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Author Topic: disgust, at how people r using merit-related threads for merit farming  (Read 271 times)
Wind_Crypto
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February 16, 2018, 08:32:20 PM
Last edit: February 17, 2018, 07:48:54 AM by Wind_Crypto
Merited by DarkStar_ (4), Kemarit (2), iasenko (1), vlad230 (1)
 #1

Newcomer here, joined in dec, got blocked by the implementation of the merit system in lvling up.

My response? I tried to adhere to the SPIRIT of the merit system and spent some hours writing up 'good quality' (imo anyway) posts.

Such as this one, which tried to clear up the air abt how what blockchain v. 1 vs 2 vs 3 vs 4 means...
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2934856.msg30156883#msg30156883.

Or this one, which tries to 'educate' beginners abt the benefits of hedging and how to go abt doing it (comes with free excel simulations too)...
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2956302.msg30343731#msg30343731

Or say this one, where I tried to suggest a feasible enhancement for the merits system.
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2938208.msg30179058#msg30179058

So how many merits am I at now?
1 ... a bit dismal, but yes maybe I'm just largely unlucky that these posts go unnoticed. I'm OK really.

But what makes my temper flare, is how some members are using merits related posts to farm merit. They create an attractive thread name, write a FEW lines about how people shdn't complain abt the merits system, that it's the next best thing to be invented since air-con, and how improving writing/english will naturally lead to merit awards. Dude, even an idiot knows this. And i see some of these posts geting 50 to >100 merits. Either some senior members only want to hear the GOOD stuff (which i highly doubt so), or this is the most blatant merit-farming i've ever seen.

Pls stop. Even if u're trying to find a valid reason to award ur junior account from ur higher-ranking ones, go write a serious educational post, abt ur trading experience, abt some new awesome ico project or even on ur views on crypto outlook for the year. Whatever, as long as it really helps the community.

For myself, I'll keep trying. Newcomers like me, don't give up. Keep writing, we'll pull through together. Smiley


[Edited: P.S. Any senior member who intended to award the post merit and sees this -> pls don't, it was a partial rant out of angst. Will continue writing 'good' posts elsewhere. Comments are always welcomed though, thanks.]

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February 16, 2018, 08:50:54 PM
 #2

Or this one, which tries to 'educate' beginners abt the benefits of hedging and how to go abt doing it (comes with free excel simulations too)...
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2956302.msg30343731#msg30343731

This is a great post! Very valuable information. You should post it in the Speculation board, where you'll find more people interested in the topic and therefore more apt to reward your for the quality and the contribution.


But what makes my temper flare, is how some members are using merits related posts to farm merit. They create an attractive thread name, write a FEW lines about how people shdn't complain abt the merits system, that it's the next best thing to be invented since air-con, and how improving writing/english will naturally lead to merit awards. Dude, even an idiot knows this. And i see some of these posts geting 50 to >100 merits. Either some senior members only want to hear the GOOD stuff (which i highly doubt so), or this is the most blatant merit-farming i've ever seen.

For myself, I'll keep trying. Newcomers like me, don't give up. Keep writing, we'll pull through together. Smiley

I don't get your "merit-farming" comment. But part of the "game" that is getting merit is posting the quality topic in a space where people are looking for merit-worthy posts. Meta, obviously, has be come a hip place for this because of the topic of Merit...which is ironic. The merit system created more spam in Meta.

If you have a quality topic, be very intentional in where you post it so you get the most views possible and thus the most opportunity for the merit reward.

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February 16, 2018, 08:59:47 PM
Merited by DarkStar_ (1)
 #3

Not that I'm disagreeing with you here, but your threads have around 20 views each. Its not that your content isn't good, its just that there wasn't much exposure. I'm assuming what you posted was quickly buried in the altcoin discussion section, and either because there wasn't much for people to add to the thread, so discussion didn't keep it bumped, or just because of the volume of threads burying it was so massive, people didn't see or merit it.

The reason people are trying to merit farm in Meta, is because it typically takes a while for a thread to reach the second page, and the moderators are a bit more careful about deleting things in Meta. Of course, after the 200th merit thread a few weeks after its introduction, our caution starts wearing thin, and the trashcan gets taken out and replaced with a dumpster to make room for the things that dont deserve a 5th thread about.

Just because you don't get merit for good posts, doesn't mean you should stop posting well. It helps improve the overall quality of the forum. Quality topics and replies are easier for other people to respond with quality.

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February 16, 2018, 09:00:22 PM
 #4

By merit-farming (ok, maybe not the correct term), what I meant was that these are probably folks with multiple accounts, using their higher-ranked ones to award their lower-ranked ones, through posts which sing praises about the system and have no real value add whatsoever.

