Broken Witness Voting System!

in witness-category •  3 months ago  (edited)

I shall keep this post short and direct to the point.


It has been proven to work, there have been examples from the past when it literally kicked in and saved the day when the blockchain needed a patch ASAP.


The reality is that the current code is leading to a dictatorship.

All votes cast by owners of Steem and all Proxies are valid til infinity.

As these accounts are owned by people, there is the following that was not factored in.


Yes, believe it or not, people can die, people do die, in fact every human on this earth dies.

Yet their witness votes or proxy NEVER DIES.


Add a ticker to the Witness votes and to the Proxy.

i.e. either a 180 day or 365 day timer (whatever the top20 witnesses/governance agree upon)

When an owner of Steem (in Steempower) votes or sets a proxy, the code changes from "0" to "1" and automatically sets off a countdown timer (ticker).

Once that timer hits 00:00:00 the "1" automatically goes back to a "0" on the witness vote/proxy.

The argument heard from some that big stake holders don't have the time or will power to look after the best interests of their stake by voting for the (witnesses) governance of Steem simply does not hold water.

We have all seen in recent events that this "argument" just isn't true.

Further more.


Approximately 1.8 people die per second which is about 150,000 people that die per day and roughly 54,750,000 per year. which is just a hair short of 1 percent death rate per year.

Need I add any more facts about this!

The current broken voting system with "infinite" votes is leading to a dictatorship.

Image Source

It really is as simple as that.

Think about it.

& please do it out of the box!

Yours truly

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Can we get the votes assigned to non-active witnesses released in the same HF, please? 😎


There should be a time period before the votes are removed. A witness might disable their witness for things like maintenance or upgrades and don't want to miss blocks during that time.

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Indeed. My thought was to give them a month or more to re-activate before releasing votes.


I would wait like 6 months so if a witness is going through a rough patch, they can come back without losing a lot.

Posted using Partiko Android


This would be a good fix to that too.

Unless for some reasons some individuals want to vote for the non-active (crossed out) witnesses.


I totally agree with this approach. People should need to be performing actions on the chain to have a valid vote.

If you’re not actively using Steem then your vote shouldn’t count.

Posted using Partiko iOS


I personally agree with that logic too!

However, one has to try and take personal opinion out of realistic needs and solutions that are fair and equal to one and all.
Being a business endeavour the DPOS concept has proven to be more than effective and as such covers all aspects of Steem, including both the financial side and human (social) side of the best interests of Steem.

Hence why the governance is so important and must cover all aspects relevant to Steem.

On the above topic, my approach is simple and straight forward, no arguments out there can justify anything else as it is methodological and logical.

Despite millions of dollars in research projects, death continues to be our nations #1 killer...

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Yeah, even Steeem Whales and Steem Dolphins, just like Steem Minnows and Redfish, all are not immune to death.

Apply the average death rate of 1% to all humans on our blockchain and there we have it.

Sooner than later, our governance can't be changed because of the infinite vote/proxy these people set during the time of their life on this planet.


My fav quote from a hardcore punk band circa late 90's: 'my living is the cause of my dying'

Posted using Partiko Android

It's a topic that's come up before. AND one I have spoken on.
Personally, not only do I think we need a ticker of some kind, but, I would say, make it shorter, 120 days - 180 days tops.
This is about the time it takes for a decent Hard Fork.
Is there some way to relate it to activity on an account, too? If an account is inactive, for say, 90 days, can all votes be removed?

I agree, the system needs a change.


DPOS as such works just fine as far as ensuring that all stake holders can have their say as far as the governance of the blockchain goes.

Hence "activity" as such is not a requirement, but I do agree it would be nice.

Voting in itself is an "activity" on the blockchain, unlike "logging in" which is only on the front end.

Have a read of my answer to @ mazzle, I don't want to put any "personal opinions" into this necessary change.

Simple, undeniable facts along with a recommended solution.

After all, if the problems with "bandwidth" were taken care of, then it is without any doubt that the ever so needed tickers on witness votes and proxies can be added ;)

Un seen this? will execution on the block chain. Maybe we can do an auto redistribution on Steem or a burn if a d as man switch is not activated


dead man switch as in some sort of activity on the chain?

I wonder how we get around autoupvotes, stemauto style?


With a dead man switch it works like this: let’s say the system keeps a track of ur activity on the chain, so it might check that you have been active at some point over the last 18 months. The dead man switch is triggered in case u don’t log in or do some form of activity on the chain for 18 months. Once triggered it counts down for say 10 years until it then send crypto to a loved ones account


deadman switch would measure your regular activity in some way and look for it to drop off over a sustained period of time.


good point,
it would need to be made so that it cannot be gamed with bots


I'm sure that there are many ways in which stake holders can legally take care of their assets and legally ensure that their heirs get it.

Again, once ownership passes over from one person to another, the new owners who inherited the stake can use their newly inherited stake to cast votes.

If in the event that stake doesn't get claimed it will probably become "lost" as was described for the millions of dollars worth of BTC that is no longer accessible.

I dare say that I don't wish to get into the topics of how anyone manages their assets or last will and testament.

The link you gave seems rather interesting, I don't see a reason why one day "smart contracts" couldn't be done on our Steem blockchain to take care of things like that too!


