Interview 1354 - Dan Dicks on Steemit, DTube, and the Alt Media

04/11/201835 Comments

In this inaugural edition of the Social Media Alternatives series we talk to Dan Dicks of Press For Truth about how Steemit and DTube are helping independent media fund their journalism in this age of GooTube demonetization, Facebook censorship and Twitter shadowbans.

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  1. Octium says:

    Well it looks like Dan has swallowed the cool-aid.

    By steemit requiring your phone number it would allow organsiations like the IRS to link your ID to the blockcains and therefore identify your posts, opinions or income from it and any other services linked to it.

    I don’t believe a verification process is required to stop people abusing the credit system. They could simply offer as an option to sign up without credit (no phone option) and give people options to transfer credit into their accounts from exchanges if they wanted.

    They are using plausible deniability to justify collecting data as Google has perfected down to a fine art.

    Personally I don’t think solutions like this are really alternative solutions at all. In fact their growing popularity could actually block genuine solutions evolving.

    I also don’t like the pyramid style of marketing where they have encouraged a few well known people to promote it by ensuring that do well from it.

    • Duck says:

      You have a point though I’d argue
      a)Its pretty easy to bypass by borrowing a buddies phone
      b)The IRS are not really going to be profiling your opinions unless your a megaDoner for “the wrong side”
      c) Your Browser is likely TRACKING YOU RIGHT NOW. If your using any normal kind of browser its screaming your location and IP address and maybe a device ID to folks like google as well as (probibly) telling them a list of every website you visited in the last “x” hours.
      If your worried about the Government tracking you your pretty much screwed… the tec writer Lunduke has a talk about it from Linuxfest, YTube “their watching Your” and “Lunduke” to see it if your interested.
      He’s pretty funny but dead serious on his topic…even has slides of the new NSA data center and a rough estimate of how much data they could hold there.
      Pretty much if your commenting here now, having subscribed, the folks at the NSA already know who you are. If your just visiting and not subscribed they at the least know yur location and device identity. I guess you could only use starbucks wi-fi for privacy but… ;(
      I would hazard a guess the folks at the payment companies have a pretty good idea of that stuff too.
      Your right about the system of rewards being slanted so that a few bigger players could end up with all the money and/or attention. I have often thought that the people whos job it is to corrall people like to
      A)divide them into smaller groups that dont communicate with each other and
      B)Build up some people over others so that the nodes of activity can be monitored and steered gently into harmlessness

    • HomeRemedySupply says:

      I understand there are plus points and negative points about Steemit.
      Cryptocurrencies suffer positive and negative aspects also.

      Many alternatives have their good aspects and bad aspects.

      the KEYNOTE is the trend towards alternative platforms.
      We are in a new era. A new era where folks are uniting to disconnect from the system.

      As time goes on, I am confident that better and better formats will evolve.
      Man loves his freedom. (Unless he has already been dumbed down and beat down.)

      In the meantime, despite their failings, I support alternatives to the system.

      From someone who has tried and started many, many, many business models, I can tell you that not every one of those will be a winner. And the ones which are winners may not have a long shelf life.
      But I salute the guys who give it a go.

      • Duck says:

        “the KEYNOTE is the trend towards alternative platforms.
        We are in a new era…”
        In many ways thats true however saying “… folks are uniting to disconnect from the system…” is false in the sense that while we have a ton more ability to do so IF WE CHOOSE the percentage of the population doing so is small. I would say it may be shrinking as a % as older folks die off and the narcissism generation who grew up in prison-like schools and are used to posting everything online becomes more active.
        These people really DONT CARE when you tell them windows 10 sends a list of every photo or doc they look at back to the microsoft servers…they have apathy and learned helplessness.
        Being just a ‘regular joe’ nowadays makes it actually HARDER to have privacy and freedom since you need to choose to use the tools to hide what was once just un-knowable for big brother in the sense it wasnt economic to track everyone.
        I hate to say it but MOST people DONT generally value or love freedom except in what it gives them in material comfort… if they knew freedom gave them all the good things we enjoy now they would care. If you try to market freedom to people as having intrinsic value (rather then making their lives better in easily definable ways) most will NOT BUY and instead choose a horrible abusive Pimp/parent state that gives them the promise of free stuff and love.
        If your selling freedom you must do it in terms of how it makes peoples lives better in easily defined material ways
        Honest truth is the Soviet Bloc didnt fall because people hated totalitarianism, it failed because they couldnt make washing machines and TV’s and cars that people knew we were getting here in the west.

