Hello everyone! It's been a hot second, and I do apologize for that. I had expected the summer to be the best time for me to use Steem, and I have just been letting everyone down. I promise it is not without good reason, as I am currently taking courses in both Java and Python, and I have been very involved with the church. As I dive more into python, I'm finally exploring the Steem library, and I'm hopeful to make some useful code soon enough (and perhaps publish it). But anyway, today is a special day for me. It was 5 years ago today that @remlaps convinced me to create a Steem account (more on that later), but I would just like to say that I'm so thankful for this blockchain. I signed up as a rising high schooler, and have used it ever since. Now, I have been entwined with Steem for a quarter of my life! Let's get into the beef of this article:
My History on Steem
When I first joined
I have told this story in some of the previous anniversary posts I've made, but I figure I'll tell it again for the people who haven't read it:
I remember in the Christmas of 8th grade opening a gift from @remlaps (my father). I opened it, and had no idea what it was. My dad explained to me that it was an Antminer, and that you could use it to mine bitcoin. My experience with bitcoin had been watching him obsess over it for a period of a few months, and not understanding it at all. I had no incentive to learn about it, so I really didn't care about it much at all. You can imagine how excited I was to learn that I could now MINE IT. My dad and I set it up, and I let it run for a few months, and I recorded how much money it earned periodically. I remember coming to the end of 8th grade, and seeing that it had made around 30 dollars (for the record now probably worth $1,000 xD). I was pretty inexperienced, and thought that performance was pretty lame when considering that most people make that much money in a few hours of working (if not every hour). So I was not really excited much about Bitcoin or Crypto.
Later in that summer, @remlaps told me about this website where people were making thousands of dollars simply by writing articles. When he told me it was crypto currency, I was skeptical (considering how long it had taken me to earn 30 dollars in bitcoin), and I still had not even determined if I believed that crypto currency really held any value at all. My dad persisted in trying to get me to sign up, and after a week I finally decided to give it a try. I had dreams of being a composer, and I was a musician, so I figured it would be cool to be able to earn money for my interests. Though I did not really think anything would come of it. I posted a few articles:
- An introduction
- An article about the first Bach invention
- My performance of the Maple Leaf Rag
- A Link to a Symphonic Movement I'd Written (It's literally just a link)
I remember going to bed and joking to @remlaps about how I was rich because I had made 12 cents. I then woke up around 1am and went to use the bathroom. My dad told me to check the articles, and I was shocked. I mean shocked! Almost all of them had been upvoted into the hundreds of dollars (with the largest payout being the link to my symphonic movement). I sat there amazed, and then couldn't go to sleep because of how much thinking I was doing. Obviously, I was still skeptical. I thought maybe the whale would remove their vote at the last possible second as a "gotcha" moment, but it paid out after 24 hours, and I was hooked.
What I should mention is the next few months to follow though. Getting those votes, I was in the right place at the right time. The whales were celebrating that their stake was so significant, and didn't actually understand much about the curation system, but in the months to follow, they actually strategized much more, and such votes were rare. I probably posted 20 articles that made literally 0 dollars, but I believed in my heart that I could make it on Steem if I just stuck with it.
I was so lucky in high school because I had a lot of free time. I remember as a 9th grader, I went several months posting every day (sometimes twice a day) simply because I had a study hall at the end of the day, and so I would spend it writing articles. I also posted a lot throughout the rest of high school (though never quite as consistently. Some of the series that I am still very proud of are:
The reason I often tell new comers to try to make a series, or post consistently about a topic is that these series helped me to establish myself in the community. Many of the people (and whales) also interested in these topics took notice of these articles, and this is part of the reason why these series helped me to earn so much in crypto.
Since these series, I have had trouble making new series, but have posted more of my own music, and other miscellaneous articles. I hope to someday make another series like those, but it took a lot of planning and work. I also just need the right idea for what to do that wont lose steam.
Something I'm really grateful for is that I documented a lot of my high school experience on Steem. I did not even realize at the time, but it is pretty cool to be able to go back and read about your Junior Prom! I'm so grateful that I have been involved in Steem through all of that, and that I have the privilege of having an immutable record of it!