Anyway, just noticed. Thanks for the merit point mate, appreciate it. And yes, will re-post in the suggested thread, thanks for the recommendation and pointers.

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February 16, 2018, 09:03:22 PM
 #5

The merit system makes it exceptionally difficult to rank up.  I think the amount of shareable merit should be replenished more frequently.
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February 16, 2018, 09:07:16 PM
 #6

@SaltySpitoon, thanks for taking the time to reply.

Yours and @HabBear's words helped me increase my understanding of how posting works. Will try to be more targeted next time.


P.S. Any senior member who intended to award the post merit and sees this -> pls don't, it was a partial rant out of angst, and I probably shouldn't be earning merits this way. Will continue writing 'good' posts elsewhere. Comments are always welcomed though, thanks.  

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February 16, 2018, 09:08:28 PM
 #7

The merit system makes it exceptionally difficult to rank up.  I think the amount of shareable merit should be replenished more frequently.
That's right, It's not easy to get some merit points unless you post high quality contents, otherwise you can't get a single merit point. It's true that the new system makes it difficult to rank up, but everyone should try to improve his posts to gain merit. But, I think the only problem is that a lot of good posts than the ones posted by OP had didn't merited until now.
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February 16, 2018, 09:26:39 PM
 #8

I checked your posts are they are indeed good Smiley I have merited you, don't have a lot to spare though...  Embarrassed

Indeed someone who called it out, I have suspected this was the case for some time now.

I understand the need for the merit system but as I said in previous posts, it's not working well for good posts...at least right now... Hopefully when the initial merit will ran out and the merit will come only from merit sources whom understand the purpose of the merit system and what posts deserve merits, only then we will have a chance.

Until then check out how harassing people gets you merit points: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2927993.msg30066577#msg30066577
Interesting, huh?  Huh
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February 16, 2018, 10:06:52 PM
Merited by hilariousetc (5)
 #9

Well, first of all, this is a bad way to end your posts:

[Share some merit if u found this useful, thanks! Hard for noobs to level up these days:)]

[P.s. Newcomer trying to lvl up here. Merits welcomed if you found this post helpful.Smiley]

I myself have a firm general policy of never awarding merit to a post which asks for it.  That’s in poor taste, at best.  It doesn’t matter whether whether the post has substance, or is just begging.

Based on this, I doubt you be begging or fishing for merit:

P.S. Any senior member who intended to award the post merit and sees this -> pls don't, it was a partial rant out of angst, and I probably shouldn't be earning merits this way. Will continue writing 'good' posts elsewhere. Comments are always welcomed though, thanks. 

However, I still would not award merit to a post which ended by asking for merit.

(N.b. that none of my own posts has ever done so—and look at how much merit I’ve earned.  No, really.  It’s not necessary.)

Now, as for the substance of your posts:  I believe you suffer the problem of not being a fair judge of your own posts.  Considering here in turn the three examples you provide:

Such as this one, which tried to clear up the air abt how what blockchain v. 1 vs 2 vs 3 vs 4 means...
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2934856.msg30156883#msg30156883.

Well, you see, many hardcore Bitcoiners (the ones with plenty of sMerit to give) will think that post is flat-out wrong—just frivolous hype!  The moment I see anything saying “Blockchain 2.0” or whatever, I stop reading.  To illustrate by contrast, this is an example of a post to which I myself awarded merit, by a Jr. Member with 42 activity who joined on 27 January 2018:

Muh blockchain! Muh decentralization! Bitcoin is old and broken!


You forget that bitcoin has:

1) The largest brand recognition
2) The largest merchant acceptance
3) The largest public/consumer acceptance
4) The largest regulatory acceptance
5) The world's highest hashrate, making it the most secure network there is (not vulnerable to a 51% attack)
6) Not controlled by a central body, no godlike deities who can dictate development procedures (ie. Vitalik Buterin)

Also, blockchain without currency is useless. And bitcoin is the best and most stable blockchain-based currency as of now.

Each point is right on the money, although this post’s author forgot to mention that unlike Blockchain 10.0 trashcoins, Bitcoin Core has the best developers.  (I will forgive her.  She’s new here.)

Unmeritorious as your Blockchain n.0 is in concept, your “Blockchain 2.0” and “Blockchain 3.0” were smart contracts and “DAPPs”, respectively.  Here is an example of a post (by a Legendary) to which I awarded merit earlier today:

Just my 2 Satoshis: I've disliked Ethereum ever since their one Unique Selling Point ("code is law" for smart contracts) got thrown out of the window after The DAO failed so hard they had to abandon their core principles and hardfork to get their money back. It proved that smart contracts are worthless if you don't understand them, which makes them worthless for almost everybody. In the case of The DAO, even the developers didn't understand the code, the only person who understood it was called "the attacker". Ironic!