        • HomeRemedySupply says:

          Duck says:
          …MOST people DONT generally value or love freedom except in what it gives them in material comfort.

          You are so right.
          It is disheartening.

          The way I see it, part of my personal purpose is to help change that perspective, even if it is in little ways. Such as my interactions with others. To do otherwise, feeds the machine.

    • colin786 says:

      I agree with Octium. I watched an interview by Jason Goodman of Crowd Source the Truth with Tone Vays, ( which pretty much convinced me that the Steemit business model is unsustainable and is distorted in favour of the founders, a kind of ponzi scheme, but where they encourage a few users to be successful, which act as window-dressing to bring in other content providers. This Dan Dicks seems to be one of these few who make a lot of money, but the vast majority earn very little, and free commenting is discouraged by censoring unwanted points of view.

  2. manbearpig says:

    Well I’m just an old hairy geezer speakin’ only from the interview and not from any experience at all with steemit or or steemit blockchain or whatever but though it can certainly be used for constructive purposes:

    Sounds like a great way to get the otherwise more alternative people into the habit of thumbing each other up or down in some fashion, into the whole e-image peer pressure thing, chasing approval for steem dollars or whatever…

    paying folks to get into the Chinese social credit system mentality, proving their sincerity, their trustworthiness…Skinner’s probably jubilating in e-heaven… But perhaps that’s inevitable now on cyber space… where humans will be spending more and more time…

  3. I Shot Santa says:

    Personally, I’m not worried about the phone number being used against me. If someone really wanted to throw me under a bus, they have more than enough data gathered to do so. It’s not like you can’t be tracked electronically, either. However, the possibility of rewards for your comments should discourage trolls. Also, I like the idea of people being rewarded for finding good posts. So yeah, there are downsides to it, but is the forum worth the risk? The internet is going to be clamped down on soon, might as well state your position while it’s here. JimBob who don’t like nobody coming at him sideways and all.

  4. mik says:

    Steemit dollars, ok, anyone can emit his own money and use it however he likes.
    But I can’t understand how you can exchange them and get real dollars. OK, funny money if you want that can never the less buy you a loaf of bread.

    Or put it the other way, how does Steemit achieve Balance of Payments?

    Obviously someone is providing BTC so Dan Dicks can get dollars out of Steemit and I’m sure many people are doing just the same. Therefore, there must be constant influx of BTC to Steemit.

    I see no logic here. Maybe someone can explain the mystery.

    • Mark K. P. says:

      well since you seem to understand that our monetary system is more or less entirely funny money (privately created through a conspiracy between financiers and their stooges in government), the rest should follow logically.
      Money is a means of exchange. Period. Its intrinsic potential success depends upon it efficacy and usefulness as a means of exchange.
      People want to use crypto-currencies in large numbers, therefore its a successful currency and according to economic logic exchangable with ant other successful currency.

      Or do you mean you dont understand government tolerance (to date) of crypto-currencies when they are created by agencies independent from the present financial ruling class ?
      I guess this can be answered in two ways ; its contextual advanced technology. Even most financiers, who really call the shots, dont yet comprehend the full implications of block chain (which may well spell the doom of old style financial institutions), while on the other hand crypto-currencies bundled with block chain accounting systems are blazing a trail in cyber space trading, expanding the boundaries of commerce and enhancing its conduct. Its a great experiment from which the ruling cleptocrats suspect that they may have a lot to gain, but they arent sure. So its this uncertainty or experimental epoch which constrains them from suppressing new money which they dont own and control.
      The other point is that there’s no certainty who actually creates the crypto-currencies. So at least some of them could be the traditional bankster orgs.

