I first heard of Smoke more than two years ago, shortly after I had joined Steem(it). It was in the Steemit Rocket.chat channels, the place where on my second or third day as a Steemian I met both @eonwarped and @raz. Eonwarped had joined Steem around that same time and Raz, well Raz is a graphene fixture. In those days also in chats.
@Tecnosgirl was also a constant presence in the Steemit Rocket.chat server. :)
One nice photo, one nice royalty-free Unsplash photo
After only some days of presence, @acid asked what I thought of Smoke. To be entirely honest, while seeing lots of potential in the Austrian model Daniel Larimer had built Steem on, I wasn’t yet entirely convinced due to the inflation pool, the bidbots era which had suddenly started to pick up, and the huge amount of bottom barrel shooting contributors.
I decided to sit out the ride and first get to know Steem better, as weaponed with years of blog network management and startup mentoring I still had to discover the potential beyond “social content” and Smoke was still in the middle of its ICO, which was a popular thing to do in that period. ICOs were in.
Eventually it happened, and little more than 9 months ago I signed up to Smoke. According to smoked exactly 280 days ago.
It would still take some time before I actively joined. I wasn’t a passionate regular smoker anymore [due to the Duterte administration where I live now] and, to be honest, I had long become a slow starter. One of those boring guys who does some due diligence before joining something and investing time in it.
After all, all those blogging and startup years resulted in many emails triggering that “When did I sign up for that service? Waddisdat? ” reaction when yet again an unknown email landed in my inbox. My original DropBox user ID is #1280, yes I belonged to the TechCrunch-crowd.
Those days have long passed though and nowadays I share my email address less easily. But smoking has been a constant in life and when I landed in South East Asia it took only few days to find the local herb and light a nice toke.
Who doesn’t enjoy a nice spliff or hitting a good bong. I know I do, so after some weeks of observing the platform and community, I started contributing.
Around three months after signing up to Smoke, on January 2nd 2019, @cannaweedness the Smoke witness operated by @eonwarped, @raz, and myself — a loose coalition of similar minded DPOS and graphene lovers — was announced after some days of test running the witness server.
As we reached our first half year as a witness on the Smoke block chain, and after a short break, it is time to return to one of our regular contests... #trippycontest. With a more Smoke focused topic this time.
#TrippyContest5: Why Are You on Smoke?
I’m Belgian. A Belgian guy with a rather
arrogant snarky assertive attitude. It wasn’t weird to hear during my youth from peers, or acquaintances from my parents that my attitude would fit better in the Netherlands. Obliging type I am — yeah, right — soon after turning adult, I hit the Netherlands and night life and the Dutch life would become a main part of my life and of who I am.
Legal [recreational] weed — or officially tolerated weed — is something I have known and enjoyed. I have seen the good and “bad” sides of it. Tourism by binge drinkers not used to Dutch quality, people getting stuck in the great Amsterdam life and eventually running out money, ending up on the streets. Similar in The Hague.
And to both, and the situation in other Dutch cities, each time I hear that argument as a reason against further tolerating legal weed, I have to call bollocks.
The crowd who end up stuck in the Netherlands don’t end up that way because of cannabis. No, they do because alcohol is cheap compared to their place. Because the Netherlands is rich in clubs and access to amphets, crack/brown, and even heroine is easy. No, don’t get me started on the “cannabis is a gateway drug” argument. It isn’t, those same people would have tried ecstasy, cokes, the synthetic amphets and anything else they wanted to try even without cannabis being available.
The greens we love so much are still stigmatized and we need to increase the advocacy level in order to get governments to listen and accept that marijuana is not worse than legal drugs like alcohol and tobacco.
Much healthier. Not to mention all cannabis health benefits.
A flock of geese
A growing community around a stigmatized subject, like the Smoke community can become a strong advocate in the fight for legalization. Often communities, especially those with potential viral mechanics like Smoke’s rewards mechanics, don’t necessarily realize the potential they can have but groups are stronger than the sum of their single components.
In Japanese there is a specific term for how organized groups can outperform themselves: gun-senryaku, which refers specificially to the behavior of birds in a flock.
