Plagiarism, Pitchforks, & Witch-Hunts... Hive-Style!

in Loving HIVE ❤2 months ago

Disclaimer: Please find it in your heart to read with an open mind, understanding that I come from a positive place. I’m not asking a lot here, lol.

I sighed. Who knew raising a daughter meant dealing with witch-hunts?

I thought being a parent was supposed to be the most fulfilling thing in the world. Seriously. They talked about “baby’s first steps”, they talked about “rebellious teenage years”, but there was nothing in the manual about “witch-hunts.” Oh well, no matter what Emma’s going through, it’s my job to help however I can.

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“Hell-o!? Dad!? You still with me?” Emma had hopped off her stool and stomped around to my side of our kitchen island, until she was inches from my face. “I can’t believe you’re spacing out when my world’s ending!”

“Ah yes, sorry hon, I’m listening even if it doesn’t seem like it, and I understand your feelings. I can help better if you explain what happened --calmly-- from the beginning. Would you do that for me?”

Emma, red-eyed, sniffled then answered “Yeah, ok. So, Mia and I finally convinced Cassie to join Hive.”

“Heyyy, you’ve been trying to do that for ages, well done!”

“No! It’s terrible!”

“What? Why? I thought you loved Hive!”

“I do! And I thought since you explained power dynamics and censorship to me I wouldn’t have any more issues with it… until Cassie joined.”

“Oh my, what has your sister done to you now? Please tell me I don’t have to ground her again, she sulked for months last time I grounded her.”

“No, no, Cassie didn’t do anything, Hive did!”

“Hive can’t do anything, my love, they’re not a corporation, it’s just a bunch of people.”

“Yeah, but the whales have a lot of power, and one in particular --@examplerichwhalegal -- is picking on Cassie!”

“I don’t get it, can’t Cassie just ‘block’ this undesirable whale?”

“Uh, it’s called ‘muting’ on Hive, but the whale and her buddies can still use their vote-power to obliterate most of Cassie’s earning potential on Hive.” Emma sauntered back to her perch to sip her tea.

“Hmmm, I see. If she's rallying her buddies to downvote Cass, we are approaching witch-hunt territory, but before we brand them all as a mob, I should ask…

...Did Cassie do anything to provoke them into doing this?”

“No! Cass was her normal angelic self!”

I knew both my daughters pretty well and I was tempted to believe Emma in this case. Cassie was an extremely kind, nice, patient girl. Emma took up a feather-ruffling career as a glamour-model, while Cassie wanted to design video games. Emma was rebellious, while Cassie ‘played nice’ as long as you didn’t push her buttons excessively. I couldn’t see Cass joining Hive and then randomly stirring the pot. That said, Cass wasn’t my most socially savvy daughter, and I could see her making a faux pas or stepping on a social landmine accidentally, so I had to double check.

“C’mon Em, you know Cassie, are you sure she didn’t even misbehave... accidentally?”

“OK yes, kind of, but it’s total bullshit!”

“Hey! Language, miss!”

“Sorry, I’m just so mad.”

“What happened?”

“Cass posted with the ‘wrong’ tags, in the ‘wrong’ community, and heavily quoted from other content on the internet without citing sources, and now the whales are branding her a ‘plagiarist’ and brigading her posts.”

“I mean, that sounds pretty bad, Em.”

“But that’s my point, it shouldn’t be. Why are these things the end of the damn world? Most of that stuff is total ‘fluff’ mistakes any newbie could make. The worst one is the ‘uncited quotes’, but even that doesn’t seem that bad to me.”

“Well, before we start deciding what’s ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, let’s explore each one together and see, ok?”

“Fine, I guess.”

Even through Em’s begrudging and petulant ‘fine,’ I could tell her initial triggered state was slowly fading, which was a good sign for our discussion. “Great, we’ll start with the ‘little’ ones you mentioned.

Why are they upset that Cass used the wrong tags?

“Because tags are how Hive categorizes and organizes posts. When I search a post topic like ‘skateboards’, I want posts relevant to that, I don’t want to see someone’s covid rant that has nothing to do with skateboards appearing just because they slapped a tag on it.”

“Well that makes sense.”

“Sure, but c’mon, any giant public platform is going to have mis-categorized stuff. Find me one that doesn’t. It’s like trying to create a city where not a single piece of litter or debris exists. People shouldn’t be so crazy about things like that.”

“You make a good point. Were Hivers giving Cass a hard time about it?”

“One or two people said stuff, but it was more about the other stuff, especially the…” Em rolled her eyes. “...’plagiarism.’

“OK, so it sounds like we’d all prefer people on the platform to tag well, but that Hive’s ok with ‘tag litter’ occasionally. What’s next?”

“Cass posted in the wrong community and got muted and reprimanded for it.”

“Thanks Em, but remember, I don’t use Hive, mind elaborating?”

“Oh, my bad. She posted her Hive introduction in the /C/MegaMoney community.”

“Uh, still not getting it, darling.”

“/C/MegaMoney specifically states in their rules posts must be finance-related, but one, Cass didn’t even notice the rules section of the community in all the clutter on her screen, and two, her intro talked a lot about how excited she was to earn crypto and improve her personal finances just for posting content, and MegaMoney is the only community with ‘finance’ in its name, so she made her best guess and posted it there. It was instantly muted, she got reprimanded, and a lot of hate in the comments for her 'abuse' of the MegaMoney community. Cass? Abuse? As if. It’s like they were all sitting on their devices, just waiting for some newbie to make a mistake, so they’d have someone to yell at.

“Yikes, that does sound unpleasant. How did Cass take it?”

“She cried. She bawled her eyes out. The bullies made her cry and I’m so mad about it. How dare they push my sister to tears when she’s just trying to get the hang of Hive?”

“Now, now, what have I taught you about taking responsibility for our emotions?”

The steam had long stopped rising from our mugs, but I sipped the cold tea just for something to do with my hands, and to give Emma space to express herself.

“I know, I know. Cass is responsible for her tears, I’m responsible for my triggers. But tell that to these low-class Hivers. They see one thing they don’t like, get triggered, and turn into complete animals. Not a single kind word or an ounce of compassion in them. No one taught them to be responsible for their emotions.”

“I understand my love, but the only way to elevate others is to be a shining example ourselves. Nothing else works. Never has. If you want change in others, you absolutely must start with yourself. Remember, chances are they didn’t have parents who raised them to be mature or level-headed. Chances are they had pretty weak role-models growing up.”

“Most. Obnoxious. Dad. Ever. Why do you always have to make so much sense? Ugh.” Emma gave me a light punch in the shoulder to let me know she was just playing, and that she actually appreciated my clear perspectives. “Anyway, eventually they started acting like decent human beings, and unmuted her post, but it was still a pretty traumatic welcome as an early posting experience for Cass. She told me she never wants to post on Hive again and is going back to Twitter. She actually called Twitter a ‘safe space.’ Twitter, Dad!”

“Yes, well, even I know Twitter can be conducive to a lot of negative reactions. Do you think the people who muted and reprimanded Cass realize that their method of communication and policing their platform hurts it’s growth, market appeal, and stock price?”

“I doubt if they realize anything past the nose on their face, Dad. God, I want to be calm about this, I want to still love Hive, but it’s hard when they’re straight up mean in the way they act and talk.”

“Why are you so passionate about this, Em? There are mean people everywhere, no biggie, right?”

“Yeah, but Hive is a fledging community that can’t afford to be mean.”

“Why not?”

“Hive has great tech, it doesn’t need much more right now. Hive is passable on looks, they don’t need a facelift. Instead, Hive’s number one need is to grow, and they desperately need a wake-up call on how to achieve that. Their hearts are in the right place, their intentions are good, but their execution is… uh… sub-optimal.

It’s hard for Hive to reach people because Hive’s marketing is paltry compared to what consumers expect. It’s hard for Hive to onboard people because their user-friendliness is the same. And most relevant to what we’re talking about, it’s hard to keep people because a noticeable percentage of Hivers police primarily through prickliness to outright cruelty, instead of kindly educating newbies and etiquette-breakers.

Just today I came across yet another example of this, and it’s actually a challenge for me to find an instance where a faux pas or breach of etiquette wasn’t met with harshness and judgment. And the worst part is, all these ‘rules’ of Hive etiquette are hidden and buried. No newbie here is gonna be aware of them. They’re all gonna accidentally break an unwritten rule, be met with squinity side-eye, and probably leave.

At this point I honestly believe all Hivers are just mean AF.”

“Ahem! So dramatic. And what have I taught you about generalizing large groups of people? Or labelling people based off of one or two experiences?”

“Grr. Can’t you just let me vent without correcting me every five seconds?”

I reached across the marble island and took my daughter's hand. “I’m your Dad, my angel. My job is to correct you, to raise you, to elevate you. And I’m assuming you came to me to help Cass, not to be your punching bag or therapist while you lump all Hivers together as ‘bad people.’ I told you when we started, I’m happy to help, but only if you present yourself calmly and constructively while we explore solutions together.”

Em’s shoulders slumped and she blew air through pursed lips. “OK, you’re right. Hive is great and full of great people, and maybe it’s just a few vocal ones who get triggered easily, or are quick to judge, or are straight-up meanies. But will you concede that there may actually be more users like that on Hive than anyone realizes? Or that even if it’s a few, it might be a few in high places, with huge influence on the platform?”

“Well, I don’t have any solid data on that, so sure, I’ll agree it’s certainly possible, but let’s stay focused on helping Cass...

What would you like to see happen with ‘posts in the wrong community?’”

“I dunno. Something like ‘Hi Cassie! You seem to have made an excellent post here! We appreciate it! I know it may seem like you posted it in the correct community, but Hive is pretty complex with lots going on, and your post is actually a better fit here [insert community]. If you’d like our admins actually have the power to move it for you, or else you can move it on your own. Moving it helps everyone because it keeps Hive organized, and you’ll have a better audience of people who really resonate with what you’re talking about in your post. Also, in the future, here’s some great tips on selecting the best community for your post…’ yadda yadda. I mean, that’s probably not even possible on the blockchain because everything’s so ‘permanent’ and you can’t mess with another person’s post or data short of downvoting them into oblivion, but you get my point right? Is that so hard? Is it so hard to be kind, gentle, and guide others towards better paths?”

“No, it’s easy to be kind, gentle, and guide others, and you’re right to want that for people like Cass. I think you’re on the right track. But if you want Hivers to behave more in this way, whining to me, or Cass, or even Hive admins… simply won’t accomplish your goal.”

“What will?”

“You tell me. Didn’t you learn anything from our conversation on power and censorship?” I tilted my head towards Em and raised my brows, waiting to see if she got it.

“Ohhhhhh! ‘Increase my influence.’

“Exactly. If you were a bigger whale, with bigger whale buddies who shared your views, wouldn’t it be much easier to influence people’s behavior? Wouldn’t your words carry more weight?”

“Yes! I could even upvote Cass and restore all her rewards. But I’m not even sure I count as a whale, and I definitely don’t have enough big whale friends to counteract @examplerichwhalegal and her crew.”


“Yes, yet.”

“Anyway, it sounds like Cass’s post eventually got restored in that community, and you have a vision for what you’d like to see happen, so let’s get to what sounds like the biggest issue.”

