Analysis of Micro Abuse - Front-Runner bot accounts

in #utopian-io4 years ago (edited)



After writing the post about the micro abuse in Steemit, I have decided to make an analysis of how deep is the problem.
For analysis, JavaScript code with Steem.Js API is used.

The problem seems to be :

  • There are several accounts that have no SP their own but only working with delegated SP
  • These accounts are front-running the bid-bots to maximize the curation using a curation bot.
  • These bot users make no posts or comments but just makes upvotes and re-steems.

The answers searched in this analysis are :

  • How many accounts are there with such properties?
  • When are these accounts created?
  • Owned SP vs delegated SP status of these accounts?
  • What is the curation reward total of these micro accounts per week?

Scope of Analysis

Analysis date: 12 May 2018
Analysis timeframe: 1 Week
Accounts analyzed : Full List


  • Finding the micro front-runner accounts

The curation bot simulator is used to define the most efficient posts that these accounts will probably follow. GitHub

The efficient URL are inserted in the tool curation break-down to analyze the voters.

The front-runner micro accounts are visible since they are all voting at the same second.

Using the same method from various posts, 1000+ account names gathered and put in excel.
Using a pivot table, repeating account names deleted and a short list of micro front-runner list of 459 accounts are formed.
This list is put as a JavaScript file as an array.

  • Finding the creation time and SP of these micro accounts

A javascript code is written using Steem.Js API to determine the creation time and SP status of these accounts.

function search(){

 steem.api.getAccounts(names, function(err, result) {
  console.log(err, result);
  for (let i = 0; i < result.length; i++) {
 var vest_pushed=(parseFloat(result[i].vesting_shares)*parseFloat(spv));
 var received_vest_pushed=(parseFloat(result[i].received_vesting_shares)*parseFloat(spv));

This gives us the account name, creation time, owned SP and received SP of these accounts in the console.

source code

  • Finding weekly curation rewards for these micro accounts

The javascript code is extended and for each of these accounts, all the votes and curations for 1 week is determined by the code below.

function get_reward(name){
    var rev=0;
    var rev_array=[];
    steem.api.getAccountHistory(name, -1, 500, function(err, result) {
   for (let j = 0; j < result.length; j++) {
   var reward_time=Date.parse(result[j][1].timestamp)
   var curation=parseFloat(result[j][1].op[1].reward);
    console.log("user: ",name,"curation reward: ",rev*spv);

In the console, we have the list of names and the curation awarded for paid posts.

  • Put all the data to Google spreadsheets for analysis



  • Accounts creation

These accounts are mostly created in April and fairly new.

  • These accounts all work on delegated SP with minimum owned SP

  • The cumulated SP reward / week of 459 micro accounts

The cumulated SP gain of these accounts is 50 SP /week.

These accounts are neither posting nor commenting.

They are created and put in a bot to create a passive income of 50 SP per week.

This may not be all accounts but some of them that analyzed.

Proof of Authorship

GitHub for analysis:


Hi @firedream, great work, especially seeing the curation simulator and breakdown tool in action! I'm personally a bit undecided, if I should be worried about bots taking a share of the curation rewards, or happy to see less curation rewards going back to the bid-bots.

Link to the Answers of the Questionnaire - Click here

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hi @crokkon, thank you for your comments.
This is a minor way but without effort kind of abuse.
Fewer curation rewards for now but maybe a trouble if it increases.
It is important to detect and keep an eye on it early.


Hey @firedream
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Vote for Utopian Witness!

I recently witnessed an another interesting thing. I checked my account status on and found that two users have downvoted my several posts. Those accounts @a-steemdefleague and @a-cmsidl just opened on 9th of May and right from the beginning started to downvote many users till their voting power ended. I wrote about them in my post two days ago. I also checked the accounts they were following or were followed by and found many of them doing the same thing. However, they also started upvoting and resteeming some users' post while still downvoting their targeted users. Most of their followers or whom they are upvoting are spammers.
Though their downvote doesn't make a difference but it irritates me and I think other users are feeling the same thing. I request you to check their activities. They are bots and doing naughty things.

@akdx, can you give me the link to your posts? This is also interesting if these accounts are used for downvote also...

They are downvoting because we had upvoted @abusereports. It's really annoying.

@akdx, I can tell you exactly why. If you follow their link, you'll notice the problem they have is with @abusereports among others. They will target you for upvoting any account on their bullcrap list.

I commented on one of their accounts and was immediately downvoted by @trollshunter on my blog.

I hold my word. Each time these assholes downvote me, they are just increasing support to the accounts they oppose. They are not too bright from the looks of it.

They are creating nuisance here. They must be settled for once and all.

I have a plan to deal with them. Feel free to reach out on Discord or and will let you know the details.

How can I contact you on Discord or

By 459 accounts earning a total of 50 SP per week, that is (50 / 459) / 7, each account earn 0.016 SP per day. It seems not worth the effort?

The effort has be done it seems. Now it's time to sit back and collect 50 SP a week. Impressive, but we don't want this!

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