STEEMIT Bot Guide: Steemit Bots for Dummies

in #steemit3 years ago

If you're new on Steemit then you probably are confused about all of the bots moving around the ecosystem.

Well, having that in mind I opted to create a STEEMIT newbie guide on bots, how to use them, what bots to steer clear of and some other pointers.

Not every bot is good, not every bot is bad, and although many are similar, some aren't, so if this is something you'd like to learn about... read this guide.

If you're a veteran Steemian, then many of these things don't come as news to you, but I'm sure that when many of you joined the concept was equally alien.

Bid Bots: Understanding Bid Bots and Their Mechanics


Screenshot from Steem Bot Tracker

There are a lot of bid bots out there.

These bots work in a characteristic way. Their full vote is divided slices as "players" enter their bids.

Once you bid on one of these bots (check the Min Bid level), you'll be attributed a slice of the vote. When the timer runs out, the percentages that each "player" has are the percentage of the vote they deserve.

This means that the more you bid, the biggest the slice, but as more and more "players" enter the bid, the vote gets dilluted, so the most profitable way to use these bots is to always just bid the minimum bid allowed.

Be careful though, many bots work in a way that more than 1 bid joins the slices for that particular person.

Also, @grumpycat has a GrumpyCat compliance system for these bots, and you can find it here.

It basically makes it so that promotion after 3.5 days is forbidden by the user @grumpycat, and he'll probably flag you if you use it in this case, since it can be seen as a way to collect the profit rather than to give the post visibility.

You can see that I used one of these bots, @upme, to promote this post. This allows the post to have added visibility in order to be read.

You'll see that I ideally wouldn't use this down on this text where it states my opinion on bots, but I see it as being necessary for now.

Maybe if the promoted section actually worked as intended that wouldn't be necessary, but for now that feature needs some work done on it.

Now, carrying on...

Voting Bots: Promote Your Content

On the other hand, we have voting bots.

Voting bots aren't a gamble and nearly always produce profitable votes since they sell their votes by less than they add to the post.

This takes some of the risk away. When using bid bots you can get your slice of the vote crushed if too many join or if a guy with a huge bid enters close to the end of the timer.

In the image above, you can see another screenshot from Steem Bot Tracker of a voting bot... in this case @randowhale (be careful, it's not randoMwhale).

You can also see that the bot is currently not working, as it is recovering its voting power.

There are also some other bots like this, like @minnowbooster and some others.

If you want to instantly promote a post, then this can be a good option.

When Should You Use Bots:

Now that you know about the bid and voting bots, you have to know about when to use them.

Some users only care about the profit the votes give, and so they may use them whenever they so please.

However, think about the purpose of Steemit, you'll see that doing this makes no sense.

The only way you should use bots, in my opinion, is right when you publish so you can get a boost and get seen in an easier way.

But here's what I think about bots...

My Opinion on Bots and Their Use

Now, you may ask yourself what is @spiritualmax 's opinion on bots?

Well, it's pretty simple. Ideally we wouldn't have them...

  • BUT!

You'll see that I use them as well. So Why?

Well, Steemit is growing in popularity and there are countless posts being thrown at the blockchain... it's easy to fade away...

ESPECIALLY... if everyone uses bots.

As everyone uses bots, not using them is a handicap, and before anyone says it isn't, this is only the case when you already reached "critical mass" of followers or when you have big friends that have you on auto-vote.

For everyone else, you just can't compete without them if you're a small fry.

It all comes down to... how fast do you want to grow?
Now, you'll also see I never pay those 40 SBDs etc to Bots...I think that is excessive use.

I just throw enough to get noticed, and I don't crush those numbers to reach trending. I think that is overkill and takes away the meaning of reaching trending all together.

Bots to Avoid: Steer Clear

Finally, there are some other bots out there doing the rounds.

I can mention one bot you should avoid, and its name is @cheetah.

If this guy upvoted your post, it wasn't a good thing because it means it spotted duplicate content.

