Moving Forward for SportsTalkSocial and SPORTS

in #sportstalk2 years ago


If you didn't see the post earlier there was an exploit against the SPORTS token to adversely affect the economics of the distribution for a small group's advantage. This allowed the attackers to claim thousands of SPORTS prior to SPORTS's first scheduled payout date. This has given that group a deeply unfair advantage in the launch of the SPORTS token.

Despite this the community within #sportstalk has continued thriving. I've been amazed to see posts continuing to pour in and users contributing ideas on how to deal with the early issues we've faced. In the face of all these issues this has kept me motivated that this project was, and continues to be, well worth the efforts to make it a success. I'd like to say thank you for that and reaffirm my dedication to improve this site.

Fixing The Mess

After spending the last 24 hours reviewing the potential plans to move forward from this incident I've come to decide there is a solution that allows us to move forward without restarting the chain. I'm very pleased with this and believe it will allow us to return to a level where no certain group has full control over the rewards platform.

Shortly after the incident occurred my initial thinking was to stop the token chain and relaunch at 0 balances and try it again with a hotfix for posts created before the launch date. This seemed like the easiest way to cut ties to attack and move forward with a chain that hadn't faced the corruption of rewards distribution.

As the night went on things changed in my mind. I kept seeing new posts being created that were, in my opinion, of strong value. I continued to see market orders for SPORTS being placed and filled within the market. It quickly occurred to me that by making the decision to shut down I'd be taking this early community away from everyone who's already contributed. This seems to be the wrong decision as the SPORTS community has already shown value to so many others.

I believe that despite the existing influence in rewards that have been distributed that we have time to save the community. To accomplish this I have prepared new parameters for the first hardfork of the SPORTS consensus algorithm. I will also be providing a new seed round with additional tokens for users who have staked some of the initially distributed tokens. Finally the last change will be preparing a moderation network that will help alleviate any early distributions.

Hardfork 1

There are a number of changes that will be coming with the first hard fork of the consensus algorithm behind SPORTS distribution. These are aimed at improving the overall experience for all users and will help to create the long term vision we see for the platform. I have sent these parameters on to the SE team and am awaiting the opportunity to have them merged into the system.

enable_account_muting: true

This is the first tool that will enable us to stop the influence of anyone who exploited the initial distribution. By enabling account muting we will be able to mute users who attacked the chain from the @sportstalksocial account. When they are muted they will no longer have any influence on the SPORTS token distribution regardless of the number of SPORTS POWER they may have.

issue_token: true

This was mentioned in the initial announcement post as something we'd like to do in the future but wasn't planned to occur until after the first year had allowed for seeding the network in a proper way. Since we'll now be seeding potentially millions of SPORTS it's time to move past the seeding round and into the actual planned distribution. This will mean that @sportstalksocial will actually be issuing new tokens for each block reward.

rewards_token: 100

Part of the changes that will be discussed down the page is our new distribution of over one million SPORTS to users starting this weekend. This creates a new issue in that this first class of SPORTS users will be quite a bit further along than what a new user coming to the network will feel like. To alleviate that we are increasing the per block reward by 10x to 100 SPORTS a block. This means that every minute there will be 2000 new tokens released and should allow the opportunity for anyone seeking to grow a path forward.

vote_window_days: 4 / cashout_window_days: 7

We are introducing a vote window days for voting on posts. This will mean that for 96 hours after a post is created it can be upvoted from members of the community. After those first 96 hours a post will still be able to be downvoted by the community until payout occurs on the 7th day after the post. This should allow the community an opportunity to moderate a post's value before it is due to pay out.


The main issue that occurred with the exploit was that distribution was taken out of whack when a small group owned enough tokens to drastically influence rewards for everyone else. To combat this users will be able to request a SPORTS grant from @sportspartners and receive a new airdrop that will bring them up to a level where they can have an influence. To apply for a distribution from @sportspartners leave a comment here.

These grants will be distributed to users based on my own assessments. I will be taking a number of factors into consideration when supplying these funds like if a user has a past history with the #sportstalk tribe, a past history of highlighting excellent sports content within the Steem ecosystem and the recommendations of other users with positive contribution histories. I apologize that not everyone will be approved for these grants. That being said starting a new blog within the #sportstalk tag will still allow anyone the opportunity to earn far more than what a single grant would allow.


This is the entire reason for using Steem based platforms. We are essentially engaging in a conversation with like minded individuals and applying our stake within our community to account for what is important to the community. That's why this exploit was so dangerous. It supplanted the entire reason of doing this in the first place. Fortunately with the above solutions we'll be on our way to fixing it. It won't end just with those changes or this post though. That's because those behind the exploit have voted for content within the community already. This will leave their ripple of influence for ages to come.

