Confession:If you know me on Steemit for more than a month, then you should know that I've been stalking you...
... in a good way.
What does it mean to follow someone on Steemit?
To some, it means "I follow you, you follow me, done." - that is how everyone does it at first.
But as you hone in on what really interests you on Steemit, strangers become your friends, readers of your content, your patrons... it gets complicated.
To me, following is a tool. To follow someone, is to support their journey, to curate their content (on time), to be among the first to comment on their post, to network and to build a relationship. Sure, there are some who I only follow symbolically, meaning I don't really follow them... But there are a few fascinating, creative and informative Steemians, who I consider a must to follow.
So how did 'following' someone became 'stalking'?....
My stalking started as a result of not knowing how to keep track of the people I followed - who I genuinely wanted to support and network with. I've hit "follow" "follow" "follow" on everyone and their dog (there are people here that have a dog profile, you know who you are :D).
And then what?
I see a feed of infinite posts, where more than half were not really my interest. If I was lucky enough, I'd occasionally spot a post from a fellow Steemian, (or in the case of the artists i follow, I'd recognize their art from the thumbnail ), and be able to support and interact with them. However, most of the time I’d miss them, and by the time I would stumble on a new post by them, I would realize that I had missed several posts - failing to follow.
So, in order for me to keep up with the 20-30 people that I wanted to support regularly, I have resorted to deliberately typing in their @ name to go see what they were up to... I had good reasons - I wanted to support their content... but in a world of social media this felt like stalking.
I kept asking myself "why can't Steemit do something more organic?" - where I get notified about what people are up to, and whether they posted anything new. It’s simple, you'd expect the platform that promotes networking to assist you in networking.
Then came the answer.
If you are still reading this, then stay with me, cause I'm about to give you some very useful information. If you are new to the community, or have experienced the problem i'm describing, please check the links below; this might help you a great deal on the platform from here on.
PAL (Peace, Abundance and Lambos... no wait, Liberty), it’s been absolutely instrumental in changing how I feel about the social side of Steemit. So many of the people I follow are there, and they are having a collective discussion, showing all the bright colors of their personalities and also being 100% helpful with every question I had regarding Steemit. In a Nuggshell, it helped me meet the people behind their posts, and beyond the 2-3 comments... and of course, they got to know me better as well - in an organic way, and no stalking required.
You need GINAbot!
PAL made it easier to talk with other Steemians, but how do I stay updated with their posts on Steemit? I still missed every 2 out of 3 posts from those who I follow...
I posted this question in Discord, and Voila, just like that, the answer I needed came from @SunRavelMe, who said: "Have you tried using GINAbot? You can list everyone you want to follow and it will notify you when someone make new posts."
GINA (General Instant Notification Automaton) can notify you about pretty much any activity you like to know on Steemit through a clearly formatted direct messages on Discord, and you can customize it to be as specific as you like.
Personally, I believe that GINAbot should be part of any Steemit 101 post (yes, its that useful). I went through the activation tutorial at @GinaBot, which was pretty easy and managed to customize it to do all the tedious stalking for me :)
I asked for a cup of water and got Champagne Mojitos! Here is a list of all the activities on Steemit that GINA can keep you updated on :
new post from any author
new post with any tag
blacklist user(s) (no notifications about blacklisted user actions)
cancelling of votes
money transfer (in and/or out)
witness vote (with useful details)
Well there you have it! No more stalking (directly :))
Why I made such a long story?... well, its just more fun this way... its flavor before nutrition.
But the bigger lesson I've learned and want to share here, is that most of us face the same difficulties when it comes to Steemit UX. However, that also means that there might be solutions out there, and they can be found if we dig a little deeper and ask others for help. There are people here who are committed to developing the tools you and I need to navigate our way on this new platform. So if you stayed with me thus far, I think your road on Steemit might have one less pothole from here on.
I will leave you here, and go check with GINA, to see who Resteemed my post ;)
I hope you found this post both amusing and informative, and if you have questions, do not hesitate to ask.
Thank you so much for reading!