Global sentiment analysis - public sentiment as the invisible hand behind democracy and how it relates to DPOS

in #eos4 years ago (edited)

“In this age, in this country, public sentiment is everything. With it, nothing can fail; against it, nothing can succeed. Whoever molds public sentiment goes deeper than he who enacts statutes, or pronounces judicial decisions.” Abraham Lincoln

Public sentiment is the invisible hand behind democracy

Democratic networks run on public sentiment. Any network which has voters, which has a crowd, which has either proposals to be voted on or representatives to vote for, is in essence guided by public sentiment. Steemit and DPOS based consensus networks all require democracy in order to work. This requirement for democracy by DPOS based consensus networks may in fact be the main flaw behind DPOS because there is the risk that the entire network could become under the influence of popularity cults.

What is a popularity cult? It usually forms around a cult personality type which the zeitgeist of the time prefers. This cult personality type may be then put in the position of "thought leader" whose opinions hold extraordinary weight. In the crypto space there already are such thought leaders which means under any democratic style network these thought leaders may become the key players. This is a problem because most people instead of thinking for themselves on every decision will prefer to go with the flow and follow the opinions of their leader(s).

Why follow the leader can become problematic

Thought leaders ultimately centralize the decision making. While it may seem that under DPOS or similar protocols that the crowd is wise and well informed, instead what we actually see in practice is very low participation rates. We also see a heavy reliance on the opinions of thought leaders who may be justifiably experts in narrow areas, but who then go to speak on every area as many people look up to them. This in my opinion represents a potential bottleneck because a thought leader may be a genius at developing blockchains or at artificial intelligence but may not know very much about the law (compliance) or team building. In essence, follow the leader can result in tribal disputes between personality cults which can ultimately disintegrate cooperation in an industry.

In my opinion the main flaw behind DPOS and similar democratic style consensus is politics. Politics in most countries divide the people. Additionally the political disputes are easily manipulated by propaganda from both mainstream and alternative media. The crowd by itself is not wise and does not research deeply into matters and for this reason the media has extreme influence.

We can for instance see how investors react to news of a South Korean ban on crypto exchanges and we can see many investors make emotional decisions based on this new information. The speculation which takes place under the democratic style political systems is a bit different where instead of people betting on which stocks will go up and down, essentially the bets are on where public sentiment will move. If you can in essence see where public sentiment is and project where it is going to go then you can do well in politics just as if you can see where the market is and where it is going to go you can do well at investing.

The problem is most of us have no clue where public sentiment is going to go and very few have any clue where public sentiment is at any point in time. The means of determining where public sentiment either in markets or in politics is by capturing public sentiment via opinion polls and then analyzing it.

Global sentiment analysis as a new input for decision making

In the past the technology did not exist to capture the opinions of people around the globe. The world was smaller, less connected, and language barriers prevented human beings from being able to know what other human beings think. These language barriers are now removed by AI, people are now more connected than ever by social media, and the blockchain allows for a record of the consensus at any point in time. The problem today isn't that we cannot capture the data which represents global sentiment but it is a problem of being unable to analyze and process the big data which represents global sentiment.

Steemit as a product is like a machine which produces an output of global sentiment. All who post their true opinions and thoughts on Steemit have submitted that data to be analyzed by AI going into the future. The ability to process the data on Steemit will only improve over time until eventually we will be able to track in a precise manner the current sentiment of Steemit. This may not substitute for the sentiment of the globe, or even of the cryptospace, but it does give us a source of data.

Global sentiment can teach us the current "right and wrong" views of humanity

How do we determine what is right and what is wrong from the eyes of humanity itself? The only way to capture this data is by continuously analyzing the expressed opinions of humanity. Humanity is a global organism and while this organism is decentralized down to the level of individuals, with individual opinions, we require a means of combining and synthesizing these various opinions in a way which is useful to what we are trying to do. Some examples of changes in global sentiment are below for discussion:

  • The global economy is improving in the minds of the global person but pessimism remains about the future.
  • The views of NATO have improved in certain places. In order words NATO is more popular now.
  • The views of Russia in the mind of the European person has diminished (this may be connected to NATO improving)
  • Angela Merkel is viewed as more competent when it comes to global affairs than some other politicians at this time.

If the crypto space is going to catch up and do these political chains in the right way then there will have to be global sentiment analysis. The result of this analysis should be used so that decisions with regard to design or upgrading can be data driven rather than by way of a top down command and control. This requires a way to collect data in such a way that the data is kept private yet allow machines to analyze it.

The problem with transparency is that when you have too much of the wrong kind of it then people cannot express their true opinions if it deviates too much from public sentiment. People for example cannot vote what they really believe if they think their votes will be analyzed on the blockchain for all time by machine intelligence to later be used against them by those who disagree. For these reasons the votes must be private and the opinions whether expressed in public or kept in private must be analyzed so as to better inform developers and key decision makers on what actions to take.

