In light of the massive gains that STEEM has experienced in the last weeks, hitting an all time high today at $9.25, it was time for the witnesses to review their minimal account creation fee.
The fee has been set at 0.2 STEEM for a while, with the price of $1/STEEM, and the recommended 30 x fee, that would add up to 0.2 STEEM x 30 = 6 STEEM. Thus, creating an undelegated account with 6 STEEM (or more) was enough to give users enough bandwidth to do most of their daily operations like upvoting, commenting, posting, transferring funds.
Also, it was an acceptable cost, if users wanted to buy their accounts from third party services, like AnonSteem or SteemConnect. However, in today's trading price at $8, that would mean an account would cost 0.2 STEEM x 30 x $8 = $48 to create. It's a steep price of course. I had a discussion last night with @timcliff and @smooth (they are witnesses too), and did some tests to figure out an acceptable minimal fee withouth compromising the user experience.
The test was done with an account using a 2 SP (delegated). With that, it was possible to do about 30 upvotes before bringing down the voting power to 60%, where we got an error:
Voting weight is too small, please accumulate more voting power or steem power.
This happens when we hit the dust vote threshold, and users can't upvote anymore until they replenish some voting power, or power up some STEEM.
Concerning posting and commenting, there weren't any issues. There was enough bandwidth for two big posts and several comments, with a lot of bandwidth left.
So, an acceptable minimal account creation fee at 0.1 STEEM or maybe 0.07 STEEM, would equate to 3 STEEM and 2.1 STEEM respectively, and allow a comfortable experience. Furthermore, if the voting or bandwidth limits are hit, it would be an invitation for users to blog more and/or buy STEEM to power up.
And finally, keep in mind that accounts created with the minimum fee may still run into limitations when the network usage is high. If account creators want to ensure accounts have enough SP to not have to worry about it (except in extreme situations) they should have a minimum balance of 6-10 SP (including any delegated).
Thanks to @timcliff for his review and input on this post.
I have set my fee to 0.1 STEEM.
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