The Ugly Truth About The Value Of Steem, Or The Steem Dilemma!

3년 전


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Why are some whales abusing the rewards pool? Why do we have so many voting bots on Steem? Why are so many people self-vote? And why Steemit Inc. and many whales are not doing anything about it?


The short answer is: because those things are the source of value for Steem. We need them. I am sorry, it is ugly, but it is the truth! So, please do not get angry and let me explain.


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Where Do The Rewards Come From?

If you are new on Steem, then this would be one of your first questions. The answer, of course, is the rewards pool. The Steem blockchain prints Steem tokens. Most of the newly-minted Steem goes to the rewards pool. The Steem in the rewards pool is, in turn, distributed among authors and curators based on the upvotes they received.

Ok, there is nothing new here, but it does not stop here. Let's dig a little deeper.

Where Does The Steem Token Get Its value From?

The amount of Steem tokens you have is not the only factor in determining the value of your account. The other factor is how much one Steem is worth?

So what determines that ? It is the market.


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The forces of supply and demand clash in the arenas of exchanges and the price of Steem is determined by their continuous struggle. Here is where it starts to get interesting! So, let's dig deeper.

Where Does The Forces Of Supply And Demand For Steem Come From?

Supply comes from those people who offer to sell there Steem. It is obvious that the source for that is me and you. Steemians transfer their rewards to exchanges to sell them and cash out there earned money. We all know that, but what we don't think about is where does the demand come from.

Why would someone want to buy Steem? What is the financial incentive for that? pause for a minute and think about it. Why would someone buy 10,000 Steem for example? And how would he/she benefit financially from it?

It is clear that currently there is no way to benefit financially from Steem other than self-voting and selling votes! If you can think of another way, please, tell me in the comments.

What Would Happen if Self-Voting and Voting Bots Are Banned?

If we prohibit self-voting and voting bots, then we would not have enough demand forces. The result would be dwindling Steem prices, and no one wants that. Not you, not me, not the whales, and certainly not Steemit Inc.

The problem with this situation is that if we keep self-voting and vote selling, the quality of posts will keep decreasing, and achieving the Steem dream would be very difficult. Many good Steemians have expressed their concerns about this lately. Some examples are:

What Can We Do?

Some people think that the situation is hopeless and nothing can be done about it, really. They think that Steem will never be the platform where the best content gets the most attention. Some people still have hope. What about you? What do you think? Do you see a solution for this

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I still think that the voting bots can put some restrictions on their use to stop people from abusing them!

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Thank you, @fury123.
I agree. SmartSteem and MinnowBooster are doing that. However, that does not solve the problem entirely.

The problem is there is no way to find the content you actually want to find, in the 'feeds' it all gets jumbled around and there is no way to have favorite forums/subs/topics that are your focus.

The list of left side topics is like a beta feature, or worse. Those should be customizeable, it is incredibly incompetent from the developers unless their intent is to make whale upvotes/resteems the only effective promotion on site.

Consider how much difficulty I have in my blog finding even another single human to respond, I only encounter bots and people who clearly can't or won't read. The only whales I ever got votes from canadian-coco and v4, are clearly disinformation accounts as is familyprotection(sic), which is quite twisted. Had I not called them out and documented their crap, I might still be raking it in.

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I totally understand your frustration, @mindhawk.

The problem is there is no way to find the content you actually want to find.

Unfortunately, those whales are not only abusing the rewards pool but, more importantly, they are abusing the trending and hot pages. They are getting more attention than they deserve.

unless their intent is to make whale upvotes/resteems the only effective promotion on site.

It seems so. This is the point of my post here. They have to do this to incentivise people to buy Steem.

Consider how much difficulty I have in my blog finding even another single human to respond.
That is another problem actually. I call it the distribution problem. Steemit does not help in delivering the right content to the interested reader. I am interested in cryptos for example, and I find it very difficult to find high-quality content about that.

I think the obvious solution is to incentivize curation much stronger. If people would be rewarded for good curation based on their SP (and not only through curation clubs like steemfollower) then it would still be worth to buy steem.

In other words it should always be much more lucrative to vote for someone else than for yourself. That could also be a way for the bid bots to be less lucrative, I think.

Because without good curation, good content will fade away like it's already happening.

And without good content, we could just let the bots fight a 'return on investment war' for the reward pool without any content at all.

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This is a good suggestion, @funcrypto.
However, how would that incentivize people to buy Steem tokens? Also, this might encourage bots in other ways.

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I don't know exactly how to do it, and I know that the curation share of the profit used to be higher and was changed to give more money to the creators (look how that went...).

But I you look at spotify or similar, people spend a lot of time doing good curation without getting too much in return. And without the playlists they make it would be really hard to discover good jazz or other niches.

So there is definitely a crowd who love to do that. So how about "playlists" for good posts?

I'm sure there are tons of other sites who have cracked the 'good curation code' that steemit could be inspired by. And if it then is communicated that those curators actually earn money here, then it should be a no brainer for many people.

I agree with you that the main reason for buying steem right now is return on investment. So the curation awards need to take that into account. And maybe it would just lead to even more bots or rich professional, corrupt curators.
I don't know, but I'm sure there are lots of good ways to do it out there that could be copied.

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Those platforms you are referring to do not offer direct money returns to people. People do it voluntarily. This makes genuine. On the other hand, Steem offers direct financial return, and money corrupts people.

