Correcting Bloomberg's Wrong Interpretation Of Things: Steem Doesn't Have A Content Quality Problem!

in steem •  13 days ago
People often said that the content has been of pretty low quality. So many users are just trying to earn a quick buck. What's your plan to improve the quality on the platform, on the content side?

This was the second question addressed by the presenter of 'Bloomberg Markets' during their recent interview with Steemit, Inc's CEO Ned Scott.

The truth is that the quality of content submitted to the Steem blockchain isn't low. It's only the evaluation mechanism as well as the way of sorting and displaying the published content that could be improved. Actually there are uncountable bloggers and vloggers who share tons of high-quality posts with their Steem community through the different applications built on the blockchain on a daily basis.

I think you could've defended the quality of content in your own network a bit more, @ned :-)

You replied then, that Steem's mission was to enable users to inform the community where to find quality - by evaluating the content objectively and bringing the one with the highest quality to the top. You furthermore acknowledged that this mission hasn't been fully accomplished so far. Well my question is: What is 'the top'? How do we measure 'quality'?

The fact that the media is highlighting content quality issues is somehow a sign that the problem might be bigger than we actually want to believe.

It's all there, we only need to bring it to the front!

Steemit Inc's CEO Ned Scott during his recent interview on 'Bloomberg'

Let's take some actions!

I think we've gone in circles around the very same issues long enough now.

Since months the majority of (established) community members is demanding solutions to fix the design problems of Steem. There have been hundreds of discussions about the corrupted rewards distribution, the overtaking greed, self-voting, excessive vote buying, etc.

Sometimes it happens in a polite manner and sometimes not. Many people who were not even participating in the dialogues, have suffered from side effects of the resulting flag wars.

The mood on Steem has changed on a dime.

Shouldn't be fixing these issues become our no. 1 priority before everything else?

Ned, you've told us that Smart Media Tokens will be able to address these mistakes

Yet, as far as I've understood the whitepaper, SMTs are new tokens with their related eco-systems that are built on top of the Steem blockchain, but they won't neither have any influence on the design of Steem as the underlying basis nor on Steemit.com as a social dApp built on Steem.

Am I right?

Wouldn't we actually need a hardfork of Steem in order to fix the problems we have at grass-roots level? Or is it even an idea to abandon Steemit.com completely and only focus on SMTs as new profit centers?

The next hardfork (HF 20) won't address the above mentioned problems either. It's rather supposed to improve scalability.

'Growth is great' stated the latest article about HF20 submitted by @steemitblog. Do you mean growth or retention?

It's been repeated during the Bloomberg interview again: Shortly there will be 1 million accounts created on the Steem blockchain.

Is this really a number we are able to play with, knowing that the number of active accounts is even decreasing?

Active accounts transacting on the Steem blockchain - source: @penguinpablo

Why call for the 'masses' if we can't hold a small tribe?

Besides 'Steem to the moon', it's a popular saying in this community that 'Steem will bring the masses'.

Are we sure that we really want them to onboard now?

Steem doesn't have any difficulties in getting more people on this blockchain, but it definitely has a problem in retaining them.

Before we talk about 'onboarding the masses' we should talk about expectation management and user experience.

It's as if you sent a birthday party invitation to millions of people without having prepared the infrastructure needed to host them.

Let's talk about how many cake we need to feed them all, let's talk about the music that makes them feel comfortable and even animates them to dance.

What we need in the Steem eco-system is a framework that will correspond to the expectations of the majority of users. You can't ever make them all happy, but you can start listening carefully to their repeated claims and brainstorm about solutions.

If we ignore the signs, there will come a point in time when we can't turn back.

What's your point of view? Let me know - the comment section is yours :-)

Much love,
Marly -

PS: Did I really write a blog post about Steem again? Crazy shit! :-)

Thanks for your valuable time!
This blog was launched at the end of July 2016
aiming to provide stories for open-minded
people who enjoy living on the edge of their lives,
stepping out of comfort zones, going on adventure,
doing extreme sports and embracing the new.
Welcome to the too-much-energy-blog!

Please also check my vlogs on dlive.io/@surfermarly

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Great post, Marly. I couldn't agree more when you said,

It's only the evaluation mechanism as well as the way of sorting and displaying the published content that could be improved.

Also, when he said

"evaluating the content objectively"

I do not believe objectivity can ever be totally achieved, because let's face it we are all subjective to varying degrees at different times.

The real quality content often gets buried in the system here due to a real lack of visibility (probably the number one fault of steem), the way the system is structured, and Ned probably failed to defend that fact because he doesn't see much of the quality. That is, in my view, because of the very faults of the system itself and also in part because up until a week ago he had gone 2 full months without a single comment and 6 months without a single post. It's one thing for a CEO to manage his business with many things going on, but another when a CEO completely abandon's his own platform and it's users for such a long period of time.

Here's the interview, BTW:

I noticed @Ned state at 4:35 said,

"but there's total liquidity at the same time - so as you're earning these tokens it's like earning money"

This is simply a misleading statement, because a larger and larger portion of rewards paid out is in SP, which has nothing even close to liquidity. SP takes 13 weeks to pull out all but 5 steem and that 5 steem it will not allow us to pull out is a real issue as the value of steem goes up.

I honestly worry, Marly, that we may be close to, as you said,

"come a point in time when we can't turn back "

This is why I have an eye also on @Dan, the technical creator of the steem blockchain and steemit, as he rolls out EOS and his stated plans to create a sort of steem II platform with an eye on fixing the many issues of this first try. Also Minds.com looks to be giving steemit real competition too. A little competition always helps us all in the end.

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Great comment, @positivesynergy! Thanks for taking the time to put it all together.
I've never really understood why the CEO of decentralized social media network prefers using Twitter instead of his own platform in order to communicate. Maybe he's tired of Steemit.com and that's why all eyes are put on SMTs as the new profit centre.

