I miss the days when Steem was all about content creators and content curators. Today, it's become a free market for opportunists and developers. There's still some great content here, but few care to reward them anymore. This is understandable, of course, the crypto world revolves around greed, and it's clear where the money is. But that also means, this is no longer the right platform for people like me, who joined Steem for content.
Today, a vast majority of the active Steem Power has been delegated out to vote buying services, developers, and SP rentals. Curators have been squeezed out of the reward pool. Established curation projects like steemSTEM and OCD have minimal delegations, while others like Curie have no delegations at all. Combined with the high SBD price, self-voting has gone through the roof. A year ago, 0.42% of all votes were self-votes. Today, this figure is up an alarming 1,600% to 7%. Mind you, this is all votes - this is perhaps even more dramatic when considering only top level posts. Who could blame them, of course? It's orders of magnitude more profitable to lease SP indiscriminately.
In a nutshell, this has become a platform openly hostile to content creators and curators.
The question, then, does a social platform on a blockchain that pays money for content even make sense? There are two options here -
a) Probably not. This will become a niche market of crypto speculation and opportunism. It'll thrive, probably be a multi-billion dollar blockchain, but it'll never be about content. As an investor, that's quite alright.
b) This is just a fad, and it'll revert back to the good old content-centric days. Hivemind/Communities will be a solid product, be managed well, and Steemit Inc will start delegating to curators just as much as developers. SMTs will ignite several communities.
All the evidence suggests b) is delusional at this stage, and a) is the way that Steem, and indeed, all blockchain projects are headed. I have seen a slow and long descent down this trajectory and don't see any signs of reversal. Still, there's a glimmer of hope things will get better.
Till then, this is no longer the platform for me. Should I leave Steem? Probably. But am I giving up just yet? Not really. Even a small amount of the reward pool allocated to content creators and curators is better than nothing.
(PS: I do get the feeling some have misread my narrative here. So, I should do the responsible thing and point out just as well - Steem is a unique platform with massive potential. I go on this rant only because I believe in Steem. I'm not going anywhere!)