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1001  Other / Meta / DefaultTrust changes on: January 09, 2019, 06:03:26 PM
For years I've been unhappy with how DefaultTrust ended up as a centralized and largely-untouchable authority, but I was reluctant to change it because the alternatives seemed too messy. However, I've finally decided to try some changes, and we'll see how it works.

As a special exception to the normal algorithm for determining a user's trust network, if you are on the default trust list ("DT1") but more other DT1 members distrust you than explicitly trust you, then it is as if you are distrusted by the default trust list for all purposes except for this very DT1-composition determination.

So if someone on DT1 is doing something stupid, you can ask other DT1 members to distrust them.

See here for live info on this "DT voting".

You can view any page as if you were using the default trust settings by putting ;dt at the end of the URL. Eg.;u=35;dt

I will periodically (maybe every month) be reconstructing the default trust list to include everyone who matches these criteria:
 - If rank was determined solely using earned merit, then you must be of at least Member rank.
 - You must have been online sometime within the last 3 days.
 - Your trust list must include at least 10 users, not including ~distrust entries.
 - You must not be banned or manually blacklisted from selection.
 - You must have posted sometime within the last 30 days.
 - You must have at least 10 people directly trusting you each with an earned merit of at least 10, not including merit you yourself sent. These "votes" are limited.
 - You must have at least 2 people directly trusting you with an earned merit of at least 250, not including merit you yourself sent. These "votes" are limited.

Unlike the previous policy, I will not generally be trying to cultivate a good list; that will be left to the DT1 members themselves. However, I reserve the right to remove you and blacklist you from future selection if you engage in egregious and obvious abuse, or if multiple known alt accounts could be selected.

Currently not that many users are eligible. If hundreds of users would be selected in the future, I plan to instead choose a random subset of about 100 eligible users each time. This DT1 reconstruction may even automatically happen on a schedule in the future, but it doesn't currently.

A major goal of this is to allow retaliatory distrusts and ratings to actually have some chance of mattering so that contentious ratings have an actual cost. If someone is obviously scamming, then any retaliatory rating should not last long due to the DT1 "voting", but if you negative-rate someone for generally disliking them, then their retaliation against you may stick. In borderline cases, it should result in something of a political battle.

This is inspired partly by something that David Friedman said once (though I can't find the quote), that one of the requirements for a peaceful society is the credible threat of retaliation in case you are harmed. As DT was organized previously, one or both sides of a dispute was usually unable to effectively retaliate to a rating, at least via the trust system itself. Now your ability to effectively retaliate will tend to increase as you become more established in the community, which should discourage abuse generally. (Or that's the idea, at least.)

All that being said, I still discourage retaliatory ratings, and with these changes I encourage people to try to "bury the hatchet" and de-escalate rather than trying to use any increased retaliatory power you now have. Also, it's best to make your own custom list, and you must do this if you want to be on DT1.

I am never completely tied to anything, but let's try this for at least a few months and see how it works.
1002  Other / Meta / Re: Russian staff are moderating scams against the rules on: January 09, 2019, 12:07:31 PM
What happened yesterday was that Marina Uni renamed the topic to something English, moved it to an English board, and then reported it. A moderator in that board, not being aware of any of this context, then trashed it for being off-topic.

I restored it and temporarily banned Marina Uni for moving the topic to where it would be off-topic. OPs do not own the replies to their topics, and unless it is self-moderated, they have no right to have the replies deleted.
1003  Bitcoin / Development & Technical Discussion / LN annoyances on: January 08, 2019, 01:52:47 AM
Today I finished rewriting the forum's payment processing code, partially with LN acceptance in mind. I can now add LN support with only a little more work. However, I ended up deciding not to accept LN at this time because I think it'd end up being too much of a headache:

First, Internet protocol designers often underestimate the fragility of the Internet, and don't realize that DDoS protection is probably the single largest issue facing any site large enough to be noticed. You can't just expect sites to run some non-standard public-facing server like it's nothing. Most affordable anti-DDoS services don't even support anything but HTTP(S). I know how to set up an effective layer 4 anti-DDoS system on my own, having run the forum behind such a system for years, but most people can't do that, and it's a big hassle which I'm not going to endure just for LN. (In reality, if I was going to set up LN now, I'd put it on its own VPS and just not care if it gets taken down. But this isn't a good solution.)

Second, because the forum's use-case is in many ways perfect for LN, the forum's LN node could be called on to do a lot of LN routing. So I'd then become a service provider for something new that I don't have time for, where many people will be adversely affected if I decide to bring my LN node & payments down for a few days for tinkering or whatever. LN will make money across many tiny fees, but since the total value is likely to be minuscule, this'll probably be more of an accounting annoyance than anything.