References

  1. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/08/18/6-trends-in-international-public-opinion-from-our-global-indicators-database/
  2. https://www.globescanfoundation.org/
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@dana-edwards - What an interesting view of public sentiment and how it can actually provide inputs for decision making for businesses which are based on consensus. The weakness of consensus based businesses is the manipulation that is possible through politics. We see it affecting futures of various countries and have an impact on the well being of a nation. You draw an interesting parallel for businesses like Steemit, DPOS that also get affected.
An enlightening article. Thanks. Upvoted full.

Regards,

@vm2904

It must provide input into the blockchain itself. We have to figure this out if we are going to truly adapt the tech to be for everyone and not merely for those who agree with our sentiments.

@dana-edwards Unfortunately public sentiment is easily shaped and manipulated through television. Most people would blindly trust and believe the news anchorman without doing any research for themselves. ''If it's on the news, then it must be true''.

Public sentiment can be manipulated with a variety of techniques and used to promote political agendas and ideology. Following a leader blindly can become problematic because as soon as people feel they can trust their leader, they stop doubting them and fully surrender to their will.

Significant point raised.

And also through blogs, which should show you exactly the risk I mean with DPOS.

@dana-edwards I was not familiar with the DPOS system prior to reading your work and I'm thankful for you taking the time to raise awareness. I absorb information all day like a sponge, however one can always miss valuable info on the web; it's huge.

The risk with DPOS or similar protocols is that it resembles politics as you rightly pointed out. "The crowd by itself is not wise and does not research deeply into matters and for this reason the media has extreme influence.'' Absolutely agreed. Politics. And that's an easy way to control the masses. Divide them, teach them to hate people with different views. You need them divided in different groups thinking each other is the real enemy.

But again, all this mess stems from the fact that the masses are ignorant and refuse to educate themselves. They refuse to ''waste'' time researching. They're too busy watching tv shows and games.

In other words, consent is manufactured, like Noam Chomsky says, which makes the whole 'democracy' thing rather null.

I think we live in an era where we are constantly being brainwashed to be zombies. Television and social media is a big part of screwing everyone's psychology. For example, by having a lot of money, you can deliver your opinion to a hundred thousand people on social medias and make them believe you are right. So if your intention is to manipulate them in some way, you can easily do that with money. It happens, because the masses are not aware of any of this happening at all. Blind trust in the leaders is not good, because that gives them all the power to do whatever they want...

Ding DIng DIng!!!!! Nailed it with this comment. There are a only a handful of individuals with enormous amounts of fiat money who do exactly what you said... I.e... Georgie S.. and Bill G.. these guys use their money to spread lies which become the public sentiment moving forward, because they (or the institutions before them) have already invested years and $$ to cracking the human psyche.

Just look to all the secret societies our "leaders" are involved in and how they regularly meet BEHIND CLOSED DOORS to discuss their satanic errr I mean "globalist" agendas.. And Angela Merkel attends those meetings.

I thought the German people wanted her out because of her insane immigration policies which lead to... i dont know... lots of rapes, sexual assualts and what not... perhaps I am wrong.

Thank you for great posts @dana-edwards, I get a lot of information from them and get knowledge which I can use in future.

Well thought-out exploration of the weaknesses of DPOS type networks. The phenomenon you mentioned, "thought leaders," is a quite interesting one. At one point, we were all on the same level as human beings, yet then suddenly, when someone has spent enough hours researching/practicing something, they are now an "expert," with all the concordant expectations, honor, and admiration. However, anyone can (and ought to) become knowledgeable about the most fundamental aspects of reality, from their unique vector of consciousness. The laziness, fear, and mental programming that plague most which encourage them to seek escapism instead of addressing the harder questions of existence may be a formidable foe, but it can be overcome.

Upvoted 100% through Steemfollower. Thanks for the food for contemplation @dana-edwards!

Thank you for getting so much knowledge @dana-edwards, I have just discovered you and your posts, and I really got a lot of new for me from them, thank you for them once more.

The views of Russia in the mind of the European person has diminished (this may be connected to NATO improving).

Pretty sure it's because American propagandistic mainstream media are incessantly trying to stoke up a war against them.

I think people also get themselves into a groupthink mentality where just because the wider group sees something then the rest feel that they should also feel the same way due to social proof. Groupthink has major implications for individualised critical thinking. Do we therefore live in a true democracy? Or are we just living in a media influenced culture that was always someone else's idea?

