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RE: Witness consensus status to fix the actual steem’s economic flows (ENG)
Curation plays a key role in rewarding the good content. Otherwise we have a reward pool of X STEEM/day spread out over all kinds of garbage and abuse and the valuable content contributors get 75% of very little.
The goal of these changes is absolutely to get better voting and curation which means more rewards flowing to those who deserve them.
I respect that you may disagree on this but I personally find such strong disagreement a bit peculiar. From 75% to 50% there is a 33% reduction in rewards. I don't know how you can be so confident that better voting and less voting motivated by content-agnostic extraction from the pool won't shift enough back to the good content to make up for this 33%.
No it doesn't. The only way to believe this is if you're completely bamboozled by the white paper. In practice curation doesn't do this at all. All it does is reward predicting what other people will vote on.
The current optimal curation strategy is to cast an extremely broad net of tiny votes in order to catch the occasional "hit" of rewarded content and win a small amount of SP each time through the n^2 curation algorithm. Look at how well @cheneats does as an example. That's the behavior you're encouraging here.
I'm not bamboozled by the white paper. I've explained (for years, often a lone voice on this) how downvoting is essential to anchoring the payout values (and therefore curation) to actual opinions on value of content/contribution. The white paper and the whole notion of downvoting only as an anti-abuse tool is getting this completely wrong (though to be fair with n^2 rewards there is less difference between the two; the original superlinear model with cheaper downvotes surely would have worked better as well).
That provably isn't the optimal strategy. I can easily improve on this by identifying some posts that won't 'hit' and not spreading to them. But to some extent this is true today because of insufficient downvoting. Literally any garbage can end up being a hit if it gets bidbot votes, and then it generally isn't downvoted enough (i.e. down to zero) because the cost of doing so is too high. Still, I think you can do better.
A large number of tiny votes on decent-to-good content is a useful form of both curation and content discovery in that it separates the possible wheat from the chaff. For example, I often upvote my own comments in large threads by 1% not to earn curation rewards or the few cents of self-voting-reward but to separate them from the huge sea of (often low value) comments.
The second level of curators then has less to look at, and can begin to shift rewards among the identified 'not worthless' candidates. This is good division of labor and value add all around, especially if you consider a scaled up system with much more content added daily.
In order for any of that to work, the large majority of the stake has to be voted naively, so that the people doing the algorithmic discovery have a large pool of content-based votes to be rewarded from. And you get naive voting by reducing the incentive to optimize, not the reverse.
If you have a first-level of curators that does basic discovery, and a larger (stakewise) second-level of curators that does higher-value discovery, you still need an even larger third level of "uncurators" who just want to vote on cool shit and don't care what their rewards are.
That remains the key population for making Steem work.
It works if overrewarded content is downvoted. Curators can pile on (or perhaps 'reverse pile on' is more accurate since it is anticipatory) because A expects B to curate/vote and B expects C, etc. But if D (along with E and/or F) comes along at the end and declares this to be trash and downvotes it to zero then A, B, and C all wasted their vote power (a costly mistake).
Even without any preference-motivated upvoters (and there will always be some) this can still work. As a curator you have to upvote something or your vote power is wasted. If you spread your votes thin or even vote randomly, this is superior to not voting. Once you do that, then choosing based on what you most expect to not get downvoted is superior to voting blindly. Simple model of course, but not absurdly off.
Somebody has to be the last voter who loses in this scenario. If not a naive voter, who's getting what they want on a personal-social level, then it's a curator who's not doing well enough to be successful. Over time the unsuccessful curators will drop off and somebody else will become the unrewarded top of the pile, until it has recursively reduced the curation-optimizing stake to the level the naive voters can support.
I don't think you have refuted my logic even there are NO naive voters other than downvoters (who count as a form of naive voter in the sense they are unrewarded).
Yes, there will be some equilibrium of curators. That's okay.
I don't understand your model here. Is it that you expect there to be a significant population of people who both desire curation rewards and are satisfied to lose at it? Do you think curation at 50% is so great that even the worst curators will be better off doing it than anything else with their money/time? (There might actually be enough inactive Steem to make that true in the immediate sense, but I'm doubtful it's sustainable. Though I really have no way to model future activity %s. I guess free downvotes help this too, and I'm going to have to think through that part some more.)
If the small curators are being paid by the medium curators and the medium curators are being paid by the big curators, who's paying the big curators? It's still zero sum and somebody has to lose.
Except that everybody in that system is getting paid by inactives and people who voted on things that got flagged, which is still zero-sum as a whole, but I need to think about it some more. There's a weirdness there of creating a system that sort of depends on the existence of abuse that I kind of like, but is super-weird in a game theory sense.
What I'm saying is that you can't do any worse than not voting. Even if your ROI from curation is relatively low, you are still better off throwing the vote out there. And if you're going to do that, you might as well try to throw it on something that has better prospects (with respect to upvotes minus downvotes).
If your ROI is low, you have a few alternatives: 1. Work to get better at it. 2. Delegate to a better curator (and probably get a share ofthe rewards). 3. Sell your stake and leave. 4. Decide you don't care (essentially your model of naive voters).
None of these are ever worse for you than not voting, with the possible exception of 3 if the STEEM price subsequently goes up (but it could go down too).
This is your mistake. It isn't zero sum unless Steem is failing. It is positive sum if the total network value of Steem increases by more than its (roughly) 8% inflation rate, even if you are the worst off stakeholder in the entire system! 8%/year doubles in 9 years. It would take 18 years at that rate for Steem to reach $1 billion in market cap. These are hardly aggressive growth targets.
People are incentivized to get their vote out there and try to get a share of the rewards, and in turn are then incentivized to try to do so in a less-than-maximally-stupid way. The goal of Steem is to grow the pie through effective allocation of rewards. That includes paying for the allocation process (curation). It doesn't just happen (well) by magic or wishful thinking.