now i have hope again as I can clearly see some people work on this platform and want it to succeed.

STEEM price is rebounding, I expect the abuse to increase accordingly as well unfortunately. If somehow this platform becomes big, with users in the hundreds of millions, dealing with abuse might be nigh impossible. Serious automatic mechanism for detecting the abuse will need to be implemented (think YouTube bots), but I don't know if there will be enough interest, technical know how to implement such systems.

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You got a 19.34% upvote from @slimwhale courtesy of @prometheus21!

Did you know you can make a passive income by simply delegating steem power?
@slimwhale offers the best return on your investment, sharing 100% of the bidding pool rewards, daily, proportional to your investment.
Let's grow together, start earning now by clicking the following links: 10SP, | 50SP | 500SP, | any amount |
For more information, see here or join me on Discord

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Does make you wonder why all those with the power don't hold a pow wow to demand to the owners to fix this problem....then again if they are involved in scamming the system then why would they.

Man it is tough to be a force for good in a world of evil.

I will admit, I stopped using bots awhile back due to the perception. But my leaning was always to try to use BAW first if the numbers looked good. I like your mission and dedication, you run a bot I can "get behind".

Now if I could just come up with something worthwhile to post about and buy myself some Buildawhale upvotes...

I'll be back!

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When I got here 9 months ago, I said I will post every day even though I hate blogging as I suck at it. Every day I think to myself, what is left to write about, then all of a sudden something comes up.

He reported your blacklist to the FBI?? Are people really that dense?

Wow... I don't feel like the noob here. I might stay a while, it feels nice.

Every network will have their fair share of troublemakers, trolls, spammers, etc. Steemit, which is largely community driven, is probably even more vulnerable to this than other networks.

Kind of like it would happen if there was no government: Gangs and such would quickly prosper and expand, eventually resulting in a Mad Max type of world.

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The problem is other platforms have moderators and admins, here we are that capacity.

hope we have to guide lines to the new comers.
on steemit platform.

thanks for posting this one. very informative post.

Upvoted and followed.

I'm new to Steemit, i don't understand how this works but to drag the FBI into it, is just drama used draw attention to the steemit post.
The more drama the more upvote the more upvote the more money, Right ?
What do I know; I am just reborn steemian living on the bottom hoping to some how get a used car.

There are many scammer say,send us 1 steem/steem doller and we resteem it and get 50 upvote but these 50 upvote value only 0.05 steem.wtf that i think ban these scammer.Good work,i will upvote to you for witness.

Thank you for the great work. I'm still a plankton learning here what is going on!

First of all - I am happy to be 1000th person which upvoted this post!!!

Second - I totally agree with actions like this and I hop more and more people will be focused on flagging and eliminating spammers here on Steemit

Third matter is the fact I am using bid bots as well myself but I now what value stands out behind my posts. If I spend few hours on a post, collecting the best photos, preparing them, writing the text, searching for some addictional info on the subject... - this kind of posts I want to be upvoted more than I can reach from my personal Followers - this is hours of my work and this kind of posts I think can be supported by other projects - for example I would never request an upvote on posts which are not fully mine or which I feel are not the best what I can post...

This is all matter of our own feelings and our own hard work to build the proper, valuable community.

Stop the shit content senders! Flag them, put them on black list, support those who work on it !!!

()

very good and information post ever.thank you for sharing with us

Thank you for the battle you are fighting. You are like the batmam of bot owners. You deserve an award! The spam is so bad i donr even look at trending or hot. I focus on my community and try discord chats

"What would be exactly the right answer, of how peanut butter and oatmeal would taste?" 🤔

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I don't know and I'd hate to find out.

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"Hmm.. It didn't look too bad from what was saw. I will report back on this matter in short time. I will find out the answer myself and share it With you, aswell as this World. 🌍" - automated reply; brain currently under hyper cry stasis. ⌛

Nice post

I am always so torn with your account. On one hand I really hate the whole bid bot business. On the other hand I really love your posts and how you handle all these dumb asses.

This is sad...

Holy shit! You do give a fuck by addressing these problems and receiving no gratitude for your efforts.

However, I don't care much for spammers and fraudster, but plagiarism and abusers makes me see blood-red like a bull.

What else is quite horrible is these parasites taking advantage of something you created to do good on here on Steemit.

Keep hunting down those fuckers and making them obsolete. You have my support 100%!

I will follow to read about your progress.

Just found another witness to vote for. Keep it up, don't turn to the dark side. Abuse is keeping the price of steem from mooning. I know that it is time consuming to do this from experience and you are not financially motivated, maybe at some point you will go up the ladder and people will appreciate the fight against spammers that are ruining STEEM. Many think they are smart, but unfortunately for them, if you make one single mistake on the STEEM blockchain it will stay there and eventually they will be revealed. Good luck further !

Your post is very good and thanks for it..
daily_gifdump_32_013.gif

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i love it too

hi @themarkymark, you did great for fighting the spammers..nice job..

This post actually just got you my follow lol.

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Thanks ;)

Was it the oatmeal?

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It was the oatmeal for me. It calmed my outrage at the scammers and spammers and fuckstagrammers. 🙏

Thank you! Youre doing a great job blacklisting spammers. I hate seeing posts that have no substance to them. Im a minnow, havent used bots, and want to earn my status here without bot help. I have considered it but dont wanna be labeled a spammer myself. Keep up the good work and making Steemit a quality platform to be on.
giphy.gif

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I love the gif, did you make it? What software did you use?

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I just googled steemit gifs. I use a few of them on quality posts.

Big up for the hard work! Carry on, Mark! witness voted

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Thank you.

That's a trippy gif

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