I'm honestly pretty disgusted by how things work here. Signed up several days ago and full of enthusiasm written several short posts + did my best on my introduction. I don't really care that I didn't get noticed, it's understandable since there are thousands of introduce yourself posts..

But the whole upvoting thing where basically people don't even read certain posts but just upvote because they know it will give them big cur. rewards...and people like Haejin just posting same shit over and over again ...and all these follow for follow and general meaning comments which are just copy pasted by bots to hundreds of posts daily...

Dunno...I haven't read the proposed solutions for this so I'll look into them and if nothing hopefull comes out of there I guess I'll be out after several more days.

Kind of disgusting that once people have money in mind, they just go all crazy and find ways how bend the system over and benefit as much as possible while destroying the whole ecosystem
...happens again and again throughout the whole history of our species, you name it: politics, nature etc etc...

...Wondering if AI could teach us how hot to do things differently in the future...but it's probably just a wishful hope of my programmer's heart :D

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Look, you can't change humans. They are exactly the same animals they were 50,000 years ago and their basic behavior will not change. Game Theory was true for what happens in a cave as is for what is now happening in big corporations and institutions.

What we can do is change the rules so that those natural human instincts and modes of behavior are channeled in a beneficial way rather than into something ultimately no one would want.

This idea that the system does not need changing, that only if people would be better is the doom of any utopian idea. Communists in the USSR dreamed of creating a "communist man" who would actually benefit from and perpetuate their perfect system. With a tongue in cheek I would say that communism IS a perfect system... for communist humans.

Don't fall into this trap, it leads nowhere except maybe bitter misanthropy. If you've played board games you'll notice how players behavior changes markedly depending on the rules of the game (sometimes quite minuscule). People who are all altruism and cooperation in one game can be brutal backstabbers in another. It is fascinating. If you have a system which rewards greed and cut-throat competition while making it easier to amass power the more you have it... will you be really surprised if it ends up as ruled by a handful of psychopaths?

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Hmm such a good point with communism...and in general, very good insight...I'd give u an upvote worh 1 cent :D but I'm 30% charged only and my upvote aint worth shit :D gotta wait and will come back to give u one!

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Good insight indeed!
I shall give @compleatgamester the well-deserved upvote.
As mentioned, the rules had to be changed, but the question is what to change exactly?

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the solution to this could be that to give a good vote first you would have to have the post and wait a considerable time in the according to the size of the post

for me it's just a matter of time for dTube and steemit to blew up, propably the best community here

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That is for sure, @lukaspoloki. But we are talking about the abuse of the rewards pool. What do you think about that?

Really i appreciate you. Good Post.

Excellent post! especially for the people that we started in the steem community, thanks for the quality of the shared information @porsadekj

Supply with demand need everyone
Thank you for great suggestion

For steemit users who does not know SBD and steem? I think every steemit user would want to go in. In short the second is a gift that we will get from any posts or other works while joining on the steemit platform. The number of SBD and steem can be rated from upvote and number of upvote of each post in post in steemit.good @sadekj

Good explanation but one reality we must always remember is, the worth of the things we buy depends on how much useful we think it is for us or for others. This platform offers knowledge at the same time earning opportunity for content creators. We just have to create quality contents and the value will grow itself eventually.

Hmm.. it's a bit of a conundrum... Unless Steem gets some more real world value (beyond get more Steem to get more Steem) it could be truly considered a kind of pyramid scheme. Hmm...

However, imho the systemic solution (those are the best ones!) would be to find a way to prevent this circular positive feedback because the whole system might end up breaking down in a kind of monopolistic, robber-baron dystopia. There should be a mechanic in place which would engender a negative-feedback loop, where the more Steem you get, the harder it is (proportionally ofc) to acquire more. Not saying that those with more SteemPower should earn less than those who don't have much, just that the curve should be logarithmic rather than exponential. It should flatten down towards the right rather than steeply increase. Say, the more you have the less percentage you can earn in a month... you would still earn more in absolute terms than the less fortunate ones, it's just that relative growth of your hoard would wind down.

As you mentioned, demand drives supply - and this would actually increase demand. At the moment it's easy for those who have a lot to get even more. If you would somehow control this growth of capital, those who really need a lot of SteemPower (to promote their content for example) would actually have to go and buy it therefore increasing the price.

How to do this practically, I currently have no idea 'cause I'm still a total newb around here. I've got some experience in games and systems design though and something might pop into my head once I get a better sense of how this whole Steem system operates.

Great thoughts. It's a never-ending and perhaps unanswerable question - "what to do?". If the system was designed to function this way. In the sense that there is nothing preventing them (the elements that you mention are detrimental to the platform) from existing - then viewing their existence is a subjective perception.

So the only solution would be to form a community that has the same beliefs, raise SP, organize systematic down-voting of elements that fit the category of detrimental to the future of the platform.

However, this sounds like centralization in a platform that is intended to be decentralized. It is a conundrum and like I mentioned above perhaps unsolvable or unanswerable.

very nice post

You have created a great post .... and wrote a very good topic ..... Your post was very good to me ..... thank you

Awesome post....
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You're right in my opinion. Right now, money is just pushed from a to b, like high stakes poker used to be before.
Main problem is the fact, that most new steemians are here for monetary reasons. This fact can't be helped in anyway, since it is the model of steem. They don't see steem as an alternate Facebook.