If this was the case, they'd make one important mistake: steemit.com as per default will always be the no. 1 gateway app to Steem. It's been the first app built on the Steem blockchain, it's got reached a top alexa ranking. If they really give up on Steemit.com, then everything else will fail as well. That's at least my perspective.

Is there anybody not having an eye on @eosio? :-)

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I assumed he's looking for retweets to get the word out, instead of preaching to the converted, here.
The best of 60,000 users is never going to be the same quality as the best of 600 million users.
Maybe scaling should be a priority after all.

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Well currently there are 940,000 dead accounts and 60,000 active accounts. Is that what we call scaling and growth...? :-) It's actually just an inflated number.

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In fairness, 3 of those are mine. Registered for later use, and I know several others who've done the same.
But I prefer to use active users for this very reason. If we can get more people onboard, the best of the best will be better :)

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From my point of view we shouldn't focus on getting as much people as possible on board, but keeping those that are coming. Let's say all of these 60,000 have an average of 4 accounts, then we're still far away from 1 million.

The problem is not the acquisition, it's onboarding, education, expectation management and working on an improved user experience.

If you earn money on Steem you don't care about a user interface from 1980 or a design (algorithm) that keeps other users away. But if you're new and that design is all you've got, then it matters.

It's absolutely logical that the number of active users is decreasing at this point in time. Everything else would be a miracle. If we don't change the design and make Steem more attractive, it will go down to a couple of thousands - those who're here since the very beginning since they're the only ones profiting from the eco-system.

Guess why the top witnesses don't say anything in public about the current issues? They're comfortably sitting on their monthly income - so why should they change a thing? :-)

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They're only earning steem, though. I'm sure they don't want a return to 7c steem any more than the rest of us.
I'm glad they're being paid in the same currency I'm hodling; means they help me by helping themselves.

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Let's see how they will help us to fix the issues.

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I don't think there are 940,000 dead accounts. Active accounts refers to how many accounts actually did something on a given day, like post, upvote, etc. The 60,000 accounts active one day are not all the same accounts that are active on another day. I think weekly or monthly active users would give a better picture.

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Great point, @surfermarly. His use of twitter over his own platform would appear to say a lot about his own faith in the platform itself, as well as the people who use it. I suppose he's trying to promote it, as he was doing on Bloomberg, but in my view, as the saying "if you build it they will come' could be retooled to say, "if you fix it, they will both come and stay".

As with the many problems it has, it seems most come and go because they see it's flaws and that the hype is in many ways just hype. Then there are those fools like me (LOL) who invest here, only to find out that to pull the funds back out takes like forever in a time of how blockchain technology is growing and changing so fast. Those people who come and go do far more than any Bloomberg broadcast or twitter tweet to folks who to a large degree are very skeptical to begin with. When a CEO of a company he owns 51% ignores his company's investors and customers, you have to wonder if he is considering going the way of Facebook, especially given the way he first replied to the question near the end about Facebook.

At 4:47 She asked,

"Could you see something like what you were building fitting into Facebook"

And his reply after several seconds of thinking was,

"absolutely and Facebook in the last several months ZuckerBerg actually came out in his yearly address and said that they're looking at cryptocurrency and how it can be used to positively impact community building.

So the real question I have is... is Ned using Bloomberg and Twitter to promote the sale of steemit all together to Facebook and/or for some sort of partnership? That sure is what it sounded like he was implying. Please have a listen and let me know your perception of that Q&A given. You gotta wonder...

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I suppose he's trying to promote it, as he was doing on Bloomberg, but in my view, as the saying "if you build it they will come' could be retooled to say, "if you fix it, they will both come and stay".

Well that reminds me of the following quote which is so absolutely true:

Who needs a platform with 940,000 dead accounts? You can't sell them to anybody.

With regards to 51%: Have you seen the following video? There's one point where Ned says that Steemit.com is a centralized app built on a decentralized blockchain. I wonder why the CEO of a company that is part of the crypto market underlines the fact that his flagship is actually not decentralized? Does that make sense? Many people are only here for the decentralized idea, so why challenge that?

When I asked Ned Scott at Steemfest² what his vision for 2018 was, he replied:

Tokenize the internet.

Maybe that vision is a bit too big for them. Maybe they should successfully implement the idea in one eco-system before they start to sell it to others...? Who would want to invest in a SMT after having had a look at steemit.com?

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I agree, Marly. That's quite revealing in and of itself that he said that. When I first started seeing the issues here, I researched and discovered it is a for-profit corporation with a CEO who controls 51%. That to me in and of itself says a lot - that it doesn't seem very decentralized. Most of the top decentralized cryptos are run by non-profit foundations for that very purpose of making them as decentralized as possible. I always liked the way Jed McCaleb, who basically co-created ripple, before breaking off to co-create Stellar says, "imagine the internet if it were created and run by one for profit corporation. It wouldn't be anything like it is today."

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These are very wise words.

Maybe that’s one of the reasons why Steem has never been a top cryptocurrency.

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I've had a bad enough day without seeing this. Powering down will be agonizingly slow! FTS and the greed of bastards that think they will live forever.

There must be a lack of morality in these people! It must be! How can you put your greed above thousands that trust you through the promises you have made.

Again poor will take the hit like it's always the case!

The rich never change. They just learn new ways to bullshit people. My biggest question is whether it is money that turn them into this or is it only a certain kind of person lacking empathy and morality that end up in those positions? The latter a perfect explanation of the flawed system!

