Getting Started in OnChainArt

in #newbie2 years ago


WTH Is OnChainArt?

OnChainArt is a global art Community based on the Hive blockchain. Within that ecosystem, for the best experience we recommend using PeakD as the main gateway to the OnChainArt Community.

WTH Is The Hive Blockchain?

To answer that in a comprehensive way, this post would need to be a several hour long read, so here's the tldr version(which is still a lot). In general, blockchains are ledgers(lists) of information that are immutable(unchangeable), so they only grow one way and are not editable once information has been added. Through some consensus algorithm(a means of coming to agreement) new verified information gets added to the ledger.

Bitcoin uses Proof of Work, you can google that for more info, and Hive uses something called Delegated Proof of Stake. In a nutshell, users vote on representatives(Witnesses) and those representatives are in charge of validating the information that gets added to the ledger(as well as other duties like performing upgrades). Depending on how much HIVE you hold and have locked in a non-transferrable state(staked/powered up), this determines the "weight" of your vote.

Like most blockchains, Hive has an associated cryptocurrency, HIVE. Yes, I know that's confusing, stay with me. Also like most cryptocurrencies HIVE is inflationary. This is how new tokens get out into the world. HIVE's inflation is divided into multiple "pools". That means a percentage of the inflation is dedicated to different aspects of the system. Here's the breakdown:


  • 65% Goes to the "Reward Pool"
  • 15% Goes to HIVE Stakeholders
  • 10% Goes to the HPS
  • 10% Goes to Witnesses

Where does the money come from???

The Reward Pool is the answer to what all users have when they first come to this platform, "Where does the money come from?"

If you've gotten this far you've probably seen a Hive post on one of many frontends(apps,websites,places to access Hive) and seen some money numbers on that post.


In the image above, that post earned a total of $28.36 worth of HIVE(actually HIVE and HBD, but let's not go there yet)

That crypto is distributed to the author of that post NOT via direct transfers, but through the inflation of HIVE. How much each user can distribute is based on their "stake weight" ie how much HIVE they have locked in a non-transferrable state. So on Hive, authors/creators make posts, other users vote on those posts in the typical way you'd interact on other social platforms, but on Hive, those votes distribute the cryptocurrency HIVE, depending on how much stake the user who voted holds. Still with me? ehhh, well keep reading anyway because we're still not done, it's worth it though...

So in the example above I mentioned that post made a total of $28.36(worth of HIVE), well that doesn't all go to the author of the post. The author gets half of that, and the other half goes to the curators or the people who voted on the post. So $14.18 goes to the author, and the other half is distributed to the people who voted on the post, in general at a rate of 50% of that users vote value. So if you have a vote value of $1.00 based on your stake, when you vote on a post, you get .50 and the author gets .50. Truth be told, this is all actually much more complicated than that, but we're not going down that rabbit hole on this post.

As I said, it's long and complicated to describe what Hive is, but taking everything just said. Hive is a blockchain where you can build social applications similar to ones you're familiar with, Reddit, Youtube, Instagram, etc, but on Hive, when you upvote(or downvote) a post, those votes have a monetary value associated with them. Cool huh!?!?

Okay, that was kinda a lot, and tbh, it's really only scratching the surface, but this is an intro post. Given that this is crypto, shit is harder. It is what it is, it's worth it, get used to it.

WTH is a Community(In the context of Hive)?

The closest thing you can liken a Hive Community to is a subreddit. It's a collection of posts around a certain topic and a community of people within the larger community of people using Hive. Communities have lots of awesome features and what you can do with them is getting better and better as time goes on. One of the benefits of posting in a community is visibility. If it's your first day on Hive and you don't have any followers, it will be really tough to get anyone to see your content. But if you post in a community relevant to the content you're posting, it's much easier for that content to be seen and picked up by curators. Also a easier way to get your first followers and start interacting with people.

Culture and best practices

If you're coming from the fast paced low interaction world of say Instagram, understand that Hive is a bit slower, smaller, and more intimate. People here know each other and a lot of us have been here for years. We care about this platform and want to nurture it and see it grow. On something like Youtube or Instagram, it's almost an adversarial relationship that you have with the platform, or at best a cold and detached one. Sort of like a boss and employee relationship.

