The winners and losers of living in a decentralized community

in hive-174578 •  9 months ago 

It is interesting to see how people are still posting on Steem with many not knowing what has even happened in regards to the hostile takeover of the chain. The Tron foundation has potentially "tricked" the stake on exchanges to power up and vote in 20 new witnesses and hardfork the chain into a new state. That state is centralized.

One of the things that the Steem blockchain is designed for is decentralization, and while it can be argued that it is currently centralized, it doesn't have to stay that way. There are always options and one of the things with the decentralized design is it can be much like hydra. Even "owning the chain" doesn't stop the community from sliding away. This would mean a fork.

While a fork would create a new chain and hence, a new token, running two, three or 10 chains is possible with each having their own pros and cons. In some way, it is similar to creating multiple SMTs, each with their own capabilities, strengths and weaknesses. The difference would be that instead of them all riding on the one chain, a major strength of SMTs, they would all be independent without the ability to crossover smoothly between - a major limitation.

The problem is as I stated in the first line, people have their habits and there are many who can't even use different interfaces, let alone cross over onto a new chain and "start again". Remember though, a fork away from the Steem blockchain doesn't exactly mean starting from zero, as it is possible to take an earlier position in the chain and keep everyone's stake intact.

But, the start again means that there will not be the exchange support that Steem currently has and this will of course have an impact on price as access to buy becomes more limited. How limited? it is hard to say.

There is very little to gain from forking other than proof of operating and participating in a decentralized community. Yes, the code has proven to be able to be vector attacked, it doesn't mean that the community need to bow to a new leader.

STEEM IS OPT-IN

Remember this.

No one has to stay here and while I do understand that people will generally follow the money - freedom still matters, and a lot of the dApps are created in order to protect our content. Our content IS safe, it might just end up existing on another blockchain and under a different name.

Whatever happens, if and when there is a fork of the chain, changes will have to be made to make sure that this doesn't happen again, this has to be a learning experience. The first thing I would change is the number of witness votes, which I pushed for over two years ago for this precise issue and vector - albeit, I didn't factor in the exchanges. However, this also would give us the opportunity to remove that massive ninja-mine stake once and for all and take away the temptation.

My 2+ year old take on witness voting
May 2018: https://steemit.com/steemit/@tarazkp/discussion-to-change-witness-voting-procedures
Oct 2018: https://steemit.com/steem/@tarazkp/reducing-the-number-of-witness-votes

Start learning

What I think people need to do is be prepared by starting to learn about what all of this means. Vote for witnesses https://steemitwallet.com/~witnesses that aren't currently in the top 20 as they are all the same person.

Proxy me if unsure

If you are unsure, you can proxy my witness vote for a little while and it will vote on real witnesses. Just scroll to the bottom of the page and type my account name in and your witness vote will follow mine. You can remove it at anytime later.

image.png

Now, when it comes to the future of Steem, that is quite unsure. However, the future of the current Steem community needn't be as heavily affected as it may seem. For content creators, it could be a relatively smooth transition over to a new chain with a new name, much like a rebranding. If this was the option that took place, those who make the move would essentially be saying that they are digitally free and can't be shackled by the power hungry.

There are many people here with a lot of different perspectives, but near uniformly, they all want what is best for the value of the community, because the value for one, is the value for many. At least, that is the way a decentralized community should be, and if Justin Sun will not opt-in to a decentralized community with decentralized governance, he might find that the value of his purchase is a lot less than he expected because, the community is the value - and if the most valuable members leave - he has a handful of code in one hand, and his penis in his other.

I don't want to go anywhere near his penis, so he better opt into the decentralization aspects of the community and release the code and allow it to develop so that he, nor anyone else could do the same thing again.

Learn and adapt.

You are the community. We all are.
The decision is yours to own or be owned.

Everything has risks, every move has costs.

Taraz
[ a Steem original ]

Onboarding

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If they fork it I still reckon a large percentage will stay here especially if money starts getting pumped into development.

A funny thing I have noted from people talking about forks and forking out STINC'y stake is a reluctance to talk about other mined stake. I would fork all mined stake and get all that nonsense out of the way. Granted they never promised to develop the chain but they did get a fair wodge of return out of running that mining for some weeks.

If the decision is taken to fork then let us be bold. Let us not be apologetic. Let us truly start the right way.