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The whole steem project seems almost to be a social engineering experiment. Take for example the Steem White Paper (https://steem.io/SteemWhitePaper.pdf), which interestingly appears to have been rewritten in August 2017 after Dan's departure as CTO. If you look under the "Voting on Distribution of Currency" heading, under the subheading of "Voting Abuse" you find this really stage "The Story of the Crab Bucket" that states the following:

A man was walking along the beach and saw another man fishing in the surf with a
bait bucket beside him. As he drew closer, he saw that the bait bucket had no lid and
had live crabs inside.
"Why don't you cover your bait bucket so the crabs won't escape?", he said.
"You don't understand.", the man replied, "If there is one crab in the bucket it would
surely crawl out very quickly. However, when there are many crabs in the bucket, if
one tries to crawl up the side, the others grab hold of it and pull it back down so that
it will share the same fate as the rest of them."
So it is with people. If one tries to do something different, get better grades, improve
herself, escape her environment, or dream big dreams, other people will try to drag
her back down to share their fate.

Then it states:

Eliminating “abuse” is not possible and shouldn’t be the goal. Even those who are attempting to “abuse” the system are still doing work. Any compensation they get for their successful attempts at abuse or collusion is at least as valuable for the purpose of distributing the currency as the make-work system employed by traditional Bitcoin mining or the collusive mining done via mining pools. All that is necessary is to ensure that abuse isn’t so rampant that it undermines the incentive to do real work in support of the community and its currency.
The goal of building a community currency is to get more “crabs in the bucket”. Going to extreme
measures to eliminate all abuse is like attempting to put a lid on the bucket to prevent a few crabs from escaping and comes at the expense of making it harder to add new crabs to the bucket. It is sufficient to make the walls slippery and give the other crabs sufficient power to prevent others from escaping.

It sounds to me in many ways like social engineering and/or socialism where human jealousy and greed traps them into in a worst-case dog-eat-dog scenario.

And then there is the whole @Dan thing. @GuiltyParties told me it was Dan who nuked @BernieSanders to that -16 rep he has and he also told me other times that Dan has been doing a lot of downvotes on others too. So last night before leaving I did a search and found that to be true too, with posts just on Dan's downvotes. That puts a little doubt on his whole idea of making a sort of steem II on EOS that fixes the problems, if he starts abusing the same fault in the system that he so resonantly pointed out Ned and others were doing.

I recall Bill Ottman, co-founder of Minds, said several times in interviews how research has been done on such cases as that girl who felt cheated by YouTube and went into their offices shooting, which shows that mistreatment and abuse on social media platforms creates violent behavior. Thus, the bot wars and downvote wars of steemit.

Well said!!!

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Thank you @knircky :-)
And special thanks for the resteem!!

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👌💪💪💪💪

Oh Marly how this hits home in a lot of my sadness lately. I saw the interview and Steem Inc has always been harping that SMT will be the answer as if it going to be a panacea to all the ills in the platform but I still don't see it.

I am more interested with Hivemind and Communities as I truly hope it will fix a lot of issues we have.

I had to roll my eyes on the interview though when they kept referring to Steem as a Facebook disruptor when in fact it is so different from Facebook. Oh well I had the same notions before I started here as well.

Steem Inc needs to start listening to the people. @dragosrua initiated this challenge and one of the topics he had was what are the 3 things that needs to be done to make Steemit better.

Reading through it has some very interesting thoughts from the users.

I had the feeling that Steem Inc created the platform and then left everyone to their own in a wild, wild west kind of situation.

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Lots of valuable thoughts here, thank you very much for stopping by @maverickinvictus!

I completely agree with you that Hivemind could bring more benefits to the Steem community than SMTs. Yet, how much do we know about the feature that was already supposed to be implemented in Q3/2017? It's a big promise, but there have been made so many promises (only thinking about the marketing team that appeared, made some big promises about a campaign and then disappeared again), that we logically start to mistrust at some point in time.

I've stopped reading and commenting announcement posts since they're just big air bubbles.

Obviously, it's always good to keep the ball rolling and talk about the potential of the platform, even though this might not lead to any changes. I haven't checked @dragosrua's challenge, but will do. Thanks for the hint!

Wild wild west - that's a precise allegory :-D Well even in the wilderness things keep growing, so let's see what the rest of 2018 brings.

It can hardly get worse, so we actually haven't much to lose :-)

As Far as Trending goes, I'd say we have a quality control problem. For the most part, the highest stakeholders are in control of what reaches Trending, and they are the Bidbots.

Only 1 employs a Whitelist, and not too much of what is boosted up their via Smartsteem is heavily criticised. So that leaves the Blacklist, or no list.

Clearly no list, as a holder of such power to change the top page of Steemit, is very poor. The Blacklist not much better.

They are the quality controllers of what content appears to the the world, and should be doing a lot more.

Cheers!

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Great that you mentioned the whitelist! There is no doubt that bid bots control the whole system as it is designed today.

What do you think would happen if we got rid off the Trending Page tomorrow?

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I think it will soon become of even less importance to the Steemian as we move to communities.

It may then be up to Steemit if they wish to present what remains to the world.

I think communities will find a way to disallow (external) bid-bot content to appear on their own trending pages, and may use their own 'community' bot to 'organise' the best content that suits their agenda.

However, there will still be an externally facing 'Trending', and if not, perhaps a worse scenario where low grade content is boosted to no-one, purely for the returns, as the round become less busy.

That's what this post was about :)

https://steemit.com/steem/@abh12345/who-will-create-the-content-for-the-bid-bots-to-promote-in-the-future

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Nice post!
Talking about alt accounts, I've seen a lot of established users creating a second account in order to upvote themselves and increase their return.

It's easy to track them since they usually send the SBD of both accounts to the very same exchange address. Then they publish some good looking anti-selfishness posts via their main account in order to maintain their clean image.

That's actually quite bold - or should I say dumb?

I've stopped digging too deep into the blockchain data, since you always end up being very frustrated and disappointed.

The circle is very well protected. They can actually do whatever they want and it will never affect their reputation or return.

That's also why I'm posting 99% about surfing and other fun stuff - and not about Steem anymore...:-) Too many grey ones on my head, haha!

