I've already made a post on this topic before, but this topic needs to be covered as much as possible.
For those new to the Steem ecosystem and lacking any real Steem Power, there is a considerable temptation to join the Dark Side. "What is this Dark Side" you say?
Without going into unnecessary amounts of detail, let's just say the Steem Ecosystem operates on a "proof-of-brain" concept. In theory, this means that content producers on Steem are rewarded monetarily in the form of Steem Power and/or Steem Dollars for producing quality content. The content doesn't have to be award-winning, but if you can tell that the author has a brain, then it's probably good content.
But it's tough for new Steemians to make any headway.
After writing a few posts and putting in some good effort, you get a couple pity upvotes and realize that making money on Steem isn't straight forward. You see posts on the trending list that are worth hundreds of dollars, and you cannot understand how some of those posts even got an upvote. What are they doing differently?
Many people just give up and quit.
Some figure it out, and start to find ways to grow on Steem.
Some Steemians start looking for ways to game the system and bypass the proof-of-brain model.
When someone attempts to bypass the proof-of-brain model of Steem, and to gain monetary rewards without putting in any effort, they are now abusing the platform and have joined the Dark Side. They are no longer contributing; they are stealing.
For the past half hour, I scrolled through a couple hundred new posts that were using the photography tag. During that time I think I reported around 20 garbage posts to @steemcleaners. Examples I found included:
- tag abuse, where a post is clearly using the wrong tag for it's content (and the content was rubbish)
- photography theft, including stealing photos from other Steemians and claiming as their own, as well as from many other places on the internet.
- posts filled with complete gibberish, probably written using autocomplete on their cellphone
- spam posts with stolen images and no words
- screenshots of existing GIFs on the internet, trying to be passed off as photography
- abuse of steepshot with gibberish posts and stolen images
- stolen pictures that are altered in Gimp/photoshop, but not enough to evade Google's detection system (in Chrome browser, right-click an image and select
search Google for image)
There's probably more examples I could add to this list, but the point is that there's a lot of abuse on Steem. If I were to throw a number at it, I would guess that at least 10% of the posts I browsed through were abuse.
@steemcleaners is not some dumb bot; it is an account backed by some big names on the platform to combat abuse.
As a minnow, you can support the effort of cleaning up Steem by reporting the trash and abuse to steemcleaners, and if you provide good evidence they should reward you a week or two later with some Steem Power. It's not automated and you won't get instant payouts, and abusing the reporting tool isn't smart either. The Steem Power reward is nice though. I would argue that it's the easiest way of earning Steem Power on the platform for smaller accounts, and there's no guilt attached.
The real irony of all this, is that if these abusers were to put their efforts into reporting abuse to steemcleaners, they would make far, far more money than they do now with their garbage posts, and it would be a legitimate income instead of degrading the platform.
But I'm not an expert on stupidity, or self defeating behavior.
Some people probably just don't know any better, and that's why it's important that new Steemians are aware that they don't need to join the Dark Side to make money on Steem.
Thank you for reading.
Want to make money while helping to clean the garbage up on Steem? Report plagiarism, theft, tag abuse, comment spam, post spam, and other Steem abuse that degrades the Steem Platform to @steemcleaners with their reporting tool. If you provide good evidence, they will investigate and deal with the abuser. A week or two later they usually reward you in Steem Power. It's a win-win for everyone, just don't abuse the abuse reporting tool itself.
As always; good luck, good wealth and good health to everyone on Steemit. Stay positive towards others and help the community grow.