STEEM does NOT need more STEEM Witnesses.

in witness-category •  last year

So my witness has been up for 5 days and has not had a single block. I’m not even in the stalled parking lot of the hopelessly queuing tail of the Top 200 supplicants.

See the madness of the Top 200 here:
and note nothing moves near the bottom for hours (days?)

There appears to be untold thousands of witnesses, but I’m guessing most are not actually live because they gave up long ago.

The only reason I’m posting this is because some folk are posting how STEEM needs witnesses, apparently trying to lure people in to becoming one.

Being a Steem Witness costs real money, you shouldn't be tricked into wasting it.

Most Steem posters can’t afford to waste the $500-$1000 a year that it costs to host a witness so they should know the truth.

Make no mistake, STEEM doesn’t need you to be a witness and from a glance at the rules, doesn’t want you.

Why do I say that?

Because the top 20 get all the rewards. The top 20 get 93% of the pie, the remaining thousands 7% between them.

The vicious Pareto law is a kinder 80%/20% share and is the reason why the reviled 1% exist, so the STEEM Witness system is even more grasping and greedy. It would make a Russian Oligarch chuckle.

The Steem witness 93%/7% rule translates into, “don’t be a Witness we don’t want/need more than perhaps 50.”
That is the practical outcome of the rules.

Even if you want to sacrifice to the Steem community, the effort of being a Witness is waste, because the resources won’t be used. You might as well buy $500 of Steem and give it away to people. At least is will go to the community, not to a hosting company.

I’ll continue to keep you posted because I actually can pour money down the drain for the pure hell of it.

I’ll keep you posted because someone needs to report back the truth.

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No, there are not thousands of witnesses, but inactive remnants from the early mining days. They may be listed, but they don't get scheduled. Running a witness is not easy, it takes patience, investment, skills, and campaigning. It took me days before I got my first block. I've helped a lot of witnesses get their setup running, only to see them drop out and quit after a month. It's not for everyone. It can be frustrating for the starters to look at the top 20 and envy them, but those guys are mostly professionals and developers who have been around since the beginning of Steem. Instead, try to focus on your projects and don't be discouraged, if you have drive and determination, you'll climb up the ranks eventually. Sometimes I blame @jerrybanfield because he hyped the witnessing so much, it got people snared into something they can't handle.

P.S. check this link I can see you don't have significant votes yet, that's why you may be stuck for a long time before getting your first block! Get more non-minnow votes!


Thanks for your thoughts Drakos, I understand why people would give up, a 93/7 split makes the vicious 80/20 Pareto distribution look kind.

I don't envy oligarchs but it is always irritating to play a rigged game however small the potatoes.

Steem witness is a centralized system where 20 oligarchs get 97% of the pie. Optically that has got to be dysfunctional and I'm going to find out if in practice that proves to be right.
I'm very interested in Steem because I posit 'POS' blockchains produce feudal outcomes. Steem is an interesting platform which can test out that idea for me.
Beg others, to get votes, to do a service for nothing.... doesn't that strike you as a little bit creepy? Oh sorry I forgot that is: Politics. WCPGW. :)


Unfortunately, there's some politics involved. Can't do much to remedy that. And yes I agree about the top 20. I think it's a bad design by @dan. The system could easily reward the top 50 in a more equitable fashion.


Regarding the number of top spots, I don't know if I agree. Blocks need to be produced on time without much failure to keep the chain going on schedule. Adding more witnesses will obviously make the failure rate higher.

However perhaps the number top of top spots could be dynamic in proportion to the total number of active, reliable witnesses.


There's a lot of block misses in the top 20 itself. Having backup servers guarantees a healthier network. Many witnesses outside the top 20 are running very reliable servers.


Do you think there is enough block misses to justify more than 20 backups? I don't think there is.

That many witnesses outside the top 20 are reliable says to me that the number 20 should be flexible and based on witness reliability.

It doesn't cost $500-$1000/year to run a witness. You can run one at home on a laptop for next to nothing (as long as it has enough RAM, and as long as your ISP connection has at least decent reliability and performance and allows sufficient bandwidth).

Agree that you should not spend $500-1000/year if you aren't going to be highly ranked. Only higher ranked witnesses need top tier hosting and equipment.

Agree that Steem does not need more witnesses.

Disagree that someone who wants to run a witness shouldn't do so, as long as costs are controlled.

You're right, Steem does not need more than the 20 witnesses. But I guess the idea is; should enough people understand how this works, they could build up alternative witnesses and voting SP to make changes. However, with the astronomical amounts of SP the early adopters built up in numerous accounts (how many each is anyone's guess), its a long road ahead.

Wow. I am interested to hear the feedback from other witnesses what they think. I believe as the community grows and there are more demands on the resources that we will be able to appreciate more witnesses. To get into top 200, must campaign as to what benefit you add to community as well as maybe highlighting which "dead witnesses" are eating up votes. Perhaps the system ought to discount these dead witness votes in order to give active witnesses a chance


Dead witnesses are eating up votes?
Can you elaborate?
I know anything with human touch will prove to be 80/20 egocentric.
Another way not perfect for all steemians.


Well according to Drakos, most give up. If you look at the Top 200, it seems the farther away you are from the top, the time you wait to get a block goes up exponentially. As people are spending real money to offer these resources which don't get used meaningfully, its no wonder they give up.


well, it's a matter of getting to know people and showing your worth to the community. support for your witness is not free, either.

please see this community engagement post and follow timcliff in general for a 100% example of how to be a good witness (and maybe get paid someday)

I agree there should be much more than 20 top witnesses. As many as the Blockchain can reliably handle. The idea of using witnesses is one of the things I like most about Steem but I'd like to see many more.

Decentralization against conspiracy :)

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