Steem is only as good as the leaders who help keep our platform running smoothly, are continually introducing new features and fixes for problems and since since the leaders are chosen by we the Steemians, it is up to us to make sure the Steem network is put in the hands of capable people who have long term success in mind
If we want to see this platform continue to grow and flourish along with the Steem token, I feel it is our duty to elect witnesses who will not only serve as master nodes but also add to the development of the Seem/Steemit environment. Most people are able to run a node with a little but of research and the proper equipment, but Witnesses vying for the top spot on the steemit network are rewarded for there position and should be doing more for the community. We all have 30 votes to cast for the witnesses of our choice and these are the 30 most important up votes you will ever make on this platform. Witnesses are the leaders in this community and thus it is of paramount importance that we due our due diligence before casting our votes.
A little while back I was an irresponsible steemian as I had used only a handful of my witness votes and I felt it was time to change that. I didn't know many of the Steem Witnesses personally and hadn't put in enough effort getting to know the people who keep this platform running. The first thing I decided to do (which I should have done months ago) was read through all the Steemit FAQ pages to get a better understanding of how our ecosystem functions. After that I headed over to Steemd to check out the top 100 witnesses and what they've been doing on the platform. I highly recommend doing those two things right now, if you haven't already done so.
If you're thinking to yourself, 'meh' I don't feel like doing it now, maybe I'll do it later, you need to understand that all the up votes on all the post pale in comparison to the importance of the 30 Witness up votes you have. If you don't use those witness votes properly, or use them at all, you are basically saying that you don't care about the future of Steem. So take a minute, ten, or even an hour and go click through our witnesses profiles and learn more about these individuals.
Okay, now that you're back, let's continue.
This is the second group of interviews that I have conducted with some of our witnesses. If you are interested in reading more of what some of our other top witnesses had to say, head over to my page @jasonshick and check them out. This second round of interviews will include (hopefully) interviews with @gtg, @aggroed, @austibank, @anyx, @drakos, @curie, @btcnews, @utopian-io, @lukestokes and @netuoso. If you have any other suggestions as to witnesses you would like to see interviewed, please leave a reply in the comments.
Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to the only meritocratic Witness (that I know of). It is none other than the curator of all curators, @curie. If you've never heard of @curie, you need to click on the username for yourself and go check out just how much love @curie spreads around.
For those of you that don't know @curie is a community account run by curators from across the globe. These curators seek out undervalued content, from users who are working hard but just not receiving a whole lot of rewards for their effort. Curie is a team made up of voluntary members who search the far reaches of the platform looking for content that deserves to be properly rewarded. Since there are thousands and thousand of posts daily, it can take a lot of time and effort for curators to find this undervalued content. After one of the teams curators nominates a post that he or she feels is deserving of a @curie vote, it will then be passed along to a reviewer who will have the final say on whether or not that post is deserving of a @curie upvote. There are a lot of parameters that must be met in order for a post to receive an upvote, you can find out everything you need to know about Curie at their homepage.
Active curation is a huge part of what makes Steem special and there will alwasy be a need for active curators. If you are interested in becoming a @curie curator, you can always join their Discord and meet some of the awesome people behind the project.
There are many people involved behind the scenes with the @curie project, one of the beautiful parts of this project is that your rank is based on merit, you can climb the ranks with solid recommendations, you are the limiting factor on how high you get. Now of course this project had to start somewhere and that honor belongs to the 4 founding fathers; @donkeypong, @alcibiades, @kevinwong and @liberosist, so we all owe these steemians a big thank you.
I could probably write several posts about the value that @curie provides to the community, all the great people involved behind the scenes, and the fact that you can earn Steem by recommending good posts, but to keep this post from turning into a novel I would like to introduce you to one of the main figures behind the @curie witness account. I was able to sit down and have a chat with @Locikll recently and he did a great job explaining everything you need to know about @curie and more. He did a great job answering any and all questions that I had for him and is a great representative of the @curie community.
This interview with @Locikll was slightly different than the previous witness interviews as it was back and forth, on the spot answers. I hope it helps answers any questions you may have about the Curie project and I hope you enjoy the interview. Below is a full transcript of our discussion, enjoy.
- How long you been with the curie team?
- How many people operate the curie bot voting account?