Holy shit, I was practically standing and shouting that last bit. I think I need to lie down... :OD

It would really be wrong to fork out ALL mined stake. As @tarazkp said, non-STINC miners were at a huge disadvantage. And there was a lot of risk and plenty of cost associated with mining STEEM.

Not to mention, most involved spent a lot of time helping get the social network off the ground in the early days when there were not many users. Some have continued for years beyond that, trying to play one productive role or another in advancing the chain.

And while some have sold and gone, the ones still remaining have endured the emotional and financial roller-coaster of 2 boom/bust cycles, while continuing to have faith in the long-term success of this platform.

Forking out the stake of these participants would be a travesty in more ways than one. Please think twice about even suggesting such a thing again.

Agreed. Even if it wasn't that costly to mine, there was still a lot of risk and many of those miners have been among the most active voters/ participants for 4 years, many of which has been positive. However, most people don't actually know who the miners were, but I have talked openly and also face to face with several of them for years - which makes a difference.

People hear "mining" and associate it with the Stinc mine, which has been a monster waiting in the corner. Most do not recognize how much they and the platform have benefited from the other mined Steem. Fork or no fork, this shouldn't be a Salem witch hunt and creep the scope of what is necessary.

People talk about "starting again" with even stake on a fork and while I understand the sentiment, many of those haven't done the work that others have to be part of this community or to earn/buy the stake they have - me being one of those who has put in consistently. I wouldn't support a fork that forked 3+ years of my (or other people's) very hard work out as if it was meaningless and cost me nothing.

Interesting times.

It was costly (in the thousands). But yeah, especially costly relative to the high risks that existed due to a huge amount of uncertainty. People had no idea if the token would have value, whether it would get onto an exchange, or even precisely what the project was. To some extent it was blind faith in Dan.

And I agree the "start again" idea makes no sense. How many people in this community would go along with the idea of wiping out all of the history and prior effort? And why haven't they already tried it? Seems like they didn't need this crisis to take a whack at something like that. To me it just sounds like blind greed. People want to use an opportunity improve their position at the expense of others, without really understanding the consequences.

I think that there are some people who haven't noticed the distribution that has come through the miners, you through curie, Phare through his trails, BT all over the place, Bue like Phare, Smooth with so much ... Many benefited, most had no idea. Even Ngc has been a major distributor over the years.

Part of the early problem I see, was that Ned gave his keys to the wrong people to vote with, and they lined their own pockets and then used that to continue doing so for years on end.

There are plenty of authors who have worked their ass off to be where they are today and don't want to have the future destroyed. People will protect themselves - others will try and get what they couldn't get earlier. I am yet to benefit financially from one STEEM yet... let's see if I ever will.

Part of the investment game is accepting the risk of a zero outcome.

But that's not going to stop people from forking. People fork. We got Weku, etc. Yes, people should fight hard to keep Steem as decentralized as possible. We should vote for witnesses, etc. But that doesn't mean we should not also have backup plans if all else fails. It's smart to have backup plans. I'm not saying we should give up on Steem. Just keep an open mind. And have a plan B just in case. Focus on trying to save Steem and everything. But be emotionally prepared. Prepare yourself for failure as it can always happen.

Was there really plenty of cost involved in mining steem? At the very beginning. How could that be?

They were at a huge disadvantage to STINC. Yes, I am not entirely sure what that brings to the table though?

I dare say people made a lot of money in the boom cycle. It would have been hard not to.

I don't doubt there are remainer miners who have supported the platform, it's development and it's authors.

But we have grown now. We have the means of funding developers and development. Do we need the early miners and their steem?

We didn't deal with the ninja mine. Look where we are.

So I won't think twice before suggesting that if we are to start again then why be timid about it. Why not address issues now instead of starting with the same old flawed model minus a little bit.

Was there really plenty of cost involved in mining steem? At the very beginning. How could that be?

What do you mean how could that be? Are you aware of how mining works? The more hash power being devoted to mining, the more expensive it is to mine the same stake. So yes, it was costly, especially relative to the very high risk. There was a huge amount of uncertainty.

They were at a huge disadvantage to STINC. Yes, I am not entirely sure what that brings to the table though?

Who said the disadvantage brought anything to the table? It simply made mining STEEM more costly and risky. And put the miners in a completely different category than STINC.

But we have grown now. We have the means of funding developers and development. Do we need the early miners and their steem?

So fork people out because you deem them unnecessary? What, pray tell, do YOU bring to the table? Should you be forked out?