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That's actually quite bold - or should I say dumb?

Sounds like a healthy sampling of both to me! :D

Yeah I can't help but dig, it's my nature and my previous line of work. I should post more about life, as I can certainly say the same about the greys!

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Bots are a curse. Bid bots or promo bots. They all are a curse. My conclusion.

PS: I'm highly inactive and whenever I come back, I see the same things persisting.

„It's as if you sent a birthday party invitation to millions of people without having prepared the infrastructure needed to host them.“

YYYESSSS!!!! Nailed perfectly!!!

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Thank youuuu!
You know I like drawing allegories :-)

It's as if you sent a birthday party invitation to millions of people without having prepared the infrastructure needed to host them.

I love this analogy - so true!!

And eek - you're a surfer? Me too. Just about to head out now - it's winter in Victoria and getting cold, and there's a big swell around!

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Hey @riverflows!
Nice to meet you. We can't ever have enough surfers in this network :-))
I'll be in Bali at the end of the month, hoping to catch some nice waves, too. At my own place it's too windy right now. I'd need to to a windsurf class one day in order to be prepared for these conditions...

Enjoy your weekend, and I'll be following your blog now :-)

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Hey we will be in Bali in July. Windy here too.. and getting cold! Xx

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Oh nice! It'll be my first time there so I'm quite excited :-)
Ah yes, you're based in Australia - right? So winter time is coming... Get some hot coffee though! :-)

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Yes, in Australia... where are you? Youll looovvve Bali. Wherabouts are you going? Xx 🗻🏝🌊

Steemit seems to be an experiment in Game Theory.

Unfortunately, with close to 1 million users, it's more of a game of Whac-a-Mole. But it will be a never ending game that I don't know if the steemit team can keep up with.

Every time that a fork has happened, there has been a short grace period before users figured out to game the system again using the new rules.

For example, some have recommended that witnesses be given more power to help battle the bots and the spammers. So ... if that happened, the bot owners would become witnesses etc etc.


Steemit seems to be a fantastic representation of society. Noone wants to be governed, yet without government, the many ideals of what a "good society" oppose each other.


If there were an easy solution, I imagine that society would have adopted it in the real world. Until them, we will continue to have Communism, Democracy, Dictatorship, Republics, Anarchy etc etc And each form of system will all believe that they are the "best"

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These are very wise words.

Steemit seems to be a fantastic representation of society. Noone wants to be governed, yet without government, the many ideals of what a "good society" oppose each other.

That's true.

The big question is if we'll be able to create something that is even better than real world?

PS: We're not 1 mio users, we're 1 mio accounts and less than 60,000 active users :-)

One of the major problems is the way all formats of content are aggregated into one feed. This might be less of a problem now dmania is no more but the quantity of crap I have to wade through to find nice new stuff is tiresome. If there were a way we could apply filters it would be much better, especially where I like to hang out in the 'new' feed.
We all need to be harsher with our flags. Steemcleaners have a battle royale flagging the single plagiarised pic brigade and @themarymark works like crazy battling circle jerkers but it shouldnt be left to these people alone to battle the bollocks. The community should be self-policing and we must all take responsibilty.
Encourage people who work hard on content (even if its not necessarily great) and discourage the quick buck merchants. It's not difficult.
Even us lowly types can make a difference! Another point is we should all use the share function and blather fb and twitter in Steem..make people notice.
In a nutshell. Use the flag Luke.

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tags?

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No because I want to determine the content format, but they can be a help but messy

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Its not just the garbage I have to wade through in my feed, but the sheer number of garbage spam comments that fill up some users posts is staggering. One or two word responses, the "awesome job" comments, the single .gif postings......it's troubling.

"The community should be self-policing and we must all take responsibilty.
Encourage people who work hard on content (even if its not necessarily great) and discourage the quick buck merchants. It's not difficult." This has got to be the ethos of STEEMIT if the content creators want it to succeed.

I'm a bit guilty of this myself. sometimes I just want to share a photo, and not do a whole blog about the food I'm eating, this tree I'm carving or this herb i'm foraging for. I think a good mix of high-quality blog posts with a few "instagram-like" photos or videos is a good mix for most people. I'd like to see more content that isn't just crypto analysis too.

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yesss i'm with you on that. There are many times when I also want to just bang a couple of lines of thought down and use this thing more like traditional social media. I usually do it under the pretence of attempting win a photocomp lol...
Steemit is all things to all people...a full blown blog or a social media platform and it needs to get filters in place to allow people to use it as they wish to....as long as its original and honest.

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Steemit is all things to all people...

Nicely said. And this is one of its biggest assets actually.

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Re: garbage spam comments... How about a mechanism to block a particular user from dropping comments in your own posts? Each blogger could weed out those accounts leaving spam or useless comments.

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Thanks for your great addings @nathen007! You're right: participating in such an environment requires accountability of all members. Yet, I firmly believe that:

Change can only be made my changing the algorithm.

You can't force people to behave in a certain manner, be fair, publish good content, flag low quality and spam. But you can make it more attractive to them to behave accordingly. It's all about the incentives. Currently it's attractive to buy votes and publish shit :-)

i personally think it is time to fork steemit or start a whole new blockchain because the current power of the whales and other abusers is so high it would destroy the platform if you chose to change something unfavorable to them.

SMT may alleviate the struggle because it gives the SMT creators more leeway to control the content reaching their applications. alas i wish my technical skills were good enough to really be of use a a developer but until then i hope the comunity works things out.

A caveat i got from this interview is that the main stream media is taking notice of STEEMIT. I dont doubt that they themselves are nterested inhow to leverage clients vis cryptocurrency.