“Yeah, on Hive, plagiarism makes you the devil.”

“C’mon, it can’t be that bad.”

“Oh it is, it’s worse than school. On Hive you don’t just get punished, sent from the principal's office, or a zero. You get whales tanking your earnings, arming villagers with pitchforks against you, and rallying them to tank your earnings for massive chunks of the foreseeable future. You’d think Cass quoting some people without a byline was basically murdering Hive-Founder's first-borns, when all she did was copy and paste some text from somewhere else-- a behavior that is occurring thousands of times a second, everywhere the internet exists.

“You make a very good point about the plagiarism and copyright sort of… no mattering these days. There’s a very poignant video series by Kirby Ferguson on this called ‘Everything Is A Remix’ that applies well to the modern era, but there’s been wise sayings about this for a long time regardless.”

“Yeah, Einstein said ‘The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.’”

“Hah, are you sure he didn’t plagiarize that quote? Many people attribute it to Einstein or Coco Chanel, but QuoteInvestigator determined that it was first published by C.E.M. Joad long before Einstein or Coco were quotable, in 1926.”

“What the hell? You know that off the top of your head?”

“Yep! For sure. That’s me, a Jeopardy-level genius who recalls all facts from memory. It’s definitely not my google-fu or knack for using my phone blind that dug up that tidbit.”

“You’re insane.”

“And you’re my daughter.”

“Not by blood.”

“Hey! Low blow. Sheesh. Regardless, there’s also ‘good artists borrow, great artists steal,’ by Picasso, I believe. And ‘What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.’

“Daaaad, no old quotes from the bible or whatever.”

“It’s Ecclesiastes, and it’s pretty relevant to Cass’s situation. But despite all this, there’s a reason uncited quotes and plagiarism bother people so much, and you’re not exempt from it.”

“What? I don’t care if people copy and paste stuff, it’s whatever. Copypasta.”

“You sure about that? Remember last year when that one girl started a fake instagram account using all your glamshots? Remember how emotional you got about it?”

“Oh. Yeah. Um, that.”


“Well, ok, I admit I over-reacted to that plagiarism kind of like how Hivers over-reacted to Cass.”

“So then, can we put this to bed? Isn’t this whole thing the pot calling the kettle black?”

“No! Well, a bit. But no! Argh! I was immature back then and didn’t understand piracy, or copyright, or plagiarism like I do now. Like there are fake Kanye West accounts all over every platform, do you think he cares about them? Do you see 'Ye out there fighting a war on plagiarism? No, he just gets on with life and art and wealth-building."

"Well, he's seemed in a rough place lately anyway."

"But even if he wasn't, the point stands. And it applies to any successful person. Lady Gaga, whoever. Even me at this point. If someone made a fake account on me now, I’d do the same. I’m way more chill about copycats. And I wish others were more chill too. That's why I'm annoyed at these peep’s immature reaction to Cass's mistake. And the girl who stole from me was doing it maliciously, for money, with intention and knowledge of what she was doing. Cass is just a kid and didn’t realize it was a big deal. I don’t even see what she did as plagiarism, period. It’s just what teen girls do, they copy stuff. Imagine if we ejected every teen from every community every time they copied something.”

“Well, let’s look at plagiarism more closely then.”

“My pleasure, where do you want to start?”

“Well, what’s the difference between plagiarism and a remix?”

“Uh… I’m not sure.”

“Well, that’s the exact thing Kirby Ferguson explores in his incredible documentary that I mentioned earlier. He starts by examining mega-famous rap-song Rapper’s Delight and how it’s beat was ripped from Chic’s song ‘Good Times’ as well as mega-famous band Led Zeppelin, and how their massive contribution to the world was basically founded on uncredited, blatant plagiarism.”

“What? Zep are plagiarists? I mean, seriously? Zep are sublime. Just stunning, revolutionary pioneers of rock and roll. I’d rather Cassie receive the Zep treatment than what she’s been getting lately.”

“Fair enough, but lots of bands sample and remix others and people are fine with it. Many people call Zep ‘ripoff artists’ specifically, for two main reasons. One, they took credit for the ‘stolen’ songs as their own work, intentionally avoiding crediting the original creators, and two, they barely changed the songs or melodies at all. They put ‘no effort’ into their remixed creation, and simply copied the original songwriter’s works directly.”

“Well, whatever. I may not know Zep’s history, and maybe they misbehaved, but I wouldn’t kick them out of my community for it. I wouldn't take all their earnings for months. Plagiarism is less like genocide and more like littering to me. It's yucky, but it's everywhere and people need to get over it, not turn into source-nazis. And besides, I do know that Zep themselves also got sampled by Beastie Boys, Enigma, Dre, Eminem, and more. So even if Zep did plagiarize, peeps just went on to plagiarize them in turn, and succeeded off it too. Or, or, or… Star Wars was basically built off Joseph Campbell’s ‘Hero Of A Thousand Faces’ and Kurosawa’s Sanjuro too. Which is my point, everyone’s copying from everyone else, we should give people way more of a break on this stuff on Hive, or at least be gentler about it, and really... just be happy people are actually posting anything.”

“So it sounds like you believe most plagiarism is an acceptable part of life, yes?”

“I never used to, like back when that chick copycatted my IG account, but yes, I’m way more at peace with it now.”

At this moment my wife Maria poked her head through the kitchen doorway, cleared her throat, and closed the door rather firmly, in what one might describe as… a huff. I’d have to apologize to her later. Em and I had been talking long and loud, while Maria, Cassie, and Olive were trying to watch Moana. I’m usually more sensitive to that sort of thing, but Cass’s breach of etiquette on Hive had intrigued me more than I expected.

“Do you believe there are any forms of unacceptable or undesirable plagiarism?”

“Yeah, I’m more ok with inspiration, tributes, and ‘well-hidden’ sources, but I’m not big on people who steal intentionally, or people who plagiarize because they’re lazy, or people who totally have the power to credit their sources but don’t.”

“Hmmm. You have some pretty interesting ‘boxes’ to put different kinds of ‘copying’ in.”

“They make sense to me in my head.”

“I’m sure they do, but would you be willing to explain why some copying is good, and other copying is bad to the people you’re disagreeing with on Hive?”

Emma folded her bottom lip up over her top one as her irises floated up towards her lustrous locks, deep in thought. There was a pause before she answered.

“Sure, to me it all comes down to intent.”

“Er...intent is a bit tricky for most humans to assess correctly, because they don’t even know their own intent behind their actions most of the time, so how could they measure others?”

“Well, for me, I just ask myself questions. Did Led Zeppelin intend to create greatness? Or did they intend to rip people off? Did they intend to do both? Did they make amends years later? Did they hypocritically get mad at everyone who sampled and stole from them over the years? Yadda yadda. As far as I’m concerned, I can tell they generally have good hearts, and have contributed tons of value to the world, and sure they grabbed some stuff from other sources, like all artists, and maybe they were shady about it, but people make mistakes and overall I believe they stopped that practice, and dealt with the consequences.”

“Right, but that’s still speculation, and a sleazy, underhanded person asking the same questions is going to come up with very different answers than you, because we tend to see the world through the lens of ourselves. Liars assume others are lying to them, even when faced with the truth, etc.”

“Well, I don’t know what to tell you, other than it’d be nice if Hive simply erred on the side of kindness, giving people the benefit of the doubt, and didn’t default to shoot-first-ask-questions-later.

“I hear you. Let’s take a different approach then…

Is paying someone to create content for you plagiarism?”

“Of course not, people have done that since forever. It’s why researchers and beatmakers and stuff exist.”

“What about people who pay to have their books written for them by a ‘ghostwriter’, and then write their own name as the ‘author.’ Is that acceptable plagiarism to you?”

“Depends if the ghostwriter agreed to such a thing.”

“So as long as someone agrees, I can put my name on their work, it’s cool?”

“I mean, it’s a bit weird, and if someone then wants to hire you to write a sequel or something things could fall apart, but yeah, it’s fine.”

“So when I was in school, if I paid someone to take a test for me, and wrote my name on it, would that be cool?”

“Oh. Hmm. Maybe not.”

“How come? They’re the same scenario aren’t they?”

“Yeeeeaaaahh… hmm. OK, I take it back, it’s not cool to put your name on anyone else’s work, even if you paid them.”

“So then you want all ghostwriters to be out of a job?”

“Yikes. I’m not sure.”

“So maybe you haven’t thought as deeply about plagiarism, copyright, credit, and content as you thought if you can’t answer these questions properly, yes?”

“I guess…”

“And take it further-- what if I pay a ghostwriter to write 49% of my book, and I write 51% of my book, is it ok to slap my name on it now? I mean over half is my ‘original’ creation.”

“Uh, I don’t know, maybe like… you’re co-author?”

“I see, so in your world ghostwriters not only can’t accept clients for fully ghost-written books, they can’t even accept ‘partial-ghostwrite’ clients?”

“Geez Dad, I don’t know, OK?”

“OK, but just to bring the point home... What if I hire a ghostwriter in good faith, and they deliver content claiming it’s 100% original, and encourage me to put my name on it. But I don’t do that exactly. Instead I post it on a ‘compilation’ channel I run called @variouspostsforyou with no specific credit attached, other than the fact that it’s on my channel, along with many other posts, some by me, some legally ghostwritten and paid for. Is that good plagiarism or bad? I’ve created jobs, I haven’t taken credit, at least not explicitly.”


“And, to make things even more interesting, a week later we all discover that the ghostwriter I hired actually plagiarized a few other pieces, taking quotes and excerpts from all over the place, barely writing anything on their own. Oh, and I'm an established leader in the Hive community.”

“Holy. Dad. Enough. My head hurts.”

“Exactly my point, lil miss. If you and I, in an open, honest discussion seeking to get to the heart of what’s OK in plagiarism and copyright, quickly get a headache, what are the chances the self-proclaimed plagiarism-police on Hive have really thought this stuff through? What are the chances they’ll be able to turn out a fair, just decision regarding any plagiarism offense?”

“None! And that’s what I’ve been saying Dad! You just proved my point! They’re clueless!”

“Hush, I wasn’t trying to rile you up, and I wouldn’t say I proved your point at all. What I’m getting at is that neither you, nor the whales you’re angry with, have really thought this stuff through. None of you really know what’s right or wrong.

None of you really know how plagiarism impacts a community.

None of you know what role it plays in the creation of new art or the advancement of society. None of you know whether it’s good or bad, or both. You’re like kids fighting over who deserves the last chocolate bar, Johnny or Vince, but no one has the ‘right’ answer, and there may not even be one.”

“Dang. Pretty harsh, Daddio. But I see your point. I still don’t care though.” Ah yes, discussions with kids. I forgot how rational and sensible they can be. Emma ignored my grimace and continued, “I know innocent copying/homage, from bad plagiarism/thievery.”

“Oh really? How are Hivers to tell the difference between innocent copying and malicious plagiarism?”

“Well, to me it’s not that difficult. I can totally tell if someone’s a kind-hearted soul who plagiarized by innocent mistake, or some malicious scammer looking to harm others. But even if the difference wasn’t clear, my whole problem is these whales didn’t even bother to seek understanding. They just got triggered by the great demon called ‘plagiarism’, grabbed their pitchforks out of knee-jerk reaction, and laid into Cassie. And they know it too. They know they’re not behaving maturely. They know they’re witch-hunting. They know they wake up hungry for some drama and to self-righteously hate on plagiarists, the world’s most dire scourge.”

