Welcome back to The Bluffer's Guide to Cryptocurrency - a layman's approach to understanding Bitcoin and Blockchain Technology!
In the previous blog, I introduced you to an upcoming platform in the so-called "New Music Industry" - Inmusik. If you missed that, check it out here.
Now we'll introduce the very platform that has seen most of the action of the Bluffer's Guide - Steemit. Hi there! Although Steemit isn't exclusively a music platform, it's a place where you can still earn some crypto from uploading your music and it is a pretty vast place to get your music heard. So let's have a little look at it.
But hold (or should that be hodl) your horses, it's disclaimer time!
Before I begin, I want to emphasise that this is a highly simplified version of what I have learnt from my own research and I'm sharing my learning with you. If you do know this topic inside out, be nice to those who are still learning about this (myself included) and we can grow together.
Furthermore, this is not financial advice and I am not a financial advisor. I am a crypto-enthusiast and wanted to create a guide to help total beginners understand what this is all about. Please seek financial advice from a qualified professional if you have any doubt about how to spend your money.
So with that said, brace yourselves, you might learn something! Shall we begin?
What is "Steemit"?
In short, Steemit is a community based platform aimed primarily at rewarding Bloggers for creating high value articles and content. Users of the platform can upvote a post if they like it and the creator gets a payment from it. However, there have been additional services bolted on to the platform, one of which is called "dsound", which is like the crypto version of Soundcloud (a huge thanks to @prc for developing this).
So how does this all work?
Firstly, you need to create a Steemit account and be VERY careful when you do so. Make sure you follow the instructions and keep back-ups of your Steemit password because it is not memorable and if you lose it, you will not get it back! Needless to say, don't give your password away to anyone and certainly don't use it to log-in to any "3rd party" Steemit applications.
Once you have been verified as a user (this can take a couple of weeks if you haven't paid for an account), a good starting point is the rather comprehensive FAQ section, which will keep you busy for hours but always worth checking if you have any questions.
Now, if you're just itching to get started with your blogs, then click the little pen icon in the top right and away you go! Familiarise yourself with how the system works but they have recently updated how you can change the formatting of blogs, which makes it a lot easier to embed links, images, videos and all sorts of useful things. If you are posting for the first time, make sure you use the "introduceyourself" tag as the first one so you can be welcomed in to the community.
"I'm not a blogger, I just want to post my music"
I hear you fellow musicians! To post your music to your Steemit profile, you will want to get involved with something called "dsound", which can be accessed here. As this runs off the Steemit blockchain, you don't need to "create an account" as such, you will just need something called your "private posting key". This is found in the "wallet" section of your account and then under permissions.
Once you have put those details in, you should see the dashboard. It's just a case of clicking on the upload button and then away you go.
As Steemit is primarily a blogging platform, I prefer the approach of writing a little bit about the track I've uploaded, followed by the link so people have something to read as they are listening. Others just go for the straight upload, it's up to you. I've had most success using Mozilla Firefox when uploading to dsound but see what works best for you.
Another tip is to post another listen link in your track description as sometimes, playback on dsound doesn't always happen.
And another tip (aren't you lucky!) is to join the dsound Discord and engage with the folks over there, as well as submit your tracks for promotion. How to join this server? Well, you need to get a link to join via Atom Collector Records.
Also, if you aren't sure what to use for tags, get yourself an Atom Collector Records account by clicking here, go to the "useful info" and look for how to tag dsound links (step 5).
What happens when the post is uploaded?
Well, after you have uploaded your track successfully, go back to your Steemit and view your blog and you should see it there in all its glory! Yes, that's right, any time you post in dsound, it will appear as a blog entry on your Steemit profile - nifty hey! You'll also notice it's got "dsound" as the primary tag.
I want to upload videos though, is that possible?
Yes that is also possible if you have a music video, vlog or some other video content you want to share with the world. There's another application called dTube which is the equivalent of uploading YouTube videos. A similar log-in process to dSound but some applications support sign-in with something called "steemconnect". Just follow the instructions to sign in and remember, do NOT use your master password!
How about live streaming?
Steemit has that covered as well with an application called "dLive". I haven't done a live video broadcast but potentially something I'd like to get my mitts on in future. Again, there are instructions on how to get yourself set up for live streaming on dLive itself and you can log in to it via steem-connect.