Interesting to see that there are only 60,000 active STEEM users...
Nice analysis. There are plenty of users that create quality content but fail to make it to the trending page. Cheers @surfermarly. I still hope more people hop on board. I love the infrastructure, it's like the wild wild west of social media

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Haha, you're the second one in the same thread who calls it wild wild west :-)
I guess these kind of things happen for a reason!

I'm glad you enjoyed the read. Usually I don't like to write about Steemit, because it's as if you were talking about the same things over and over again and nothing ever happened. Well on the positive side, we can earn Steem for the very same stuff over and over again, haha :-D

Enjoy your weekend @jeffjagoe

Currently, there already is an alternative to the trending pages: Curated niche tags such as #photofeed and #travelfeed that are way better for finding quality content than their non-curated counterparts, but the best way of finding great niche content is by browsing the posts resteemed by the curation accounts @photofeed and @travelfeed. I am part of the travelfeed team myself and we hope that when the community feature will be introduced, this will solve the problem with the trending pages.

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Nice adding! Thanks for the information, it's the first I hear about these tags and trails.

The site needs to be redesigned. More like reddit or something. Hot trending and new are not enough subdivision for a site this size

I don't think enough of the Steemit C-suite spends enough time on their own site to really know if there's actually quality content or not.

The next thing is, quality is so subjective, it's not even much of a measure for value. Most people mean "things I like" rather than "that's well written" or "that's accurate, well-researched information."

For all I know, all the technical analysis that gets thrown around here is top notch. I don't understand it, I don't see the value in it, so I don't upvote it. And there's plenty of other topics I don't wander into regularly for much the same reasons. Does that mean the posts are low quality?

No. It just means low-interest to me. And maybe that's a better way of putting it. Again, though, it's subjective. It's obvious that anything that is about crypto gets plenty of eyeballs. I'm not here for just crypto news. I like variety, which means more than just what a few subjects that some people, mainly with higher SP, might like.

So, yeah, I agree, Ned could of defended us a little better. And yeah, there's plenty of lower quality posts, along with low-interest, but I don't know if that's your focus when your only answer to it is the trending page, the same page you need to buy your way up to get noticed on.

I've been wondering for a long while now, with so many cutting edge social sites out there, why Steemit looks the way it does, and functions the way it does. Why didn't we have Community from the outset? Why not Hivemind? Why aren't we even on our way to 2.0 of those things.

I'm kind of getting tired about hearing that Steemit is still in beta. Yes it is, but it's a beta circa early 2000s. I guess the creators and early adopters thought it should look like Reddit, when it really should have looked and functioned more like Facebook groups or something similar.

Which leads me to believe that Steemit in and of itself isn't that important in the grand scheme of things. Something else is. I'm not sure what that is, but as a premiere social site, it's lacking.

And if you think quality posts are lacking here, then give us tools to improve our quality. What self-respecting blog software doesn't even allow you to save multiple drafts, let alone schedule a post?

I don't know. I've been trying to keep my head down and just post, comment and curate. However, in doing so, I run between those who seem a little happier about the place because they're trying to make Steemit a good place, and then I run into others that only want to get their own piece of the pie.

I don't know. This is a great subject and post. It's really passed time to have this discussion not only in the highest offices of Steemit, but actually see it result in something. Instead of incrementally taking away small things, hiding others, how about we get something majorly useful instead?

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Wow, that's what I call a comment! :-)
Thanks for taking the time and putting everything together, @glenalbrethsen. I'll answer step by step...

I don't think enough of the Steemit C-suite spends enough time on their own site to really know if there's actually quality content or not.

Well that was exactly what I asked Ned in a comment a couple of days back and this was his reply:

I have used it nearly every day since launch.... and I read and see everything on here ))

It's actually sad that he sees everything on here and it's still the way it is.
If this was my project I wouldn't want it to look like that - not only one day. I wouldn't want to be asked about the poor quality of my network in a TV interview...

Hivemind! Oh yeah! The last update was posted one month ago, but only God knows if this will ever be implemented. I doubt it will be in 2018. While the days go passing by, more and more people leave the network, so in the end there'd even be very few to test it then...

Then you touched the user interface. Well I'm doing my blog posts in HTML since the steemit editor is so poorly equipped. They were promising to improve it at Steemfest no. 1 in Amsterdam. That was in November 2016 :-) I better not comment this..

Well thanks for stopping by and keeping the ball rolling.
You're right, if we don't talk about it, nothing will ever be improved.
Yet, I've gradually lost hope. Maybe that's it - and the current stage of steemit is all we'll ever have. Then we should be simply content - or move on.

Enjoy your weekend!

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Thank you for finding time to reply to my rather lengthy comment. :)

First off, that's awesome you even got an answer back from Ned.

Second, he may very well use it everyday but it is literally impossible to see everything on here, so anyway. Saying something like "I'm aware of what's going on" would have been good enough.

It is sad. I suppose, though, if this is meant to be a social experiment, with a hands off approach, to see where it might lead, that it all makes more sense. If it's not, then creating an environment where value can thrive would seem to be the order of the day.

Promises to fix the UI since 11-2016. Hmmmm. Okay. Well, so much for that, then. In hindsight, it probably served as a good indication where the UI wasn't going to go if it started out basically like this in the first place, rather than actually being more modern. I've not seen much interest being paid to it, but I've only been here actively since January.

I guess we're all that we've got. We're our only hope. I'm not ready to give up on me yet. :) Of course, I haven't been here so long that the amount of broken promises given reach the proverbial moon STEEM's supposed to reach, either.

Wow. Well said @surfermarly.
I totally agree with you and we really have to work on the solution by listening and really paying attention to where the problem is because it can backfire later on if we just keep on ignoring it.

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Thank you @joalvarez! I really believe we've been watching the problems growing and growing long enough now... It's time to finally do something about it.