So anyone who wants to accept LN payments in a fully-participating manner basically needs to enter a new side business with a whole new set of paying (but not-very-well-paying) customers who might get annoyed at you for various reasons, and a whole new set of technical concerns. This does not appeal to me...

I suspect that the only people who will accept LN payments in its current state are enthusiasts who are too small or too enthusiastic to care about those issues, plus maybe the very largest of businesses which have both the motive and ability to deal with this. For LN to see wide adoption in its current state, I'd expect it to only be through a proliferation of trusted-third-party LN-based payment processors, which is very much not ideal. In order to avoid this, I recommend one of these solutions:

 - Create a system where third-parties can trustlessly proxy incoming LN payments. It's OK if the final recipient needs to run an always-on daemon, just as long as it's not public. Bonus points if the final recipient doesn't need to open any ports, or if you can do something to allow offline recipients.
 - Restructure LN to be inherently DDoS-resistant. For example, instead of having one public node IP/onion, a unique onion with restrictive data limits could be automatically created and given to each new person you interact with (eg. included in invoices). Also, make LN refuse to route transactions by default.
 - Rather than LN, put more focus on other off-chain systems such as sidechains.
1004  Other / Politics & Society / Re: President Trump to address the "Southern Boarder" on Tuesday on: January 08, 2019, 01:20:06 AM
I can't think of how he could use an address to advance his position. The courts will block him virtually before his address is finished if he tries to build it via a national emergency, and if he just makes it a "campaign ad" for the wall, probably the relevant polling will be worse for him after the address than before.

Personally, I don't really care about the wall. It's a waste of money, but there are hundreds of examples of much more egregious wastes of money in government. If there was a deal where $26 billion of aggressive war spending was cut in order to spend $25 billion on a wall and save $1 billion, I'd be very happy with that, for example.
1005  Other / Politics & Society / Re: Trump Threatens To Keep Government Closed "For Months Or years" on: January 06, 2019, 06:57:35 AM
I think one side will cave before the end of February once federal employees really stop receiving paychecks and people don't receive their anticipated tax refunds. Probably Trump will be the one to cave (likely accepting the original $1.6 billion and calling it a win), since polling shows that most people attribute the shutdown to him. If Trump can resist the crushing political pressure for several months, Democrats might eventually give in, but the whole event could provide them with effective political ammunition against Trump even as far into the future as 2020.

I like the shutdown because it makes people think, "The government has been (partially) shut down for a long time, but the sky hasn't fallen. Maybe we can shrink government permanently." So I hope it stays shut down as long as possible.

There's also the much more meaningful debt ceiling deadline in March which Trump could try blocking, if the dispute lasts that long.
1006  Other / Meta / Re: Attention Theymos: This is a sMerit holdup! Hands in the air! on: January 06, 2019, 06:02:47 AM
The bump (or more like re-balancing) seems to be having an effect - it was ~14900-ish just a few hours ago.

Whenever a merit source's source amount is adjusted upward or downward, it is immediately completely replenished. This'll be a factor.

And yeah, my first inclination was to PM Theymos, but I've never done that, don't think he likes me all that much, and didn't think I'd get any sort of response.  I'm sure he gets tons of PMs daily, and I don't know how he responds to them.

How I handle PMs:

 - I try to at least skim all PMs. Rarely I might misplace some, but usually not.
 - If I feel ready to immediately resolve your PM, and I feel that it is a reasonable request worth my time, then I do it. Often this is replying to questions or doing simple tasks, but sometimes I'll have already been working on / thinking about it for days/weeks/months and your PM will get me to devote a few hours to finally resolving the thing right then and there. If even newbies ask questions which I consider reasonable, I usually answer!
 - If I am not ready to act on your thing, often due to uncertainty or lack of immediate time, then your issue enters my "leaky queue". Unfortunately, a lot of these things never end up getting done. (But I do try to get to the most important ones.)

You have to do a lot more than disagree with me to get me to dislike you. And even if eg. MemoryDealers came to me with some reasonable issue with his usage of the forum, I'd handle it like I would for anyone else.

It says "Administrator" under my name, not "President". Anyone is free to PM/email me.
1007  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Announcements (Altcoins) / Re: [ANN] Bitcoin Cash - Pro on-chain scaling - Cheaper fees on: January 05, 2019, 05:03:09 AM
It's amusing that grin is going to out-cash BCH, using real science instead of dumb parameter fiddling. grin can scale costlessly, and it's also reasonably private like physical cash.