      It could be that when/if financiers eventually attempt to suppress crypto-currency its independent creators and present owners will promote the use of block chain to suppress traditional financial institutions. Depending upon relative power in the market place. Might sound crazy but remember that the success of the current cleptocracy is built on the bedrock of silence about money creation. Most people just dont know that governments no longer issue money and that it has become the privilege of a tiny class. Indeed the greatest privilege in all history in an age superficially devoted to liberty and equality. So if this topic ever enters the public arena as a major debating point the current regime may well fall, and quickly too

      • Duck says:

        Mark K
        I’d upvote you on steemit- good post.
        The reason most people don’t know that money is no longer issued by Government is because most people DON’T CARE.
        The reason they dont care is that their money buys real ‘stuff’ they need or want. As long as it does that to Some degree people will accept things like inflation and ‘BanksterBonuses’ and all the rest.
        People will only care about the ‘economy’ when it is directly causing them pain- probably LOTS of pain before they take notice.
        The only way crypto money will ever be care about by normal folks is when they can buy stuff with it. Unless that happens it wont replace anything.

        • Mark K. P. says:

          I like most of your posts Duck, but disagree here. Its risky business when your propaganda machinery is churning out liberty + equality memes coupled with death chants against privilege while the owners of the machinery have carved out for themselves an hereditary and uniquely privileged position.
          A great deal of money and effort is expended keeping the history and day to day reality of the modern (post 1694) monetary system out of the public discourse and out of the education system. The aim and necessity is to keep the educated and activist type folk ignorant, not the naturally ignorant and indolent.

          • Duck says:

            Mark K
            Thanks, I learn more from people pointing out my errors.
            Since your agreeing on the subject of the ignorant and indolent not caring about money as an “idea” I’m assuming you disagree that they will accept the parasite class stealing their savings/retirement.
            I think that they will AS LONG as they dont see how the trick (inflation/loss of property rights/outsourcing/rigged pension schemes) is being worked, so you are 100% right that the aim is to keep them in distracted ignorance.
            I guess we just disagree how successful those in power will be?
            The educated folks and the activists are not (IMO) the same thing… the educated and smart folks often have very saleable skills that make them immune from the worst of the inflation (for a while…) while the activist class is as often from lower social/economic levels. I think they get run in circles by deliberate shilling and steering of their movements (Occupy without doubt and the tea party i think) into wasted action that changes nothing.
            The violent groups that are funded and encouraged to attack other groups are fragmented and weak minded and would/will be easily crushed whenever those in power decide to bring the hammer down. The KKK broke like a stick when the FBI was told to break them. The IRA was heavily infiltrated and steered.
            Your right that its a dangerous game to play stiring up ethnic and political hatred, but its the game the Brits played all around the world, successfully using armed minority locals to police and put down the majority. It ended in horrible bloodshed later on, but the price was paid by people other then policy makers ;( Psycopaths dont always think about long term stuff

            • I Shot Santa says:

              The educated folks and the activists are not (IMO) the same thing… the educated and smart folks often have very saleable skills that make them immune from the worst of the inflation (for a while…) while the activist class is as often from lower social/economic levels. I think they get run in circles by deliberate shilling and steering of their movements (Occupy without doubt and the tea party i think) into wasted action that changes nothing.

              Caution: That comment made too much sense. Unfortunately. But really, educated/smart doesn’t really translate into money or skills. I like to think I’m smart. I have a paper that also says I have a graduate degree, so I guess I’m educated. Yet, I’m poor. I have long abandoned my saleable skills as well. I just can’t really get excited about money when I know I can get anything I need without it.

      • mik says:

        Mark K. P.,

        So many words but you still didn’t touch the problem.

        Any money has its own domain and its value is connected to its usefulness. Sometimes one particular instance of money cannot be used for purchasing some goods because supplier want different instance of money. Therefore you have to exchange money you have for money you need.

        Every monetary domain should have balanced “Balance of payments” i.e. exits from monetary domain should be balanced with entries, at least to some extent.
        If this condition is not met, value of money starts to fluctuate.

        With Steemit$ you can’t buy anything (as far as I know), its domain is Steemit platform, so its usefulness is close to zero and its value should be the same.