If policymakers were of a mind to make New Year’s resolutions, they might have chosen an obvious one: find ways to spur sustained growth. Useful policy initiatives include increasing investment in human capital and infrastructure; promoting trade; and fostering an environment that maximizes the benefits of foreign direct investment and technological transfer.

indeed, politics divides people. even at us on a site the newcomers were struggling to have something to say to be noticed, I have content on the inside. thanks for giving me time to think again

The result of this analysis should be used so that decisions with regard to design or upgrading can be data driven rather than by way of a top down command and control.

In a way, I think it could make matters worse, because people are still under the influence of others, but in addition to that we indirectly make everyone's opinion count. Which magnifies the problem with public sentiment and popularity cults.

In DPOS people who don't do enough research are less likely to vote, which is not a bad thing. You still get bunch of people who think they know enough, but are actually just blind followers. But at least you don't include all the people who don't care enough about the network, but nevertheless have opinions formed by others.

Also there might be stakeholders, who have opinions, but are wise enough to understand that their knowledge is not complete. You don't want to include their opinions into decision making process as well.

Either way, thanks for a thought provoking article.

Which means DPOS evolves into technocracy? That might work okay for narrowly focused decisions on technical matters where clear objective measurements can be had but this does not work so well for governance in the true sense.

Well, everyone is still free to vote, so it's up to the people to prevent it from evolving into technocracy. Fortunately, people can learn, and once they see the consequences of non-voting they can easily start fixing the problem by voting.

Which cannot be said about most of other existing protocols. Where it's hard for average user to have any positive effect on the network, because he has to dedicate hardware to participate in consensus process.

I think that non-voting problem in DPOS is way smaller compared to problems with centralization in other existing protocols. I'm not saying DPOS is perfect, just pointing out that other protocols have even bigger problems.

good post. Thank you for sharing ♥

What I for some time have been thinking about this libertarian blockchain ideology is, that it changes nothing. This article inadvertently confirms my beliefs. Steemit or any other community, digital or traditional is just a community. Just like an ethnic, religious, political or national sphere, like Europe, China, Christendom, France, Latin America. Why not a City ot a school, a group of friends, a sports club, a political party. All of these are communities.

Nothing is different, each and every community has the same problems with democracy, leadership, passivity. So does Steemit or Dapps.

The real problem I have with this is that I see a repetition of what every technology so far has done. Produce big promises and great expectations, then fail. The invention of steam power as well as the locomotive were supposed to bring peace and end of strife. The machine gun and later the atomic bomb were to make wars impossible. The internet was supposed to give the people a voice. But the internet gave us the most extreme surveillance society ever seen. Think of the revelations by Snowden and Assange alone. AI is used to predict politics and make deadly effective propaganda. All just from knowing your favourite colour, shoe size and a hundred thousand other personal trival facts about you and millions of your peers. Big Data technologies are already horribly effective.

What I see is that blockchain and dapps change nothing. Just a new community with the same dynamics and psychology as any other community. A need for leadership. Like a state and its government. What is worse is that the damage of any bad forces are yet again just magnified. Think sci-fi nightmare.

i followed u from two days @Dana-edwards you are sharing really amazing things And u have a good Writing like which i have never seen. i get alot of knowledge from your posts. i read your all posts daily. Thank u for sharing this valuable information with us .

Very nic post

very good, thanks

Interesting study on public sentiment and democracy. But I see it is only applicable to the developed European countries. For a country like Nepal, where i am from, democracy is the most ill-utilized word translating literally into "anarchy". It is "democrazy" out here.

The problem is that fund raising has taken over so much because getting re-elected has become such a commodity to leaders. I don't worry so much the democratic angle is flawed, it is the watering down and ruining of the procedure by laws not being followed, and certain violators being excused. Great post @dana-edwards, found the post on steemfollower. I like to return the favor when others vote my posts, which are very much related to this one, as well as many others. Thanks for the post, provocative thoughts. UPVOTE

I am indeed floored by your artical Dana. Truly inspirational and a food for thought for many. Public sentiments and opinions do matter strongly in this every changing and dynamic world and can topple a lot of hidden interests to suppress crypto curriencies and their existance. Regards Nainaz.
#thealliance

tnx for your informative post

Thank you so much for giving us a great posts @dana-edwards,
I get a lot of information from it and get knowledge which I can use in future.
I wish your long life....

I must say, this is the great view of public sentiment and democratic view. Actually, we all are use sentiments while decision-making using our worthy vote to select a political but on the other hand, we are totally wrong. Almost all are countries are affected by this. I'm unable to determine what is wrong and what is right before voting. We most of them are blind followers, we don't think in the right way whether it is right or wrong.

You have raised very good point. Thanks it worth reading.

“Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.” Winston Churchill. Our platform is democratic and decentralized, they say. Then all of us should be asked to have feedback, maybe that would help. Democracy is expressed by vote.