In the far future, I see either a BTC-only ecosystem using various off-chain systems to scale (maybe a grin sidechain), or BTC as digital gold and grin as cash. But there's really no place for BCH's strictly inferior tech.
1008  Other / Meta / Re: Bitcointalk mass hacking... Look at seclog now! on: January 04, 2019, 10:06:39 PM
I further modified seclog.php so that by default newbies & brand-new members are hidden unless they are whitelisted, copper member, etc.
1009  Other / Meta / Re: Bitcointalk mass hacking... Look at seclog now! on: January 04, 2019, 07:30:42 PM
But what did you add and how is it connected to the woke-up of all this old accounts?

No, I mean that I just now added this stat to the page in order to illustrate that the rate is not unusual:
296 users/day in the last month, 520 users/day in the last year.

People often see the big wall of seclog events and freak out, but it's a noisy log covering 30 days, and a high number of events is normal. OP's issue is not part of any wider trend.
1010  Other / Meta / Re: Bitcointalk mass hacking... Look at seclog now! on: January 04, 2019, 06:52:53 PM
The rate is not unusual. I added an extra stat to that page.
1011  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Announcements (Altcoins) / Re: [ANN] Grin | PoW Mining | Electronic transactions for all. Community driven. on: January 04, 2019, 01:26:17 AM
What is the economic model?  I read a while back that there was something funky about it and not that appealing. 

1 grin is created per second on average, forever. Similar to XMR. Not ideal IMO, but it does tend to be deflationary long-term.
1012  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Satoshi's lesson on: January 03, 2019, 03:51:55 AM
The foundations of Bitcoin were set in stone 10 years ago today with the creation of the genesis block, and Bitcoin version 0.1 was officially released a week later. Version 0.1 was amazingly complete, and even more impressively, it had very few bugs. It also had great forward-compatibility, with explicit support for future softforks in the form of the OP_NOPn opcodes. Before anyone knew how a decentralized cryptocurrency would even work, Satoshi was figuring out how to add to Bitcoin things like smart contracts and payment channels. This is incredible, and a lot of people look at Satoshi's amazing accomplishments with Bitcoin and say stuff like, "Satoshi must be a crypto super-genius, the next Einstein." This, I think, is very much missing the point.

When Satoshi was working on Bitcoin in 2007-2009, almost all of the core ideas of Bitcoin were well-known in the cryptography community. In 1996, a summary of previous academic work on electronic cash was published, talking at length about most of the low-level cryptographic primitives used in Bitcoin and using familiar terms like "double spending". Hashcash proof-of-work was well-known, and I remember reading about it prior to Bitcoin as an idea to prevent email spam. git uses the same unbreakable chain of hashes as Bitcoin's block chain, and was first released in 2005. Satoshi made one major leap: combining all these pieces to prevent double spending through a PoW block chain. This was impressive, but the same flash of brilliance could've happened to anyone who was following this stuff.

Satoshi is not awesome because he was watching the crypto world and had a brilliant idea. He's awesome because upon having this idea, he carried it out. You know what I would've done if this idea had come to me? I probably would've mentioned it to a few people, maybe written some very basic code if I was feeling especially ambitious. You know what Satoshi did? He spent 2+ years contemplating every possible aspect of the system he could think of, and wrote code that worked brilliantly in the real world. Satoshi's code was good, but anyone who had read a good C++ book could've written similarly-good code. Anyone who had taken an intro crypto course or read a few books on the subject would understand Satoshi's usage of crypto primitives. The task of creating Bitcoin required a small flash of brilliance, moderate skill, and an unbelievably huge amount of dedication to thinking about, coding, and testing the system until it worked exactly as envisioned.

Satoshi's lesson is that you don't need to be the next Einstein in order to change the world. Nor do you need to have much money, or influence with the world's "movers & shakers". You just need to put in the effort. Satoshi, probably just an ordinary hobbyist like anyone here, saw that something was lacking in the Universe, and he fought tooth-and-nail for 2+ years until this imperfection was corrected. This is what makes Satoshi and his work my greatest inspiration.