        But somehow, someone is willing to buy worthless Steemit$ and pay in BTC, that on the other hand is proved to have some Real Value. Of course in the process, Steemit$ also received some value.

        For me the question is, who is so irrational to buy worthless things?
        You can say it is an investment and then the question is, who is investor? Sugar-daddy?

        Try to imagine, Steemit start to demand payment from audience or from authors. I’m pretty sure they would fail miserably.
        How they finance their expenses?
        I see no viable business model in Steemit without a kind of sugar-daddy.

        • Mark K. P. says:

          possibly its present domain is Steemit because the latter is just starting up, still in beta. But it’s still a crypto-currency bundled with block-chain and there’s no instrinsic difference between handing out a new currency for participation and opposed to data “mining”. You have to have a strategy to get a new currency flowing.
          At this stage the value of Steemit$ lies in its potential, as with any any crypto-currency following the phenomenal success of Bitcoin. If its still not buying anything directly a year or two from now you’d have a good point, but not now.

          Also notable that somebodi(es) are offering precisely a Bitcoin exchange, not bankster currencies. Even though it’s easy enough to convert Bitcoin to the latter (there’s now a business in my town which offers cash for bitcoin). Unlike bankster currencies, which gradually lose value by their very nature, Bitcoin has gained it into the stratosphere, so somebodi(es), and perhaps many people, have made some pretty handsome profits from it ; giving plenty of margin to risk investing in other crypto-currency models that have yet to prove themselves individually

          • mik says:

            You are talking a lot about crypto-currencies and block chain in general but less about Steemit.

            There is something fishy about Steemit in my opinion. It would be nice that Dan, James or someone else check claims of some commentaries here that Steemit is kind of exclusive club.

            I’m not surprised about BTC success. For years it had huge publicity in alternative media and also mainstream media. For years BTC and funny money domains are connected through exchange. It’s not Joe Sixpack that contributed much to BTC stratospheric rise. People with deep pockets did, most probably some of them with banksters attitude.

            “… many people, have made some pretty handsome profits from it ; giving plenty of margin to risk investing in other crypto-currency ….”

            Risk investment is for people who can afford it and for lunnies.
            Investing in Steemit (selling BTC for Steemit$) is far riskier than investing in BTC some years ago.
            Steemit is emitting new money all the time.

      • HomeRemedySupply says:

        Mark K. P. says:
        Money is a means of exchange. Period.

        Most people just dont know that governments no longer issue money and that it has become the privilege of a tiny class.

  5. dreadeutsch says:

    I have a beef with Steemit. I have tried 3 times to sign up (because I wanted to post an article I wrote) and three times I failed to be approved, I cannot imagine why, and there is no way to contact them to complain about this, no way at all.

    • Mark K. P. says:

      wow that’s interesting. Maybe you already need to have a social media history and profile to be allowed to play. I’ll try joining myself and let you know (never used twitter, was on facebook for about 4 months maybe six years ago)

  6. dreadeutsch says:

    No, signing up for Steemit does not just require a phone number; it requires a CELL phone number. A land line does not work. Fuck you Steemit.

    • Nevertheless says:

      Exactly, anytime someone asks for something that can identify me directly, I am out.

      • Duck says:

        Who are you worried about ID’ing you?
        I dont mean to be sarcastic, I’m seriously asking, because commenting here on this site you ARE EASILY FINDABLE by the Government (if they have an interest) and your web browser is PROBABLY chock full of cookies that tell other websites (inc ones that do know who you are if you buy stuff online) you visit that you have been here.
        If you have Windows 10 it is sending data about what you do on that PC (inc .they say, what pics and docs you open) somewhere out on the net.
        The internet is no longer a place where anyone is anonymous unless they decide to do some serious extra work.
        That said what are you scared of? If they start locking up folks for posting comments and reading articles it’d be to late to worry.

  7. HomeRemedySupply says:

    Steemit and D-Tube are a new frontier for me.
    I’ll delve into it as time allows.

