Prologue - Steem as a technology
Steem is an amazing piece of work. Alone from a technology standpoint.
New technology always advances with time, and blockchain probably twice as fast, but Steem is still one of the most useful blockchain-projects. It has already been forked/copied multiple times, which displays how valuable the technology is.
While there are blockchains who might be newer or more advanced, this is not always an indicator for value - just take a look at Bitcoin and it's forks, or Ethereum & Litecoin. All of them older than Steem, but they still provide high usability & value.
However, the technology is also fertile ground for something which Steem is very unique in - bringing people together.
Chapter I - Technology for Communities
The truth is, Steem as a technology for building communities is completely unique and different, than, for example, building them in the "real world" or on non-blockchain entities like Facebook.
Steem's technology is of course not perfect yet. But it's working and has been working for a few years now!
It has empowered countless communities with the ability to reward its participators with real value. Not just simple virtual likes or hearts, but real tokens - worth a lot of money - called STEEM & SBD.
At the same time, it's a decentralised, trustless system, which is being controlled only by its users/stakeholders, instead of a single entity (as in Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc.)
Chapter II - Decentralised System of Stakeholders
Each one of you reading this is part of this stakeholder group.
Some are bigger stakeholders (5k STEEM+; dolphins, orcas & whales) and some are smaller ones (plankton & minnows). All valuable for this ecosystem!
And as time goes on, the amount of middle-class stakeholders is growing more and more. Which is a good thing, as the future of this platform can be shaped by many stakeholders, rather than just a few big ones.
Now, I do believe big stakeholders, are also very important as they hold the most risk, so their decision is usually in-line with the success of Steem.
But regardless of the wallet size, everyone is able to participate in this system. And there are currently two ways:
- 1.) Voting for witnesses to secure the system
- 2.) Voting for distribution of the rewards pool
I'm quite sure that in the future, we will have more options, where stakeholders can come together to influence even more on Steem. But for now, we have these 2 possibilities.
And so far, only a fraction of us, the stakeholders, are voting for witnesses.
Chapter III - The Importance of Witness Voting
Before I go any further, if you don't know yet what witnesses are: they are the ones keeping this blockchain running, decisionmakers for new updates and are essentially guardians of your stake & property. (More detailed info)
Voting for witnesses plays a vital role, as you can select the ones (up to 30), who you believe will protect your stake (the STEEM & SBD you own) the best.
And the amazing thing about this system is, that voting is non-binding. If a witness is doing a good job for 2 months, but then starts to slack or you lost faith in that said witness, you're able to remove the vote in a matter of seconds.
However, as I mentioned before, not everybody is yet voting for witnesses. Based on my research, only 50% of stakeholders with more than 100 Steempower are currently utilizing their votes or have a proxy. (Proxy simply means that another account is voting for witnesses for them)
And without any Steempower threshold, the voting involvement is only at 5%!
Witnesses are also often times people who are working to provide much value to Steem. As there are only 20 witness spots (the rest are backup witnesses), this competitive environment results in everybody trying their best to bring as much value as possible.
And as a stakeholder, you are able to vote for those witnesses, whom you believe bring the most value AND/OR who are expressing what you want to see on Steem.
Chapter IV - Lack of Witness Voting Engagement
But why is it that only 50% of all 100+ Steempower stakeholders are utilizing their stake to vote (and only 5% of all existing accounts on Steem.?)
Well, I believe it's due to a lack of knowledge and urgency in that matter.
There is currently not a centralised place for knowledge about Steem, so new users don't really know about witnesses unless they are eager to learn about it themselves or see a periodic post explaining them.
However, this is what @steemonboarding is working on - creating this central hub to educate new users about Steem, because - take it from me: it's really not that simple to understand everything.
Now, to sum it up
Witnesses are crucial for Steem and voting for them, plays a vital role in the health and success of Steem and its ecosystem.
As I'm a Witness myself, my engagement with the whole witness topic is of course much higher, than the average user.
Over the coming weeks, I'm going to release a series of posts, explaining my own witness voting patterns and showcasing the witnesses I'm voting for, with the goal to share my knowledge with my fellow stakeholders.
Chapter V - Your Vote Matters
Before actually writing this post, I had the title in my head for weeks. Because the truth is:
Your vote/voice really matters!
This is a statement I honestly believe in. Each one of us is able to bring the change into the world and into Steem, that we want to see. And the first step can be as small/big as making a witness vote.
If you're scrolling through my blog-posts (with resteems hidden), you should be able to see that I'm not only spitting fancy words, or just talking the talk, but I'm actually walking the walk.
In recent months, I've focused on letting my work & engagement speak for itself.
And I believe now is a good time to let you know that your witness vote matters and if you believe that my work and the projects I've been working on are valuable for Steem, then the best way to show this is with a witness vote.
Chapter VI - How to Vote
Now, I'm fully aware that it's not that easy to vote for witnesses in general, especially if you've never done it before.
That's why I build a complete voting solution on my recently updated website (therealwolf.me), which makes voting as easy as counting to 5.
If you've read some of my previous posts, you know that I love GIFs, so to get started, here is the complete workflow in action:
And here are the detailed steps:
0.) Go to https://therealwolf.me/vote
1.) Enter your Steem account
2.) Choose either vote or proxy¹
3.) (Optional) If you've already voted for 30 witnesses, you can decide to unvote somebody else²
4.) Choose your preferred vote method³
5.) Finish the vote(s)
¹ Proxy means that you're redirecting all of your accounts witness-voting power to said an account. (non-binding, can be revoked at any time, but not yet supported directly via my tool.)
² Don't feel forced to remove a witness. Only if you believe that the new witness is more suitable. For example, somebody who has been deactivated/inactive for a longer period of time.
³ All of them are secure. I personally prefer Steem Keychain & SteemConnect.
And that's it. If you've done these steps, feel free to let me know in the comments below and I'll make sure to show my gratitude.
Fun fact: The tool can even be used to vote for other witnesses besides my own. For example https://therealwolf.me/vote?witness=blocktrades&account=therealwolf
If you're a witness, you're more than welcome to use it.
Usually, when writing these kinds of posts, in the end, I'm already out of words.
However, this time, as it's my first long post in 2019, I want to put the focus on the coming 12 months.
I don't want to sound like a motivational preacher - not at all, I simply believe in the power of positivity.
Without positivity, I wouldn't be, where I am right now. The bear market could have easily crushed my work ethic, but I decided to force myself on positive thinking => high work ethic.
And I wish each one of you the same. If there is anything I can help you with, feel free to message me. You'll find my contact details on my newly updated website: therealwolf.me.
If you haven't checked it out, please feel free to do so. (Especially the witness schedule tool is worth a look. :P
Now with that said:
Let's make 2019 a better year to remember than 2018!
All the best,
Do you believe that my work is valuable for Steem? Then please vote for me as witness.