Fortunately there are a couple of tools that are available to the community that will enable us to all combat the unfair rewards that were created over the last 36 hours. The key phrase in that last sentence being "available to the community." While I will certainly be doing my own part of looking at posts rewards it will take more than just myself to stop this. I will need everyone to be vigilant in their use of the downvote tool to remove rewards they feel are undeserved. When you combine the new SP that will be available with multiple users we'll quickly take back our Trending page.

The first tool I want to highlight has been with us since the beginning. That is that each account with SPORTS has a downvote pool with free downvotes available. That's because the SPORTS chain adopts an the idea of a downvote pool that exists outside of your voting pool. When you downvote it will use any downvote pool space available first. If you've already used all of your downvote pool then you can continue to downvote but it will subtract from your upvote pool instead. Our downvote pool regenerates completely every 5 days and allows for essentially 1 free downvote a day. Be sure to claim your SPORTS grant before moderating to ensure you have enough SPORTS POWER to combat any rewards abuse you see.

The second tool is the introduction of @sportsmod. @sportsmod is a new account that I've distributed 100,000 SPORTS POWER to for the purpose of improving our moderation. I want to be clear that this tool is only meant as a means to moderate rewards that were distributed by users who obtained an unfair advantage and is not a reflection of the value a post holds to the community at large. While this tool will have the power needed to remove all rewards that are distributed by users who benefited from the account, I personally will not have the eyeballs to track each piece down. This is another reason that the community coming together with claimed grants and free downvotes to eliminate the problem ourselves is the only real solution.

Thank you

I feel the need to say thank you again. If it weren't for your support then there's not a chance this could be a success. SPORTS will only ever be as good as what the users are bringing to the table. I have no doubt from what I've seen that we are just getting started and it's amazing what may come of this.

I would also be amiss if I didn't say a thank you to the Steem Engine team for their dedication to helping find the solutions needed. I feel I've bounced a thousand questions off @aggroed, @eonwarped and @holger80 so please show these kind souls all the love you can for their support of building this excellent resource for all Steemians.


This is great to hear and to see that it has been fixed. This chain is here to stay i believe so as many people have already falling in love with this majorly the sport lovers.
I will be applying for the grant airdrop distribution and i hope i am picked

That’s a great update! I was a bit worried about the future of this project, but the actions you will be taking has given me a lot of hope. It echoes a lot of my suggestions in my previous post. I hope there will also be some moderation on Actifit posts filling up the trending page in the future. Thanks again for your dedication to the project.

It's great to see you have come up with a solution to cut out the abusers and relaunch the project properly. I hope to get an airdrop as I am a big believer in this project and can see it adding a lot to the STEEM eco-system.

It's a shame that some people saw an epportunity to exploit the new system for their own gain but hopefully you can learn from this and keep moving forward. There will always be people out there to try and exploit what is being built so it needs to be built solidly.

I would also suggest a group of moderators with access to stake or delegation so that they can help with the moderation. Pushing good content to the top and downvoting irrelevant posts to prevent them using the site. If the site gains traction it's going to be a lot more than a one man job to keep the house in order. have a huge team with a lot of experience to build their site and community and they seem to be a good model to work from.

I'm glad you didn't start over, it's been fun and I like the new feel to this interface for sports fans! Keep up the good work, we appreciate all you have done.

i downvoted one from the trending page but now i feel bad because i downvoted his STEEM and PAL rewards also. This stuff gets confusing. lol

For now i will reverse my downvote

Yes it does get a bit confusing with so much interconnected.

So, sometimes it feels better to stake different tokens in different accounts.

I'm impressed with the creative way handled this issue, Well played! Fortunate too coz I feel this project could be revolutionary, and I sure am glad I stumbled on it's introduction post and became one of the day ones.

That sounds good!!

We should have list of offenders maybe so we know who to mute.

Thank you Patrick for saving it, you did handle this beautifully and with care! Like a true sportsman! This community will thrive, that's for sure! I just bought another 100 tokens, overpriced, but I don't care, just to show my commitment!

On the other hand, @patrickulrich, with another airdrop coming up. I will not use these tokens, as I have an unfair advantage over the rest. I'll keep, but I will unstake them.

So should i buy more or not? The ones i have bought what they worth? Whats my vote worth if anything lol im confused as f@#$

I would wait if I were you until this grant has happened, so you don’t buy at the wrong price!