Uh oh. Em was standing up again. I hoped I could smooth out the conversation before her emotions got too out of control.

“But they probably see it as a public service, making sure low-effort, lazy, scammy, plagiarists don’t make bank off the work of others, especially without giving credit. They probably see it as saving the ‘hive rewards’ pie for other, more deserving members of Hive, so when they downvote and zero out rewards, they’re allowing other non-plagiarizing members of Hive to earn properly. People like you. Imagine they zero out the rewards of 9 truly sleazy plagiarists, plus Cassie as well. And by doing so, they’ve opened up thousands of dollars worth of crypto for posts like your original high-effort photoshoots? Surely that’s a great thing for the community, right?

“Well, yeah sure, but I’d gladly take a hit on my own earnings if it meant Hive was a nicer, friendlier place that didn’t brigade anyone and everyone who doesn’t live up to --or is even aware of-- their invisible standards or rules of where, when, how, and what to post.”

“That’s fine, but not everyone shares your values. Maybe they value a stricter Hive. Germany and Japan are very different cultures than the Southern U.S. or Hawaii. Maybe long-term Hivers value every single dollar in the hive rewards pool going exactly to people they judge as ‘worthy.’ Maybe they proudly value their anti-plagiarist stance, even if it’s not well-thought out. Maybe their identity is even tied to it.”

“That sounds so militant and gross.”

“Maybe, but you have to realize in any community there are different values held by different people in the community, some of them very influential.”

“Of course, that’s what I’ve been saying. That’s why I’m so mad! I value a friendly Hive that doesn’t knee-jerk at people for their first offense. They, on the other hand, seem to value self-righteousness and finger-pointing and cruelty.

“Be careful, love, like I said, these whales probably don’t see it that way.”

“Then they need to take a hard look at themselves, because Cassie is a freakin’ saint compared to them. She is so damn nice, goes the extra mile for everybody, and they should be doing everything they can onboard people like her. So she posted in the wrong community, big deal. So, in her excitement to get her work out, she neglected to cite something.

Should her value to Hive seriously be judged on a couple slip-ups?

Is this how we want to treat awesome people? Cassie would be a blessing and a light to Hive, and help raise their community in major ways. Did you know she has a Facebook group with tens of thousands of girl gamers? She could bring them all to Hive, massively spiking Hive’s stock. And now she wants to boycott the place instead. Every time I turn around all I see from whales is... posts about how great whatever their current project is, or bad vibes reprimanding smaller hivers. It's lame.”

“Well, like I said before, you can change things by changing yourself --elevating your influence-- or you can head to a platform that has a culture and value-system you’re more aligned with. Those are literally the only effective paths towards change.”

“The latter is sounding pretty good right now. Hive deserves to lose Cass, me, and every other talented creator on there, if this is the top level of friendliness Hive can muster. If I go on any other massively successful platform like Twitter, YouTube, or Facebook, there’s rampant plagiarism but those platforms don’t go nuts about it because they know it’s mostly innocent, not malicious, and also not worth shutting huge amounts of people out with militant policing.”

“Yep, those platforms are a lot more inviting for newcomers to hop onto, and they’re definitely a lot more ‘chill’ regarding infractions and etiquette. But again, my dear, I can’t emphasize enough that if you want Hive to embrace certain things that made those platforms succeed, you’ll need to become much more influential. You’ll need to work on yourself, not rage against the machine. Either that, or leave for a platform that shares those values more clearly.”

“So you’re saying I shouldn’t see this one incident with Cassie as a hill to die on or a flag to plant, but as inspiration to raise my influence higher, if I really do want change?”

“Spot on, my oh-so-eloquent progeny.”

“You’re so corny. But what you say makes sense. I still think it’s so much easier just to whine or get into comment-debates with the trolls.”

“It’s actually harder, babydoll.”

“It doesn’t feel harder.”

“Still, it is. Period. Because, like banging your head against a wall, engaging in discussion with closed-minds will actually make your life harder and achieve nothing, while building your influence can be fun and definitely moves you closer to desired results.”

“OK, you just inspired me.”

“Oooh, I’m psyched. What did I inspire you to do?”

“I’m gonna make a post that basically lays out the situation, then polls readers on which approach makes a better Hive.”

“And what approaches will be offered for Hivers to vote on?”

“One, they can have a Hive that heavily polices plagiarism and brings an overall harsh tone towards dealing with offenders. Two, they can have a Hive that still polices plagiarism, but with a lighter touch that brings an overall gentler tone towards dealing with offenders.

I’ll lay out the pros and cons of both approaches, and I’ll do my research and show lots of examples of how Hive currently leans militant on this issue. Finally, I’ll ask them which approach they believe will raise Hive’s price more, onboard more people, and make Hive a better community. I’ll spread my poll far and wide and really get as many Hivers to vote as possible, then I’ll let the numbers speak for me. I even have an idea to create a ‘Hive Etiquette’ mega-guide for newbies so people like Cass can avoid the hundreds of Hive-Etiquette Pitfalls that exist.”

“Wow, brilliant Em! I bet all that will increase your influence on the topic very well, and likely earn you a lot more followers too.”

“Yeah, and it’ll probably filter out anyone who sympathizes with the plagiarism-triggered whales too, I’d be happy if anyone like that unfollowed me.”

“Are you still angry with them, even after I explained they may have been raised differently, grown into different values, thought things through less, and may even be trying to create a totally different Hive than you?”

“Oh, no, no, I’m not mad any more. Even if I disagree with their approach to policing plagiarism, you're right, everyone’s entitled to their own viewpoint. It’s up to me to be more influential than them if I want to create change.

But it’d be nice if they put their pitchforks away.

And it’d be nice if they learned how to communicate more clearly and kindly. It’d be nice if a lot of things were different, but I just meant that I want to be clear on who I am and what I’m about, and I’m happy if my follower-base reflects that as much as possible.”

“Sure, just be careful creating an echo-chamber. Most great things in the world arise out of a clash of viewpoints, differing opinions, and a variety of diverse perspectives, not just followers that agree with us.”

“True. And who knows. I guess I may end up surprised with the majority of Hivers voting to come down hard on plagiarism, but I highly doubt it. And even if they do, I think they’ll still support me on less draconian policing methods.”

“Why’s that?”

“Because despite all my rage, I really do believe Hive is an incredible community, full of beautiful souls.

I believe most Hivers really want to bring good to the world, and I don’t believe they truly desire a harsher, more ruthless form of plagiarism-management. I believe they want the benefit of the doubt given to them, and they’re happy to extend that to others, even if it means being taken advantage of here or there.”

“Wow, who are you and what have you done with Emma?”

“C’mon Dad, I’m not that bad. You know I just have to work through my emotions and talk it out.”

“I do, which is why I cancelled my League Of Legends tournament when you texted that you wanted to talk.”

“Say what now?”

“Yep, daughter comes first.”

“Aww, Dad, you’re sweet as honey. Thank you so much. You didn’t have to do that, I could’ve waited, I know you were looking forward to League’ing it up.”

“I was, but there’ll be other tournaments, and it’s not every day I get to help my girls deal with a 'witch-hunt', right? Speaking of which, I'm surprised Cass didn’t come to me with all this.”

“You know little-miss-sunshine, she just wants to paint a happy face on everything, play video-games, and watch Disney flicks.”

“Good point. Well, I hope you’ll keep me posted about all this, and I hope Cassandra isn’t too soured on her Hive experience, and can find a way to navigate all this to a fulfilling conclusion.”

“Yeah, she’ll be alright, I’m gonna bring her in on my poll idea, and even if she never touches Hive again and sticks with her girl-gamer Facebook group, at least it was a great learning experience.”

“Very wise, Em.”

“Thanks, Papa. And you know something?

My biggest takeaway from all this is that being quick to judge creates pain.

My judging Hivers who are harsh on plagiarism just creates more pain. Them judging plagiarism the instant they see it with no thoughtful reflection just creates more pain. Any of us judging what’s ‘good’ or ‘bad’ without soul-searching or knowing our own biases just creates more pain. And all that pain can only lead to more pain, it won’t magically turn into joy, bliss, peace, or harmony. Logically, all this pain-creation simply won’t lead to a happy, inviting community, which I’d really love Hive to be. And although I can’t make the witch-hunters out there drop their ‘forks and torches, I can at least make sure I don’t pour more gas on the fire, and be an example of a ‘better way.’”

“Wow. Beautifully said. I love you, Em.”

“I love you too.”


Note From The Author: As far as I know, this is a completely original work from my own brain. At the same time, I’ve ingested millions of pieces of media in my four decades on earth, and it’s possible I picked up a word to add to my vocabulary from someone here, and a belief, idea, or concept there. It’s possible great writers like Neil Gaiman, or obscure writers like my brother... have influenced me somehow. It’s possible I wouldn’t have chosen the name Cassie, if I hadn’t just played as Cassiopeia in League Of Legends.

Sure, I can happily credit for the amazing stock images I use in my doodles (or, in this case, another high-value site.) And I can happily tag @wil.metcalfe , @purpinay , @samsmith , @harlowjourney and countless others as the inspiration for this post, but If I wanted to cite all the influences, inspirations, or sources that helped this creation become reality, it’d be virtually impossible. I’d end up thanking my parents for teaching me language and letting me copy their speech patterns, and the credits would be longer than the actual content. So, if someone, somehow finds some tiny turn of phrase that I’ve failed to cite... please have the decency to correct me gently, with a kind heart, and I’ll gladly credit any fellow creators I may have neglected.

Ultimately, this piece is just a fiction, just like others in the Emma series. It’s aimed to spark thought, discussion, progress, and increased understanding on the topics of plagiarism, Hive-culture, and platform moderation, because I believe a hive where members think deeper for themselves is better than one where everyone blindly follows and delegates thinking to others. I love Hive and have contributed a ridiculous amount of words in my short time here, and they’re always written with love, and the goal of encouraging a broader perspective and a bigger picture. I like to think this piece achieves that. Whether you agree or not, if you've anything of value to add to the discussion, please share in the comments. I'd love to read it, and it may help others as well.

Either way, I appreciate you reading, commenting, sharing, or even skimming, and I wish you lots of successful, plagiarism-free(?) experiences in your future.

P.S. Tagging a few passionate hivers who may enjoy this: @meesterboom , @danielvehe , @nonameslefttouse , @mattclarke , @keco , @brittandjosie , @thoughts-in-time , @minismallholding , @crosheille , and @traciyork :D)


There used to be accounts from the old blockchain that just copy pastes content from other profiles off the platform and monetizing the works. You're right about this practice not being new especially on Instagram. The thing is, independent artists trying to get some visibility and chasing the goal of being able to monetize their works can't compete with accounts that can grab content from different places and use that to attract more eyes as the algorithm favors creators that pump out content frequently vs users that can draw hours and produce every other day on average.

Now the copycat accounts get their visibility and can now negotiate for ad space with their acquired followers. It's like someone using the works of others for free and then having the audacity to charge you space. Those business models can't survive here because value is being given to artists who are legit and working on their content. The monetary element changes how social rewards are being distributed.