Bitcoin has come a long way in 10 years, but it still has much more room to grow, with both major challenges and major opportunities ahead. How Bitcoin moves forward - how Satoshi's work continues - is for as many people as possible to take personal responsbility for improving the Bitcoin ecosystem, creating interesting things, and changing the world for the better. Since we've long passed the moon, I hope you'll join me in aiming for the stars.
1013  Other / Meta / Re: Posting in local boards to improve language skills? on: January 03, 2019, 12:04:48 AM
Ask the local moderators.
1014  Economy / Auctions / Advertise on this forum - Round 265 on: January 02, 2019, 02:18:23 PM
The forum sells ad space in the area beneath the first post of every topic page. This income is used primarily to cover hosting costs and to pay moderators for their work (there are many moderators, so each moderator gets only a small amount -- moderators should be seen as volunteers, not employees). Any leftover amount is typically either saved for future expenses or otherwise reinvested into the forum or the ecosystem.

Ads are allowed to contain any non-annoying HTML/CSS style. No images, JavaScript, or animation. Ads must appear 3 or fewer lines tall in my browser (Firefox, 900px wide). Ad text may not contain lies, misrepresentation, or inappropriate language. Ads may not link directly to any NSFW page. No ICOs[1], banks, funds, or anything else that a person can be said to "invest" in; I may very rarely make exceptions if you convince me that you are ultra legit, but don't count on it. Ads may be rejected for other reasons, and I may remove ads even after they are accepted.

There are 10 total ad slots which are randomly rotated. So one ad slot has a one in ten chance of appearing. Nine of the slots are for sale here. Ads appear only on topic pages with more than one post, and only for people using the default theme.


- Your ads are guaranteed to be up for at least 7 days.
- I usually try to keep ads up for no more than 8 or 9 days.
- Sometimes ads might be up for longer, but hopefully no longer than 12 days. Even if past rounds sometimes lasted for long periods of time, you should not rely on this for your ads.


Exact historical impression counts per slot:

Info about the current ad slots:

Ad blocking

Hero/Legendary members, Donators, VIPs, and moderators have the ability to disable ads. I don't expect many people to use this option. These people don't increase the impression stats for your ads.

I try to bypass Adblock Plus filters as much as possible, though this is not guaranteed. It is difficult or impossible for ABP filters to block the ad space itself without blocking posts. However, filters can match against the URLs in your links, your CSS classes and style attributes, and the HTML structure of your ads.

To prevent matches against URLs: I have some JavaScript which fixes links blocked by ABP. You must tell me if you want this for your ads. When someone with ABP and JavaScript enabled views your ads, your links are changed to a special randomized URL which redirects to your site when visited. People without ABP are unaffected, even if they don't have JavaScript enabled. The downsides are:
- ABP users will see the redirection link when they hover over the link, even if they disable ABP for the forum.
- Getting referral stats might become even more difficult.
- Some users might get a warning when redirecting from https to http.

To prevent matching on CSS classes/styles: Don't use inline CSS. I can give your ad a CSS class that is randomized on each pageload, but you must request this.

To prevent matching against your HTML structure: Use only one <a> and no other tags if possible. If your ads get blocked because of matching done on something inside of your ad, you are responsible for noticing this and giving me new ad HTML.

Designing ads

Make sure that your ads look good when you download and edit this test page:
Also read the comments in that file.

Images are not allowed no matter how they are created (CSS, SVG, or data URI). Occasionally I will make an exception for small logos and such, but you must get pre-approval from me first.

The maximum size of any one ad is 51200 bytes.

I will send you more detailed styling rules if you win slots in this auction (or upon request).

Auction rules

You must be at least a Jr Member to bid. If you are not a Jr Member and you really want to bid, you should PM me first. Tell me in the PM what you're going to advertise. You might be required to pay some amount in advance. Everyone else: Please quickly PM newbies who try to bid here to warn them against impersonation scammers.

If you have never purchased forum ad space before, and it is not blatantly obvious what you're going to advertise, say what you're going to advertise in your first bid, or tell me in a PM.

Post your bids in this thread. Prices must be stated in BTC per slot. You must state the maximum number of slots you want. When the auction ends, the highest bidders will have their slots filled until all nine slots are filled.

So if someone bids for 9 slots @ 5 BTC and this is the highest bid, then he'll get all 9 slots. If the two highest bids are 9 slots @ 4 BTC and 1 slot @ 5 BTC, then the first person will get 8 slots and the second person will get 1 slot.

The notation "2 @ 5" means 2 slots for 5 BTC each. Not 2 slots for 5 BTC total.