Steemit is still tiny. A lot of those million accounts are fake despite Steemit supposedly checking them. I suspect a lot of people give up when they don't make anything, but then they use other sites for no reward. There has to be a compelling experience and that may be lacking. The trending page is largely junk as they are effectively promoted posts. In some cases they may be worthy, but some just do it for the money and to possibly gain followers. It's all a big experiment in new businesses.

Certain people are driving away good creators as part of their flagging war. That doesn't help matters.

On the plus side we have so these 'dapps' for images, videos and audio. It's a great playground for the creative and there's that potential for rewards.

I'll keep on voting up the good stuff and helping worthy causes. I still believe this platform can do great things, but it's not guaranteed to succeed.

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Very valuable thoughts, @steevc - thank you!

What Steem needs is a redesign. We should have a better control on what's trending / visible / important and what is not. Currently the best exposure in the network can be simply bought. It's as if one could buy the no. 1 headline in a newspaper. These spaces should be reserved for content that was considered valuable by a large majority of the community. The evaluation process of content is completely corrupted now.

That's why Bloomberg asks what the CEO is planning to do in order to improve the content quality on Steem. That's why Steem has such a negative image now.

The more we talk about it, the merrier.
I still hope that @ned doesn't plan to completely abandon Steemit.com.

I don't think, that we have a quality problem with the articles here, but with people who upvote shitty hate posts of people, who can't write 2 correct sentences and pushing these useless posts to the trending page. This is where we should start and this is a huge problem. There are really good posts on Steemit, but most of them are not found in the trending section, because there you will find some egocentric sociopaths fighting their war about protecting the reward pool instead. Something that @ned strangely finds entertaining and good publicity - which makes me seriously doubt his judgement and leadership skills.
Then of course the missing transparency with regular (at least weekly) updates on SMTs and development, as well as the non-existent marketing by Steemit Inc. are also things handled very poorly.
But hey, let's stay positive! At least the chain has people like us! 😉

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I think there are many who especially upvote and comment trending posts just because they believe that they'll get a piece of the attention someone else just bought by voting for them. Actually it's the other way around. Trending is now known as the place where you definitely don't find quality content, and where no real social engagement is taking place.

Something that @ned strangely finds entertaining and good publicity - which makes me seriously doubt his judgement and leadership skills.

I remember he commented a post from grumpycat or berniesanders once, saying that it was amazing how much traffic these guys were bringing to the platform. I replied to his comment asking him if he seriously believed that these two were bringing traffic from the outside - or if it was rather the case that the post just made a couple of thousand views for being boosted to a top trending position where it was found by the local drama lovers then. He didn't answer back.

Thanks for stopping by and keeping the ball rolling, @atmosblack.
Something needs to be done.

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This was exactly the post I was referring to! I was just sitting there and shaking my head... What you are saying about the trending page is absolutely true - at least they promised with the next community update, that the trending page will be gone. I personally never look there anymore, because of my anger management ;)

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Haha, oh yeah the anger management...
The community feature was announced for in January 2017 for Q3/2017 to come. Now we're getting closer to Q3/2018, so honestly I've stopped dreaming of it :-)

If it comes: nice. If not, nobody would be surprised either.
Until then we've got to work with what we have...

You can't ever make them all happy, but you can start listening carefully to their repeated claims and brainstorm about solutions.
I agree on this, each and every problem of the users can't be just solved in a single day, it will take a hell of a time but the important problems should really be adressed as soon as possible.

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Well I think nobody is asking for miracles. The very same concerns have been mentioned since at least half a year now. At Steemfest² Ned Scott was already asked during the Fire Side Chat what he thinks about vote buying. His answer was:

It's a quite interesting phenomena.

Now this is not only an interesting phenomena, but the greatest threat to the Steem eco-system. Yet, everybody is waiting for the others to do the first step.

Hello Marly, how long time!

We (you and I and others) old users of this platform know more than anyone what we have been through here in the last 2 years.

There have been so many things that it seems that Steemit already has 20 years of creation. I believe that the change starts with a fork that is as dense as we could have on that platform.

These voting bots ended up with the argument that we were rewarded according to the quality of our posts, the whales and witnesses became distant and divine characters that did not meet the users' expectations and in this problem I only think of the newcomers who joins the platform.

I hope this hard fork 20 can be a good change for us, as I like an old user and seeing our all trajectory here, we do not see a good destination for Steemit.

Big hug and kisses for you from Brazil!

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Heyyy! How are you doing? So nice to see you here :-)
You're completely right: sometimes it seems as if we had been here for decades.
Yet, currently there's some stagnancy, we neither move forward nor backward. It's as if everybody was waiting for some miracle to happen. SMTs, communities, the Steem app won't be miracles, but they might make a difference... It'll be interesting to see if some of these things will be ever implemented one day.

Until then we just do what we've always done: keep our own sub-communities alive, trying to make the best of it :-)

Thanks for stopping by!
Hugs and kisses from Canary Islands :-)

Perhaps Ned's goal is to have a billion inactive accounts. I am starting to think steemit was just created as Dan's big social experiment to study our behavior in a given environment.

In any case, I am still trying to make the most of this place. I'm about halfway to being able to sustain myself through steemit 1/4 of the way to do that and then have some crypto savings leftover, and I want to help as many people as possible do the same.

You are right there is some awesome content on here and I thought the same thing when he said that. "Dude, that's it? No defense?"

Check out our #nobidbot tag and curate some of the undervalued stuff that you see :-D

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You are right there is some awesome content on here and I thought the same thing when he said that. "Dude, that's it? No defense?"

It's funny that you touched this point in the way you did. I realy didn't understand how he could listen to someone talking about the bad quality on this own platform and then just acknowledge that they hadn't fully succeeded yet. I mean, was this the way of selling Steem on TV?!

I'm doing the same like you do: trying to make the best of it. It's healthier to not look at the bigger picture sometimes, especially because it doesn't move forward.