Of course sometimes this is innevitable if you're repurposing content of one of your blogs to steemit, but cheetah's upvotes go mainly to spammers that copy paste stuff to try to make a quick buck from it.

You should also avoid bots that ask for too much information... you mean, those who seem like phishing scams.

Always research the bot you're thinking about using, and ask a more experienced Steemian.

Community Bots

Finally, you may notice some community bots around.
They usually exist to empower members of a certain Steemit community.

I'll give you STAX as an example.

STAX is the community bot from the #steemsilvergold community and she does the rounds, upvoting the members of her community to show them support.

You can only get on her voting list if you're part of the community and contribute to its power, so there are no free rides.

There are a lot of community bots like the Silver Gold Botty out there, and if you stumble upon one, now you know what it is.

Conclusion

So, to conclude, I hope you now know more about the bots roaming around Steemit and their purpose.

I urge you to use bots in a responsible way and in a way that doesn't hurt the community. Don't use bots to pump content you aren't proud of, and try to use them for your best pieces, but not after 3.5 days, do it when you want the visibility, right at the start.

Cheers!

Sort:  

I can mention one bot you should avoid, and its name is @cheetah.

If this guy upvoted your post, it wasn't a good thing because it means it spotted duplicate content

Why does this bot upvote rather than flag duplicate content?

Because sometimes the user is just transfering his old posts that were published elsewhere to steemit and the flag wouldn't be appropriate in those cases.

Cheetah is more like an alert for readers to see that it is duplicate and they can decide whether its spam or not.

Cheetah's warning says "similar content" at least part of the time, and I have tested it's algos... by posting my older content from other sites. The AI must be pretty advanced because I have never gotten the warning. Cheetah is a GOOD Bot, but has a darker side for abusers... Cheetah can BAN, but not as part of it's automated skillZ... This was done at the behest of the lovely @Patrice <3

So if I copy-paste my old blog posts here, Cheetah will not flag?

I would use the quotes feature in Markdown, I would add commentary as well, like updates. Really, most any time Cheetah gets involved it's because it's pretty blatant!

Thanks for the summary!

CC: @gank @ragemaster

Thank you for coming.
Cheers!

Great post @spiritualmax, as always. Just a clarification. I think that the @grumpycat's policy is a little different. He does not only flag posts that use bots after 3.5 days, but flag post that buys votes from bots that ALLOW the purchase of votes after 3.5 days. So maybe, even if you use the bot in a legitimate way, you can receive a flag. In fact, @grumpycat himself has said that he tries to flag the posts with the best content, and the most legitimate use of the bots.

Apparently, the purpose of this policy is to discourage users who are honestly seeking to promote their content from using these bots. Eventually, this should lead to the administrators of these bots to lower the time limit for the purchase of votes to 3.5 days, which would reduce the abusive use of these services.

Here is an example of a post flagged by @grumpycat, one in which he also leaves a comment where he explains what I said before: https://steemit.com/steemit/@purepinay/thinking-about-tomorrow-today-reinvest-and-power-up

Thanks Wil

That's a fine point! I was aware of it but failed to warn people about it in my article.
Thanks for spotting that out, giving you a good upvote to ensure people can see your contribution.

Glad you got my back!
Cheers!

It's my pleasure, I am learning a lot from you, so I'm pleased to be helpful in some way :-)

Thank you for the great post and expressing reserve when using bots. I have recently been taking a very anti-upvote bot stance as I feel it is a huge danger to the future of steem, especially as these services continue to grow, and more and more people, both honest, and not so honest, find their way to the platform. Yes, on one hand, no one likes to put hours or days of effort into a post, just to see it earn couple of cents and slip away in to the abyss. However I have been wondering lately, what is to stop a future of steem where one will be paying $5000 to 'promote' a selfie. We all know how self serving social media in general is, combined with the temptation of vast rewards, this could be a serious problem for the future of Steem.
-Anyway great post, and I would also like to add GINAbot to the list, my new favorite bot - she tells you when you get followed, upvoted, mentioned, or almost anything else and sends you a DM on Discord chat.

the use of bots means that those who pay get attention, regardless if they have good content or not .. its not about quality, its about money .. and there we have the motto of steemit: Money Talks ... I guess that doesnt bother some people but I think the bots work against the community. If we took away bots, @grumpycat's schtick wouldnt work .. I think s(he) has only posted blog entries 7 times ...

