For The Love of God, Can We Finish Communities?

in #hive2 months ago


I don't post nearly as much as I used to, but I'm on Hive every single day. Mostly to do basic maintenance and curation in OnChainArt, but I'm also looking at what's going on, developments, generally trying to stay in the loop.

When I look at the current state of things on the internet, Hive is always on my mind. I think the world needs Hive. I honestly think Hive can be the answer to so many people and it goes beyond just mooning, or making some gains on the token. Censorship is seriously going ape shit in the world right now. I think the vaccine debate is a prime example. Regardless of where you fall on this issue, it's nuts how the most benign discussion about it is being totally shut down. I think this is dangerous for humanity and a huge problem for the world at large.

I think there has to be a balance between free speech and moderation, and I can't find a better solution than what we (should) have on Hive.

  • The blockchain itself is totally censorship resistant and nobody has control over what's added.
  • Frontends are the first line of moderation and should probably be reserved for content that is illegal (child porn, etc.)
  • Overall community moderation(user downvotes) can be used for spam and abusive content.
  • Communities and muting is the final layer of moderation for making content relevant and keeping a good user experience.

Here we have the potential to have the best of everything. At the end of the day if you have some REALLY fringe content that the VAST majority of people disagree with, but it's not illegal, for relatively little money, you can spin up your own condenser based frontend that is exclusively for your community content and have a censorship free experience. It's easy to focus on the edge cases of the worst use cases of this, but I think if it were all easy and accessible, the vast majority of people would use it for content that is not those fringe edge cases, since most people are not fringe edge cases.


We are still using the incomplete version of the Communities design. The original design planned for multiple types of communities. I'm too lazy to look this up, but I think I know them by heart. Excuse any inaccuracies, but I believe it goes

  • A Community where anyone can post, and anyone can comment (What we currently have)
  • A Community where only whitelisted Authors can post and anyone can comment
  • A Community where only whitelisted Authors can post and comment

These additional features at the surface might seem to only add a little additional functionality, but I think the difference is actually HUGE in terms of the additional use cases you get with these additional features. For example...

One of the problems with web 2.0 social media is the signal to noise ratio is ridiculous. This design for Communities is unique as far as I know on the internet for consolidating information from varied sources. It's up to THE PEOPLE to moderate the signal to noise ratio and everyone would have equal rights to a crack at this. Let people compete on an even playing field for people's attention, trust, and engagement. I think this is FAR better than the status quo and the world is screaming for it.

Seriously, what's it going to take? I can't imagine we can't scrape together the money to make this happen. Are people not understanding that this is a valuable addition? WTF are we waiting for?

As an add on to the end of this rant. Muting is also still broken. Not as in I can't mute posts in my Community, but after I mute a post, I can't see which posts I muted. This has been broken for months.


Alright, that's the end of this rant. I think this everyday, so now you get to hear it. Let me know your thoughts below.


Amen! I do hold out hope as there are flickers that communities are still on the radar. I can’t recall exactly when/where but I know a few months back there was discussion and some seeming progress, perhaps in one of the regularly recorded developers meetings? Then of course everything pivoted to the most recent hardfork, etc. and I haven’t heard much since. I just hope there’s at least one person on Blocktrades team pushing communities forward!

I think the original design specs were even more ambitious than your summary, incorporating who could view community content as well as post it. Truly private communities using encryption/memo keys would be incredible and along with automated beneficiary percentages for community content and things like the new recurring transfers feature enable a completely decentralized Patreon replacement!

I just hope there’s at least one person on Blocktrades team pushing communities forward!

LoL, so much for "decentralization" of development, can't rely on one group of devs who have been around since day 1 (of steem).. just saying.

We don't tho. The community pays for howo to do development, and lots of people not on blocktrades team contribute to code. You yourself could contribute. Why talk down to a group of people that have willingly stepped up to do work and dismiss so many hard working people like they haven't accomplished anything? Feeling bad about yourself is one thing, but projecting onto all these other people is lame

Say what? I was replying to the comment about blocktrades that someone else made. I don't feel I was talking down to anyone.. but ok

Yes, I used the wrong preposition and it changed the meaning quite a bit. I meant to refer to talking down about those people that have all worked hard and contributed, not "to" them. Putting down their works. Dismissing their efforts. Publicly dismissing all the work they have done and continue to do. Some phrasing like that

Yea I dare not even dream that big. I'd be overjoyed with just the basic design.

build hive engine tokens into communities

A Community where only whitelisted Authors can post and anyone can comment

I would love this.

Yeah sadly we just don't seem to have anyone willing and able to work on the backend of communities since steemit Inc. Which means it hasn't been touched for upgrades in 18 months.

Perhaps we need to find outside help and bribe them with proposal money perhaps?