Thanks for linking the tag which I didn't know so far! :-)
Enjoy your weekend @whatamidoing

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I think he probably avoids looking at steemit because he knows a lot of people don’t like him as much as Dan. He probably sees more of the Trending page than anything. He seemed very defensive in some of his engagement, I think the breakup with Dan probably put a whole lot of pressure on him to keep this ship afloat and he is probably tempted every day not to take the money and run. Or I might be projecting.

:-)

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Yes, that's what I noticed, too. The fire's gone.
At the end of 2017 he still seemed to be very motivated in general and very enthusiastic about SMTs. Probably with EOS being so strong now he notices that it's going to be hard to accomplish the goal. Steem has lost a lot of market cap lately, the platform is full of crap, so there must be a lot of pressure on him now.

Let's see how he's going to handle it. Setbacks can be both the killer or the beginning of something great...

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Larimer....the one that got away...I hope one day he finds someone to fill those massive shoes!

Great post and very valid concerns in my view. Like you I am on Steemit for nearly two years now and really want it to succeed. As of end last year however I feel not much progress has been made. No SMT's no communities, no Steemit mobile app. All this has been announced on SF2 to be available early 2018. We are close to mid 2018 and still don't have an idea in which month communities, HF20 will be released? Lets hope an update on all that will follow soon and Steemit will not follow the same path as AOL. First on top of the world, than let it slip until they became not relevant anymore.

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Thanks for your valuable addings, @tarekadam! I guess we're all impatiently waiting for anything to happen. It's been too silent for too long now.

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That's how I feel, and I'm new to the game (2 months). I keep reading about (or wallowing in) the problems with Steemit, and keep wondering why there doesn't seem to be any engagement with the community by @Ned and team. There is definitely a lot of discussion from within the Steemit community, and initiatives to help correct and direct the system, which is great. But the silence and non-engagement of the people who created this behemoth... that's puzzling.

Steemit is I think doing a social experiment (I dont believe its a stable business yet) adding monetary rewards to the content generated by the people. This itself will drive a lot of people to create content with monetary expectation. This same psychological aspect will be the issue for user retention as well,people leave since they feel they failed, if they are not able to earn meaningful rewards.
This is the problem to solve and is not an easy one.
Steemit is essentially a blogger platform and not a network like Facebook. As a blogger platform it should create quality content and where users come back for consuming more.
Steemit could add better user interface ,groups ,closed groups and evolve more like Facebook but still the core issue remains

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Steemit is definitely not made for everybody, and that's also why I don't understand that people say things like:

Let's bring the masses.

For what? These masses will end up as thousands of dead accounts, inflating the network artificially and generating unnecessary costs.

It seems that we all know what the core problem is: expectation management. Yet, there is no welcoming of new users, no education, no help center, no support. I wonder what's the plan to ever fix these substantial problems that start being problems in the moment the user enters the platform.

You can tell people that one can earn money on Steemit by posting things, and when they come to give it a try, you don't help them to understand the complexity of the system, leave them alone with their doings, and the only thing they'll quickly understand by themselves is that by buying votes they can grab some attention. Congratulations!

Nobody is actually surprised about the current situation on Steem, because it's a logical consequence of the very same mistakes that have been repeatedly done over months.

Well the issue is much more complicated like you said.If left out it is nothing but if one thinks it deep it is indeed a very great issue.

Regarding the users that many are joining while many are leaving as well as because they can not get the support or any kind of direction.And those who are working on supporting the new users they are not being appreciated.While in this storm many are just taking away as much as they want.

I indeed LOVE STEEMIT as it had made a new turning point for me and I am sure many will agree with it.I want it a better place and a better way of making it right.

A game plan for now is indeed needed.Hope in the coming days the solutions comes out.

I really want to know. Is really Steemit a social media platform?

Can I post everything I want? Sometimes I feel I can post everything on facebook but on steemit nope.

I thought steemit is the decentralized platform

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The government model of Steemit is a government. Decentralized, but a government. So I can not post everything I want here. Freedom of expression is something that does not exist and this is a frustrating reality.

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Well you can publish whatever you want since there is no censorship :-) But obviously not everything is rewarded in the very same manner. As long as you write positively about Steem, you'll be a recognized member of the community. THIS is probably what challenges the real decentralized model.

I am also agree with you. Steem post quality is best. No copy past, no scame, all are doing original work. I think steemit is boss.

Muchas personas suelen comentar que es un mal contenido y cuando entro en sus blogs no es nada del otro mundo es algo tonto comentar algo que tu ni siquiera haces bien, pero tuve la oportunidad de leer esa entrevista y me pareció fantástica.

Well, recently I dont even check trending page anymore. I go to the profile of the person that I love then I enjoy reading. ✌

Thank you @surfermarly for transferring to my wallet for my birthday and my son Jansen while we were at hospital. Been wanting to tell u this but could not find you at discord.

We are at home now. Everything is okay except some post-hospital exhaustion on my side & post-traumatic stress on jansen's side.

Thank you from our hearts for generosity. 😍

I dont know. It depends on steemit's objectives. Is this a social media platform for connectivity or a knowledged based platform for sharing quality information? If it is the former, steemit is doing well, if it is the latter then steemit has failed.

Steemit Inc. DOES NOT listen!!!

Steemit has some very powerful tools that we ignore, mute, unfollow and flag. You can be polite and use mute or unfollow or be bold and flag. Its our platform, lets do the communal cleanup together.

Steem doesn't have any difficulties in getting more people on this blockchain, but it definitely has a problem in retaining them.

Yes you’re right , it’s time for the corrections to be made , there has been speculations about the SMT that it will change the future of steem to a bright leading one, but having an ecosystem which won’t influence the value of steem and steemit is not what we hope for .