I assume you've never used your time to hunt accounts that are just built to milk the system as efficient as possible, verify authors cross platforms for plagiarism and ID theft? Got any experience introducing Hive to someone with an opening spiel that "Hey I saw you post on Hive and just wanted to know if it's really you there? and be replied by "I don't know Hive and that person isn't me"

I just have to tell them what Hive is and market it as the platform that their content is being used and monetized on by strangers. Most of the content on this post is just a "feel good" content that appeals to people that aren't actively doing the hunting. The truth is, once you find a plagiarist, some quit while others make new accounts and the cycle is just becoming a whack a mole problem. Most can't be bothered to be in this process because it's a complete waste of time.

Give some irresponsible stakeholders an applause for being enablers because their phat ass stake makes the zeroing more problematic. As far as I can tell, most commenters about downvoters are just people not really doing active work on hunting shitty users that copy paste, do ID theft, spread a scam or phising links.

Also please make a mental note not to lump individual downvotes as part of the hivewatchers policing. People can make their own calls on how they would use the downvotes and not be affiliated to Hivewatchers.

I wouldn't mind having my illustrations reposted by another user on facebook without giving me due credit but if they got paid for it then they are crossing the line especially when I specially put a no repost/no monetizing sign for the works I share across social media space. Of course there's little way I can enforce copyright rules if they actually post my stuff on Blurt for example, but they are going to be downvoted if they reposted it here without my permission.

People can still post on Steem or Blurt if they don't want a downvote environment. Their "financial rewards" are secured there.

Some curators vote because they believe you made the content and if it was co-authored or edited by someone, it wouldn't hurt to acknowledge you hired help. But frankly, I don't think people using their stake would go full 100% vote weight on ghost written work if they knew about it.

But isn't this the purpose of ghostwriters? I agree. Just don't get caught doing it otherwise supporters just felt cheated on from the misdirection.

Thanks for sharing your perspective so eloquently and in detail. I'm sure your comment will help people gain even more clarity regarding these issues.


It won't help people. The only time people mind is when their circle or income from the platform is compromised. The idea that their content is being monetized by someone else is alien until they realize it can happen to them.

I made an account at Steemit and Blurt copy pasting your posts and was surprised to earn each post got me 100$ minimum as they thought it was actually you posting, got to thank stupid stakeholders and curators not doing their antiabuse work policing their turf. It's been going on for months now and still dumbfounded no one calls me out for it.

The user name is @therealryzeonline so you'd look it up if curious.

Whatever makes you happy man, if you have a good clear conscience doing stuff like that, go for it.

Glad you're supportive about it.
If you ever start posting on those platforms, ping me up and will give you a cut of your work. I would appreciate it if you post frequently as I need to keep the cash flowing in. Don't want to disappoint some readers on being told how great the platform is.


It might be fiction, but it's definitely "On the money." Hive is the only platform I know of, and I've been on hundreds over the years; that's like that escape scene from The Temple of Doom.

image source

There's no T&C's when you sign up. No warning message that if you break any of the rules, you could find yourself with a lifetime black mark, and nobody will give you a definitive list of these so-called "Rules." anyway so how the hell are you supposed to know if you're doing anything wrong? Why are they not written down? Because a lot of it is made up on the fly as they go along with some of the interpretations of wrongdoing utterly bizarre! But more importantly, if it's not written down, you can't refute it plus, if a group put "Whistling on a Tuesday is not acceptable on Hive!" we'd all laugh our dangly bits off, surely? Whistling on Tuesday

Like you, I too think the only way to make Hive nicer and safer is to build a counterbalance of users, but there are two problems we would need to face up to if ever a project got off the ground.

    1. It would need to go to war with HiveWatchers literally. Not only would it need to counteract the DV's but possibly make punitive downvotes of its own against HW and a lot of other self-appointed groups out there in an effort to bring a community spirit back on track.
    2. There is a danger the 'New Group' could turn into what it set itself up to fight. (Shades of Animal Farm)

I spent the last three months initially lurking then contributing on the Discord HW channels in an effort to make it less aggressive; my god, it's like a bear pit on there sometimes and also offer people the most common basic of manners. Giving them a response, a.s.a.p. even if that response was "Look, I've no official capacity but....." that worked out well! Individuals who habitually plead innocence scream they have no official capacity decided they didn't like this new interloper nevermind HW wasn't bothered, had thanked me on numerous occasions for helping people and asked me to help out with reporting stolen funds etc. No, these individuals took it upon themselves to silence me. About the only insult that was missing was "TOXIC!" 🤣 what I found sad was the fact they just couldn't see it; they couldn't see how appalling their behaviour was, probably because they had spent so long bathing in the fake glory of BUSTING WRONDOERS. that they now can't distinguish between being part of the problem in a clumsy attempt at being associated with a poor solution.

Ooh! Sorry about that rant; I'm still pretty angry, TBH.

    A: In the classic UV seeking comment: Great post, love it.
    B: How are you doing, colours? Red
    C: Feel free to tag me in relevant posts.
    E: Surprised at one of your tag choices.

Thanks @dickturpin , I appreciate the kind words.

Yes! Temple Of Doom scene indeed, haha, great analogy.

There's no T&C's when you sign up. No warning message that if you break any of the rules, you could find yourself with a lifetime black mark, and nobody will give you a definitive list of these so-called "Rules." anyway so how the hell are you supposed to know if you're doing anything wrong? Why are they not written down? Because a lot of it is made up on the fly as they go along with some of the interpretations of wrongdoing utterly bizarre! But more importantly, if it's not written down, you can't refute it

This is really the heart of what I was getting at, thank you so much for emphasizing that. And I agree with both your points that overcoming HW's influence would be vital for change, and that in doing so it's possible any new group would simply follow in the same footsteps, resulting in the same environment or culture.

I applaud your attempts to inject some positivity and understanding into the discord, and at the same time, I'm not surprised you were silenced, nor that the silencers had little self-awareness of their behavior. I'd probably be a bit sore about such a thing too.

A: Thank you.

B: Only red is doable as far as I know, and it's done like this.
I want <div class="phishy">THIS TEXT</div> to be red.

C: I'd be happy to, though I'm not exactly clear what would qualify as relevant. My post on power/abuse? My post on censorship? Does my Hive Guide or Crypto Dictionary fall outside relevance or inside?

D: To be honest, I still haven't got the hang of tags (I've been on Hive less than half-a-year), it could just be a mistake. Which one? 🙏








@ryzeonline, you've been given LUV from @dickturpin.

Check the LUV in your H-E wallet. (1/1)

There were never any rules. Its just jungle justice out here. The price of decentralization.

See, this "Decentralised" is a load of old dishwater too! The word actually has no value as far as the platform or the userbase is concerned. This is born out by the original post in that around 10% (It might be more for the pedantic's among us) who effectively control what happens on Hive. For example, if it were decided tomorrow that only posts in markdown were acceptable, the likes of myself who post in HTML would be forced to convert to markdown or face being DV'd to oblivion. Don't believe me? I've seen folk being DV'd for selling their Hive to other people or, get this! Non authorised exchanges. Authorised? By Who? So basically, we're being told what to do with our own money! Never mind what we post. I even know of one witness that downvotes you if you dare to say anything positive about STEEM. If that's not an abuse of position, I don't know what is.

Talking of STEEM, there is the DV'ing anything that relates to STEEM, even if it was four years ago. I've even seen folk get in trouble for upvoting family and friends. Maybe they're vote farming? Who knows? But if my brother or sister were on the platform, I'd undoubtedly be too scared to vote for them. So, when you see someone claiming Hive is about "Freedom", tell them they're talking bollocks because it is not free it is someone else's (A groups) idea of freedom, and that could change today, tomorrow or at the next hard fork. Remember, boys and girls, the moment someone says: "We need a moderator." You should scream out loud:

Saying that Hive is decentralised is a hollow, worthless incentive to join; it would be better to say: "Hey! Come join this platform and get bullied and walk through a minefield that nobody has a map to. Have smart arses tell you how you haven't earned it yet, so you can't lose it!" Only an idiot wouldn't feel better about that DV napalm attack across their account now they know that "Potential Earning" isn't real, although it could be if they left you alone, but it's more fun removing it. I saw someone on Discord last week say, "I will downvote everything you post!" Now I accept that everyone is free to do what the hell they like with their votes; it's just some seem to get a perverse pleasure out of financial violence.

Please don't misunderstand me. I think there is a place for HiveWatchers. But they should close down at least two of their DV bots and focus on Plagiarism, Spam, Vote farming and Theft, and that's it. Anything outside of those four criteria should be none of their business.

As for whales, there's not much that can be done if you upset one of them, and some people are insanely easy to upset. 🤷‍♂️

Now I accept that everyone is free to do what the hell they like with their votes; it's just some seem to get a perverse pleasure out of financial violence.

This and the rest of your grasp to the circus isn't off the mark. The price of freedom is having this circus. Not going to defend the antiabuse side as it has its own moments that make me facepalm too, but would still choose this circus over what goes on at Steem where the visibility and financial rewards for new comers if they hustle are steeper so there's that.

HW ain't the right organization to talk about downvoting consensus, there's HDR which I think you've been invited before? It's a circus of it's own but it's the closest thing I can liken to community consensus to what is tolerable and not as pooled downvotes get discussed while having members not obligated to join in some efforts if they don't want to. The best channel is the shitpost channel there.

So basically, we're being told what to do with our own money!

Beautifully illustrated by the JUSTINSUN debacle.


Dunno, what's stopping those who don't like first layer to just make 2nd layer frontend and their own tribe token to buy and gatekeep those oligarchs so you guys could have your community, token value which letting an actual market decide whether they want to buy into, and all the advantages of 2nd layer which happens to include control over what is visible?

My ancestors told me never to click random links from strangers. Is there candy there?

it's everything that hive should be

from day one

it always puzzled me

why the fuck does steemcleaners use discord ?

why the fuck does hivewatchers use discord ?


so i sold 100% of my 22,000 HIVE and now i don't give a shit if someone downvotes me because this place is almost pure trash, even hivewatchers knows discord is better

It's wasn't designed for instant messaging. Better to consider that when making a fair assessment.

There's also beechat on peakd where instant messaging is allowed. Ever used that?

It's always going to fail if we just leave decision making to anybody and trying to make that decision making power equal across the board. Some are just better at using power and some have power that aren't good with it but who says which gets to have those privileges? Always a subject for debate.

each account must have the option to limit audience

even facebook knows this

allowing "friends only" and even more optional granular access

if a whale wants to blow their vote stake on "low quality spam" THAT IS THEIR RIGHT

It's a frontend issue and anyone can develop their own frontend based from the available github files of they know how to code. I believe dbuzz made a lot of changes when it comes to visibility. Now to expect all frontends to obey the same rules isnt feasible.

that's a pretty highly qualified "anyone"

What's stopping someone from not actually doing it on their own and hiring someone else to do it for them?

each account must have the option to limit audience

even facebook knows this

allowing "friends only" and even more optional granular access

if a whale wants to blow their stake on "low quality spam" THAT IS THEIR RIGHT

Its definitely in their ability...


  1. It would need to go to war with HiveWatchers literally. Not only would it need to counteract the DV's but possibly make punitive downvotes of its own against HW and a lot of other self-appointed groups out there in an effort to bring a community spirit back on track.