We didn't deal with the ninja mine. Look where we are.

I wonder if you understand the difference between STINC and the other early miners. Doesn't seem like it.

So I won't think twice before suggesting that if we are to start again then why be timid about it. Why not address issues now instead of starting with the same old flawed model minus a little bit.

Do you really want to give early miners more incentive to dump now? I'm not even sure why you're so hung up on removing their stake. Are you a socialist/communist or something?

Well, it didn't take much for the accusations of socialist and Communist to come out.

It's ok, people fear change. I get it.

And I would expect this kind of rhetoric from those who mined. It is only natural to safeguard what you have.

I think I understand perfectly well how mining works. I read with great fascination the mining debacle on here on other forums.

I don't think you understand that the purpose of the platform is not to keep those who mined early in pocket change?

I am more okay with the other mined stake as firstly, they had a fair disadvantage compared to Stinc and secondly, they have sold most of it. some sold all and have since bought back.

If the decision is taken to fork then let us be bold. Let us not be apologetic. Let us truly start the right way.

I do agree with this though.

Holy shit, I was practically standing and shouting that last bit. I think I need to lie down... :OD

I read it as if you were standing on a table.

I read it as if you were standing on a table.

That's the way I felt!

With a can of Skol

I had about one or 9 skol last night myself

Kestrel!!! ;OD

They still sell that?! 😩

Feck, hope not. They still sell Skol? Lol!

I hope not, both never needed to exist!

What you said!

Lol! Indeed!! :0)

Did you channel your inner Churchill?

Haha!! I did!!



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I agree, let us be bold in forking, in fighting, etc.

Lol at standing to shout.

Raar, it was a noble thing!! :0D

!ENGAGE 50

Does this work?

HA, whatdya know, it did. That dude can fair code a bot!



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My suggestion is to start all existing accounts at 500SPs.

P.S. Including the STINC accounts.

I think the problem with that is that most people have more and would not like to go backwards in the game

I think it is easy to say "start again" in theory. But, fuck I have a put a lot of work and money into this, as have many others.

Exactly, I don't want to lose all I've worked for. It's been years in the making

Yeah, I wouldn't mind forking out the stinc stake and reducing the supply by 70M

Yeah, let's not do that.

!ENGAGE 25

It becomes tiresome eventually listening to everyone screaming and running around like chickens with their heads cut off. Then again, it's good for mental development to weigh various arguments and think critically. In my case there is a large gap in knowledge due to not being a dev that causes me to be ignorant to deails. Plus, knowing that even Justin Sun is a small fry monetarily compared to trillionaires makes me think it is folly to pretend to comprehend the politics going on multiple orders of magnitude above my stake in the world financial game.

I'm not so bothered because Steem has been totally corrupt the whole time I've been using it; it's been tainted since day one and plagued with basic game-theory-breaking flaws. I was here anyway because of the people I met (community) and the magic of being involved with what felt like a new paradigm of valuing human attention/energy. Probably, I have been enormously naive, but have gained a lot from being around. Mainly, connections internationally with like-minded individuals I never would have me otherwise.

Am likely to stay in touch with them and hopefully meet in person, circumstances permitting. That will occur regardless of chain politics. Also, will eat, live, sleep, work regardless of what happens here. Perhaps it comes off as apathy, and to a certain extent I suppose I am essentially unmoved by these developments since I am looking for a long-term evolution in the consciousness of humanity that is likely to take far, far longer than my short lifespan, anyway. Growing pains, collective lessons, etc. are ongoing and to be expected.

The game is never broken, it just might not be the game people think it ought to be.

I dont like the politics at all, but I do like the thinking through alternatives and tracing the potential paths into the future. It is my game.

I am quite confident about the future here, one way or another.

The game is never broken, it just might not be the game people think it ought to be.

Yes, that's a very good point. I think most of my time on Steem has been not understanding what I'm really seeing but continually trying to anyway.

I dont like the politics at all, but I do like the thinking through alternatives and tracing the potential paths into the future. It is my game.

That is pretty fascinating, I agree.

I am quite confident about the future here, one way or another.

Same, because of the people that are involved, of all persuasions. Not just devs but visionaries of all sorts. People have put in a huge amount of man-hours developing the space and won't just quit overnight.

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Are you saying Steemit the company is corrupt or the actual Steem blockchain technology itself?