- When you post a bid, the bids in your previous posts are considered to be automatically canceled. You can put multiple bids in one post, however.
- All bid prices must be evenly divisible by 0.02.
- The bidding starts at 0.02.
- I will end the auction at an arbitrary time. Unless I say otherwise, I typically try to end auctions within a few days of 10 days from the time of this post, but unexpected circumstances may sometimes force me to end the auction anytime between 4 and 22 days from the start. I have a small bias toward ending auctions on Fridays, Sundays, and Mondays.
- If two people bid at the same price, the person who bid first will have his slots filled first.
- Bids are considered invalid and will be ignored if they do not specify both a price and a max quantity, or if they could not possibly win any slots

If these rules are confusing, look at some of the past forum ad auctions to see how it's done.

I reserve the right to reject bids, even days after the bid is made.

Price flattening

At the end of the auction, after the winning bids are all determined, I will do a "price flattening" operation. This has no effect on which bids actually win. For each bid, in order of lowest to greatest price/slot, I will reduce each bid's price/slot to the highest value which is equal to or only the minimum increment greater than the next-lower bid. This allows you to bid higher prices without worrying so much, but you still mustn't bid more than you're willing to pay. Example:

Slots  BTC/Slot  Person
    6      0.20       A
    1      0.16       B
    1      0.08       C
    1      0.08       D

Slots  BTC/Slot  Person
    6      0.12       A [step 4: reduced to 0.10+0.02=0.12]
    1      0.10       B [step 3: reduced to 0.08+0.02=0.10]
    1      0.08       C [step 2: same as the next-lowest, unchanged]
    1      0.08       D [step 1: the lowest bid is always unchanged]

Payment, etc.

You must pay for your slots within 24 hours of receiving the payment address. Otherwise your slots may be sold to someone else, and I might even give you a negative trust rating. I will send you the payment information via forum PM from this account ("theymos", user ID 35) after announcing the auction results in this thread. You might receive false payment information from scammers pretending to be me. They might even have somewhat similar usernames. Be careful.

[1]: For the purposes of forum ads, an ICO is any token, altcoin, or other altcoin-like thing which meets any of the following criteria: it is primarily run/backed by a company; it is substantially, fundamentally centralized in either operation or coin distribution; or it is not yet possible for two unprivileged users of the system to send coins directly to each other in a P2P way. The intention here is to allow community efforts to advertise things like Litecoin, but not to allow ICO funding, even when the ICO is disguised in various ways.
1015  Economy / Auctions / Re: Advertise on this forum - Round 264 on: January 02, 2019, 02:10:37 PM
1 @ 0.08 for BiblePay (BBP)

Investigation Thread: Are BiblePay's Charity Donations Legitimate?

Ive added an End of Year Statement from Compassion International, who has received 80%+ of our donations, and also proof that we were liked and retweeted by CEO of Compassion Jim Mellado today:

Still no.

Auction ended, final result:
Slots BTC/Person
2 0.16 FirstGlobalCredit
1 0.16 SwC_Poker
1 0.14 blenderio
5 0.14 cryptasm

(No flattening was required.)
1016  Other / Meta / Re: Bug on the merit system? on: December 29, 2018, 02:41:13 AM
I just did.

OK, now it should be impossible no matter how much you try.
1017  Bitcoin / Press / Re: [2018-12-28]Judge Denies Craig Wright's Motion to Dismiss Billion-$ BTC Lawsuit on: December 29, 2018, 01:20:23 AM
Though I support anything that puts Craigy in legal trouble I really don't get this case.

The addresses have been proven to be nothing to do with either of them -

How can someone with zero evidence their relative ever had any ownership of anything sue a pathological liar with an equal lack of evidence to match?

You can sue anyone for anything. I suppose it's not obvious enough for outright dismissal in this case.

I feel bad for the Kleimans. It sounds like CSW tried to use them as a pawn in some larger con, and now they think that they're owed millions of dollars which never existed.
1018  Other / Meta / Re: Bug on the merit system? on: December 29, 2018, 01:15:15 AM
Alright, you now can't merit the same post with the same amount within 60 seconds.
1019  Other / Meta / Re: Account recoveries are moving again on: December 29, 2018, 12:54:56 AM
Am I right assuming that appeal threads in Meta are also prohibited for permabanned users now?

No. I changed it to "Your ban message may have an email address which you can email. If not, then appeals are unlikely to be accepted."

I don't want to so blatantly encourage people to "appeal by making a topic in Meta" because that's just a ridiculous process, especially since it so rarely works.
1020  Other / Meta / Re: " is not available or authorized for sale.Do not believe any fake on: December 29, 2018, 12:48:45 AM
I’m thinking more if they change their terms and conditions and just delete your account under pressure from governments or something?

There are daily offsite backups, so only up to a day of content could be lost in that case.
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