HF19 "Equality" Coming Soon: Linear Rewards!

in #steemit6 years ago (edited)

Hello Steemians!

We are happy to say that the witnesses have reached consensus on Hardfork 19, codenamed “Equality.” This update to the Steem Blockchain Protocol changes how rewards are distributed to the content creators using any Steem application like Steemit.com or Busy.org.

Linear Rewards!

The code was released last week and witnesses have been upgrading to it since that time. As of right now the top 20 witnesses are all running 0.19 but the changes described below will not go into effect until tomorrow morning (Tuesday, June 20th, 2017 at 15:00:00 UTC). Once those changes in logic take effect, the voting power of the users of any Steem-based application will be directly proportional to the amount of Steem Power they possess. Some have referred to this as “1 Steem Power, 1 Vote.” From that moment on accounts with a large amount of Steem Power will no longer have exponentially more voting power (i.e. influence) than accounts with less Steem power. This will reduce the degree of inequality within the ecosystem while preserving the incentive to accumulate STEEM and disincentivizing sybil-attacks.

What Are Hardforks?

For those new to Steem, “hardforks” are what people call updates to a blockchain protocol. The Steem Blockchain has an innovative Witness-based system that allows improvements to be made to the protocol more rapidly than other blockchain protocols. All that is necessary for a Steem hardfork is for the top 20 witnesses, who are chosen by the users, to adopt the changes based on their assessment that the code is bug-free and does not pose a threat to the security of the blockchain.

When it comes to most blockchains, a change like the one that will occur would either never happen, or would lead to an entirely new blockchain that would coexist alongside the unchanged original. Thanks to Steem’s unique design, when it became clear that there was a widespread consensus among Steem users that the reward system needed to be changed, we were able to come together and implement this change which will make the Steem Ecosystem more fair, and the Steem Blockchain more valuable.

Improving the Process

It was only 2 months ago that we first started experimenting with a proposal process which involved presenting the changes we were considering to the community for feedback before attempting to update the blockchain. We had lots of great discussions with the community which helped guide improvements to our proposal and that enabled us to arrive at a consensus regarding the necessary changes.

Thank you!

We want to give a special “Thank You” to everyone who contributed to this discussion and helped make the Steem Blockchain even better. That includes all the Witnesses, not just the top 20, who work tirelessly to maintain the stability, security, and sanctity of the Steem Blockchain. Their communication, cooperation, and diligence have enabled us to execute this change in the timeframe we did while meeting our high quality assurance standards.

Additional Information

The information below was included in our previous post Pre-Release HF19: Linear Rewards! and is included below for the benefit of those who would like to familiarize themselves with the other changes that will be occurring.

Curation Rewards and Vote Impact

There are two other changes, aside from linear rewards, within the update that affect non-technical community members: 1. Changing to a square root curation rewards curve and 2. Increasing vote impact.

Curation Rewards

The change to the curation rewards curve will not have a noticeable impact on curation rewards and is necessary simply to prevent the linear reward curve changes from having a material impact on curation rewards.

Vote Impact

The changes to the impact of a 100% vote are more material. A 100% vote will be 4 times more powerful once HF19 is completed. As it stands now a single 100% vote uses only 0.5% of your remaining voting power (voting power regenerates fully over a 5 day period). That means real users would need to vote 40 times a day at full power to use most of their voting power. This leaves users who are less active unable to fully leverage their voting power. After this change, a single 100% vote will use 2% of your remaining voting power, meaning that 10 full-power votes a day will now be enough to leverage the majority of your daily voting power.

Users can continue to simply upvote-at-will because a vote only consumes a percentage of the remaining voting power, not the total. Imagine “voting power” as a swimming pool that is constantly being refilled by the rain. Every time you upvote you reduce the amount of water (in this case “voting power”) from the pool by a percentage (i.e. it’s not like you are constantly removing 500 gallons from the lake). The next time you vote you are removing another percentage from an already diminished supply.

That means there are still no limits on how much you can vote. The more you vote the more you incrementally decrease the amount of voting power you have (the water in the pool). To get a better sense of how powerful your votes are and the rate at which that power diminishes simply observe how much your full power upvotes increase the rewards of content creators and you should get an intuitive sense of how the algorithm works.