    I am old and slow on trying the new gizmos and stuff.
    I waited on getting a computer, until many of my friends were already doing emails. I wrote letters instead.
    About six months ago, I finally got a “Smart phone”, like others have.
    I get younger folks to walk me through things.
    Bitcoin – I only bought 2 or 3 years ago, because I needed some Bitcoin to place a 9/11 Event ad that only accepted Bitcoin (The Observer Ad censorship campaign by credit cards). It took me all night to get some. I’m glad I got some then.

  8. illbnice2u2 says:

    I joined Steemit but have not been able to post and can’t figure out the problem. Confused.

  9. woodshed says:

    JAMES CHECK THIS OUT! – Major Evidence Syrian Chemical Attack Staged by US-backed Terrorists
    Blackstone Intelligence Network

  10. 9tH says:

    there is a notification about my post here, telling me it is awaiting moderation? what exactly is that?

  11. Nevertheless says:

    I went to Steemit, and went to join, but balked when they requested my phone number “for a quick text”, anything trying to sound so innocuous never is.

  12. Markus O'hilleus says:

    There is no need to give any personal information to Steemit. You can purchase an account anonymously from 3rd parties using a number of different crypto currencies. It’s right in their FAQ.

    I signed up for a regular Steemit account for my work and it took over a week to get it approved. Then I used BlockTrades to anonymously purchase an account for personal use and it took minutes.

  13. anonymint says:

    The video was fairly well balanced. However, I must throw ice on the notion that Steem is decentralized and for the benefit of the users.

    Dan Dicks seems to not be aware (at least at the time of the interview) that virtual phone numbers can be obtained for free in bulk quantities these days. Thus, phone numbers and email addresses verify nothing.

    There is evidence:

    Steemit, Inc (aka STINC) may be surreptitiously allowing the creation of up to 8000 signups per day many or maybe even most of which are fake accounts. Thus possibly awarding up to 120,000 STEEM POWER tokens per day to some nefarious group, which might even be themselves obscured behind sockpuppets.

    There is another new blog with a video that explains some of the nefarious history of Steem:

    I have several comments on the above linked blog which add my perspective of the issue.

    In particular I would like to draw attention to my scoop given my interaction since 2013 with some of the key players:

  14. bazanted says:

    well i cant even get the DTube page, from the above link, to load. i could understand when using Palemoon browser (which merely informs me ‘Done’) as it’s a bit alternative. but even MS IE11 does absolutely nothing except show the icon in the bar.
    Also, if using a firewall IP notifier/blocker like Peerblock, when going to Steemit com i get a ‘can’t establish connection’ problem due to routing through Haliburton Company, e.g. the ‘Cloud’.
    Furthermore, the text on the site may actually be on their blockchain but all the content is on the w.w.Cloud. Same old same old
    Personally i don’t spend much time on Steemit, except for the obvious favorites, James and a few others, it bores me.

  15. colin786 says:

    In response to the Ryan Charles interview, but which is relevant here too, I would say that this is a discussion about value. We pay for Google, Youtube, Facebook etc., perhaps not always directly, but by working with the mainstream, which can include everybody, but you kind of take pot-luck on the quality. There is a price on everything. I pay for my site for example through WordPress like this one, by having greater control over what appears or does not appear.

    At the moment, the wave is to exclude or downgrade a noticeable proportion of non-conformists, but these cycles are rather like the economic cycles, they come and go with a certain regularity, more or less liberal, more or less income, with harder times obliging people to look for alternatives, and to get out of their comfort zone.

    Minority sites, such as Yours-org, have limited readership. However, I often reflect that it all depends on the audience one is trying to reach. Sometimes we only need to affect a few people, which may or may not be through a broad channel.

    One good thing, at least from my point of view, is that James is able to reach a reasonably large portion of the population, in alternative media terms, and at a low price to us, for what we see as good quality material.1

  16. senge says:

    Listening to the interview it all sounds like an interesting alternative, block chain and all… But to me those steem tokens smell of an even bigger dopamine hit than a “like”.

    And the funny thing is exactly that prospect got me thinking about joining steemit in the first place. But with my need to communicate I doubt, that I would create any income whatsoever…

  17. anonymint says:

    Apologies for a double-post in this thread. I think the a recent comment post ties in most of the history and research on Steem that I’m aware of.

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