“There were some stories about teamwork that I’m sure Ryan Giggs or Paul Scholes feel they heard dozens of times, like my tale about large flocks of Canada geese, which can migrate thousands of miles because of the way they work as a team. The birds take turns breaking the air at the front of the flock and, at the back, if one gets injured, a couple drop away from the flock to look after it. I was not asking them to fly for thousands of miles, I was only asking them to play 38 games of football.”
— Excerpt From “Leading: Learning from Life and My Years at Manchester United” by Alex Ferguson with Michael Moritz
Advocacy, and being surrounded also by activists, is a main reason for me to contribute to the Smoke network.
2. Building a Decentralized Ecosystem
As mentioned in the past, I have several years of background in mentoring startups. I love building. I’m a closet nerd. I constantly need a project (must read essay if you wish to gather a small insight in the mind of many a “nerd”).
Often when we speak about the Steem blockchain, most think about social media and creating content. But that is just one application of the system, probably the most apt one to use the rewards mechanics for.
But, as Daniel Larimer himself once said: rewards for content/creation are a “Trojan Horse”. Content, creation being rewarded attracts users and users in turn attract developers. An ever growing user base will eventually lead to a healthy ecosystem for the Smoke blockchain, one also taking SMOKE beyond the internet, in real life, to dispensaries and commerce.
Rewarded content is but the first step. The foundation of the ecosystem so to say. The potential to contribute to helping grow first the user base and later the ecosystem is something I want to be part of.
Especially when the ecosystem revolves around cannabis. A plant I love and want to see legally accessible for anyone, both medically and recreationally.
Being able to some day build, or stimulate the development of businesses on the Smoke network is exciting and I want to not only see that happen but also contribute to that.
Also: decentralized censor-resilience.
3. Do, Don’t Say, and Stay
While contributing and creating content/art to the network is awesome, trying to empower creators to constantly improve their craft is even more awesome.
Develop themselves, their skills, and sometimes also their staying power.
All while trying to attract new eyeballs, users to the network.
I am still growing in the (old) task of being more social online, more regularly in it and personally prefer working more in the background. It’s an awesome
chore challenge, as well as the knowledge that I will have to pick up the pace and vastly improve my game as the community grows.
Being early to the party, we are not only growing the chain’s future middle class but also the future generation of community leaders. As well as stimulating creators to bring their best and contribute window shopping quality creations.
4. It Is NOT Just About the Money
I love a good token just like I love a good toke. But the money isn’t what it isn’t about.
Contributing, participating, distributing and building the future are a much bigger motivation. Money is not always what drives people. Don’t take my word for it tho. ;)
On Smoke we breed winners
Of course, if things succeed we will all look back while we count our tokens. The possibility to be able to say that I may have helped few contributors, convinced few new members, and possibly helped some build their business on the Smoke blockchain or maybe even built an own Smoke business some day is a huge drive.
Why are you on the Smoke blockchain?
#TrippyContest5 Prizes: 930 SMOKE
This trippycontest round will be judged by the @CannaWeedness members, @eonwarped, @raz, and @unnamed. As usual, each participant is free to decide over the format of their participation: a post, a vlog, an audio contribution, a comic, a movie... you pick it, we consume it.
|4 & 5||75 SMOKE each|
- All contributions must be original
- Contributions must be Smoke exclusive
- Contributions must be published as a post on your profile
- Contributions must be the equivalent of at least 500 words “in effort” long.
- Contributions must be in English
- Contributions must be tagged #TrippyContest5
- Leave a comment with a link to your contribution on this post
- Rewards will be directly powered up to your account
- Submission deadline is Sunday, August 04, 2019 at 23.59 GMT
In our first half year as a witness, most of which as an active witness, we are proud to report a +99.9% reliability. We have on average missed merely a block every third day and while this isn’t the perfect performance, sometimes things aren’t entirely in our control. Thus we are reasonably satisfied with that performance.
We not only hope to maintain but also improve our reliability in the future, in as much as things are in our control and we do not suffer any issues with our hosting provider or its setup.
We also wish to quickly take the opportunity to thank every contributor to the smoke network and also everyone who has supported us.
While, just like the smoke community, we are still growing and have merely wet our toes... the party is yet to get started.
Thank you all and... let’s get this party started.
Let us know why YOU are on the Smoke blockchain!