On content, flagging, upvoting, rewards and more... my frustrations with Steemit

in #steemit4 years ago

Right from the get-go I was pulled in by the money. Seeing payouts of over 10k for short introduction posts were an everyday occurrence back in the day. Were those posts worth 10~15 thousand dollars a piece? Hell no! Hell yes!

Who am I to judge what's worth anything on this platform. My vote is determined by my wallet size and that's the extent I can judge on something. Whales will have a bigger say and will upvote on what they think is worth an upvote - they might not upvote at all. In any case this won't effect the payouts in the end as the reward pool will stay constant. So saying things like "@haejin doesn't care about the community, because he doesn't upvote anyone but himself" is rather odd. Why should he? It's how the system was built and it's totally legitimate to act in this manner. Hell, I might stop upvoting everyone too, why shouldn't I?
Also, we can't complain about voting power. Again, it's how Steemit was built. Seeing certain whales upvoting each other many times a day - that's legitimate. Nothing wrong with it. And upvoting ourselves - we ALL do it. Is there anyone who wouldn't upvote himself?

We cannot complain about "quality of content" either, because there is no measurement on quality on this platform and what any post is worth is totally up to the people to decide and everyone has their own stake in it (Steem Power). Complaining about the preferences of people with more Steem Power is like protesting on the street with "we are the 99%" signs. It's just dumb.

"It's not worth the money!", "It's spam!", "It's misleading!"
etc... and what isn't? Are @kaylinart 's everyday life hack posts worth the money when you could read the same things on lifehack.com anytime anywhere for free? I don't think so. Are @gringalicious 's everyday recipes worth 100$+ a post? NO. The internet is full of free recipes and food pictures. Are my pictures actually worth anything for simply sharing them here? NO.

Content and quality comes SECOND on Steemit. SteemPower comes FIRST!

If you don't have a lot of SP then obviously content and the quality of it will determine how good you'll do here.
You won't get rewards for it, but you will slowly start gathering "real followers" that actually upvote your posts on a regular basis. That's how @papa-pepper @kaylinart @gringalicious are where they are today. Not by bitching about how unfair the world is, but by building a following around them - engagement, regular appealing content.

Fixing Steemit

Does Steemit need fixing? I don't know. One can never satisfy everyone. All I know is that many aren't proud of what Steemit has become and see a lot of unfairness in the system.
Steemit was built as a self-regulatory system governed by it's users. Clearly this allows for anarchy to exist.
The more time has went by the more curation accounts have appeared - this shows only one thing:
full decentralization doesn't work.

I've thought about limiting the payouts to maybe 100$ per day. This should avoid the rewardpool from being sucked dry by whales yet give a good payout nevertheless. But this would also remove the reason to keep most of our STEEM powered up.

Another solution would be to actually form a real curation team for Steemit. A thought put forth by @benjojo . The current curators are not cutting it.
Where would we get the SteemPower? Maybe it would be in Steemits best interest to make a rule that 10% of everyones SP has to be delegated to a curation account? (or something similar - in other words, everyone has to contribute to curation). I don't know the answer.

Why am I writing this?

I haven't been paying close attention to the whole drama regarding @haejin and everyone trying to downvote his posts. After reading a critical post on the topic I got persuaded what he's doing isn't really good to the platform. After flagging him, he flagged me back and it got me thinking. As you know now, I'm not against what @haejin is doing because he is really doing what mostly everyone is doing on this platform: producing content and trying to get the most out of it. The only difference is that he's is gathering large payouts and taking up a good portion of the reward pool and people got jealous.

Flagging is not the solution here, as it's the system that's broken. If flagging his content is allowed then flagging everyone's content should be allowed too as we are all doing the same thing.

Last thoughts

I don't know what Steemit will become in a year or a decade, but the way it's now, it's not gonna be a very appealing place for sure if we engage in flag wars and rudeness.

Secondly, In regards to quality of content. Look at youtube. I think they have watch-minute and subscription milestones until people can actually start monetizing their videos. Shouldn't Steemit have these too? I'm sure a lot of spammers will disappear overnight if something similar gets implemented.

And third, don't trust anything I say. I'm no expert on any of these topics and this post is a rant from the top of my head. I haven't fact-checked any of my claims. Call me out, explain to me what Steemit is all about for you. I'm all ears.


Here's a worthless picture to fill the thumbnail and calm your soul:


don't comment on the picture or you'll get a flag for spam... Ohh the irony

Bye 2.0!


All in all you're right it is what it is it is how it was built and it works as it was intended to. The only bad side of steem it is that majority of tokens are concentrated in few hands. However we must understand that this is the first blockchain of this kind and it had to start somehow not without its flaws and definitely with its great benefits. Once smt's will be released there will be many applications on steem blockchain and different reward systems and as for myself I can tell that the photography community that we are building and will be releasing smt as BeScouted tokens we will try to commence token distribution much more evenly and we will see how that works for the community. inherent problems with steam token distribution might have been and unnecessary evil to kick-start the platform and lay foundations for the future projects. Let's wait and see how it develops. For now I am grateful to steem Developers for providing unprecedented opportunity that was never possible before maybe with some flaws but the Magnificent piece of software engineering by itself.