I'd say one of the most challenging times in my life was when Steem and Hive split last year (only in part because of the split). It happened almost the same week that covid began, and those two events launched a period of depression that lasted probably until the end of 2020. One thing I am thankful for though, is that I stayed here on Steem. I remember debating with @remlaps the day after the split, and I was convinced that Justin Sun would abandon Steem because of the way that the old witnesses treated him, and all of the drama that had ensued. I told my father that it would be smartest to power down our stake and move it out of Steem. That argument ended completely when we saw the Steemit team's professional response to the situation, and their boldness in launching the 100 days of Steem. We were both incredibly excited to see where this might lead, and we decided not only to stay on Steem, but to try to involve ourselves as much as we could. He became a curator, and I became a Steem Greeter. I am so thankful that we stayed, and that I got to have the experience of working with the other greeters to try to establish a way for newcomers to learn the ropes of Steem. I am still glad to see that that community is thriving, and the achievements that we established are still going. It's also really inspiring to see the Steemit Crypto Academy is still running well!
My first year of college
Unfortunately, I didn't do much on Steem during the first year of college. I have been recording music by myself and with friends on and off, but I have not been posting enough, and it makes me really sad. One thing I did do that I was proud of was my work with the Build the Earth community, but unfortunately I had to leave that go for now because of the classes I am taking.
What has changed on Steem?
Lastly, I always find it interesting to list the things that have changed on Steem. So here are the things I remember:
- When I first joined, articles paid out twice: once after 24 hours, and once after 30 days. This has now been changed to one payout after 7 days.
- When I first joined, it was also possible to mine Steem. My father and I probably earned about 1,000 Steem by mining it.
- The voting system was different. You had 40 100 percent votes a day (as opposed to the 10 it currently is).
- When I first joined, the power down period was 2 years I believe, and it was reduced to 13 weeks. It has now been reduced to 4 weeks.
- When I first joined Steem, they didn't have delegations or beneficiary rewards, and curators only received 25% of an article's payout.
- Something amazing is the week I joined Steem, it was the third highest crypto currency in terms of market cap (the price was also $4.20)
- There were no communities when I first joined. This feature was huge for Steem, and has completely changed the way it works!
- In the last year, TRX integration occurred which makes it so that articles now pay out TRX to match the Steem Power payout.
- I will also say that the dynamic on Steem has completely shifted since the split. There is much less drama, and much less milking (as far as I can tell at least).
Feel free to comment anything else you have noticed that has changed for some of this article's rewards!
My hopes going forward
I would like to say that one of my biggest personal hopes going forward is to learn about programming with Steem. I have so many ideas that I want to bring to life, and I am finally getting to the point where I think I may be able to start working on them. I also hope to inspire some of my classmates to join steem and work on projects with me. I have not actually met many people in the computer science department yet, and I am hoping that they will really love the idea of Steem when I tell them about it.
Going off of the last hope, I really want to get some of my musician friends involved here on Steem, but it is hard because I have to debate them every time I bring it up about how Steem works, and whether it truly has value or not. I'm hoping that they will at least set up accounts and let me post recordings with them if nothing else.
Another hope I have for myself is to somehow combine Steem with a composition for my senior composition project. I have time to think about that, but there is nothing I would rather do more than to combine my two passions for that project.
My last hope for myself is that I will remain somewhat active even as I get busy. I was really bummed to have to put the Build the Earth project down, but I really want to contribute to the value of Steem, and I hope that I will have time to stay active on campus.
My hopes for Steem
The biggest hope that I have for Steem is that it will be mass-adopted. I have believed from day one that it has the potential, but I have been disheartened by how long it has taken, and how hard it has proven to be to convince people to join. My hope is that we will continue to make new users feel welcome, and that we will help a large number of people to earn stakes on this platform posting about or curating what they love.
Tron integration was a great first step, but I hope to see Justin Sun and Tron combine Steem more with their overall plan and vision. I know that Steem is a part of their vision (why else would they invest in it?) But I hope that they will do more to link Steem with their other assets.
I also hope to see a rise in the price of Steem (as we all do) to a consistent higher price than where it has sat in the past. Though at this point, I am satisficed as long as Steem is improving, and Steem is still fulfilling its overall purpose of providing value to social media transactions.
Lastly, I really want to see a better interface for Steemit. I have talked about this before, but I definitely think the website's interface could use some work, and that making it more attractive would have huge benefits to the overall quality of Steem :)
Thanks for reading this! Please feel free to comment your history here on Steem, or anything you remember having changed. I will be making 10 percent of this article's liquid rewards go towards comments (utilizing @penny4thoughts). Again, I am very grateful to Steem and the users on it for dealing with me for the last 5 years :-)