For several months now I have been working as a referee for the Sports Talk Social tribe.
It is a great place where you can post, converse, and share your love of sports. If you enjoy sports and you haven't checked it out, you definitely should.
With the advent of #newsteem and the death of bidbots, unfortunately users have found new ways to abuse the system. We I first started being a "Ref", I thought it was going to be people plagiarizing or incorrectly sourcing images.
Sadly, I am beginning to find that it is much more than that. Vote farms, comment farms, circle jerking, and tag abuse are just a few of the major issues that have come to light.
The sad thing is, it isn't just the Sports Talk Social tribe that this is happening in. It almost seems that the people who are perpetrating this abuse just move from one tribe to another milking it for all it is worth. Once they get caught or banned, they move along to the next tribe and start all over again.
There are some referee's that put a ton of time and effort into tracking down each of these abusers. I do the best I can, but I really want to commend those on our team that go above and beyond. Referee's are voted for based on stake so that users of the platform get to have a say in who they want to be officiating.
Sports Talk Social has some agreements with other tribes like Actifit and Dlike so that users can cross post their content on both platforms (the sportstalk tag gets added automatically). This has made it difficult as a ref because some users don't realize in the process of spamming the Dlike or Actifit tribe they are also spamming ours.
More recently, some of the leadership of these other tribes have reached out to us to have us ban or "bench" known abusers to them.
Users are typically given warnings so they can change their behavior before we take action to bench them.
I think it would be really cool if the tribes could work together in some way to create a sort of Global Blacklist of users that are known to abuse the system. This might give the moderators and officials of each tribe a way to keep an eye out for should they start hopping and doing the same thing.
I know some platforms just don't care. The curation rewards are too good for them to question the abuse that is going on. I also understand there is a fine line between blacklisting and censorship or witch hunting.
The worst thing would be for STEEM to become a victim of something in the vein of "McCarthyism"
What do you think? Should there be more collaboration between tribes to cut down on abuse or do you think that is against the spirit of STEEM?
I'd love to see a healthy conversation about this in the comments!