I've updated to 0.18.1 (0.18.2 on some non-witness nodes). Congratulations to @sneak and the rest of the team on getting the release out and working with the community to reach consensus on the feature set.
My market maker bot continues to provide liquidity (for small-to-medium size trades) on the internal market. There were some brief interruptions during the craziness earlier this week (when SBD briefly reached $6) but for the most part it has been providing continuous 24/7 service for the past several months. Roughly 80000 trades have been completed.
I've been supporting abit's initiative to make counter votes (both up or down) in response to high power votes (aka 'whale votes') that could otherwise dominate the voting pool. This supports the sacrifice of those whales who have decided to give up their own curation rewards and forgo voting in order to increase the voting influence available to the bulk of the user base. Were it not for these counter votes, those few whales who do continue to vote would monopolize the voting to an even greater extent, and the sacrifice of those whales not voting would be pointless and unsustainable. So this is an important balancing mechanism. My bot is independent of abit's and functions somewhat differently but with most of the same goals.
Getting back to SBD, I am addressing the situation of overvalued SBD along with that overvaluation being made worse (or at a minimum, not made better) by the large short-term reduction in new SBD supply (which in turn is a function of the drastically reduced posting rewards during the transition period to a 30-day reward pool) by publishing biased-high STEEM price. This bias will result in more SBD being paid out in rewards relative to the size of the pool. Currently my bias is +50%, but even much higher biases (for example +1000%) are reasonable and prudent as long as the reward pool is so severely reduced (90% or more), as these will still result in no more SBD that would otherwise be produced. I will continue to monitor the situation and make appropriate adjustments based on conditions.
As a side effect of the high bias, SBD conversions will yield less STEEM. Those using the conversion function should do so with care (in fact this is always the case). Fortunately @timcliff has made an excellent post explaining the situation and I encourage all to read it.
Secondarily, I am reducing my SBD interest rate vote to 0% at the start of the new month, in response to the significant and persistent overvaluation of SBD. As long as SBD continues to be secure, convenient and efficient to use, it may not need an interest to support it. I will monitor the situation and reintroduce interest if necessary.
One last comment on SBD. I believe that the "SBD Stability" patch, which was made last year when STEEM was operating under the hyperinflationary (pre-HF16) model and had severely-impaired liquidity, may have outlived its usefulness in the original form and be due for re-examination. We currently have a situation where SBD market cap is 2-3% of STEEM, which the "SDB Stability" patch considers high enough to start to mildly reduce SBD supply, yet at the same time the market views SBD as being sufficiently-collateralized as to command a high value. That disconnect suggest that STEEM liquidity is becoming sufficient to support more than a 50-1 equity-to-debt ratio.
Rewards from this post (in whatever form received -- STEEM, SBD, and/or SP) will be burned, as were previous witness post rewards. However, given the overvaluation of SBD, instead of converting to SBD and burning the SBD, this time I will burn an equivalent amount of STEEM instead. Proof of the burn will be posted as a comment reply