Bringing out the penis references, must mean business this evening :)

This had me laughing too, like most small penises do.

ahahahaa

:D

Please better NOT to get any "Penis" involved :)

I will try :)

!ENGAGE 25

hahaha! ok I trust you



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I don't like to go near penis at the best of times.... it has to be serious tonight. Surgical.
Hopefully this made sense as I am knackered.

Yes, you have a headache and are not in the mood :)

That's what I hear her say.

😁

Wait til MEETS is $10, can buy a lot of viagra then.

:D

MeetsCoin -Hodl this.

Learn and adapt.
You are the community. We all are.
The decision is yours to own or be owned.

Wise words!!!!

They could always trade the fork coin on steem engine. I don’t think i will leave to the fork since i was already threatened to be forked out of the fork today!! The same people that downvoted me here will be in charge there so doesn’t make sense for me, but hopefully they won’t take my fork coins?? Either way it sounds like the fork would be centralized unless they fix the system.

You won't be on either chain will you? You said you were going to greener pastures.

Another thing. I have been expecting a scenario similar to this the whole time I've been on Steem because of how low the market cap is. Wasn't hard to realize that any interested billionaire could take over relatively easy by acquiring a huge stake, esp. if acquired under-the-table from the premined portion thus bypassing pump/dump market mechanics.

Yes. The only real way to do it though was through stinc. Sure, a billionaire could have hmjust bought it all, but what is the point?

Only sun knows

This has never really been a decentralized platform.
And to be frank I was not at all impressed with the governance structure.
imho the old regime was doing all it could to prevent mass adoption.
Maybe the New Regime actually wants to build something helpful to the world. But maybe not, only time will tell.

The new regime wants to make money for the new regime in the same way as Google, Facebook and Microsoft. They don't care about you or me and they'll never know who the users actually are - we are all just numbers to them.

lol

They don't care about you or me and they'll never know who the users actually are

The last crew didnt care ether! : )

The new crew may care about growth and increasing adoption. The last crew actively worked against growth and mass adoption. How else could you interpret fake flag wars and the EIP ?
just yesterday I saw top twenty witnesses flagging Bounty because they get 1 to 3 $ pay outs ! That kind of behavior can only damage the platform. It will be great if all that comes to a stop

The EIP and downvotes are a protection of proof of brain. It never was proof of activity.

One of the stated aims of the EIP was to normalize flags.
Normalizing abuse is not a positive thing. Out of that, we get accounts like Bounty being flagged for receiving votes of between 1 and 3 $

This is clear evidence of centralization at its worst.

So now we can get on with growing the platform with real users for the first time in years

If you take a group of kids and you give them each a daily allotment of small candies they can either eat themselves or give to other kids to appreciate their art-project-performance-journal, that's all well and good, but then when you give them all squirt-guns to soak the faces of art-project-performance-journals they DON'T like, THAT MEANS THAT EVEN THE IDIOT KIDS GET TO SOAK PEOPLE OUT OF SPITE.

More flags =/= more "justice".

Waytruthlight quit posting two years ago because they were getting unfairly downvoted. Now they just downvote other people out of spite.

This is an awesome model.

Downvote people so they stop posting and just stay mad for two years downvoting random accounts so they get mad and stop posting and just stay mad for two years downvoting random accounts so they get mad and stop posting...

This BOOSTS THE REWARD POOL which gets scooped into the hands of the TOP EARNERS.

It's a WIN-WIN!!!!

nOW, how do we onboard new users..?
Oh, yes, tell the newbz some evil people are posting nasty stuff on steemit and they need to open an account so they can DOWNVOTE them!!!

Especially the water gun part.

I agree with your logic but without downvotes we have nothing to prevent large scale automated abuse and plagiarism earning.

That's a much worse situation to end up in, unless you can activate so much stake to actively curate that their minimal earnings become all below dust vote levels and the possible scale they could generate doesn't matter anymore.

The biggest problem is humans like to behaviorally suck a middle ground solution needs to be found between satisfying emotions and still having tools to fight genuine abuse.

The EIP curve is a solid start but want to make it even harsher for lower appreciated content (fight automated farms) that's also harsh on not discovered creators who post for $TU 0.5-3.

It's a very complicated topic and many opposing positions can all be right in their analysis and sentiment.

!ENGAGE 35

Do you like private property?

Give "downvote power" exclusively to the witnesses.

That way, we can at least "vote" for the witnesses we agree with (I guess you can't "downvote" witnesses currently, doesn't that sort of break your "must-have-downvotes" moral axiom?)