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Bit late now bought a fair bit lol typical crypto lol we forgot to put a decimal payout whoops someone hacked us whoops you bought tokens might be pointless whoops. Welcome to the whoops network

Posted using Partiko Android

It is so bad that a few folks gamed the system and they are the whales now!!!

By enabling account muting we will be able to mute users who attacked the chain from the @sportstalksocial account. When they are muted they will no longer have any influence on the SPORTS token distribution regardless of the number of SPORTS POWER they may have.

This is a good move and I have some comments below where people have been downvoting the said accounts!!

I am sure these folks who gamed the system read this updates of yours and I have an idea.
How about we ask them to return all or 75% of the token they recieved and the community will welcome them!!

The problem with downvoting is that by downvoting a post on Sportstalk social UI, all the connected accounts will be affected!!! His/her Pal and Steem will be affected by the downvote!!

It is better for them to return the Sports and have a good time with the community!!!

If they don not then the mute function and downvotes will be on them until they leave Steem!!

Thanks for your hard work.
I just got to know Sports Talk yesterday, which is great.
I guess there will be many more people coming to the sportstalk in the near future. And we have to utilize all of our collective wisdom and power to make this platform fair and attractive. That is depending on we users hands. We hope we make a better move.


This post has been manually curated, resteemed
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Much love to you from all of us at @helpie!
Keep up the great work!


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Sounds like a decent plan Patrick. Can't wait to see that the sports tribe will take over palnet :)
Already feel at home here, so keep on going!

Woot! It feels great you came back with a decent plans and solutions to keep #sportstalk moving, so amazing! Thank you for the time and dedication you've put in. As well as thanks to @aggroed, @eonwarped and @holger80. You're all appreciated 🙏

I don't know what happened in the first place but is good you're working hard on the solutions. I like what I'm seeing so far champ. Keep it up!

I was so thrilled knowing there is a sport section on #steem blockchain. I posted last year all games about the World cup from Russia.
Sport is alive and so happy for #sportstalk.
I have seen post in here not related to sports at all.
Abusers need o be dealt with accordingly.
I wish to get more sport token soon and stake them as well.
Keep on postin'

Glad to see a working solution for the issue that doesn't wipe everything! Looking forward for the future of Sportstalk!

Good job.


Everything is back on track. Thank you for the updates!
Way to go, SportsTalkSocial!

I think this is the right and balanced decision. Because the relaunch could be a bit radical.

The solution are generally effective to dilute the monopoly by these who exploited the system, but it will also hurt the price of SPORTS a lot into a level that is not quite predictable at this moment.

I hope the community could gradually focus on the content in the community rather than its power and money.

@patrickulrich thank you and I'm sorry these assholes put you to so much trouble after all your hard work and expense. I will be putting comments on unrelated spam and farming attempts and will downvote where I personally feel fit.
Finally, you've given me something to talk about and post on Steemit!
Cheers, and if there is anything I can do please let me know.

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I would love to apply for the grant as well. I have been posting about sports for the longest time until even though it was not rewarding. It wasn't until I discovered Sportstalksocial that I was finally at home.

Sounds great.
It is really dangerous when a small group of people control the rewards system. This happened on steemit as well during the early days and we don't want the repeat of that.
I am very glad that you have found a solution.

Sounds like a very fair plan to resolve the situation. Airdrop sounds good to balance the supply.

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Thank you @patrickulrich. I have staked all and gone on a voting spree to help distribution to posts that are actually sports related. Excellent response to a wobbly start.

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Is there a #sportstalk discord group?

It's still being worked on but you can still join at

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Thank you for your continuous efforts @patrickulrich. It's normal to have some birth complication, but I think with the fixes proposed we are ready to take off! Sportfrei!

@patrickulrich is there a list of the people who were actually muted? Will those people be notified if theyre blacklisted? One concern I have in this move is the centralized muting powers that might be abused. Are there plans to try to decentralize that?

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I purchased a bunch of SPORT without realizing they were "ill gotten". I staked them all and I'm not planning on selling. I'm glad to hear about these changes, I think it is very reassuring to users that this is being taken seriously and some reasonable action is being taken to continue the growth of this new platform.

I expect that this community will thrive, which is why I purchased them in the first place. I look forward to using this stake to reward good content. I enjoy curating, so this is a great opportunity.

I"m confident that SPORT will continue recovering in value and as new users join there will be lots of new and quality content added.

I'm just reading this wonderful post, and I'm really excited. I have already started to publish some articles about it and now I read many details about it. it's nice to have a place to talk about sports with passionate users!

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Good day, @patrickulrich sir when are we expecting this changes to happen?