  2. There is a danger the 'New Group' could turn into what it set itself up to fight. (Shades of Animal Farm)

I wonder if people running certain accounts are LEGALLY authorized to such "Rights"...
As interpreted by State Authorities Operating in such Jurisdictions.


Its like a State (engine) Sponsored Asset Seizure.

i'm not sure which actual laws you think might be salient to this particular case

@ryzeonline hi 😊🙏

Warning: Very very long response. Sorry, not sorry 😂😂😂

I tend to be the kind of person who steps back and tries to look at competing perspectives so that I can try to understand all points of view, even if I don't agree with them. The point is "to understand" where people are coming from and why they feel the way they do about whatever the issue at hand might be, without needing to choose between them, although sometimes I do if I feel strongly enough about the outcome and its impact. I believe you have done just this in your story Jay, showing the reasons why each side may have acted and reacted in the way that they did and I commend you for that.

I do think that the key issue here is that when people plagiarise and use other people's content as their own, especially on HIVE, they not only take literary or artistic credit for something that they have not done themselves, but they also take financial credit for it, and in so doing, they deprive authors who are spending valuable hours of their life creating quality original content from earning a fair return. This is because the pool is finite at any one time and if one person gets more, another has to get less. And so the scales of justice and fairness come into play and the intensity of the emotional response is heightened, and this is understandable to an extent. Anyone can copy and paste and become an article generating machine but this kind of behaviour must be checked at some point. In my view, the Hive can be distinguished from Twitter and the like because nobody 'gets paid' on Twitter or Facebook and that is why people don't seem to "care" as much.

I am fairly certain from what you have described, that Cassie is simply a naive teen who needs to be given guidance in what she is doing to bring her back on track (but it is still acknowledged in your story that she must be brought on track and helped to understand that plagiarism is wrong, just in a more gentle manner). When an established Hiver, however, knowingly publishes content without being transparent as to the source, and without doing the due diligence required of every Hiver to ensure that they are meeting community standards, values, and rules, then unfortunately they lay open to this sort of response and ultimately have nobody to blame but themselves for the fallout. This is not to say that other Hivers shouldn't approach the issue with sensitivity and kindness at first, asking for clarification, explanation, and assurances on future conduct, but everyone is different and some may feel that whilst they would give this latitude to a complete newbie, they are not prepared to extend it to someone who, as in today's case on Hive, that they perceive as already earning significant amounts of Hive on their posts, from what is claimed to be as a result of belonging to voting circles, for unoriginal content that has been plagiarised from others and copy-pasted into a Hive post. Regardless of knowledge or intention on the part of the owner of the Hive account, if the content of a specific post is plagiarised, it should be DV'ed. This use of the DV promotes the right values going forwards.

Allow me to use an example: If someone steals a car because they were deprived as a youngster and their parents taught them that stealing was ok, and then they get caught, we can argue that they are young, naive, influenced by the way in which they were raised, and we'd look to rehabilitate them and offer support as the first measure for a first violation, but we wouldn't let them keep the car, would we? Clearly that would be promoting the wrong behaviours and would deprive the genuine owner who worked hard to earn the car, of their right to the asset. Other Hivers (including whales) can't DV the original author, as they are hiding in the shadows, so all they can do is DV the content that is presented to them as being by the owner of the account and which has been identified as plagiarism. The owner of the account cannot then attempt to pass the buck and hide behind his/her co-creators, claiming ignorance, as it is not the actual creator's name against the piece, but the owner of the Hive account instead. I also don't think it helps when a person is challenged on their behaviours and chooses silence instead. Actions do however speak louder than words so when a person apologises for these behaviours, this is not necessarily sufficient in itself, they need to then demonstrate a change in their behaviour in order to rebuild the trust that has been lost. As I have said previously, complete transparency and due diligence are what is required.

Let me be clear though, I don't approve at all of witch-hunts, as this is not a resolution-seeking approach, and so a flippant comment by a whale to DV everything that is being published by said errant author is not an answer in itself. I do, however, understand the response, because how do they trust the content being output going forwards? Do we require the whales who DV to spend their time reviewing each and every post of said account to check for suspected plagiarism? Surely the onus has to rest with the errant account holder to prove a change in process?

Perhaps what needs to happen, at the very least, to reassure their audience of their honourable intentions, is that in today's case, the errant account holder, who in fairness has held up their hands, should have a disclaimer at the top of each post explaining that the posts under the account are written by a variety of authors and that each submission has been plagiarism checked before publication, with a copy of the plagiarism-free proof posted at the bottom of each post. This would give some reassurance at least to the community that the process is transparent, the curators know what they are getting, they can see it isn't plagiarised (in so far as exact use of words is concerned) and they can then choose to upvote or ignore instead of having a need to DV. This is the sort of response that should be given to errant account holders to gain back trust in the community, and probably what I should have offered up earlier today as my own personal advice on the posts that I saw re the DV'ing etc. Sadly, I don't think it helped that the post in contention today had at least one supporter intent on winding up the DV'ers with f-bombs and the like. That kind of language and tone certainly didn't help anyone. And so I think when they were appropriately engaged by @wil.metcalfe, he was unfortunately met with more than a little resistance and a complete shutdown to be honest, which in itself was not the most helpful or respectful response to Wil, who was just trying to help them to understand a different perspective.

Finally, as a parting note, I just want to be clear that I do not use the DV at all and was not involved in DV'ing this person or getting them DV'ed. I simply commented on the post after being tagged in it. I also tried to comment as objectively as possible, not knowing the full extent of what had gone on but just commenting on the scenario presented. Ordinarily, if I have concerns about anything, I will flag it to one or more of the Hivers whom I respect on the platform who have a lot more experience than me and whom I trust to take an objective, compassionate, and balanced view on things and make the right decision for the community as a whole.

I do hope that the community can come together better in the future to resolve issues rather than deteriorating into a mud-slinging pit of awkward discomfort. I personally found the regression today quite difficult and uncomfortable to witness. But I also found the issue of plagiarism and lack of transparency a problem. I could have walked away and chosen to ignore it altogether, a sort of "not my monkeys, not my circus" approach, but I felt this would be disrespectful to the person who had looked to me, amongst others, for input and I felt that although it wasn't my monkeys or circus, it was about my "home" on the blockchain, and as a stakeholder, I needed to stand up and be counted. I had initially decided to take the evening off from writing and curating, however, your post inspired me to write the above response.

Thank you Jay for your generous perspective and sharing of your knowledge and experience. It is always very much appreciated. Using your own language (if I may be so bold and not be accused of trademark or copyright infringement or plagiarism by the peanut gallery lol🤣) let's hope as Hivers, we can all follow your lead and Ryze above this🙏

@wil.metcalfe I hope the above is a more meaningful comment than the one I left earlier during my working day 🙏

especially on HIVE, they not only take literary or artistic credit for something that they have not done themselves, but they also take financial credit for it

This may be also true for other platforms, for example YouTube, Twitch. Even for real life. Financial credit is not Hive exclusive.


Excellent point, thanks for interjecting this. :)

I appreciate your well thought-out response (and the warning, lol.)

I love that you step back to understand at competing points of view. I aimed to include a few them in my narrative, thanks for noticing.

Other commenters have cited 'financial reward' as the main issue here, but since plagiarism, patent, & copyright law have been around since long before Hive, and plenty of content-creators are earning on Instagram and YouTube as we speak, some through plagiarized content, I'm not sure just how relevant that point is. Try telling a YouTuber who had their channel shutdown for plagiarism, justly or not, that Hivers 'care more,' lol. But I do agree with you, whether justified or not, people do seem to have extremely heightened emotions on the matter here on Hive compared to elsewhere, even if I can't pin down a specific reason, lol.

And you raise an interesting point regarding 'established Hivers', 'due diligence', and taking responsibility. The question is how much 'should' the standard we hold people to differ? And is it helpful for a fledgling platform like Hive have higher standards for plagiarism than other platforms before them, or lower, in order to encourage sharing, posting, and engagement, regardless of 'source?' Is downvoting a creators entire body of work upon discovery of a single plagiarized item acceptable? Overkill? Is rallying other voters to enact revenge or punishment good? Bad? Something we couldn't stop even if we wanted to? If an author has to do due-diligence for every source they leverage, isn't it right that every downvoter also do due diligence regarding the author-in-question's true-intent? Etc.

Definitely food for thought.

Your ideas for transparency, adding disclaimers, and so on are intriguing, could certainly be worth a try.

You also make a good point about inflammatory language not helping during situations like these.

I do hope that the community can come together better in the future to resolve issues rather than deteriorating into a mud-slinging pit of awkward discomfort.

This sums up my desire, and I'm honored my post inspired you to write. Thank you so much.

if I may be so bold and not be accused of trademark or copyright infringement or plagiarism by the peanut gallery lol

Hahahaa, love it. #TogetherWeRyze :) 🙏

As regards financial rewards my point essentially, regardless of platform, was that when money is involved, people fall out quicker. If nobody is losing anything monetary then it's just the ideological folk who will squeal. Purists who do not like to see plagiarism and theft of creativity. If money is involved, then add the financial element (theft of potential rewards) to the ideological concerns and you have a lynch mob. Thank you for the engagement @ryzeonline. Indeed we shall rise together🙏😊💗

Understood, and agreed.

(Though I could write another 30,000 words on herd mentality, financial motivations, human behavior, etc. lol) Thank you as well! 🙏

😂ha ha that is why there was a warning!!! Feel free to scroll on by my dear. I could have created an entirely new post with my response, as @ryzeonline did with his lol. But I chose to leave it here. If you are not aware of the context within which these two posts were written then you would have missed the complexity of the discussion altogether. This was a direct response to a few people that were involved in a discussion of important issues on the Hive. If you didn't want to read it, and I suspect that you probably didn't, then I have no issue with that at all, but the tone of your comment is exactly what we are trying to reduce on Hive. Blessings.

You have a great day @introvertspeaks. That is certainly what I intend to do. I too have long graduated from this form of social evolution and bullshit so I know it when I see it. Circle jerker? Is that a thing? I certainly am not sure how this applies to me. I chose not to create another post as I wasn't looking to profit separately from my engagement with @ryzeonline. His response, unlike mine, was able to take the form of a completely separate and distinct article. Last time I looked exclamation marks were used in grammar to emphasise a point or show astonishment ...and in this case, I used it both to emphasise the fact that I had given fair warning of my long response and was astonished that you still took exception🤭. The triple marks were also to emphasise just how long it was😂Stop sweating the small stuff @introvertspeaks. I respect you have your views, but I just don't feel that you needed to engage in something that you were given every opportunity to opt out of. If I had wanted to shout at you in text I would have used capital letters, but don't worry you are safe there as I don't shout and I don't bite🙏

Are you sure? I have read his complete comment. I also replied to it, adding a fact to what he presented as the "key issue". And I am currently on a bus to my workplace. He (@samsmith1971) wrote a long response to a long post, which is fair in my opinion. I think that you would not say "cut the fat my dear" to @ryzeonline. That would be disrespectful. Just like this. Both of them (and everyone else) put time and effort to write down their thoughts and opinions.