That is a good question, I first joined as a Curator when anyone could submit in July (it was an open system), however myself, like many many others typically failed with their submissions as they were not 100% in tune with making sure that the posts were in-fact 'hidden gems'. Literally a week later, the public submissions were shutdown in favour of 'curator recommendations', this was due to the ridiculous amount of submissions, where most were rejected. I was recommended by Liberosist in early August, and attained the 'Top Curator' status a couple of weeks after. After becoming a 'Top Curator', you get to join a chatroom where you can discuss issues with reviewers and operators easily and vote on and have input to the guidelines/direction of Curie, at this time I developed a python tool for being able to discover posts within Curie's guidelines (Now these tools are relatively abundant), and with that I started developing smaller tools and reward tracking tools such that it would make the accounting of Curie significantly easier. Eventually I was put in charge of running the Witness in October. TLDR: 6 Months as a Curator, and 4 Months as a Witness/Bot Operator
The 'Curie' Account is run by a few of the operators who do specific tasks in order to distribute the workload amongst us (as most of us have full time jobs alongside Curie), the 'voting bots' and bots are operated primarily by myself, however Liberosist is easily able to switch the Witness over to the Backup (In the tiny off-chance that the fail-over doesn't do it's job), or inform me if something is not correct or changes need to be make to the bots and voting parameters.
- Congrats on climbing the ranks quickly
Well I think that's the beauty of Curie is that it is Meritocratic, it doesn't matter who you are, where you come from, or how much money/time you have, if you have a particular set of skills which are beneficial for the development and improvement of the Steem platform and helping to reward upcoming and promising authors on Steem, then there's always a place for people.
- Very true, the meritocratic approach is a great way to delegate and a great system in general.
Who are the original founding fathers?
Exactly, it makes sure that everyone is included and everyone actually wants to help out in a meaningful way, without envy.
To my knowledge the founding fathers are @donkeypong, @alcibiades, @kevinwong, and @liberosist, these 4 have done incredible work at developing some of the best authors on the platform today, and I really couldn't commend them enough on their altruistic spirit as they are true in all ways for their mission to give back and support the Steem community.
- Awesome, I am familiar with a few of those steemians, it's great when others are really looking out for the good of the community.
Exactly, I couldn't agree more, especially with the price of Steem rising (apart from the latest dip), more people are jumping on board and thinking this platform is all about 'facebook for money', where it couldn't be further from the truth.
- So curie seeks to find those posts that typically go unrecognized by authors who usually haven't received many rewards. There are several other criteria involved before Curie upvotes on a piece, but the main focus is rewarding deserving authors who have not been adequately awarded.
What about the authors that are just above that level, say, the authors who earn $1-5 per post but never seem to get about that level? Curie can seem a bit rigid in its guidelines.
Exactly, Curie also supports community votes as well, we vote follow 12 communities right now (and most likely more in the future), including @steemstem,@sSteemiteducation and many others, such that we can use our vote power and trail to help grow these communities, track the rewards we earn from the vote, and pay these directly back to the community curators such that they can continue to do the amazing work building the communities out even further.
Funny you should actually say that, the guidelines were recently expanded to a $10 maximum payout and a more holistic view of quality as opposed to the previous rigidity of 'exact value ranges', this actually allows for higher rep posters to be rewarded if they post truly exceptional works. The Curie reviewers try to balance the user reputation and rewards, against how 'new' the users are, in order to make sure that we are continually improving the authorship on the Steem platform into the future and to develop these new authors such that they continue to produce quality content.
And the communities have their own sets of guidelines in place (which we do not dictate), to ensure a high quality level of content, Donkeypong and Kevin work with these curation groups to educate, advise and be updated on how these groups are performing with respect to their communities.
- Ahh that's great to see. I have noticed lots of authors who fall into this range and with @curie's previous guidelines it was difficult for them to ever be spotted . Great to see that Curie isn't inflexible in changing its parameters when needed.
Exactly, the communities are sort of our way of not only supporting and developing communities, but to also bring in what Steem Guild should have been, a means to support authors who may not fall into the direct curation range, but can still be supported with a bit of a smaller vote by the community which they are a part of.
- So Curie has a new curator recommendation program since the open submission platform was not succeeding as hoped. If a fellow user was interested in becoming a curator, what would be the best way to go about it?
The best way to 'become a curator' would be;
1.) Check @Curie's latest Weekly Update post and find the 'Top Curators' of the week,
2.) Check the Top Curator's blogs to see whether they have any announcements that they are taking on any new Curators
3.) If one is, follow their instructions, If not then join the discord and maybe ask one or two whether or not they would be keen to take one on
4.) If the answer is no, be patient (and please do not harass them), sometimes they might be training someone, or just do not have the time to mentor a new Curator
5.) If the answer is yes, then follow their guidance, each 'Top Curator' will typically have their own process for mentor ship, and making sure that your submissions are perfect is something they'll typically do.