A great show to watch is of course, Radio Evolved every Sunday at 8pm UTC from the omnipotent Juxta of Atom Collector Records - submit your tracks and you may get a play out!
So what is the cryptocurrency of Steemit?
No prizes for guessing that Steemit uses its own cryptocurrency called "STEEM", a digital token used to reward users for their contributions but there's a bit more to it than that. This token can be converted in to something called Steem Power or Steem Dollars.
Steem Power, or SP for short, is a way for users to have an influence on what content gets rewarded on the Steem network. If you have more SP (either from purchasing STEEM and converting it or by earning through content), you will have more influence when you upvote a post than someone who has less.
Steem Dollars, or SBD, are a stabalising currency, pegged to $1 US. These can be traded or converted with STEEM, transferred to other accounts or even used to buy things in marketplaces.
You can see your how much you have (your balance) by going to the wallet. Here's my measly amount for you to laugh at:
Why so many variations?
Well, STEEM is a cryptocurrency, like Bitcoin, so can be exchanged and eventually turned in to fiat but it's also the link between other aspects in the community of Steemit.
You need to have STEEM to get Steem Power if you want to really have a say in what the community should consider as valuable and reward content that you like. Steem Power is where the real influence lies behind each vote. Steem Dollars are there to stabalise the value of STEEM so it doesn't fluctuate too much.
This system of Steemit with the influence token, STEEM and SBD means that articles with value can be rewarded properly and those who create them can potentially have a side income from it.
At least, that's the theory but there are a lot of bots around (i.e. not real people) and some low value posts can be promoted by paying services to boost so it can be difficult to determine true high value articles. You'll just have to dive in and get involved!
What's in it for listeners?
STEEM is a social platform, effectively like the crypto version of Facebook, except as fans, when you like something, you have the power to reward your favourite artist by upvoting their posts. You do also have the chance to earn something called "curation rewards", which means that if you are one of the first to upvote a post and it goes viral, you will be rewarded for spotting the valuable post early. Pretty neat.
What's even better is that you can share or "re-steem" the post on to your profile as well or write your own article about your favourite music on the platform, tag the relevant people and support in a big way. It's a positive spiral.
But I'm a label owner, another site that I can't use.
Well, this is not the case either as with a bit of lateral thinking, you label owners can benefit from writing newsletters, uploading releases of your producers and when the rewards have been paid out, you can share it with your producers straight away. Rewards get paid out after 7 days since the original post was made.
We'll go more in to the dynamics of the ecosystem in the next blog.
Who's behind the platform?
A gentleman called Ned Scott is the man behind Steemit, which has been going since January 2016. Have a look at his LinkedIn profile to dig a bit deeper about his background if you'd like.
How do I get involved?
You can sign up by clicking here and then "Sign-up" where you will be prompted to give the usual details. There is a waiting time for the platform, which is around a week (possibly longer) as each profile needs to be manually verified. But once you're in, it's show time!
Ok, time for a time out!
So a brief overview of a platform aiming to take on Facebook and one I'm pretty happy to be apart of - Steemit. In part 2, I'll go through a little more detail about the workings of the platform as there's so much to this beast that it's impossible to cover in one blog! Next up, we'll be going through an interesting platform called "Channels" and see what's happening there.
If you are enjoying the series so far, I'd love to hear from you! And if you'd like to feel the high energy of my music, feel free to have a listen to my profile on Choon
Now though, it's your turn.
Did you enjoy the article or find it useful?
I'd love to hear from you and if you learnt something new, feel inspired to do some of your own research or felt I didn't cover something well enough, let me know and when I finalise the pdf, I'll make it right!
For now though, take it easy and catch you soon!
The history and technology of Bitcoin
2.1 How and why did Bitcoin come in to existence?
2.2 How does Bitcoin & blockchain actually work (Part 1)?
2.3 How does Bitcoin & Blockchain actually work (Part 2)?
Posted from my blog with SteemPress : https://www.atomcollectorrecords.com/blog/2018/08/22/7-5-bluffers-guide-to-cryptocurrency-blockchain-platforms-for-musicians-music-fans-steemit-part-1/