I guess it was missed that Jay's article above was a well-timed response to another HIVE post and to my comment that I had made on that post (tagging him in it). His reply comment ran to 6000 odd words so he turned it into a post lol. I felt I owed him the consideration of a decent engagement given the time he took to respond to the post we were both commenting on and to my own comment 😂Perhaps people should take the time to understand the context within which engagement is occurring before making knee jerk reactions that don't contribute towards engagement, tolerance or community spirit and growth. Thank you for the support :-)

Saying "most people do not want to read long texts" and "that is backed up by a study" is a clear opinion. I accept and respect that. Even TLDR (too long, did not read) is okay. But asking someone to "cut the fat" after he/she took time and effort to write a long and meaningful response (addressing multiple people with his/her message) is simply rude and disrespectful. The attitude, the way you say things is important. Respect others to be respected. I hope that you see the difference. I give you some !PIZZA.

@introvertspeaks! I sent you a slice of $PIZZA on behalf of @xplosive.

Learn more about $PIZZA Token at (2/10)

There are very few truly original ideas in this world. Culture advances by people sorting through and advancing the best existing ideas.

The cancel culture went after the guy who started #inktober after someone made the claim of plagiarism. Here is my post on that drama .

The people on LeoFinance use to encourage newbies to drop their #introduceyourself post on their forum. Starting a HIVE account is a de facto financial decision. I am sad to here that they started giving introductory posts a DV. I will start recommending that newbies avoid using LeoFinance.

The copyright issue is driven in part by legal issues. HIVE has to actively defend against actions that could be construed as copyright infringement to avoid lawsuits. Copyright problems are especially prominent with images.

The "copy and paste" issue has a lot to do with the way that Googlebot categorizes information. Googlebot is extremely adept at finding text and images that were copied. Google demotes web sites that have too much copied content. Of course the way HIVE tribes handle tags means that the platform produces a dozen sites that appear to be copy and paste jobs.

IMHO, HIVE has a serious problem with tag spam. This is where people list a large number of money making tags on each post regardless of relevancy. Tag spam really bugs me.

Unfortunately, several whales engage in tag spam to maximize their profits; so we can't complain about that problem. It is stupid to have a platform where we can't do anything to counter the bad actions of the large accounts.

Posted via

Very good point about how culture advances through idea-sorting.

I'd not heard about that inktober drama, but I'm not surprised.

I also wasn't aware of that LeoFinance change (any similarities in my story were unintended.) I suppose they have to do whatever they feel is best for their community. Hmm.

Yeah, copyright is a thing, but on most platforms (YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) I've not seen it really be an issue in the early years, simple cease & desist suffices until the platform grows quite large.

I'd heard Google no longer penalized 'duplicate content' as heavily or at all. I'd have to look further into it.

I believe most platforms have a problem with tag spam, and I agree it'd be nice if we could address it in some productive way.

Thanks very much for sharing all your valuable insights here. Definitely a lot of food for thought, much appreciated and wishing you a great evening. 🙏

I think if you aren't earning from it, then it's hard to get a plagiarism claim to stick, so pointless going after people on most sites sharing things all over the place. The issue with Hive is the earnings side of things.

You raise a good point, financial incentive has interesting effects on issues that would be relatively clear-cut otherwise. That said, there are people earning money off their audiences, as well as plagiarized content, on all these platforms. Many people have an Instagram business, or make bank off their YT channel, plagiarized or not. Is that any different from Hive? If so, to what degree? Hmmm...thanks for giving me more to think on @minismallholding ! Wishing you a great day! 🙏

I am sad to here that they started giving introductory posts a DV. I will start recommending that newbies avoid using LeoFinance.

This is really sad. Every Hive community should encourage newbies to create and post their #introduceyourself posts, instead of scaring them away. LeoFinance is ruining both their own image and the image of Hive, because this makes Hive an unwelcoming place, a place to avoid from the outsider perspective. I thought that we (the entire Hive community) would like to achieve the opposite. To have more and more new and active users. But this is not going to happen, if we scare them away right at their introduction. This is not the way to mass adoption.

When LEO was a welcoming community, their stock rose. The exclusivity seems to be making the value of the coin drop.

IMHO: The really big problem is with tag spam. IMHO, Scotbot should only give alt-coins if the coin tag is in the first two positions. This eliminates most of the tag abuse as people would return to using only the relevant tags in the their posts.

BTW: I've noticed through the months that LEO users are often the worst for abusing the tags of other tribes. So, there attempts to push down others is simply a display of hypocrisy.


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I haven't seen anyone downvoting on LeoFinance for intro posts. If I see posts that do not have a financial topic, I greet the user, give a small upvote and tell them what the community is about.

I'm not saying it didn't happen, I am saying LEO is working to avoid being petty and mean when sharing odd cultural rules and things that take time to understand.. like tags, topics etc.

Quick question @dickturpin ... this post is something I consider high value content, a well-written fiction that sparks interesting discussion about Hive.

It got over 400 upvotes, plus a hundred comments, most of them praise, but I appear to have received a substantial downvote with no explanation given by an account called 'newsflash'... you seem to have a deep understanding of multiple sides of this issue, as well as connections to some of the bigger players that may be relevant...

I just wondered if you had any insights or input to share? Anything it'd be good for me to know going forward? All good if not, just figured I'd ask, thanks in advance! 🙏

OK. I can find out who/what they are. I'm purely guessing, but I suspect this might be a "How dare you say anything against Hive!" situation? So much for "Freedom of speech." others would argue this sort of thing is exactly what Hive is all about, showing your displeasure at a piece of work. I'd find it heartbreaking if someone did that to me for no good reason. 😢

Thanks for the prompt response, good sir. And no need to trouble yourself about any of it, I just thought I'd ask in case you knew off the top of your head.

I was under the impression writing an original, high-quality piece of fiction (that singled-out no one in particular) is the kind of authorship Hive wants to encourage, and if someone wants to downvote me for ~55 Hive, it'd certainly be nice to know why.

But it's no big deal, @comet.ranker swung by and tipped me 50 Hive which offsets it, and neither act was backed up by a comment on my post explaining things, so I can embrace the ebb and flow.

Still somewhat strange, imho, though. Anyway, thanks again for your time and consideration, I appreciate you and wish you a fantastic day. 🙏

So, having looked at the account, they are a pretty substantial whale and appears to be yet another one of those News regurgitation endeavours. A couple of people have told me that the account does do upvotes now and again, but I've not seen any evidence of that. I also got the stock answer that I seem to get a lot when asking why someone did something: "They're OK..............." I suspect everyone is OK until they stop you earning?

As I said earlier, I guess this is a personal thing because as far as I know, there's no plagiarism here, no copy/paste and no breaking of any of the other unwritten rules that it's possible to break, which is a shame because I don't see anything wrong with what you've written, and although you've penned it in a fictional style, I would have to say that I have seen the scenarios you describe on numerous occasions.

You could try talking to them and asking why they downvoted you, appeal to their better judgment, perhaps? I don't have a problem with people being downvoted for doing something wrong. If there were not a financial element attached to all this, I probably wouldn't have an issue with downvoting because the work was not liked, but when there's a financial impact, we're in a whole different ball game IMO.

If anything cannot withstand scrutiny or criticism, then maybe it should fall.

I can think of nothing worse than defending a lie. Usually, in these situations, you'd be accused of being a Troll, Toxic, Tearing it down, anything to shut you up. It's a dangerous precedent to use the downvote weapon to stop people from saying what they like on a supposedly free platform. We should all be free to question everything and everyone without fear of reprisals or "Losing your mates."

First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

-- Pastor Martin Niemöller 1946

I always have and always will live by this rule.


Wow, I wasn't expecting you to go to such lengths, but I'm super grateful, thank you!

I could question it further, but looks, sounds, and feels like I "got downvoted by the whim of a whale", which is a thing that can happen, and although I don't feel my piece comes anywhere near justifying such a thing, I'm at peace wit it and feel I've 'gotten answers to my question' at this point.

As for their motivation, perhaps they want to discourage quality content like mine? Or get me to move back to centralized platforms? Maybe they simply misclicked? I could seek to discover their motivation but my gut tells me just to let it go.

Fortunately some of the community stepped in to restore the rewards on this post in their own way ( @comet.ranker tipped 50 Hive and @dudeontheweb tipped 0.25 HBD), which I'm hugely thankful for and shows the power of the community to offset a whale when they band together. Only thing really missing is the nice 'rewards number' in the corner of my post so people would click on it more.

Anyway, I love the lines you've quoted and resonate with them. I'm all for discussion especially if it's 'mature', civil, and constructive, and I encourage the questioning of anything as well. Without questions there are no answers. :)

To conclude, thank you again so much for putting in the time and effort to find more about this, and for the validation that my piece didn't deserve it. You brought a smile to my day, and I appreciate it.

P.S. @mattclarke has been here a while and seen @alexanova scared off the platform, perhaps he knows more about this? Or @dandays or @nonameslefttouse may be able to shed insight? Either way, I'll just move on and let it be what it is, lol.) 🙏

I just saw this and barely skimmed backward enough to see what you guys are talking about. We have several hours left fostering these puppies but didn't want you to think I missed the memo.


All good bro, it was just a small curiosity I thought you might know more about. :) And since those adorable puppies are clearly a fantastic way to spend several hours, I highly encourage your fostering. #KeepRyzing :) 🙏

I wrote this in my notepad by the way since it's so got dang lengthy

Funny, I wrote 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦'𝘴 𝘢 𝘣𝘪𝘨 𝘥𝘪𝘧𝘧𝘦𝘳𝘦𝘯𝘤𝘦 𝘣𝘦𝘵𝘸𝘦𝘦𝘯 𝘱𝘭𝘢𝘨𝘪𝘢𝘳𝘪𝘴𝘮 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘺𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘪𝘴 𝘢 𝘳𝘦𝘮𝘪𝘹 and then continued reading. Scratch that. Now I have to tell a Rappers Delight story. I doubt this is what you asked for but it's what you get when you get me.

Yard sale, I'm a regular back in the day—record shopping. I used to turn records, ok, ready? My buddy is behind me, the crate says "Vinyl - $1." I thumb and thumb and thumb (similar to now) and find Rappers Delight, the "original." I got excited, "Josh, check it out!" "Eh," the chick running the thing said "oh that one's $5." Funny. Where was I?

I keep forgetting to ask your editing process, there's gotta be more than one of you doing it. Lengthy ass content like that and only one typo is'fa king impressive.

This is lengthy already and I've yet to address your question but you're like.. 'lengthy, pshh!'

Is saying Einstein is genius a cliche or profundity or neither? Hashtag rhetorical. All I mean is back in the racing days when if you got caught cheating, you sacrificed points, they'd like you to believe cheaters never win. I hear mothers tell their kids that shit, look'em right in the eye and say it when I know for a fact the best cheater always wins. Cliche/profundity, remember, it's the first question in this paragraph.

Dear RyzeOnline.

Just as I didn't have to say everything I just said, I also don't have to explain to each producer why I Upvote their content. Dude I've never had a downvote near as substantial as the one you received here so it's like me telling you what it's like having children. I can not tell you what that's like. Understand my perceptive is altered from yours but I've never required explanation when whales Upvote me. I'm silently appreciative. However, we expect explanations when things don't go our way and, at the end of the day, expectations are not mandatory.