You can read the release notes on github here: https://github.com/steemit/steem/releases/tag/v0.19.0rc1

We have more exciting announcements coming this week, so stay tuned and Steem On!

  • Team Steemit
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Tip: If you are used to vote at 100%, make sure you lower your voting slider to 25% as of tomorrow. At least if you vote more than 10 times a day.

:O so powerful upvote :O

Looking for a definitive clarification on what happens to posts created between 13th June 1500 UTC and 20th June 1500 UTC, that'll start paying out right after HF19. Will the pending payouts hold as voted before HF19? So, if I made a post today and one whale voted it up to $20, will the payout still be $20 on the 26th? Or will it be retroactively "linearized"? I'm inclined to believe the linear rewards will only start from votes given out after HF19, and thus the existing payouts will be honoured, but a clarification would be appreciated. Suggest you add that to the post.

This is definitely a good step forward from the absence of communication surrounding HF18. Eagerly awaiting those exciting announcements!

Haha, I have experienced in HF 17. My post for $ 18 (that's a big amount for me) to 0 when HF 17.

Yeah, that was a mess. While it was announced on Github, it was never communicated properly to the community. That's why a lot of people were upset - had they known it was to be expected, they would be prepared for it.

Similarly, it's important to know what kind of changes we should expect to pending payouts this time.

I think the best demonstration of the rewards change would be to have 20 or so whales vote on my comment with their full power and then wait to see if the payout remains the same or decreases after the fork.

I just gave you a puny minnow upvote, because that was very funny!

A brilliant idea!


Nice try :)

Yes, do the experiment. Whales vote on my last post so I can record the results.

In a recent post by @timcliff, I believe he said that if a post hasn't paid out by the time the hard fork is implemented, it will be retroactively linearized.

Which seems to be in direct contradiction with this post.

As of right now the top 20 witnesses are all running 0.19 but the changes described below will not go into effect until tomorrow morning (Tuesday, June 20th, 2017 at 15:00:00 UTC). Once those changes in logic take effect, the voting power of the users of any Steem-based application will be directly proportional to the amount of Steem Power they possess.

Need a clarification from the developers.

Will vote impact also be implemented retroactively? Will everyone's individual voting power initially take a massive hit? If all my 100% votes from the last week turn into 400% votes I'm going to be totally drained lol.

Haha, good question. I haven't heard that to be the case.

😲😂 it better not be

Thanks for the article, great way of explaining it all.
I love this new system, check it out, can pay myself $10.

And again.

Congratulations for that! I hope I can achieve this level too someday!
I am a relatively new user. I registered approximately 1 month ago.
Have a nice day!

This looks like it's going to be yuge. But people will be more careful on voting. It might actually do the opposite of "equality", people will vote up hot and trending authors because of possible higher curation rewards while new section will be a scroll practice.

Upvoting an already trending post is the worst strategy when it comes to curation rewards. You'll only add curation rewards to the early voters while making a negligible amount yourself. The rewards algorithm heavily favours early voters.

Instead upvote great undiscovered posts, then spread the word around. That's the optimal way to maximise curation rewards. Or maybe strike a balance by voting early on a semi-established but not trending author, they will get some votes after you.

Of course, you're right to be concerned that few are aware of how the rewards system works and may end up piling the votes on trending posts in ignorance. Worse still, they might end up being the kind of casual voters who make less than 10 votes per day, and now suddenly have much greater influence due to the vote impact change.

I hope as a community we can curate responsibly. It'll need the right education and support.

Very useful info, thanks!

I see that as a possibility that most people will just want to power up trending posts 🤔😩😂

Interesting, thanks for the info! Still trying to figure things out on Steemit and posts / replies such as this one really help to understand! Cheers

Thanks for advice, very helpful

Agreed, not sure why the curation rewards had to be amplified. I haven't seen curation incentivise voting that is beneficial to the platform as a whole. (Apart from upvoting #introduceyourself posts)

Your comments make sense !!!

a lot has changed since the beginning, maybe an update with the whitepaper is needed to help new users(even old ones).