In my reply to that, I mentioned cutting-edge research into mathematically provable smart contracts for Bitcoin; I suggest you go read.

N.b. that the foregoing is not about whether I “agree” with your post.  I sometimes award merit to posts I disagree with, but which I believe to be cogent and well-informed.  Rather, I think the post you uphold as an example is ill-informed and misleading—based on hype, and spreading it.  I would not award merit for that.

Now, on to the next one:

Or this one, which tries to 'educate' beginners abt the benefits of hedging and how to go abt doing it (comes with free excel simulations too)...
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2956302.msg30343731#msg30343731

Again, not something which will even remotely interest Bitcoiners.  I’ve never speculated on the altcoin market.  (I have owned exactly one altcoin—a privacy coin I bought into for ideological and practical reasons, not for speculative “investment”.)  I’ve therefore never needed to hedge.  Indeed, I think the best altcoin “hedging” advice is given by the personal text (also signature) of JayJuanGee:  “How much alt coin diversification is necessary? 0%”.  That makes me wish I could award merit to personal text.

Or say this one, where I tried to suggest a feasible enhancement for the merits system.
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2938208.msg30179058#msg30179058

Mildly interesting.  Surely well-intended.  I actually saw that when it was posted.  But I don’t believe the idea is very well thought out.  “Likes” are cheap; the merit system is intended to be meaningful.  The system you propose does not look workable to me, for various practical reasons I don’t think are worthwhile to spend time discussing.  And then, there’s this:

I sincerely believe having some form of complementary channel for rank-up will help ease some of the tension between old/new members simply due to the challenge of ranking up and will prove beneficial for btctalk over the longer-term.

I don’t think there is any problem with “tension between old/new members”.  I say that as a relatively new, low-ranked member myself.  Mostly, I see the “tense” people as whiners.  The merit system needs to not give a damn about those; otherwise, the idea of “merit” is per se meaningless, and the system will fail.

Now, this I deem meritorious:

But what makes my temper flare, is how some members are using merits related posts to farm merit. They create an attractive thread name, write a FEW lines about how people shdn't complain abt the merits system, that it's the next best thing to be invented since air-con, and how improving writing/english will naturally lead to merit awards. Dude, even an idiot knows this. And i see some of these posts geting 50 to >100 merits. Either some senior members only want to hear the GOOD stuff (which i highly doubt so), or this is the most blatant merit-farming i've ever seen.

If you made a post saying only that, it would get merit from me!  I am sickened by the transparently obsequious flatterers who try to game a system they obviously hate by showering it with fake praise.  And uselessly obvious advice is just that.  (I myself have partly drafted an advice post on how to earn merit; but as you may imagine, it says something more than “write better English”.)

Also, this is generally the right attitude:

Pls stop. Even if u're trying to find a valid reason to award ur junior account from ur higher-ranking ones, go write a serious educational post, abt ur trading experience, abt some new awesome ico project or even on ur views on crypto outlook for the year. Whatever, as long as it really helps the community.

For myself, I'll keep trying. Newcomers like me, don't give up. Keep writing, we'll pull through together. Smiley

I wish I could split your post in half.  Awarding merit is, among other things, an endorsement of the basic validity of the post; it is especially so on the technical forums, but in some degree here, too.  I would award merit to half your OP in this thread; but the other half presents altcoin junk I don’t want my name associated with, etc.  Too bad.

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February 17, 2018, 01:32:36 AM
 #10

I understand the need for the merit system but as I said in previous posts, it's not working well for good posts...at least right now... Hopefully when the initial merit will ran out and the merit will come only from merit sources whom understand the purpose of the merit system and what posts deserve merits, only then we will have a chance.

Thanks vlad230! i'm also hoping more active merit sources (eventually) will fulfill the system's original intention. I think there's a good chance of that we'll start seeing that over the next two months. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Until then check out how harassing people gets you merit points: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2927993.msg30066577#msg30066577
Interesting, huh?  Huh

i'm really speechless @ this. -_-"

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February 17, 2018, 01:44:08 AM
 #11

@nullius

Wow, I should just say I'm thankful for the time you took to dissect my posts/content. I really appreciate the insights you've given me for each sub-reply, but I don't exactly agree with entirely. E.g., I do believe that quite a significant proportion of forum members engage in altcoin trading. Even if these are not the members with loads of smerits, I still think it's worthwhile to produce some content which might be useful for them.

Having said that though, I think going forward I will remove that "share merits if u found this useful" line. It was originally meant as a 'reminder' of sorts, since the system is new, and some folks are not used to awarding merits yet. But if it actually increases the chance of the post being viewed as fishing for merit etc., then it sort of defeats the purpose.