I didn't go through all 145 comments cuz I think 45 minutes on one piece is record breaking so someone might've said it already. Considering the message here, as twisted as what I'm about to say may sound, dude the only better example I could think of to put a period at the end of your story is a little bit more and zero that fucker out completely.

"Yellow and blue makes green." Bullshit, show me. "Downvotes suck!" Damn... you ain't bullshittin!

You could try talking to them and asking why they downvoted you, appeal to their better judgment, perhaps?

They probably just need a hug from their mommy.

So it's one account that downvoted you. They just happen to be a whale. I note that they are upvoting a lot more than they downvote. Do you demand that someone justifies a big upvote for you? That will be taking a share of the pool that others cannot have and some will wonder why. We have no specific obligations as users of Hive and don't have to justify what we do. That's part of the freedom. This person may just have disagreed with you, but as far as I know it's a long-time whale who is not afraid to stir things up. They have used other accounts before.

You should be used to Hive being the wild west by now. You can strike gold or you can have your cattle stolen by rustlers. Just be happy if it's more of the former. I see people complain about a downvote (at length) when they still made decent money. But it can happen that some large account takes against you. I do downvote what I consider abuse, but I try to avoid feuds and vendettas.

 2 months ago (edited)

Yes, I gathered most of that from @dickturpin already, and now it's 'extra-confirmed' by yourself. So, thank you. :)

I demanded nothing and obligated no one. I expressed simple curiosity to someone who seemed friendly and knowledgeable. In fact, I'm surprised you even revisited this post, and found this particular thread in order to interject. Interesting. :)

Regardless, I agree with you on all points, and have never suggested otherwise. In fact, I've written my agreement on this issue many times, specifically my post on abuse, my post on censorship, and my post on trolls, thousands of extremely articulate, poignant, well-crafted words on the topic, if you're interested. ;)

I've been talking to 'dick' about it. He is put off by some of the negative stuff even if that's a small part of Hive. We have all sorts of people are some enjoy attacking others with impunity. Those affected often write a sob story post striking back that may only make things worse. I see people who do deal with real abuse getting attacked in such posts as bullies. They are human and may react negatively to that.

Hive is a microcosm that may not have a representative selection of humanity. It will attract people with strong/extreme opinions who enjoy some conflict. I would hope it can grow to reduce their impact, but we cannot afford to scare off good people with infighting.

I have seen some of your previous posts, but be aware that not everyone has time to read thousands of words on such topics. Some people get pretty verbose in the comments and so those can be even longer. I tend to concentrate on posts around my own interests and I support those.

I agree with all this, and have even written (quite expertly) on long vs. short content, multiple times.

And I expect everyone to concentrate on posts around their own interests. It'd be quite silly otherwise, lol. Imagine people concentrating on posts utterly NOT their own interests.

Being aware of that, your multiple comments on this post, as well as discussing with 'dick' and then revisiting to address me here... seemed a fairly clear sign that the issues discussed here (and which I took the time to link above) align with your interests-- but if they're too long, detailed, or nuanced for you, or you simply prefer more bite-sized content, I totally understand. To each their own. Wishing you a great day. 🙏

I get dragged into some things against my better judgement :)

Do you demand that someone justifies a big upvote for you?

Someone giving you money and someone taking money from you are (not) exactly the same.

Both are about distribution of rewards.

the same exact principles apply IRL

every dollar you spend increases liquidity, causing my saved dollars to lose value

I don't spend any dollars :) Much bigger pool of money involved anyway.


A great take, on "all things HIVE", and certainly qualifiable for a #thoughtfuldailypost. Having been on the chain, since 2017, I have seen many scenarios at play. I have helped several people "redeem" themselves (or try to anyway) from their actions... At the end of the day, we probably all could think of situations like this. I have inadvertently nominated myself as a "Mediator" of sorts, being in 100 Discord Groups, as well as being a Moderator for The Terminal. I have stepped in many times to help others, even when I shouldn't have. But that's how I was raised. I feel it needs to be mentioned or "remembered", that we are all humans here... behind these screens, keyboards, and devices. For whatever reason we are all here, it makes things so much easier, if we are all singing the same song... yes?

I appreciate what you do... and thank you for such a "neutral" and positive (dare I say comical and great) response to a very real topic.


!LUV @tipu curate !WINE !giphy Respect

Thanks so much for this wonderful comment @wesphilbin , hugely appreciated and I'm honored you feel it's #thoughtfuldailypost worthy. I can tell you've got loads of experience and insight to share, and I hugely respect all you contribute to the platform (have since I was introduced to you). I love how willing you are to help, and believe Hive would do well to onboard more people like yourself if at all possible.

we are all humans here... behind these screens, keyboards, and devices. For whatever reason we are all here, it makes things so much easier, if we are all singing the same song... yes?

Absolutely. My sentiments as well, and I'm very grateful you resonated with my neutral/positive take on things (I'll take 'comical' and 'great' happily as well). Thanks for the luv, wine, curation, gifs, respect, and sharing it with others. Wishing you a great day! 🙏

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Seconded. (And epic gif!) 🙏






@ryzeonline, you've been given LUV from @wesphilbin.

Check the LUV in your H-E wallet. (3/10)


Great article, @ryzeonline!

Persecution complexes are a thing that can arise from misunderstandings, and then you have some legit witchhunts that occur too. There are also some sociopathic types on the platform that will wrongfully misuse their power because they can. And these folks can give HIVE as a social media platform a bad name. I'm hoping one day we'll be able to innovate beyond that so that we become less niche, more popular, and people will want to stay.

Sometimes it's easier for your average user to be unfeeling towards individuals who get targeted by whales with ill intent. However, when the shoe is on the other foot, that's when it's most easy to put yourself in someone else's shoes. But it's a two-way street, building self-awareness and recognizing abusive behavior, even when one might be powerless to do much against it. Sometimes the powerful can get away with abusing others because they've harnessed the fear to silence those who would have otherwise spoken were they not cowed into intimidation.

Mathematically speaking, sociopaths only make up a tiny fraction of the population. However, these types are also power-seeking and thus may be over-represented percentage-wise as whales on the platform. And this might be why HIVE cannot seem to fix the antisocial problems that drive many away.


Thanks, @thoughts-in-time ! You raise excellent points about persecution complexes & sociopathic behavior possibly being over-represented, and giving Hive a bad name. I too hope we're able to innovate beyond that so people will want to stay.

Sometimes it's easier for your average user to be unfeeling

This gets to the heart of many issues, I'd say. People out of touch with their emotions, the emotions of others, and having compassion during moments of friction.

Thanks so much for your insights and contribution here. Wishing you a great day! 🙏

 2 months ago 

Wow you are the master of engagement in HIVE. What a lot of comments...

We act based on our memories. Those who come to Hive bring memories from other social networks and apply the same habits. Those who don't come with a mentor may have a hard time. Of course, when we talk about blogging. Applications like Splinterlands or NFTShowroom have simpler dynamics and fewer rules.

Those of us who have time in Hive act from our memories in Steem. There we saw how abuse destroyed good content and spam overshadowed original creations. Based on that experience, we take care of Hive, so that it does not become what it was or is, Steem.

Here we have a big difference with respect to other platforms where everything is shared and it is not considered plagiarism. Here it is monetized. In Youtube for example, if you commit plagiarism they take away the monetization and most of them don't even explain it to you. Here we also remove the monetization and I don't think we have to explain every downvote for plagiarism. It is logical that we are not going to reward material from someone who is not even on Hive.

As the saying goes: Ignorance of the rule does not exempt its compliance. It is everyone's duty to take responsibility, both for their money and their actions here. That is why you should read a lot and look for what is accepted.

It is true that the "rules" are a bit "hidden" and I agree that they should be more visible, even a notice before posting that asks you if this content is yours and if you have doubts, click on "read more".

It takes a lot of work on that, on the part of the dapps. I haven't read all the comments but I sense that this post is inspired by a true story. Regarding labels, I've always seen a lot of overreaction to this. I don't see the drama in someone being wrong. If you incise on abusing tags, with a downvote you shouldn't do it anymore, I don't see the reason to get into heated discussions.

In Hive we have a delicate ecosystem, with a reward pool that needs to be taken care of. That should be understood by the newcomers. Likewise, most of the time you can tell who is acting intentionally and premeditated. When this is not the case, you can correct and give second chances. Many of those who have worked against abuse here, for years, know how to distinguish (almost always) intentionality. Although it is true that due to so many cases, you may be a bit biased and defensive.

This post is great for raising the debate, thanks for posting it.

Note. check out the battle that Ryze Mech won 😄.

Thanks for the kind words! It still doesn't top all the comments I got on my Hive Marketing Post, but it's definitely a good amount, lol.

I agree, most people act from their memories and past experiences. As for the 'money' issue, I've addressed it heavily in various other comments, since everyone keeps bringing it up, lol.

It is true that the "rules" are a bit "hidden" and I agree that they should be more visible,

This is a huge point, and your proposed solution is a step in the right direction, I'd say. I've programmed apps and games before, and popping up a notice to posters is such a simple coding task.

This post was inspired by many true stories, one of them was even linked by Emma, another is from @purpinay 's recent controversy on her posts, another is from @wil.metcalfe 's experiences, and on and on.

I don't see the reason to get into heated discussions.

This is largely what Emma was getting at in the story. Less heat, less militancy, less draconian responses.

may be a bit biased and defensive.

You make a great point here. The thing is, this is one of the most unacceptable traits to have in moderators or police. It's like having an accountant who is 'bad with numbers' or a writer who is 'bad with words.'

Thanks so much for sharing your insights here, very interesting, I'm glad you found my post good for raising debate (yours about comments was good for that too), and wishing you a great day!

P.S. Ryze Mech is crushing it, piercing through all the armor! (Though that Centauri Mage did a great job front-lining and protecting him, lol!)

P.P.S. Did you ever read Emma's Splinterlands Guide?

 2 months ago 

I did read it, it was great, although I didn't finish it hahahaha. I have a lot of half finished posts of yours, when I'm on vacation I'll complete them. Why is that? 🤣

lol, well, I'm glad you got part way through it. Haha, I guess I have to make them more of a 'page-turner' or one of those 'books-you-cant-put-down.'


Split em out into parts. keeping the reading time around 5-10 minutes, cuz you know, attention span and such.

Yeah, thanks for the suggestion. I've considered it before, and have even split many of my posts into two parts because Hive's character limit forced me to... but if I did much more then people would probably accuse of me of trying to 'milk votes' when it could've been all one article or something.

Anyway, if people can watch/pause hour-long movies, read books using bookmarks, etc., I'll trust they're grown-up enough to read my posts in their own way, on their own time.

I post a lot shorter content on twitter/Instagram though, plus Project Blank's supposed to be coming soon, so who knows, maybe I'll end up doing this anyway. 🙏

If only there were a simple solution to everything. 😉 As usual you've touched on practically every side that makes this such a complex topic. I recognise all the scenarios you present, as these conversations have happened so often before and I'll wager they'll continue to happen.

I think there are multiple scenarios of what people think Hive should be and few of them gel with each other. I often question whether people really do want to onboard the masses, or if they do, they want it in a way where they aren't all trying to be content creators, but content consumers on the whole. From what a lot of the big accounts have said, I feel like their ideal would be to attract great content creators here who will bring along their followers to invest and upvote content.