Since everyone that's been here for any amount of time is also a HIVE stakeholder, we are the "owners" of the platform. So basically, we don't take kindly to people coming and shitting on our lawn.

There is a huge opportunity to build something better, fairer, and more powerful than anything that exists in the legacy social spaces. It's not there yet, but we welcome you to come on the journey with us as pioneers figuring out this new world together.

Hive Benefits

Not trying to be hyperbolic, but Hive is the answer to what everyone hates about today's biggest social platforms.

Hive is censorship resistant. The platform is decentralized and there is no company running it. No one can ban you, no one person or entity can stop you from earning. In the same way that upvotes distribute the currency, downvotes remove it. Each post is open for voting for 7 days to find that balance and each user has a say. If you create a large fanbase on Hive, you can become an unstoppable creator.

In that same vein, your account, your followers, your communities and your content are all YOURS. No one can remove them from the chain. There are moderation tools in place, but that all lives at the frontend level. ie Someone can hide your content from THEIR site, but Hive is accessible from multiple sites and apps. If they all remove your content, you were probably doing something illegal, but even in that case, that content is still on the chain and if you REALLY wanted to, you could just create your own Hive frontend to display your content that nobody wants to see.

While Hive has this cool reward pool where you can reward creators without dipping into your actual wallet, you can also just dip into your wallet and tip people directly. (Not supported on ALL Hive frontends, but it is on PeakD) If you create a following of fans willing to tip you directly, no one can stop that or even influence it.

Hive is free to use, doesn't play algorithmic favorites, and doesn't in and of itself promote any content over other content. It's the most level playing field in existence in terms of social platforms. That has benefits and drawbacks.

Again, this could go on, but that's some of the main benefits.

Hive Drawbacks

Hive is smol relative to social platforms, and a social platform without a ton of people has major issues. This is probably the main issue with Hive. It simply needs more users.

Mo money mo problems. The psychological motivations of people change when money gets thrown into the mix. Why people post, why people vote, why people comment, and why people do just about everything here is polluted with the financial incentive baked into the system. It doesn't help that the incentive structure of Hive is not directly in line with what is best for Hive. These are ongoing growing pains of the system and things the community is constantly iterating on and brainstorming about.(Join the fun!)

You don't know how much you like algorithms until you don't have them. All those evil algorithms on the big social platforms are actually really good at connecting you to the content you like. On Hive, that needs to be done more manually by people creating relevant communities, or by people grouping content into Collections.

How to get started

For a more detailed post on getting started, key management, and all the ins and outs, check out this post

Hive: A Complete Beginner's Guide (With Fun Doodles) Pt. 1


Download Hive Keychain. It's a browser extension that helps you manage your keys.

As with all crypto, on Hive you have keys. Difference here is you have multiple keys for different levels of permission.

If all you want to do is social stuff, that's one key, if you want to make money transactions, that's another key, if you want to restore you your account, that's another key, etc. Of course it's more complex than this, but you went with the tldr version, what do you expect.

Make a Hive account here

Once you make a Hive account and have your keys, you can import them into keychain and use that to access Hive. Keychain basically works like a universal sign on app for the entire Hive ecosystem. There are dozens of apps all built on Hive, but once you make that one account, you're on all of them. One account to rule them all!

You're almost ready to post in OnChainArt! One more thing...

READ THE DAMN RULES! 😁 You can find them here

Alright, now that you've totally read the rules and totally didn't just skip that part, happy posting in OCA! Welcome to the Community!


This is a great getting started guide, love all the screenshots! I'm sure it'll help many artists get a jumpstart on Hive.

(Also, I appreciate you linking to my Hive Beginner's Guide as well, ty.) 🙏

Thanks! And thank you for making it. I'm sure it'll be a great asset for a long time.

Fingers crossed! 😁🙌🙏

Thank you for that wonderful intro. Still new here and happy to read things like that. Well written and easily understandable. Really enjoying my time so far on HIVE 😀

Glad you found it useful, and welcome to Hive!