Yes, this makes sense to me..
I would like to see very much transparency and ease of use on knowing where this is all going?

Great job by the team, and the witnesses! Appreciate your efforts.
What possibilities this will bring forth, we will get to see. But for the great number of new users that have joined recently, this will be their first hard-fork experience and hoping it will benefit all and move forward the cause of making steemit beautiful and taking it to the masses.

Users can continue to simply upvote-at-will because a vote only consumes a percentage of the remaining voting power, not the total.

That means there are still no limits on how much you can vote.

Thanks for including these points. Voting power is widely misunderstood, and it's important for users to know that they can still vote as much as they want.

This will reduce the degree of inequality within the ecosystem while preserving the incentive to accumulate STEEM and disincentivizing sybil-attacks.

Can someone explain how a linear reward curve disincentivizes sybil attacks? I thought the purpose of the ^2 reward curve was to disincentize sybil, and that sybil attacks were precicely the perceived problem with a linear or near-linear curve.

Don't get me wrong, I strongly favor this change, but I'm not sure I understand how it would disincentivize sybil attacks.

Good question @shenanigator. There were multiple reasons for the n^2 curve only one of which was discouraging sybil attacks. The statement to which you are referring is only meant to highlight the point that despite these changes it will remain advantageous to accumulate Steem and disadvantageous to launch sybil attacks.

Currently, it's too easy for whales to dominate and abuse the system. The central fallacy of the original whitepaper / n^2 was that whales would act in the best interests of the community, but evidently people will only ever act in their own self interest. As they have the right to, of course. By distributing influence more evenly, the impact of whale abuse is significantly diminished.

For the most part, I would say that it "does not incentivize" sybil attacks. I think "disincentivizes" overstates it.

Although, one way that it actually may slightly disincentivize sybil attacks is that other users can vote between two sybil accounts, say sybil-1 and sybil-2, which would reduce the curation rewards of (sybil-1 + sybil-2) as compared to a single account voting the full weight all at once.

Yup, I don't understand how it makes it fairer; I'm just taking their word for it; however it would be nice having it explained.


Thank u, Have a nice day

Should we expect any drastic shift in current pending payouts due to the changes in voting influence of votes that were already made ?

as I heard from one of the developers, the high reward posts like 4k figures will get kicked in the butt, while the post in the range of 1-200 USD will get a boost.

Good question. I was wondering the same thing.

I hope HF 19 gives a fair reward system. I have never achieved a reward of 100, maybe my posts are not qualified. But, what about other posts that are not qualified can get a lot of rewards?

good morning, don't be confused by 100 ... 100% upvote is not the same as an upvote that gives $100 (i have no idea how to do the math ... but i'm thinking you might need a whale to come by and upvote to get $100) ... anyway you can see who has been able to vote for you at what % at https://www.steemnow.com/ Right this second, 100% of my vote would be about 0.005 ... hope that helps :)

Cool app. Thank you for sharing.

Thank you for sharing this valuable information.

Update the link to the Pre-Release HF19: Linear Rewards post (in the article) - it's calling a bad url --- https://steemit.com/steemit/@steemitblog/%E2%80%9Dhttps://steemit.com/steem/@steemitblog/2hfxx1-pre-release-hf19-linear-rewards%E2%80%9D

Fixed. Thank you.

Nice update. Looking forward to trying out the new changes. Exciting times!

I can't believe this incredible world I'm finding myself walking into.

Time to explore...

Enjoy your life

Thanks for clarifying that it is a 2% on the Remaining rather than on the Total.

I was confused about it and it was something I feared from the new HF I though it meant a Max of 10 votes a day. What a relief! Haha.

I like your picture very much, I follow you.


this is my first week, and HF here, so after one week there is a chance that I may get zero rewards :) I'm excited though to see what it is going to be like

This was very helpful. Can't wait for the change to happen. Now my vote will count :D

I like the idea.

this post was very helpful we appreciate if you provide more post like this

That's a good news. I support HF19.

This will be an interesting experiment, whale censorship we've already seen has turned into quite a problem where you have idiots with big accounts trying to flag content they don't like. If this helps reduce censorship as much as possible I'm all for it, I just hope this doesn't backfire with the payout system though, but we'll just have to see how it goes.