@praugepainter WOW mind blown...'money talks' I never considered it's dual meaning.

Yes, GINA bot is great.

When I started writing this post the idea was to include GINA bot actually, I just forgot about it and ended up not including, but I definitely feel it is worth a mention.

That danger is something I already thought about myself.

Cheers

I took a very vocal stand in using upvote bots before when I just joined the platform because I thought most people abuse them.

Yet being in the platform a bit longer that they are a necessary way to spread the votes and delegation. I bot from time to time to boost a good content post but I abhor people who post 5-6 times a day and use two paragraphs and a marvel image and then plug in 5-6 bots per post and thus ensuring good returns.

I am disgusted with those kind of people who cheat the system and share in the reward pool of the week for those that create content and engage people. Their posts are nothing more than placeholders and you see more confirmation messages of bots than actual people.

These kinds of people are smarter than your average shit poster who puts just one image or short content.

You know what?

I know exactly who are you talking about.

Using the bot earlier means also that you keep more of the payout from the bot vote.

I use bots later sometimes so that it distributes to the curated votes on purpose. I'm now experimenting with hitting the hot section of the topic I want it seen in, and I don't go as far as trending because that takes a crazy amount and I'd rather it go there if it deserves it. (Yeah ideally hitting hot should be the same principle, but it's exactly what you say about not being able to gain visibility).

By the way, I have an earlier post that computes your profit from bots depending in terms of SBD input that you might be interested in.

Hmm... that's interesting!
Yes, Eon, I also think trending should be reached by merit rather than by wallet.
Glad we're on the same page :D

Cheers and thank you for your support as always!

This is a good read. I am new to steem myself and am very curious about how bots work. This was a good starting point for me and I'm going to dig in and do a little more research on my own.

Thanks for the information.

If you need anything else, let me know.

Hey @spiritualmax, you definitely have hit the nail on the head as to how the voting bots work and why they provide an important service to the community by helping new / smaller authors to get their content out there for others to see among the huge sea of posts.

I am the creator of the Steem Bot Tracker website and I run the @postpromoter voting bot so I would appreciate any feedback you have on how to make the site and/or the bots themselves better or easier to understand and use!

Wow!

I am honored to have you visit my blog @yabapmatt! I'm an avid user of the Steem Bot Tracker and I love the site. I don't usually go for @postpromoter but I can guarantee you I'll give it a go for my next post.

I actually do have a suggestion, and that would be to add if the bid-bot adds a comment stating your purchased the vote or not, because for instances upme does it but buildawhale doesn't. It would be nice knowing about that as I tend to use one of each to avoid my post looking like a meeting point for 2 bots. :D

Once again, humbled by your presence and the fact you asked for my advice.
Cheers!

Thank you - but i really don’t consider my visit very humbling :-) Regardless of how long you’ve been on Steem it’s clear that you “get it” and that’s why I’m quite interested in your advice.

I have been asked a few times before to add that feature to the bot tracker so i will bump it up in priority now. I just have to be careful to make sure it’s not confused with the existing icon that shows which bots will vote on comments.

What is your opinion on bots leaving comments on posts though? Initially it was very important for bots to leave comments because that’s the only way you could find out about them...that’s a bit less of an issue now thanks to the bot tracker but I still think new users find out about content promotion services and the bot tracker site through the comments.

Also some people feel it’s a good way of disclosing that a post was paid to be promoted.

On the other hand, I also don’t like seeing a whole bunch of bot comments at the bottom of every post!