As for the "rampant plagiarism" "problem", cheetahbot already provides links to the "original content", which sort of automatically "fixes" the "problem". Anybody who forgets to post attribution links will be thankful for cheetahbot's helpful link posts. No downvoting required.

And to fix the zombie-sock-puppet "problem", just ask @steemit to stop automatically delegating 15 steem-power to every newb. This would essentially make steemit "invite only" because you'd either have to buy some steem yourself or be sponsored by an existing account. Don't forget gm.ail and fa.cebuk (and others) were "invite only" when they were getting started, it builds "community" and gives an air of "exclusivity" and "prestige".

And to fix the self-voters, disable self-voting (most websites already disable self-voting automatically).

And to fix the circle-jerks, disable voting on the same account more than once every seven days.

You could set the parameters to only allow a maximum of 25% of your running seven day votes (by total amount of steem) to be granted to the same account.

if people game the system and it yields bad results, you have a poorly designed system.

https://steemit.com/ethics/@randr10/q5zczj

ALSO, LOWERING THE MINIMUM PAYOUT TO 0.001 (would remove the financial incentive to downvote) AND FLATTENING THE CURATION REWARDS (NO MORE INCENTIVE BONUS FOR VOTING IN THE FIRST 5 MINUTES) WOULD GO A LONG WAY TO "FIXING" STEEMIT (are the band-wagon voters really "adding-value"?)

SOURCE CONVO

I see a lot of misconceptions here. But will be brief in reply.

  1. Witness voting and "must-have-downvotes" are two entirely different processes. Yes, you can downvote any comment/post created by a witness. No, witness voting does not have a downvote mechanic. I think one needs not explaining why not in a "delegated proof of stake" system.

  2. You underestimate the degree of automated spam abuse which has required so far resource credits and EIP already. Lowering dustvote rewards payout to 0.001 would be counter productive and only increase the earnings by such actors again.

  3. A certain degree of abuse/maximization will always happen. It can not be fully nuked and that should not become the priority either. A system which is well-designed will minimize the scale of the abuse, with a scaling solution.

  4. Emotional butthurt will always happen over downvotes. That proves a misunderstanding about the rewards belonging to the community until a post is payed out.

  5. Humans bound to maximize will always find ways. Same with circle jerks. The latter are very hard to recognize as patterns without high levels of false positive and thus collateral automated damage. That is why also manual downvotes

  6. Dapps, and future SMTs, can decide their own rewards system.

  7. Sybill attacks (alt accounts) are a reality. If I can dedicate only 25% to an account, then I create 16 accounts if I want to maximize. (Don't get me started about IP recognition aso, maximizers know VPNs)

Also, there is no reward for activity. Unless you're an actifit user.

I understand that downvotes are a fickle thing to understand and accept. They are indeed weird and may seem hostile, poor design even, because entitlement over rewards can easily grow. But, the chain owes nobody anything until the final rewards amount is locked and subsequently paid out.

I too would much prefer that retaliation and similar sentiments were not part of the human modus operandi but they are. That still doesn't mean the system is flawed because many people fail to understand that nobody is owed anything by the chain. It's a weakness in the system because humans.

If you have a system which both understands the scale of (automated/spam) abuse and finding the middle path I will gladly read it.

So far you don't. That mostly because you don't seem to acknowledge the vast amount of maximization/abuse which needs countered as much as possible (because takes away potential rewards of real users).



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The EIP was a good move and there is nothing wrong with using downvotes.

I am curious, what about the EIP do you see as good and why do you see flags as good?
I look at it and laugh

You seem to have a very narrow view of what happens on steem. Perhaps you should get out more and discover what else is out there?

Perhaps you should get out more

lol maybe you are right.

I prefer to take responsibility for my own environment.

Yea me to. That is most of the reason I ask why people think its good to flag other users. Why do you see the EIP as a positive?
I dont find many coherent answers.

lets say I ask you why its a good idea to be flagging a specific account.
You may say because they are receiving between 1 - 3 $ in upvotes
But how is that negative action protecting the platform ? Its not protecting the platform at all. The only people it benefits are the people who already hold the largest Stake.

Yea me to. That is most of the reason I ask why people think its good to flag other users. Why do you see the EIP as a positive?

I am not sure where you live, but perhaps you should spend time in some of the most violent places on earth where there is no law and order. Not so great I imagine.