I know so many I’ve brought to the platform and they left right before my eyes. But I know nothing good comes easy so I endures. But steem should speak for it self. If steem to the moon happens then believe me , masses to the platform to the stars. Investors and content creators alike . Thanks for talking about this , this is a nice awareness

nice post, friend :)

I dont think that the content is low. I see daily good content written my Minnows and remains invisible. We also have many new users signing up every day. The problems we have in this platform is Spam, Phishing, Selfupvote in a wrong way, whale war and plagiarism. These are the major problems that we have and need to solve fast as possible :(
Another problem is bots! We have many of them and the most dont offer any useful service. Just 3 days ago I saw a very normal personal photo on the trending page, upvote by bots and about 500 users. I mean whats going on!

What we need in the Steem ecosystem is a framework that meets the expectations of most users. You can't make everyone happy, but you can begin to listen carefully to their repeated statements and think of solutions.

All you say is an alert! really the platform is attractive but I think it can be much more, when I really came in, all I needed was to create quality content, support some post and make friends, I started to create content, crafts, travel, food; were my main topics, rarely my post got rewards, so I thought I was doing something wrong, at the beginning of the year the fashion was to pay for votes ( although I don't like it, the system seems to work like that, to enter into trends is part of a business rather than a merit, although I am new to give my verdict, I would like to stop paying the bot and that normally there are people valuing and implying quality content, happy day.

When the heck is HF20 gonna happen? I've been hearing people talk about it like it's some impending thing since I joined like 9 MONTHS ago. There's obviously improvements that can be made (one thing I think would be beneficial is limiting number of posts per day to 3-4 instead of 10...ahem...name that starts with an H) so let's make some progress already. I've read some other good ideas but I just woke up so forgive my lack of more insight into this lol.

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"H"..is just one...check out jackie1293 and tomtomandt (and I'm sure there are many others.) Even newbs are hitting us with these tiny blurb "articles" now at like 5-minute intervals. They have got to be bots or third-world sweat shops with multiple people in a room (or internet cafe?) somewhere posting under the same account. That kind of crap will KILL us.

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Didn't you know that this is the network where lots of improvements are promised but only very few get ever implemented....? Didn't you know the best paid blog posts were big announcements, independently if the things announced got ever done? :-D

You better don't ask about timelines, because even if there was one it wouldn't be fulfilled.
The community feature - also known as Hivemind - was planned to be implemented in Q3/2017 btw, the Steem app for mobile phones was supposed to be live in December 2017... Should I go ahead? :-))

I guess HF20 should be ready by 2020...

When we focus only on making money on steemit, we can not move forward.
If our goal, besides winning, is to help and prepare others, we are sure to succeed.
If we only invite people to this business and we do not help them grow, they will be discouraged and abandon. It is very necessary that we educate her and teach her how to do this business and do it well.
Excellent interview friend. Congratulations. See you at the top

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Excellent interview friend. Congratulations. See you at the top

Who do you mean?

To listen to the audio version of this article click on the play image.

Brought to you by @tts. If you find it useful please consider upvote this reply.

The problem is not that we lack quality content, it's that it isn't rising to the top. I've written extensively about this as have many others. The Bloomberg interview reflects current overall public opinion, and rather than shrinking from that reality, we need to address it, or at least broadcast that we are working towards solutions. Ned did OK, but the community needs to step in now and and do the rest. Witnesses? You listening??

No problem with the quality of content? Probably Ned lives in some other isolated Steem-blockchain and sees it not as we all see it.

If a year ago quality content was considered the content created by the whales (because they could selfvote their own posts to $ 200 and even $ 1000) and our Trending page was formed by the whales, now the quality of the content is decided by the bid-bots and vote-sellers.

In fact, nothing has changed since the HF19. If you have enough money, you will be able to place your content to the Trending page and it will be considered as a quality by default. Regardless of the community's opinion and the number of views.

And about 1 million users ... you know, when I compare the numbers from the @penguinpablo's reports and Steemcleaners'/Spaminators' reports about huge post/comment farms, I sometimes think that we have no more than 10-15 thousand of real active and fair bloggers here.

thanks also for you who have made a good post to read congratulations for you

I hope he reads this post and start implementing things that should have been fixed in the beginning. The trending page? It's a big LOL and question on the quality. In the month of March, 72% posts in the trending section had an army of bots on them and since I did this analysis, I was pretty sure that no matter how good or excellent your content is, you can't be on the trending page until you spend some money or unless your upvote has a big value! I don't think they are taking these problem into account and are more focused on bringing more and more investment which will eventually (Okay, I won't say that!)

And where have you been? Haven't seen you on Telegram groups.

Steem is a social media platform. A social media platform can be perfectly good without having top notch quality on it. Does the average quality of content on other social media networks strike you as fantastic by some objective criteria?

I believe the #bounty concept on Steemit is a great way to promote high quality content on the portal. With bounties applied, only high quality content and comments may get up-votes.

I'm more interested with the Howland and Communities, I hope it will solve many of our problems. I had to roll my eyes in interview even though they referred to the Stem as a Facebook disruptor when it was actually so different from Facebook. Oh well the same opinion before I started here before Was. @surfermarly This challenge was raised and one of those things was necessary to make Steveet even better. Inati chilaami thing felt that their platform stime Incorporated has kept to himself.

images (20).jpeg

I think that steemit has very good content, and for example this is your blog

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Thanks for the compliment @merryslamb!! :-)

Good one @surfermarly! Resteemed and sending you love here! <3 <3

So many salient points in this post, @surfermarly. And in the comments too. So many intelligent minds have been thinking about these problems and what can be done about them!

It's the commitment and initiatives from within the Steemit community that give me hope. It does seem like this is an experiment, and a number of flaws and solutions have been identified. I figure either those solutions will be implemented on the Steemit platform, or the knowledge gained will be exported to another site.

Thanks, and well said, very clear, I absolutely agree!

Given the small number of active accounts, there is actually quite a lot of quality content on here, especially around homesteading!