Very useful advice within this post! It is the little changes which will make the greatest changes. Many thanks for sharing!
This article couldn’t be written any better! Going through this article reminds me of my previous roommate!
He constantly kept talking about this. I'll send this article to him. Pretty sure he's going to have a great read. Thank you for sharing!
Having read this I thought it was extremely enlightening. I appreciate you finding the time and energy to put this short article together. I once again find myself personally spending way too much time both reading and commenting. But so what, it was still worth it! Thankx @dana-edwards

Yesteraday i analyze eos bought at $9 next target $20
check my profile for more detail
EOS will break $12 next target $20

From a pure profit perspective EOS has made people money. From a difference making perspective I do not know if EOS will result in an improved state of the world. Currently we just have a lot of theories and as an experiment it is looking like it will be done on a massive scale but this scalability also means potential for massive harm if anything goes wrong.

Yes Dana! Right! But it’s look like at the moment eos has a great potential to move on! Next eye surely on $ 20 then a bit consolation then a big jump expected!

Point on and 100% upvote. As an investor, I also agree that all markets whether crypto or wall street have been strongly controlled by emotion since 9/11. Appreciate your perspective.

While it may seem that under DPOS or similar protocols that the crowd is wise and well informed, instead what we actually see in practice is very low participation rates.

You could change a couple words and you'd be talking about democracy itself. This is an old problem. Democracy needs ideally informed citizens, highly educated, in order to function properly. Most people would rather choose one thing and do it well, rather than learn about every issue that's up for a vote. I don't learn about medicine before going to the doctor: that's why I pay him, so I won't have to learn what he learned. Being a politician is like any other practice, it's amenable to argument and science and rational thinking. So I think it should be handled like other practices: egregious violations of the public interest in favor of personal interest should be punished, for instance, and accidental mistakes that can't be helped must be tolerated as a necessary evil bug in an imperfect system.

This is why I think EOS will fail. We cannot have informed citizens with the current technology so in the end there is technocracy and all the problems we see today in Steemit will only become progressively worse under EOS.

Tauchain seeks to resolve this problem by scaling discussion so that collaborative decisions can be made. In other words, I see EOS as having the same bottleneck that we see in traditional institutions because DPOS which to my understanding is the basis behind EOS and it has those flaws. I think these problems can be resolved but it requires using algorithms, machines, AI, and to scale decision making in ways which go far beyond what DPOS currently offers.

I will never be educated enough. I can only read so many books in the time I have due to the scarcity of my attention. The only way to get beyond the scarcity of my attention is to somehow encode my preferences and values in such a way that machine intelligence can increasingly focus my attention on what is in my interest.

DPOS in my opinion will lead to politicians and politics. Also the transparency agenda behind EOS will promote maximum conformity possibly to the point where people cannot stray from orthodoxy to even express their true opinions. This could have very negative long term consequences but it's for EOS to experiment and discover for the cryptospace what those consequences will be.

My take on it is we need to scale our thinking and relieve our bottlenecks. In my opinion the best way to create a better life and a better world is to focus on improving ourselves individually. There is no institution which can help us if we don't scale ourselves, as in our thinking, our ability to be moral, our ability to make big decisions. Global sentiment is very important but without an automated means of factoring it in, we cannot know how our decisions could impact other people.

Accidental mistakes are not well tolerated in society though even if you believe it should be. The data does not show that just because something is an accident that global sentiment is not going to turn negative toward the entity which did the accident. Accidents also scale up as the stakes scale up, and as EOS becomes more scalable, it becomes a global thing with global implications and world level stakes.

Interesting thoughts. I'll keep in mind.

And I agree with the moral sentiments of the penultimate paragraph.


Very interesting and fair observation. There are always pitfalls that form currents of public opinion. This is especially noticeable when there is a struggle of politicians for power. Proplachennye and private media. How to break this vicious circle?
After all, many political and financial leaders of many countries are not interested in changing this mechanism of influence on public opinion.
Block Cheynov systems can certainly change this on a country scale and even on a global scale. Only inter active communication of society can express public opinion on certain issues. Steemit is the first step in this direction. Although investors also have a decisive opinion on the trends and directions of the movement here.
But if we, people of different countries, already now can talk about this and think about it, then this is evidence of progress in solving these issues.
Keep it up @dana-edwards and thank you!


Great concept invisible hand and adam smith theory ,it so interessing thanks for sharing

Well-addressed.

Of course, these are the potential downsides of both democracy and decentralization - consensus may clarify what groups agree upon, but that doesn’t necessarily mean their opinions aren’t flawed or subject to all kinds of cognitive bias which may not lead developments in the most constructive of directions...