On Steem, we are the law and order. People like to live in peace, but just don't want to get their hands dirty.

Perhaps you should get out more

lol maybe you are right.

I prefer to take responsibility for my own environment.

Yea me to. That is most of the reason I ask why people think its good to flag other users. Why do you see the EIP as a positive?
I dont find many coherent answers.

lets say I ask you why its a good idea to be flagging a specific account.
You may say because they are receiving between 1 - 3 $ in upvotes
But how is that negative action protecting the platform ? Its not protecting the platform at all. The only people it benefits are the people who already hold the largest Stake.

You may say because they are receiving between 1 - 3 $ in upvotes

They don't even get a "real" cut of the reward-pool-pie unless their pending payout is over $20.00 steem (but I guess every tiny scrap counts!)

You seem to have a very narrow view of what happens on steem.

If you want more newbz to join steem, you're going to need to be able to answer their questions.

Imagine a simple thought experiment, you @tarazkp, start a new account, do not link it to your current accounts in any way. Don't make an "introduceyourself" post unless someone suggests it to you first (most newbz don't know about that). Post stuff you find interesting for 30 days (not necessarily every single day of course). Reply only to people who comment on your posts (or who follow you). Only follow people who follow you first. See how much steem you earn in 30 days.

Then you'll know if people like you for your rep and formidable steem-power or if they like you for your "high-quality-original-content".

And you might also have some inkling of why all the newbz feel like they're trying to break-into a private club.

I could not disagree with you more : ) the only exception I would consent to would be serious plagiarism.

You can disagree, that is your right. I have my own experiences here, and they tell me that the downvotes are necessary in an economy, in the same way that in society there is policing to discourage thieves. There are always bad actors, at least on steem we didn't have to have a central authority to tell us who they were. Perhaps you will be happier under a centralized authority that rewards those who jump through the hoops.

I prefer to take responsibility for my own environment.

No nether would I @joeyarnoldvn. But under some conditions I may flag it : )
how about you?

I think you answered to the wrong comment

I would not criminalize plagiarism.

No nether would I @joeyarnoldvn. But under some conditions I may flag it : )
how about you?

people can plagiarize all they want, but they don't have to earn STEEM on it.

Sometimes, you don't know what is plagiarized or not and you might accidentally upvote something. For example, if I say "HELLO." Is that plagiarism? You might say no. Just one word. What about, "HELLO THERE?" That is a quote from Kenobi from Star Wars. Imagine if that quote was copyrighted. That was just two words. What about "How are you doing?" That is four words. See where I am going with this? I can continue this game. We can go up to ten words. We could go up maybe 100 words or even more. We can go up and up. The question would be in regards to where the line is. We can talk about how many words it takes or what it might take. It is a very complex issue. Even the Emperor was a clone it seems.

exactly ....but who actually knows users anyways before THE TRON madness , especially the loyal ones :)
little sarcasm allowed hopefully

I knows them alls. :D

Hope you are well, despite the madness :*

I know that YOU do know 😁 I am so proud of our community and hey ! I am cancerfree and back in power as well

Cancer free. Good job.

I made a similar remark on another post @tarazkp - the little fish are caught up in the maelstrom and most pay little attention to what happens with the governance. Or owners of Dapps. Some of us are just interested in blogging on the blockchain because we like to do that, and it would be really nice to get some return.

I have, in the past, said how I loathe the backbiting and bullying that happens here. However, it's not unique to Steemit; it's rife on the interweb. At the end of the day, it's the little people who come short and those with the power and who shout loudest, who win.

For the moment, I'm still conducting #OperationOstrich and will see what happens when I dare to raise my head above the parapet. With apologies for all the mixed metaphors and thanks for keeping watch on things.

The "little fish" are only possible to be here because of all of the others who develop, much of it at their own expense, in the hope that it is leading to a more valuable ecosystem as a whole. People on the surface level like myself can only do what I do because someone has built the infrastructure below, and it is because of this I have to take responsibility to learn about and maintain the areas I can.

Point well made and taken. And more should appreciate (as I do) the time and work that people like you put into the ecosystem. So, while I am doing the ostrich thing, I am trying to keep up to date with what's going on. This little fish appreciates what you and others are doing to steady the ship and keep us informed.

Thank you.