Now that I’m thinking about it - i wonder if it would make sense to have a separate bot that simply discloses with a single comment when a post is promoted by one or more other bots. This may be a good solution to both promote the service while reducing comment spam.

Well... I see the point you make about it being the way the community gets to "meet" the bots.

I don't see any problem there as less use of the bots wouldn't exactly be a bad thing in the long run, although I hear where you're coming from.

On the other hand, I usually promote my posts on 2 different bots with minimal bids... I don't want two bots commenting I got a 0.1% upvote though, it makes no sense, that idea of yours is actually really great and something I would definitely prefer to this current system.

There's a whole economy around bots, and they will ALWAYS exist as far as Im concerned, but having the bots less promoted would be a positive thing and let me tell you why I think that is the case:

1 - Low effort users wouldn't make an effort to learn how to enlist the bots.

2 - High Effort users would get there anyway, as well as the occasional low effort user who would try to find bots to upvote shitty content, but some bots already curate their content so that is good.

On the other hand, this system we have now means people see these bots Everywhere! That is bad because:

1 - It turns new users off: Many get disappointed on seeing that bots run the show apparently.

2 - The guy who takes selfies and uploads them on the go can easilly see promotion bots all around him and just go manic on them. They are just too easy to get.

Of course, I'm a newbie, I may be mistaken, but as of now I think the exposure is too much, and we're making it so that even the lowest effort users know bots are around and can pump their rewards up.

Once again, thank you for your comment, and nice words.
Cheers

You are a waterfall of BOT education and I am just one of the many sponges soaking up that FLOW you are putting out here on this blockchain! Really is grateful for your posts! Learning about BOTS was a bit easier to break the ice on then I had ever even imagined! Great post @originalworks by @spiritualmax Much LOVE for the 'good' BOTS out there!

Thank you for your support and the kind comment Hero!
It's always an honor to have a kindred spirit around!
Cheers and thanks for calling original works, though it is down as of now :)
See you around.

That's quite a nice guide never used any till now so it was very useful :)

Oooh, I used @upme once but I had no idea how the bid system worked or that there were different types of bots. Awesome content, Max. I'm really enjoying it and this one will help me a ton in the future. <3

Thanks Sharon!
Great that you took value out of it.
Kisses

Excellent information here @spiritualmax. This was really helpful and helped to clarify a few perspectives for me.

Just last week I started using more bots and upvoting services and I have come to a similar conclusion as you: I'd rather not use them BUT without them my efforts are just going completely unnoticed.

This will likely become an issue down the line but for now, it is what it is and I feel that if you are abusing the system and promoting posts that are clearly lacking effort / not adding value to the platform, then these posts should be flagged.

@randomwhale was a new one for me so I'll be looking into that one more. A few others that weren't mentioned here are:

@smartsteem, @koinbot, @lays, @appreciator, @steemfunding, @postpromoter

Thanks for sharing this valuable information @spiritualmax. I'm sure a lot of your fellow Steemians will really appreciate it as I do!

Cheers!

~ @axios

PS: I wrote a post about some great Steemian channels worth following. I'd love to hear your thoughts about it! Steemit DISCOVERIES with @axios [EP 2]: Steemians Worth Following!

Be careful axios, it's not @randomwhale it's @randowhale without the "m"

A lot of people are making that mistake and the money ends up in the account of an impostor.
Cheers!

Got it, thank you!

Thank you for another very informative article @spiritualmax,
I've been debating using bots to get more visibility... I still don't know where I stand on the matter but I may try one out before too long! Your article makes some very good points, there really are SO many posts on Steemit every day, its hard to get many views.
Thanks for helping us figure things out :)
Take care,
@amymya

No worrie!
And yes, you should think by your own head and figure out where you stand on them as I can definitely understand why you'd be hesitant.

Cheers!

HEY!!! I don't see the coding and writing hints for setting up a BOT! :P

I noticed streemian is not getting the votes out, perhaps it tripped when I went below a certain level but I manually did this one and I am much closer to a 100% UV now Maxxey :D

This post is very informative and answered a lot of questions for me. I have been wondering whether to use bots or not. I want to use them, just to make it out of the kiddie pool, because I spend major time on my articles, but don't have the backing yet.