Hardfork, witnesses, all this was foreign to me but since reading this post, I now understand what's happening with HF-19. I'm behind it 100% and can't wait to see equality in action. This should help new Steemians and those still growing to influence the network and make impactful contributions.


As a new-ish member I'm pretty happy to see how flexible you guys are and strive to keep everyone happy and motivated. Looking forward to seeing what .19 will bring!
I'm keeping my introductory post until after the fork so that everyone can smash that upvote and send me to Monte Carlo
I salute you!

Thank you for this post!
This has cleared up a lot of problems that have been pondering on my mind

I support these changes.
I like the idea that my one cent investment is worth as much as one cent from a million dollar investment.
Also, the ability of using more voting power per vote is necessary because of the "I would UV you twice if I could" situations. One could still UV 'infinite' times.

Great stuff Thanks for sharing and keeping us informed .

Big times ahead!! The last fork improved things and I expect no less this time!! :0)

are all upvotes more powerful or just 100% upvotes ?

Not necessarily all. It's difficult to predict which users will see a decrease in voting influence due to the linear curve, but all minnows should see an increase. And yes any % upvote will be more powerful for minnows.

all minnows without the voting slider will be limited to 10 votes a day. after that their voting power will go down faster than it will re-charge

Then they should have the voting slider. Should be easy to implement that.

the voting power appears at 500sp. I think thats a great incentive to reach that milestonne.

Thanks for that little tid bit at the end about how the voting power works. I actually hadn't seen that before and it was nice to see it explained like that. :)

Regarding the rest of it, it will be interesting to see how it all plays out. Hopefully it will go a long ways towards keeping a lot of the new users we are currently seeing sign up.

This sounds absolutely incredible. Super excited about it.

With more power comes more responsibility. If we vote for posts that we actually find value in, it could improve consensus on what is rewarded well. If we keep trying to game curation, we could make the concentration of votes and rewards worse

does this change affect the power of few downvotes by big fish to completely someone's work and the rewards of other less powerful upvotes?

Geeat post thank you. Resteemed! You should have taken the reward you earned it! Good thing for the "common" STEEMIAN like me who has only ~300 SP

Thank you for the update! I believe even the talks about adjusting the voting months ago was a big factor in saving this platform! It will be interesting how this changes everything! I'm READY!

Equality..sounds crazy enough to work. I like it.

Thanks for this clear explanation and links.

ch @globocop

Thanks for giving everyone so much information!
Been on steem for a little over a month and there is so much I have learned and still more I need to learn, thanks for the people that put all this together and working to make it better.

As a new arrival (a little over 1 month) the main things that confused me was the energy put into; buying upvotes, gimmicks, schemes and the huge $$$amounts going to mundane posts.
I'm still not sure how the "whales" got to be whales. I also notice alot of ridiculous "whale-courting" comments, in the hopes that a poster might be smiled upon and noticed, which deters me from even reading the comments.
I hope the changes can be implemented smoothly, didn't understand the old system, don't get the new one, but good luck!

Great post! Short but packed with important info! Steem On!

I don't know how much a minnow vote will be in the future. now it is 0-1 cent, but if this goes up to 10-50 cents per vote, it will be really motivating for everybody to vote.

through the whale-non-upvote expermiment, I could vote up people with one click with 1.6 USD. that was really cool, so I did a lot curating to vote for a lot people in the last weeks.

Maybe this change will be a game changer for steemit! I hope it will be

Thank you!!!
I have a question though.
What will happen with all those posts that are waiting to the seventh day to have the earnings distributed? Will the $ already raised be affected? Or are these changes only affecting brand new posts?

Side point: questionable use of Portuguese military image. Why use this? @steemitblog an the official Steemit Inc. account so you are stating at least ambivalence towards state military (and the Portuguese in particular) and at most a support of them.

I'm really glad to see how easily we reached consensus on HF19. Let's keep moving forward and improving.

Thanks for the explanation. I needed clarification on what happened today... new to steemit. :)

I see now, and I finally understand what a Hard Fork is. I'm glad this changes took place.

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