The charismatic leader of Steem

in LeoFinancelast year

There is an ongoing conversation of leadership on Steem with various points of view from, it is compulsory for success to it is completely unnecessary in a decentralized ecosystem. I tend to lay somewhere in the middle, but not out of indecision.

The world we have created and support is one that tends to put people on pedestals and value a personality over ideas. I see that this is one of the fundamental problems with politics and the democratic process as a charming person with little idea can gain favor over those better suited. There are other problems there too, but I am not going off on that tangent now.

But, because we value charisma and personality and like I mentioned the other day, we are blinded by confidence, the leaders we follow can bring a lot of value to an idea or product as they become authorities that drive social proof and group alignment. A leader also gives a single point of support and for a project in crypto, this can be great for generating hype in the industry, even a small industry.

Why I lay in the middle between no leader and a strong leader for Steem is that I think that what Steem needs are industry leaders, and this doesn't mean crypto industry. With the potential of Smart Media Tokens (SMTs) soon to arrive, what should be recognized is that the websites that integrate them need never mention Steem to their user base at all as it is irrelevant, in the same way that a site built on wordpress, doesn't need to tell their users they are using WP.

This means that while an SMT is powered by Steem, the site that utilizes it is its own free entity to do as it chooses and this might mean, having strong leadership. For an example which is highly unlikely but can illustrate this, if Twitter integrated an SMT into their user interface and experience, Jack Dorsey would be a fantastic advocate for creating hype and drumming up support, whilst @ned would not be suitable at that level at all, regardless of how charming he may be, as he is irrelevant to Twitter users.

The benefit and beauty of SMTs on a truly decentralized blockchain is that all users, communities, and SMT-powered sites can work independently upon the blockchain, which is a protocol. The real value of Steem isn't in the rewards pool, it is in the coding that enables anyone to participate and leverage the technology with few and very low barriers of entry.

If Steem does need a leader, it isn't to attract end users, it is to be able to approach and have sway with industry leaders, organizations and websites to put the Steem protocol in their hands with a toolkit and support to integrate it in - and that includes technical and change management solutions to help them be successful. This is something that @elipowell as CEO of Steemit Inc has to be on top of to increase the value of Steemit Inc, not making Steem end users happy, as she is the head of a private company, not Steem - although this view might not be popular.

One of the problems that many websites and communities are going to find if integrating a token of some kind, whether Steem-based or something else is, once there is value attached to actions, behavior changes. This is something we have had to deal with a lot in various ways for nearly four years already, and there are people here who can help "end-user tokenizers" to avoid some of the pitfalls. This is a change management problem that is similar to any company changing their processes.

So, while people look to find leaders within Steem, the leaders that are the most important for Steem, are going to be the ones that are currently not on Steem at all but will later integrate an SMT to tokenize and empower their end users. These leaders have already got traction and influence with their base, which means Steem needs to influence the influencer, and from this perspective, it isn't a user, it is an owner. Ownership is core to the Steem value proposition and this understanding and potential has to be transferred to the future community owners.

This all means that while Steem the blockchain needs no leaders, the communities that will run SMTs do need leaders of some kind as that is what end users are often influenced by - the hype. while hype can create spikes, Steem itself needs to eventually move away from the speculative market valuations and become a foundational blockchain that is secure, scalable and fast enough to empower thousands of independent communities and many millions of users.

And, I think this is where I will close by mentioning, that while we on Steem might spend a great deal of time contemplating and arguing about the economics of the pool, SMTs themselves will have their own configurations that are independent. What is required for secure, scalable and fast enough is not dependent on the pool at all, it is the protocol that is important, although part of the security is in the wider distribution of course.

What I believe is that while tweaking the Steem token economics and worrying about current price is fun, the concentration of development needs to look at building the protocol and pushing the awareness of Steem into the eyeline of the future owners of SMTs. Yes, this requires getting Steem out there to end users too, but when it comes to hardforks, it isn't about making us happy with the distribution of the inflation pool, it is about making sure that the SMT integrators have all the tools they need to build on a chain that they can depend on daily.

On a blockchain, the only leader everyone will follow is - the protocol.

Taraz
[ a Steem original ]


Onboarding


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Nice perspective, as always

“ So, while people look to find leaders within Steem, the leaders that are the most important for Steem, are going to be the ones that are currently not on Steem at all but will later integrate an SMT to tokenize and empower their end users.”