You are right, yes. Let's hope this is just the beginning and future applications will be better. Nothing starts out perfect.

The thing that gets me is that people post a photo of their donut with a bite out of it and it gets bot-voted 100+ times. I post my better photography work and am lucky if I get ten votes. Ugh. Well, I'd post anyway, so not making a ton of money isn't dissuading, but I do feel underappreciated here. I get more likes on Instagram.

The reward aspect of Steemit is noble, but as usual, it brings out the worst in us - greed.
As I wrote in my post, content comes second and Steemit isn't a photosharing platform like instagram. Unless you have a whale friend, payout is linked to how much of a active following you produce and how fat their wallets are :P
(The thing that sometimes makes me mad are people talking about how much they have worked to get their big payouts. When I look at their votes, there's always the same whales upvoting pointless content. Stop saying you work hard, when all there is, is a whale friend.)

Well actually, the thing is that it is basically allowed to flag anyone we like. People might have bad reactions to it, but it doesn't make it forbidden. ;)

Haejin is mostly flagged not due to his huge upvotes, but his habit of self-upvoting instead of upvoting anyone else (or creating quality content, but people have different opinions on this) and people are also assuming the huge whale account upvoting him might be his account too.

Users can be unhappy with those with highest power only using it to get more and more for themselves. That's why we are happy to have the flagging tool - and more importantly we are allowed to say our opinions on the subject.

This is truly a fine thing this Steemit. I hope it'll survive a long enough time. Ps. Nice picture ;)

Damn. I think the flagging rules were changed or something. I recall reading flags are only for spam, plagiarism etc, the usual things, now there aren't any rules. Flag ahead :/
Okay, I get it now, but why are we only looking at the biggest of them. Is haejin really taking up a considerable portion of the reward pool and aren't there actually more "unknown" dolphins whose content is of questionable value, but they cash in 150+ daily?
And damn, flagging seems bad - you waste your vote to invalidate someone elses vote. Isn't it better to simply upvote on the things you like?
I think it's all a mess.

Flagging is acceptable on "disagreement on rewards", so if you don't think someone earns the payout they are getting - it's ok to flag :)

Usually spam and plagiarism are being targetted of the flags, or the typical "I don't like what you are saying" but those are quite rare anyways.

Well at "worst" (or best?) haejin is currently making over $2500 per day with his posts - or more than that, when you take in consideration the SBD value.

In addition to this, haejins upvotes are around 75% self-upvotes AND what you asked about his share of reward pool. Using this tool ( https://steemworld.org/@haejin )to check the amount he is getting from the reward pool, currently it seems to be over 2% of the total reward pool.

Flagging is not only bad, you invalidate someone elses vote BUT this means others will get bigger share of the reward pool. Sometimes you can't only find things to upvote, while leaving the "playfield" for someone to get over 1/50th of the whole reward pool for themselves.

It's fucked up... that's why I think the system needs an overhaul.

Well I can't argue with that :D

Very level headed assessment.

I fluctuate between being excited for the future of Steem (esp. with SMTs) and disillusioned by the current model. There is something of a ponzi element going on, in that the early you got in, the better you have done. I was lucky to start off a while back, and having never put anything in but my own thoughts and images, have made some money. For those just starting out, it must be demoralising. I see some n00bs with great content (much better than mine), but they earn a small fraction of what I do. On the other hand, I see some trash from whales and dolphins earn considerably more than some of my better stuff (@haejin being a prime example).

The distribution and reward pool model is what really sucks - everything else is pretty good - some strong communities, decent UI, fast blockchain, etc.

The only way I can think to level this out is to restrict repeat large payouts. Here goes:

  • Whale A votes on content of User X with 100% on Friday
  • Whale A votes on content of User X with 100% on Saturday, but the voting power of repeat vote is only now 50%
  • Whale A votes on content of User X on with 100% on Sunday, but the voting power for this instance is now 25%

This system of diminishing vote power for voting on the same accounts might encourage Whale A to vote less for User X, and instead sepnd some SP on User Y or Z. After a week they can vote 100% on User X again.

Such a model might help redistribute votes amongst a greater variety of users, and limit massive recurring payouts for the Steemit elite.

Algorythmically it should be possible, but what do i know.....?

By the time anything gets fixed, haejin will have walked away with millions.

I actually see a lot of new users that do quite fine (earn 1 to 5$ per post). By new I mean a few months.

Very educative and important content it is, already starting to read.

steemit is one of the biggest opportunities since the invention of the internet itseif....great times to be around......

resteem and upvoted this poste continued @sulev

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