Great post @tarazkp - I think there is a HUGE divide between the witness community and the nerdy inner crowd, and the rest of us. I have asked several "leaders" in my steem world about how to choose witnesses, and simply been told to use them as proxy. That doesn't work for me.

The witnesses must take more responsibility for explaining who they are and what they stand for, to empower better and more responsible voting.

I'd love to see you taking some leadership to make this happen.

Much gratitude from a solo mom in Thailand who errs on the luddite side of town. :)

Do you follow the witness accounts? On the witness link page many of them have links to their positions as witnesses too.

Don't proxy anyone you don't trust to vote for you. Ever.

Question of the Day:: How to trust an anonymous steem person who doesn't even use a "real name"? LOL?? You are the first person in 2 years on steem to mention witness accounts - I had no idea. I'm hoping it is one short paragraph each in real-person speak.... LOL.

In 2 years you haven't looked into how the system works?

Only to a very basic level. The people I have asked have mostly blown me off. And the info in layperson's language is not easy to find. It may amuse you to know that I have 2 degrees - 1 in classical music & 1 in journalism 🤣 - after getting blown off for the 7th or 8th time, I voted for 5 or 6 witnesses who I knew NOTHING about & havent looked at it since. I curate for both @natiralmedicine & @ecotrain & it rarely comes up, although @riverflows is the most active on this issue of all. I think the witness end of steem has huge amounts of bridge building & communicating to do.... to the end point, foot-soldier users.

A witness isn't a person, it is a machine (run by a person). This machine processes the blockchain and without them, nothing moves. They take a percentage of the reward pool as payment for this service and this is why the transactions on Steem are free, unlike most other blockchains.

A witness is part of a network of machines that cross-reference and verify each block to check it for consistency, to make sure that it is valid. They are spread all over the world and give what used to be, a decentralized structure.

Witnesses are (were) voted in by the community based on the stake of users and this creates the "top 20" who are considered "consensus" witnesses. It is these 20 who agree on the changes to the code, with 17/20 needing to upgrade their machines (agree) to the new version to create the change. They are also responsible for submitting (sometimes) and testing the new code that will be deployed.

The decentralized nature of this setup is that quite a few people need to agree in order to make any code change on the blockchain. Now that all witnesses are controlled by a single entity, it means the chain is centralized. This puts everyone at far greater risk as one "person" makes the decision on what is okay to implement or ban - without even a discussion.

Where were you when I signed up? 🤣

Seriously, the person-machine issue stops people voting. What does this witness believe & what is their vision? When people don't know that, and are also privvy to lots of public spats, downvotes etc etc.... they do.... nothing. Post & engage, if they stay.

There is far more to evolving steem than code. The best leaders lead in the language of the slowest person & the last in the line.

Thank you for patiently explaining. I came to steem mostly due to my work with unbankable refugees in Burma - the no censorship thing & decentralized matters. The tech end often leaves me feeling like a total ditz.

There is (was) a decent mix of community witnesses (@ocd, @steempeak, @curie etc) and developer witness (@gtg, @themarkymark, @blocktrades, @therealwolf etc).

Not all coders are social animals, not all social witnesses can code.

As I see it, if one is going to invest into something, they best do their due diligence and have an understanding of what they are looking to hold.

I would encourage people to do both. Some people should try to fork. That doesn't have to be a bad thing. We already have some forks, like Weku, Bear Shares, Smoke, Serey, Dream Real, etc. But at the same time, some of us should still be here on Steem voting for witnesses, etc, just like people should post on Bitchute and should also be on YouTube at the same time. Steemit will always be the YouTube of blockchain social networking, meaning they will always be the pioneers, the first ones to do it.

I believe that I am one of those who are posting without realizing what is going on in the blockchain. I'm having difficulties to understand some words like centralization and decentralization. I'm not sure what is the meaning for both but I'm going to find out.

I heard about voting witnesses and I too will be going to look more to that. For now, I think I'll follow your proxy first. I'm giving my trust to you until I understand whatbis actually going on.

I have just voted!!

Do you know the tragedy of libertarianism?

It is this:
Libertarians love the free market. But the big players on the free market don´t give a f*** obout their libertarian dreams.

I think it is time to stop whining and accept the fact that a blockchain can be sold and that this is not even a bad thing.

Anything can be sold. The blockchain hasn't been though - it has been commandeered. However, it can also be forked and left empty and valueless.

Do you think the chain split will occur before the end of the week?

Can't say as I don't know, but they are working on the code if necessary it seems.