It’ may seem a bit unrelated at first, but this idea reminded me of a thought I had yesterday. I just started a casual podcast with fellow steemian @vincentnijman. We obviously posted on steemit but we weren’t thinking of sharing exclusively on steemit or related platforms. We got the most listens on YouTube linked from Facebook (about 40 or so). It got me thinking a lot more about how this podcast may be a way to onboard my friends onto steemit.

When we collaborate with people from steemit and other steem platforms and mention steem outside, not as “a place to make money posting shit” but just as “that place we met” and then we bring it up from time to time, this has much more potential to onboard users than trying to convince a coworker or friend through raving manically about “the power of the blockchain.”

The common thread with you post is that growth may come about naturally from things we are doing off chain. I think a lot of the effort to grow this ecosystem has gone towards steemian exclusive material OR, it’s been way too intentional and kind of pushes people away because it sounds too good to be true and we push too hard. The best we can do for the ecosystem whether it’s on boarding users or SMT developers is to find ways to casually integrate it with what we are doing off-chain.

I will write more about this when I wake up! Lots of ideas!

not as “a place to make money posting shit” but just as “that place we met” and then we bring it up from time to time, this has much more potential to onboard users than trying to convince a coworker or friend through raving manically about “the power of the blockchain.”

Yep, when I talk to people these days it is about were I write a lot, and don't mention the rewards or blockchain (depends on audience fot the BC part) at all. It piques more curiosity and over time leads to wider conversation. I have slowed down my onboarding to play the long game with people and have them naturally gravitate toward discovery.

The best we can do for the platform whether it’s on boarding users or SMT developers is to find ways to casually integrate it with what we are doing off-chain.

Organic growth leads to a more stable environment, but it takes longer and many people are in a rush.

So true. Sites have competitors, too. If there's an advantage to be had by tokenising interaction on one's site; established players won't want to lose ground by letting that advantage be enjoyed only by their competitors.
I'm really starting to think it's only going to take one big site to strike that match and throw it in the powderkeg.

And while highly configurable, it is still very accessible for pretty much any level of usage. This means it can propagate very fast through all kinds of industries once word gets out.

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Sweet Steem Tweet

That is great to see.... Steem leaders are important.

Nice read, as most are :)

One of the problems that many websites and communities are going to find if integrating a token of some kind, whether Steem-based or something else is, once there is value attached to actions, behavior changes. This is something we have had to deal with a lot in various ways for nearly four years already

Yeah, and although steemit.com and other interfaces are said to not have a sway on price, a business looking in due to SMT interest could well be put off by how they perceive behavior of the folks writing on the chain each day.

I know I'm preaching to the converted here, but it would be nice to see our apparent 'small' community pull together when the big guns come out to play 'soon'.

it would be nice to see our apparent 'small' community pull together when the big guns come out to play 'soon'.

It definitely would, but I fear that there are too many high profiles that are only interested in opposition, no matter the cost.

Justin Sun = Lord and Savior for Steem blockchain...JK..but we could use a hype man

Ned Scott = Joke ...has no original thoughts...just follow him on twitter and you will know

Eli Powell = Middle management

Middle management can be critical to get things done, especially when no one wants to do much at all :)

still no leader though !!

Nope, but maybe charming enough to approach and convince business owners.

will settle for anyone active actually... right now it's radio silence for months on end...

I still take the approach Steemit Inc isn't Steem and think as long as development happens, that is enough from them. While it'd be nice, I don't think they are going to be the ones who make a marketing breakthrough.

Dear @tarazkp

Funny enough, sometimes when I thought about strong leaders on steem - I actually thought about you. So your publication got me interested right away from the start.

With the potential of Smart Media Tokens (SMTs) soon to arrive, what should be recognized is that the websites that integrate them need never mention Steem to their user base at all as it is irrelevant

I was recently wondering how SMTs can be affected by new anti-money laundering directive AMDL5 - which will be valid starting 10th jan. Would you have any opinion on that issue?

Thank you for interesting read. Upvoted already :)
Yours, Piotr

Haven't looked into the laundering thing at all, but it is going to be hard for them t stop much of anything once rolling.

Linux does a decent job of being decentralised with a handful of leaders (for each distro and each app) so I'm sure we'll get there :)

Yes it does and, it has survived open-sourcing and multiple versions.

For quite a while now!

Yep. A much bigger success than many gave it credit in the first years of its existence and, it has become a go-to for some areas of industry also.