I think there was someone who came into developer chat asking what would be best to work on and @blocktrades and @howo told him to look into getting good at hivemind development but not sure what ever happened with that.

Each time I look at peakd visitor analytics i realize just how important communities are.

Here's to hoping.

In my opinion, it would be a mistake to start this work before we complete HAF work. The next step in hivemind's evolution is to port it to HAF. After that, it should be no big deal for someone to enhance communities further.

You've probably said this in one of your update posts, but what's the ETA on completion of HAF work?

I'm hopeful it will be ready before the end of the month.

Also, @howo has previously expressed plans to continue work on communities, as I recall from discussions with you and others in mattermost and gitlab.

Yep, I plan on working on it after RC delegations

Can anyone at least spec it out so the community could take steps to hire someone? Like I wouldn't even know where to start. I don't know the skills required, the scope of the work, the technical side of anything that goes into it, etc. I don't have the technical knowledge, but I'd be willing to contribute to the pot to get things paid for and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

There is an other important option that's not working, it's not related directly with communities, but with tags and number of comments. I already wrote about that, but it will be good if someone more influenced to write about that, that's easy to do I guess. I mean this one :

It's always nice to know about the most active tags, usually tags can be related to a community. The most commented tags and the most rewarded. That will help for sure, many curators and community leaders and moderators to have a picture of what's going on. I hope that will work. That's always empty, even in other front ends.

Maybe @quochuy can investigate this on

I will check the code but I feel like it could be data that are not provided by the API anymore.

By all APIs you mean ? that is.
Still need to investigate, but since that page does not work on the other frontend either, that means it's probably not just the Condenser.

While it obviously is bad to have pages just not working like this, there is a better option on PeakD with their new search. Have you tried that out? It actually works really well.

I don't use peakd a lot, but I know that the tag page is not working there at all, you can check it yourself :

The same about ecency :

I hope that will be fixed, at least in

It’s okay to express yourself. At least this will bring about incredible changes to the system.

For The Love of God, Can We Finish Communities?
WTF are we waiting for?

Not until other projects come out with their version of tokenized communities as Hive fades into obscurity. Then, communities on here can be finished and miss the entire ship that sailed.

See SMTs, DeFi, etc. Seems to be the trend anyhow.

I keep stumbling into you being a grouch. Is everything okay at home?
Just joking around...

No happiness allowed!

jarvie mentioned some more cool stuff that should be added to communities some time ago, but he also mentioned that it was not worked on communities for the last 2 HF.

not sure is anyone working on the code right now.

I'm pretty sure this is not the first time you've ranted about this XD

Philosophically I think any pushback will be a resistance to censorship that is taken to the most absurd extremes (the kind where people decide that anyone who disagrees with their opinion or whatever else they're is somehow oppressing and censoring them which is super easy to stretch into they're being censored because someone actively doesn't want to listen to them for whatever reason).

Technically there may be some back end stuff that's making implementing some of those changes "interesting" (when I did use to do dev stuff, there were times when something that "shouldn't take too long" according to people that had no idea how anything worked but at the idea level seemed "easy" enough, would require a significant refactor if not burn the whole thing down and try again which I sometimes wanted to do but couldn't for whatever reason).

And there's the time factor; if it's not a full time job and there isn't a large or at least cohesive team working on a big project (you probably have more experience than I do in this general area), it's just going to take forever no matter what anyone wants. I think you're right and that we wouldn't have trouble scraping the money together, I feel like it may be more finding people who are able and willing to put in the work to get it done.

and that mute thing is a bit of a problem isn't it x_x

Every now and then my rants escape from my head onto the computer. I think the real problem is literally no one is working on it.

Hence my last comment about finding the money being much less of an issue than finding people both able and willing to put in the time and the effort :)

That's a good idea. Perhaps a different name from Communities.

Maybe something like Clan and/or Company, that give the creator possibility to whitelist writers and close or not people comments...

100% agree with this!

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Great post.

yep, needs to be done!

I have to admit, I am slowly moving back because of how slow things are moving. (I've stopped posting for the most part, and haven't bought any more tokens)

I feel like by the time people know about Hive and all the promises are fulfilled it will be too late because someone else will have done it in the meantime who is better at promotion. That would be a shame.

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The only problem I see with these sites is if the majority of wealthy ppl ( which rly is a quite small circle) decide they are pro vaccine etc they can shut posts down and essentially shadow ban them anywyas. I rly would love to see downvote only being used for spam and plagerism.

Well if you have good distribution then that shouldn't happen. Also if you create a community you have more moderation controls. In the absolute worst case scenario you could simply launch your own frontend for your community, and create a community token. That way you decide the distribution and even if you were largely shut down on the main chain you could still have your own community where you and your members hold all the power.