Unfortunately, a lot of what we are getting are people from countries who can't afford to invest, so they attempt to make as much content as they can (often it's mediocre to awful or so amazing it's not theirs) and withdraw their rewards to spend. When the price of Hive goes up, these accounts flood in and a lot of them plagiarise. I sometimes wonder if those dealing with them just get fed up with it and report all plagiarism to HiveWatchers to make life easier for themselves, despite the fact that it's usually pretty easy to tell if it's a genuine newby mistake or blatent plagiarism. I'll admit that the are times when I've come across a new account my first touts are: "here we go again..." but I always read through first and avoid jumping to conclusions. Sadly, my low expectations are more often met than not.

I must confess that just today I came upon a new account that had posted numerous times in less than 24hrs and each one I checked was lifted from a different website, so I reported it to HiveWatchers. If they were all coming from one site them I'd have asked them to verify if that was their blog and advise them on sourcing and not posting too frequently.

Once again an entertaining read.

Yes! If only! ;)

I do aim to get as full a picture covering all sides as possible, so I'm happy to hear that shines through.

I agree with your take on things. I've written about attracting 'big' or 'great' content creators to Hive in my hive marketing post and it's sequel. Talented content creators generally go where the audiences are, if Hive wants to attract them despite not having a huge user-base to offer them, it's doable, but a tall order and requires some fairly specific approaches, which I could advise upon, if anyone invited my input.

get fed up with it and report all plagiarism to HiveWatchers to make life easier for themselves

That wouldn't surprise me in the slightest, but apathetic, burned-out, or lazy action will never lead to fantastic desired results, so it's not recommended.

it's usually pretty easy to tell if it's a genuine newby mistake or blatent plagiarism.

That's exactly how Emma feels about it. :)

but I always read through first and avoid jumping to conclusions.

I have a lot of respect for this approach, good on ya, and I'm glad you're so diligent and precise when assessing new accounts. Hive definitely benefits a lot from your presence and contribution, and I personally have enjoyed all our interactions so far. You rock, and I appreciate you. I'm glad you found it an entertaining read, and wish you a great day!🙏

This is a very thoughtful piece, and I really can sympathize with both Cass and the whales.

The whales have seen so many people come in and take everything they can from Hive. They want to protect this wonderful place from thieves.

Cass is a new member who is excited about joining, and making her first posts. She is going to make mistakes. But they won't be intentional or repeated.

I wonder, how can we find a solution acceptable to both the whales and Cass?


Thanks for saying so, I aimed for thoughtful, so I'm glad that shone through. And I love that you're seeking a solution that's acceptable to both sides. That's exactly what I hoped people would do. You rock, thanks for the pizza, and wishing you a great day! 🙏

Thanks so much for the kind words ♥️

I don't see why it has to end badly, so long as the one who broke the rules is willing to change. It only makes sense to punish someone until they have learned. Punishment is about removing the bad habit and preventing it from ever happening again, after all.

By the way, I just met a new member, this is their second post :)

The first was a short intro, asking for help. I think this one needs some help to avoid those landmines you mentioned :)

 2 months ago (edited)

My pleasure, thank you as well.

I agree, it doesn't have to end badly at all, but from the tone certain parties offer up, you might conclude that they're aiming for such an outcome regardless, lol.

I guess it depends if people are focused on rehabilitation as a solution or if ostracization or ejection is preferred.

Usually @lovesniper or other wonderful Hivers discover new accounts like that and give them a warm welcome and a pointer in the right direction. Many people even link my Hive guide to newbies. I wish landmines on no one. :) 🙏

Thanks, I'll give the link - and go meet your friend too :) It was good that in this case, the intro won't cause any problem. The Freewrite community is very welcoming, and I am positive that both posts actually would have been accepted happily. Seeing that we are encouraged to use any of the past word prompts, I'm pretty sure one of them must have been in there somewhere 🤣


Hope you enjoy, and yes good in this case, freewrite is very welcoming, and lol regarding past prompts, true. Thanks for the pizza and alive! 🙏

@ryzeonline! I sent you a slice of $PIZZA on behalf of @wrestlingdesires.

Learn more about $PIZZA Token at (2/10)


You Are Alive and have been rewarded with 0.1 ALIVE tokens from the We Are Alive Tribe, and it's paid for by the earnings on, swing by our daily chat any time you want.


@ryzeonline! I sent you a slice of $PIZZA on behalf of @wrestlingdesires.

Learn more about $PIZZA Token at (1/10)


This is such a good piece of writing! The interchange was quite entertaining and contained much valuable food-for-thought about this topic, so KUDOS all around! ✨

Thanks so much @thekittygirl , I really appreciate kind words like this, and I'm thrilled you enjoyed the piece. You're a light on this platform, so kudos to you too! 🙏

This was orgasmic. 💯 from me. Things like this happen all too often with the puffed up power tripping keyboard warriors around here. The only thing I disagree with is them taking her rewards. They took nothing as it wasn't hers yet. They may have adjusted it prior to payout, but there was no taking or theft. Highly disagree with the treatment of newbies in that manner though. In America, there is a 3 strike rule for law enforcement and I think the whole of #hive would do well to adopt it. Thanks for the cue @wesphilbin this was awesome.

Building Positive Bridges... it's what I do. I want us all to get the full meal deal. Raman gets old...







@enginewitty, you've been given LUV from @wesphilbin.

Check the LUV in your H-E wallet. (7/10)


Heard that man. We need full plates of spaghetti.


@wesphilbin! I sent you a slice of $PIZZA on behalf of @enginewitty.

Learn more about $PIZZA Token at (1/10)

Glad you're feelin' it man. Yeah, I don't have data on how often it happens, but it does seem to be fairly frequent.

The only thing I disagree with is them taking her rewards. They took nothing as it wasn't hers yet.

Totally agree, I didn't want to get into the technicalities of this here in the story, so I simply wrote it from the perspective of what it "feels like" to most creators, but you're right, it's simply adjustment prior-to-payout.

In America, there is a 3 strike rule for law enforcement and I think the whole of #hive would do well to adopt it.

Seconded, and thanks for swinging by and weighing in, totally appreciated, and I hope others read your comment and benefit as well. Wishing you a great day! 🙏

Thanks bro and thanks for putting this out there. Maybe the scenario will be seen by the right eyes and some action can be taken to ease the pressure on the noobs.


My pleasure, and I'd love for it to reach the right eyes. #KeepRyzing man! 🙏

I could probably go to any post on this blockchain and call out plagiarism based on some arbitrary standard of some sort. As an example, I could use the standard set for one course I took at a university. Basically if all references are not cited using APA citation it will be considered plagiarism. It doesn't matter if it used MLA citation, it will still be considered plagiarised when it comes to grading (voting) time.

Ironically, in this example from my university course, these same professors would fail to provide proper credit to his/her graduate students (a.k.a. slaves) for their work on his PowerPoint presentations that they put together for presentation in class. In fact, I don't recall any of my college professors doing this. Hypocrites!😀

This particular argument is why I have changed my thoughts on the Hive token finally moving off the social frontends of the blockchain. Frontends need to come up with their own token tied to Hive through Hive Engine, or have no token at all, completely up to the front end owners. Then each frontend and its community can set their own standard and there will be consistency...maybe.

Lots of emotion around the financial aspect, change that up and I believe you take down the heat a notch or two across the entire blockchain when it comes to these "witchhunts".

But what do I know, nothing really. I'm just here for the social and to invest a little. Other than that, my life would still go on just fine if Hive disappeared off the face of the earth. Not going to get too spun up over any of this stuff on here anymore. Just going to create content, comment on shit I like, curate, and try and meet new people.

You make a very interesting point on what counts as plagiarism or not. Our woefully outdated copyright laws are getting overwhelmed in this digital era we live in, it wouldn't surprise if definitions and lines change more and more.

Same goes for hypocritical plagiarism by those enforcing plagiarism 'laws.'

Having front-end specific tokens is interesting. I wonder how that would impact people's behavior...

Emotion around finance is one of my least favorite things, I much prefer rational, level-headed, solution-seeking over emotional knee-jerk...well... anything. But to each their own. That said, there are earners on every social platform, and many people get angry if they earn off 'plagiarized' stuff.

I'm glad you don't get too spun out, I'm the same, it's all whatever. Thanks for weighing in, and wishing you a great day! 🙏

I much prefer rational, level-headed, solution-seeking over emotional knee-jerk...well... anything.


Having front-end specific tokens is interesting

It is and goes beyond just the behavior really. Imagine a tribe with its own token. Hive on a more micro level. Such as the #CTP community here on Hive blockchain with their own CTP token traded on the Hive Engine. It is a small thriving community that is very active and very positive.

I understand, and CTP may be a good example! At the same time, I was more thinking of 'human nature', behaviors that have been around since Neanderthal times, etc. We can get into it during walk-n-talk if you like. :) 🙏

Sounds fun!


Our woefully outdated copyright laws are getting overwhelmed in this digital era we live in, it wouldn't surprise if definitions and lines change more and more.

creatives existed long before copyright laws

you cannot copyright a recipe - and yet innovation exists in the culinary arts

you cannot copyright a shirt or a dress pattern - and yet innovation exists in the fashion industry

you cannot copyright a joke - and yet innovation exists in comedy

you cannot copyright a dictionary - and yet innovation exists in lexicography

not to mention

all patents expire after 20 years

all copyright should expire after 20 years

how many versions of the three pigs and cinderella and pinocchio exist

copyright was only created to protect CREATORS from CORPORATIONS

now copyright is used as a weapon of CORPORATIONS against CREATORS (remix-mashup-reimagine)

All excellent points to contribute to the discussion, and an easy-to-understand explanation in the linked video. Thank you again. 🙏

I think communities should be understanding with newbies, but they may also see a lot of very deliberate abuse. That can wear you down. I saw a case just yesterday where someone had copied a whole post from 'the other chain' and posted it as their introduction. It got some nice votes. Then the actual creator posted it themselves. Some good people investigated and we eventually resolved the issue. This sort of thing is happening all the time.

The rewards of Hive make it different to other platforms. We do not want abuse to be rewarded, but people will come here desperate to earn something and may break the 'rules' unintentionally. It can be hard to tell if they meant to or not. In some cases they may be previous users who created another account. It can be suspicious when they seem to know all about which tags and communities to use from the start, but maybe a friend educated them.

I do not want to drive good people away. We really do need them and so we have to find the right balance. I will only get out my pitchfork when I see it as really necessary.


I agree with you, understanding is key. And I hope 'not getting worn down' is something people aspire to, but I totally understand it can happen. It's great that you shared an example of an investigation that reached a resolution.

A few people in the comments here raised the issue of Hive's rewards playing a key role, but each time someone else pointed out that other social platforms have tons of money-making earners on them, equally subject to plagiaristic-scrutiny, so Hive's rewards may play a role, but it's not clear to me how relevant it is. Either way, your point about how tricky it is to tell a poster's intentions does seem to apply, so great insight there.

I do not want to drive good people away. We really do need them and so we have to find the right balance.

This is excellent and what I was hoping to hear, and from what I've seen so far, you do well with that personally, so thank you, and please keep up the great work. Thanks for the pizza, and wishing you a great day! 🙏