- Perfect, easy to follow steps.
Exactly, wanted to make it as clear as possible.
- What do you see as Steem's biggest selling point and biggest weakness?
I think Steem's biggest selling point can sometimes make for it's biggest weakness, The biggest selling point of Steem is that, for the most part people are very happy to help out and you get a really strong sense of community and support within the platform, however the problem with this 'strong community' is that sometimes these smaller 'fractal' communities can fight amongst one another (usually for a good reason, although sometimes not), and whilst it can often be easy for an outsider to see who is right, it isn't for these groups, and ultimately this toxic infighting can often hurt their own investment (time, reputation, money) in the long run, and it is sad to see that they can become very short sighted instead of looking to actually improve the community, and put aside their differences for the benefit of the Steem platform as a whole which would significantly improve their investment in the long-run.
- I totally agree, even taking it one step further is the tribe mentality. I think it's great to have a group you are connected with, but becoming so connected where you stop interacting with people outside the group and thinking of people not in the group as "others" is very dangerous. I think is only going to become more tribal as SMT's start rolling out.
I personally couldn't agree more with that
- Like you said, one of the selling points can also be a huge weakness.
Exactly, I'm not too fond of SMTs either, as I really do not see a use case different from the use case of Steem/SBDs
But I suppose we'll have to wait and see what happens when they're released.
- Yeah exactly, it might help bring more people to steem, but i think it will also create more division
what advise can you give to new users who are fed up with not receiving any rewards on posts and are close to giving up on steem?
That is an excellent question, If you're expecting this to be like Facebook, Instagram, or twitter, then unfortunately you've come to the wrong place and I wish you all the best. Steem is more akin to blogger, where people come to read in depth blog-style posts/articles which are your own (Not plagiarized), if you're putting your personality and taking the time to write excellently crafted, original pieces then groups like @curie, communities, and many other dolphins/whales will find and read your post, and if they really like it, you might even get yourself a permanent high-vote follower and a decent reward from it. Personally I think the only people who do not receive apt-rewards are those who plagiarize, or do not understand how Steem works with respect to quality, blog-style content, and for those people I recommend reading the posts which Curie re-steems as these are top-quality posts which you should strive to produce.
- Great answer, I think a lot of people come here and immediately expect to start earning rewards without any effort put in, and that's not how it works.
Yeah exactly, it happens very often, there needs to be a bit better-placed documentation (maybe on your first or second posts or something) about how to properly write a high-quality Steem post, and how plagiarism, etc will tarnish your work.
- Right, steem is definitely not for everyone, and like you said, if you truly put in the effort, you will likely be rewarded.
Exactly, I think Steem should be for everyone in terms of Curating and reading, but like Youtube and other social media, don't expect to be making a lot of money unless you're prepared to put in the work
- Okay last question, I guess this one is more from your perspective though. Where do you see Steemit and Curie in 5 years?
That is actually a funny question, prior to Communities and Curie hitting a top-20 spot as a community witness, we planned on actually slowing down operations and phasing out by completely distributing Curie's net worth back to the community, however due to the demand and the fact that many authors and Curators find the organization incredibly helpful for new authors and helping the growth of Steem, we have decided to continue operations into the future. By being in the top-20 Witness we are now able to provide more things to come which will significantly improve the Steem ecosystem and authorship on Steem, the next 5 years is a very interesting time frame with respect to cryptocurrency as things in this climate happen very quickly, however I can see Curie growing alongside many of the Steem communities over the next 5 years and to provide services for the Steem blockchain which will improve the way we interact with and distribute Steem in order to ensure that great quality content is a top priority on Steem.
- Interesting how moving up a few places on the witness voting list has completely changed the future course.
glad to see that curie plans on sticking around.
One upvote from a major account like curie can have a huge effect not only on the person who receives it, but the overall ripple effect on other members who see that hard work pays off.
As you can see, @Locikll is a perfect example of how the meritocratic system of curie works. Through nothing but hard work he was able to advance through the ranks and is now the main person in charge of the main witness account. Once again I want to that @Locikll for taking the time to have an in depth chat with me and a big thank you to the @curie team for helping deserving steemians receive the rewards they otherwise would have never obtained.
This is part 13 of the series "Meet Our Witnesses", You can read the interviews with @rival, @good-karma, @someguy123, @liondani, @patrice, @jerrybanfield, @kyle, @pharesim @reggaemuffin, @timcliff, @gtg and @netuoso by clicking the links:
Make sure you follow along to this series as we get to know many of the leaders in the Steemit community and show some appreciation for everything they do. Thanks for reading and check back soon.