Question - you say that we should use the as soon as possible, if you use upme or other bidding one, and they do 2.4H rounds, isn't that a bit slow ? or is it fine.

That is fine!
But if choosing between bid bot or vote bot and you only have money for one, go for the vote bot.
Cheers!

I am new, and I am having a hard time with this concept! Why is it, that people are always trying to get over on the system! There can't just be honest and fair users... Is it greed? Must be! One reason I came to steemit was because of the abuses and control issues from Google/Youtube, Facebook, etc. Now you're telling me that this forum, has potential for all the same abuses... cool! (sarcasm)

You have to be patient puppetmaster.
People are still formatted to think on the old mindset, and these things take time.
With time, Im sure the scarcity mindset will be reduced in intensity.
Have faith!
Cheers!

Very Cool, we are psychically linked again...
I have been churning over a Bot Post in my mind, I've had it in the hopper for a few weeks actually. Of course it is totally different, and something you have overlooked :D I'm speaking of auto-bots, and not from a cartoon! Bots that rove around and upvote good content :D

Auto-Bots Assemble!

Looking forward to reading that post of yours Underground.
Cheers!

A good description of the bots, I liked this manual. This is something that has long been lacking. You are right, the correct use of bots will give an opportunity to raise your post.
Thanks for the valuable information, good work :)

Hello Franky,

Glad to see your rep above 50!

Good job, you deserve it man. Keep on Steeming!

I was just pondering why these bots exist today, my first impression is that they are like the spam bots on twitter and other things that have come out of the Blackhat Seo world.

Although I do see why they exist now, and I have a better understanding of what to do with them.

Thanks for your post

No Problem Damion!
Glad to see you around here.
Cheers!

Probably the best bot post I've read yet. I just hate to have to play these games with the system to promote my blog but I guess it's par for the course. When in Rome do as the Romans do...

Yes, that's exactly it.
Cheers!

I only knew a about @minnowsupport that gives you upvotes every 12 or 24 hours. So this really helped out, thank you!

These are way more powerful Barny.
Give one a go, it may help you, BUT make sure the content you promote is good!
Cheers

@spiritualmax Extremely helpful information. Which bots do you use?

Writing for the purpose of helping others is really good. What a wonderful eye opener. I suggest this community follow this trend of yours.
You're really a darling @spiritualmax

I agree with you, we need @spritualmax in our lives in steemit.

Thank you for your kind words.

You never cease to amaze me @spiritualmax, excellent article you got there.

Glad you liked it buddy!

Indeed I agree with you! It even makes my stay in this platform a lot more easier.

Amazing post, really helpful for someone just starting out into the world of steem!

I don't have experience with that bot, but I know some people who use it without a problem.
Cheers!

ahhhh haaaaa hugeeeee help Maxxie love what you are doing for steemit my man. Keep doing you, it seems to be working a-okay mate

Respect

Cheers Conrad!

Nice seeing you around. Stay cool and thanks

I am new on steemit and it seems like anything goes. Bots are siphoning off sbd from thousands of users making their owners rich. And @grumpycat is a kind of self-appointed policecat .. like some sheriff come to clean up the casino, I guess s(he)'s cleaning up ... I feel conflicted about bots, but it seems the rot has spread pretty far already so its hard to escape ...if you want attention you have to play with bots

If you want attention and you're a small fish... get some bots to help out... but on good content, otherwise you'll get flagged!

This was quite informative, thank you :)

Thank you for commenting. Cheers!

so what bots should we use then?

Read the post and then you can make the call for yourself.
Cheers

shitpost_GIF.gif

you need to follow @minnowbootcamp!

Very interesting content, hope the blogger continues to update.

Я все еще не в состоянии выяснить ботов ... Но я надеюсь что-то понять)))

I have never tried