Sack all the witnesses
I’ve not posted on Steem for ages; I became disenchanted with the platform last year or to be more precise after Hard Fork 21 which penalised those who earned under $20 by ensuring they received even fewer rewards however those raking it in got rewarded even more! I could launch into a tirade of other ‘goings-on.’ that angered me with Steemit such as Social Media Celebrities joining the platform simply to milk both it and the hard-working users who stupidly think these parasites care about their followers when in fact they only see you as a meal ticket. See? I’ve got my hackles up! Back to the subject then. Some of you may have been following the @ned and @justinsunsteemit saga whereby Ned sold some of his stakes to Justin which in itself should have been enough for users to understand how all this works when it comes to communities that have been created off the back of someone’s money or at the very least one individual holding the reins, but no, people seem to get very confused about ‘Ownership’ when it comes to a service that’s free and appears on the surface to be akin to Open Source.
Bear with me folks
A few years ago, I, along with a friend of mine, ran a niche podcast that was based around FOSS, Linux and business. One of the key features was that we were not afraid to “Tell it like it is.” especially when it came to Ubuntu or as I prefer to call it Canonical-nee-Ubuntu. That’s not because we hated it, quite the opposite, we loved it. What we didn’t like was the utter bullshit that surrounded it. For me, one of the most significant pieces of bullshit was that it was “A community project.” Mark Shuttleworth invested $10 Million of his own money initially (He has spent far more since), and people flocked to the distribution in their thousands along with hundreds of top developers many from the Debian community. The keyword here folks is “Developers.” because in this instance for developers read Witnesses! Ubuntu had a phenomenal following with a good smattering of zealots and looked on track to dominate FOSS even squaring off against the likes of Apple and Microsoft in a bid to become the third operating system of choice, but then Ownership reared its ugly head. Mark wanted the distribution to not only go in a certain way but to encompass elements that the ‘community.’ abhorred and so cracks began to appear. The thing was, after nearly six years the community felt they owned Ubuntu, after all, they’d contributed so much over the years what with all the code and UI (User Interface) work people had done and everyone said: It’s a comminity project? But they were to learn a sharp lesson in “He who pays the piper calls the tunes!” after numerous complaints, accusations and arguments Mark Shuttleworth put his foot down and demonstrated that it was his train set and this was how it was going to be.
Back to Steem
The similarities between Steem and the Ubuntu Community is staggering. I’ve watched lots of people demonstrate ‘entitlement.’ simply because they were given a position of trust don’t misunderstand me, the witnesses (Devs.) provide an essential service. Still, people need to keep in mind “Whose train set is it?” is it Ned’s or is it the Witnesses or is it the users? In my mind, it’s not the users although obviously without them there’s no platform. It’s not the witnesses, sure they invest a lot, but I don’t remember seeing anywhere “If you do this, you’ll get a share of the company.” It has to be Ned and Dan and anyone else they effectively offer a partnership.
An Open Letter to the Community – HF22.5
In any other language, this strikes me as an attempted takeover by certain elements which initially were in a position of trust with the ability to manipulate the blockchain it’s debatable it was being done for the benefit of the average user? In my view, it was an attempt to seize control nothing more nothing less. I suppose it all depends on what side of the fence you sit, but I’m firmly in the camp of @ned if he wants to sell his assets that’s his business you can always fork Steem and run your own train set if you don’t like it, that’s one of the joys of FOSS.