Difficult issue that requires a hardfork to implement. The solution is typically proposed on frontends but that's not really a solution. I'd say it would need to go hand in hand with a system that'd list all accounts owned by one entity under one. There's a lot of users with a large number of accounts that are still performing blockchain functions. Proxy to own account vs proxy and forget it is different. Lots of inherent design possibilities for the chain.


If one person owns more than one account, then that is up to that person to manage their accounts and their responsibility to ensure they take whatever measures they want to so as to ensure the vote that they can make with it is given or not.

I don't see an issue, especially as there is the proxy option which likewise needs the same ticker applied to it.

I kept it all direct with no room for arguments that can differ in any way.

Did that for a reason.

So that we don't read any condescending answers from those who have the responsibility and who are being rewarded for it.


Yes - I 100% agree we should have a mechanism for inactive voters. I can imagine a lot of votes are being cast now of people who jumped onto Steem in 2016 but haven't even logged in for 2 years now. We could implement a trigger after a certain amount of time no activity (like a log-in, post, comment, upvote) was registered on an account - assuming that people who still log in or are in any other way active are also still agreeing with their witness votes? Anyway, I'd actually be fine with any mechanism as long as we don't assume it's fine as it is ;-)


Ohhh definitely the right attitude to have.

As for "it being possible or not", well let me just state the following facts:

  1. Days, hours, minutes and seconds are defined in the current code.

  2. There is a time stamp on all witness votes and all proxies. (ON ALL TRANSACTIONS IN FACT)

For those out there who don't believe me, or who would say that this isn't the case, well, take a look:

Note: screenshot originally taken from

So to state that a countdown ticker can't be added to these transactions is like saying something along the lines of "You can't put jam into a doughnut".

Really is as silly as that when anyone says "it can't be done".


NEVER, ever, underestimate the ability of humans to add shit to a donut.


We are one weird species on this fragile planet of ours, that is for sure!


Would be interesting to see 1) which witnesses 'survive' on votes cast in 2016/early 2017 and 2) which voters cast years ago and never changed votes after that :-)

PS: I've been using @arcange's version of the witness list for a few days now and I like how quick it gives me an overview on what's changing in the ranks! Especially the 'history' button and the green/red up/down numbers are very insightful: Cheers!


Yep, the resources for up to date information are surfacing all over the place. Guess many a Steemian is asking for more transparent information ;)

As far as the votes go, I am sure that every witness would ensure that they do not lose votes from living voters.

As for the ones that are no longer on this side of the grass, well, may they RIP.

Can't argue against mother nature!

I have seen posts before requesting this.
You bring up a good point, only those in power never seem interested in it.


Well, they probably have far more important things to worry about than fixing something that is broken!



Sounds like a great idea to put a time limit on the votes.

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Yes. It is logical (for obvious reasons ,as defined in the post)

However, when some people throw around a term "decaying vote", that is NOT THE SAME THING.

Just taking this opportunity to make this clear.

A "decaying vote" would as per the definition applied from one other blockchain =

A vote that loses its stake/vote value as time passes.

That is not fair nor equal in any way, manner or form.

A persons investment (stake) is what makes DPOS work and as such unless powered down remains the same.

DPOS protects investors and should NEVER BE COMPROMISED or UNDERMINED, let alone brought to a value that is equal to anything less than their investment.


While a DEFINED TERM VOTE (as described in the post) DOES NOT IN ANY WAY CHANGE DPOS.

Needed to get this out there, just in case anyone tries to "copy a flawed system".

Thanks for mentioning "time limit", it got the light bulb shining above the head in ref to what all some have thrown around in the past.



All good mate and thanks for the decaying vote information.

Posted using Partiko Android

Valid til infinity. Nuff said.

Posted using Partiko Android

The Steem Witness voting system certainly could do with some tweaking, all you need to do is look at the number of long shut down Witnesses still ranking in the top 100 because when they shut down their voters did not remove their vote for them.

Combine that with accounts that lost log in keys, became inactive for whatever reason - it all adds up. DPOS is about individuals voting for Witnesses that benefit them and further the progress of Steem using their stake - but if they are inactive and taking no interest in the blockchain any more - how can they know the Witnesses they voted for two or one years ago are still giving they benefits they voted for back then?

#thealliance #witness


Definitely agree with what you said here.

It is clear that with all the changes that we have seen to date, plus the changes that are being discussed that the dynamics of Steem are such that a person really needs to dedicate a lot of their time to it all so as to keep up with everything that is relevant to our ecosystem.

If we just take into account the ideas of forming an independent foundation that has as one of its key goals to promote Steem to potential investors and to help existing investors thrive to their maximum capacities. It is safe to state that such an endeavour is impossible with the flaw I have spelled out in the current witness (governance) voting model which inevitably leads to an outright dictatorship.

Needless to say, that we have already seen some of what I am touching on in this comment when it comes to evenly spreading out the input of assets to such endeavours.

"The Untouchables" is probably the nicest way of putting it, especially when it concerns their part of the pot!

It is very true that the system was poorly launched and forever broken. Unfortunately those in power will want to remain in power so there would be no incentive to change the witness voting system when it could remove them from power.

I did a video on the witness voting situation.


Case in point... I went and checked my witness votes yesterday and found that several witnesses I’d voted for had become disabled.

So I updated my votes to witnesses who are actually doing the job.

Steempeak’s witness function is brilliant in this way.

Checking from time to time would help. A ticker or reminder would help in that way.

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