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February 17, 2018, 01:57:09 AM
Merited by nullius (3)
 #12

I'm assuming what you posted was quickly buried in the altcoin discussion section,
Yep, and though I didn't take a look at OP's posts, there's also the problem of good posts being buried in a sea of shitposts.  I've seen that happen so often in bitcoin discussion, economics, and altcoin discussion.  That's the whole problem this forum has been having all along.  And I've said this in other threads:  It's not supposed to be easy to earn merit.  If it was, there would be no point in having the system.  Get used to writing constructive posts that don't earn merit. 

Suck it up and try again. 

Also, it disturbs me somewhat that members are basically saying "Oh!  I put in so much effort into this post, and no one is giving me merit points!".  In my view, people ought to be writing posts because they want to.  That's what I was doing when I joined bitcointalk, and I wasn't in a signature campaign for quite some time--when I found out what they were, it was like being able to get something for free.  These places would be paying me to post, which is what I would already be doing.  So these kinds of threads are telling me people are still here just to earn money, and not to write good posts.  I'm not surprised, but people like OP need to stop making these threads which are basically advertising all their posts that they think need merits.

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February 17, 2018, 06:15:47 AM
 #13


But what makes my temper flare, is how some members are using merits related posts to farm merit. They create an attractive thread name, write a FEW lines about how people shdn't complain abt the merits system

You mean like this one?  Grin

The merit system makes it exceptionally difficult to rank up. 

Good. And so it should. Now only exceptional posters will rank up and the forum will be dratstically better off for it.

Well, first of all, this is a bad way to end your posts:

[Share some merit if u found this useful, thanks! Hard for noobs to level up these days:)]

[P.s. Newcomer trying to lvl up here. Merits welcomed if you found this post helpful.Smiley]

I myself have a firm general policy of never awarding merit to a post which asks for it.  That’s in poor taste, at best.  It doesn’t matter whether whether the post has substance, or is just begging.

Agreed. I don't think I would leave merit on a post/thread if somebody asks for it regardless of how great the post was. This sort of practice should be frowned upon by the community or better off actually prohibited. At worst it's begging and at best it's completely redundant.

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February 17, 2018, 07:28:51 AM
Last edit: February 17, 2018, 07:47:02 AM by Wind_Crypto
 #14

Agreed. I don't think I would leave merit on a post/thread if somebody asks for it regardless of how great the post was. This sort of practice should be frowned upon by the community or better off actually prohibited. At worst it's begging and at best it's completely redundant.

@hilariousetc, I welcome the comment but it's a bit biased dun u think? if u look at the replies to some of my posts, there were several people who were appreciative, often people who are newer to the forum, and who left comments like "I would definitely have merited if I had some left xx". And to that I usually leave a comment saying "np and that we're all here to learn tog" etc. Do you honestly view this sort of interaction as 'bad' for the forum? To me, it's really just a neutral reminder of sorts, and what matters most, in the spirit of the merit system, shd still be the quality of the content.

On this note, I actually think that it's a bit unhealthy for high level folks to frown excessively on all merit-related lines. Neutral merit reminders shd not be clustered together with so-called merit begging/fishing, however the latter are defined. The terms themselves are also quite derogatory in nature. Gives off the vibes that someone high and mighty, commenting from 100 feet above, saying "shoo, go away beggar", when the reality could be quite far from that. 

Anyway, think i already sorta addressed your concerns via my replies above.

"P.S. Any senior member who intended to award the post merit and sees this -> pls don't, it was a partial rant out of angst, and I probably shouldn't be earning merits this way. Will continue writing 'good' posts elsewhere. Comments are always welcomed though, thanks."

and,

"Having said that though, I think going forward I will remove that "share merits if u found this useful" line. It was originally meant as a 'reminder' of sorts, since the system is new, and some folks are not used to awarding merits yet. But if it actually increases the chance of the post being viewed as fishing for merit etc., then it sort of defeats the purpose."

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February 26, 2018, 05:05:37 AM
 #15

You are right! The forum has been covered with hundreds / thousands of shitty-posts that probably mainly came from spammers whom only tried increasing their postcounts/ activity-counts for ranking up or satisfying signature campaigns' requirements. Consequently, it's hard to find quality posts in the forum to read. This fact makes real users of the forum disapointed and merit system solved the problem. In a word, I can say "Well done, Theymos".

Yep, and though I didn't take a look at OP's posts, there's also the problem of good posts being buried in a sea of shitposts.

Yeah, with those users, their purposes to join the forum is to get money, which has changed to get merits (because without merits they can not rank up to desired level which qualified to join campaigns). Then they asked for it, but they don't know the ruthless fact that they will get nothing by continuously, repeatedly asking for merits. Instead, they should focus on their works, and if their posts deserved merits, they will probably earn merits.
Also, it disturbs me somewhat that members are basically saying "Oh!  I put in so much effort into this post, and no one is giving me merit points!".
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