Without beating too much drum on a project that we all know quite well, I will say again that Steem is in my opinion one of the best working projects in the crypto space, one of the most undervalued, but at the same time it needs some more polishing to make it perfect. When it comes to perfection it is clear that we're entering subjectivity territory, but I'll try anyway.
Considering that my perfection is the best that I can conceive and comprehend, I am intending with this post to propose some changes that I consider necessary for Steem, and of bon augur as well, for the next hardfork/s. I suppose the HF22 wasn't the last one and my hopes are the next one, or next ones, to deal with these tweaks as well.
Enough with this boring introduction and let's dive into my picks for tweaking Steem in the following hardfork/s. The first one, that I've been calling for more than a year I guess, is private wallets. I don't see any reason to have public wallets, other than chasing whales and ass lick them to get you noticed and attract attention upon your blog and, if lucky, plenty of upvotes as well. A bit of mystery and privacy I believe won't harm the blockchain.
After all, I guess that Steem is one of the few, or maybe the only one social media platform, offering viewing access to anyone for anyone's wallet. I know that you can track Bitcoin wallets as well, and you can spy on whales activity on that blockchain, but I don't feel that's a good thing either. Especially when you expect privacy and financial freedom from crypto. Where's the privacy then?
Next I'll mention auto votes. Many will hate me for even thinking to get rid of the auto vote feature, but I believe in humans and I believe in organic interaction, and curation as well. Automation in my opinion is one of the most destructive forces against our human essence. It might be the future for many life sectors, and AI will probably help us even more on that, but I dislike it and I will give you a couple of reasons for what I consider killing the auto vote, in a future and better Steem, a #newsteem.
First and fore most it will bring back engagement and traffic on the platform to decent levels. Having the auto voting feature at hand, one must not be a too active part of the community, to put his SP to work, and doesn't even have to read anything or engage in any way, because everything spins for him on the blockchain, behind closed doors.
Yes, for the ones having revenues on their SP, and the ones getting constant upvotes on their content, that's a good feature, but what about the new comers, what about the undiscovered veterans, what about the engagement that we all ramble about, what about our image in the world? Do we want Steem to be an alive platform or an automated reward tokens factory?
If the previous hardfork has turned bid bots into true active, and organic curators, why can't we push curation a step higher and have almost everything organic in here. From my experience, and hope I'm not wrong, @appreciator, @oc and @ocd, @curangel, @curie, @blocktrades, @theycallmedan, and probably many other important curators and SP holders(quite a few being ex bid bots), are manually curating content in here. If they can do it, why can't you? Again, I am sure that many will be against such a feature, but I believe it will bring Steem to life once again, and it will transform this platform into a truly active one, more sustainable for both content creators and curators, and last but not least, more fun.
Take fun out from your life, and see what a robot you are... Then, why do we need auto votes?
If you think that you already had enough with this post, you should know that this is a long one, so if I got your attention by now, please make it to the end, it might be worth your five minutes spent reading. If not, I'm refunding...
Not one Steem improvements proposal post can see the light of publishing, without mentioning the trending page. One of the most important pages in my opinion, and one of the most flawed ones. Fixing it is a simple task and doesn't require too much thinking to find better criteria for how posts get to be trending. Ever since I remember Steem, it was always the highest paid ones that got to be featured as trending post. That should change to have a more relevant one.
My proposal is to take into account not only upvotes that one post gets, and their weight, but the number of them as well, meaning that we take in account individuals more than vote value. Next I will put more weight on the engagement that one post receives, along with its potential payout. You can have tens of dollars on a trending one and less than 10 comments before it gets there. That's not trending according to my logic. Last but not least let's not forget resteems. It's true that quite many of the trending posts get a high share of resteems, but usually after getting to the trending page. Taking in consideration all of that above mentioned criteria, will make the trending page a more appealing and fair one, IMO.
Reputation score. Probably many of us don't pay too much attention anymore, to that number attached on one's user name, but it is still there, and it's subjective to artificial growth, same as with the trending page. The only factor determining it to grow or get down to zero, and below, is upvotes. We all know that for many years upvotes could be bought, so that's not earned reputation. My type of reputation would take into account votes as well, but only to some extent.
I would highly consider engagement, as an important criteria for a reputable steemian and I would also take into consideration how many times did he/she get to the trending page, but in order for that to be a viable criteria we need to fix the trending page. I would not take into account downvotes because they're easily the subject of revenge and they can be misleading. Regarding engagement, it would be of much help to score users, when taking comments addressed to their posts as well. A respectable steemian that is more than just a number on the blockchain, has usually plenty of people reading his posts and engaging with him. Let's not forget post views, where we can adopt youtube's algorithms for scoring, and make reputation scores great again.
I am close to ending the post, but not quite there, and I will shortly tackle the power down time frame as well, but I won't get too much into details with it. I consider that what's over a month as waiting period is too much and it kind of screams centralization. Let's not forget that when we power up, it only takes a few seconds to lock Steem for 13 weeks, so why not have an instant, or at least shorter power down period? It's users funds after all. I know that staking is practiced on quite a few other blockchains, but I'd prefer a shorter power down period on this one.
Vote value and curators I would also keep private, on every post, same as with wallets. What I consider this to be fixing is circle jerking, and ass licking from small users. I am a user of publish0x as well, and although it is a relatively new platform, it has some features that Steem could borrow from it. One of these being anonymity in terms of curation. You can see a post's value, but you don't get to see who's voting it and on what value. It makes sense for me. That would as well help in making Steem more alive and engaging, because you'll be more authentic when you don't know who's boosting your posts.
Enough is enough, so this is the last paragraph of my proposals post for a better Steem. I really hope that it will get to as many users as possible, for a quick read, and I'm open towards discussions. I am perfectly aware that my views and logic are limited, but I am not stepping back from expressing my views on making Steem better, simply because I like Steem too much. Small fish have big mouths sometimes, don't they.
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Thanks for attention,