Originally published on 25 August 2023
To provide more interaction within Hive SBI, we are resuming our interviews with prominent members of Hive SBI. We hope to bring a greater sense of community, get to know our members, and gain a better understanding of why Hivers are choosing to be a part of Hive SBI.
Joseph is the founder of Hive SBI. Entrepreneur, investor, trader, polymath; Joseph needs no further introduction.
My desire to get to know him better was a prime factor in my decision to begin a Hive SBI interview series, to pick up where our sister program, Steem Basic Income, left off with its last interview three years ago.
@josephsavage: How did you get into crypto, and how did you learn about Hive?
@freecompliments: I initially heard about Bitcoin roughly 11 years ago, but didn't pay much mind to it back then, as with many other people. It was only last year that I truly started to pay more attention to it, after seeing the meteoric rise, and relatively predictable patterns, of Bitcoin's value. I then read about the underlying technology for a few months, and even though I'm still far from well-versed, it occurred to me that the potential applications of this technology are so far-ranging that it would be foolish to not give it a reasonable chance. Thus, I started buying into bitcoin, along the way encountering some other alternative cryptocurrencies which, in hindsight, were not great choices.
At one point during a brief work break, I was interested in finding ways to earn Bitcoin, rather than simply buying it. I found out about SteemIt, where it was possible to earn cryptocurrency without having to buy into it and without having to provide any identifying information. I then read about the history of what happened a few years ago, and consequently reached Hive. It became clear that this was going to be my primary choice of blog, and in fact, my very first actual blog.
The idea instantly came to me that, in this decentralized, censorship-free environment, I could potentially start a community which I successfully began on a different platform, but later lost ownership due to a variety of platform restrictions. This time, I could run the show my way while maintaining the freedom of speech that I wanted to keep in the original iteration of the community. Thus, I opened up the @freecompliments account, and the rest is history... in the making!
@josephsavage: I find it interesting that a lot of cool things are started by people that just got here. I had only been on Steemit for about a month when I started to put the pieces together to start Steem Basic Income.
@josephsavage: So you have some background in community-building then?
@freecompliments: Yes, I actually built the FreeCompliments community on Reddit from the ground up; that was the very first iteration. I built until it reached roughly 50,000 members, then dropped away from the site after I was banned for promoting it. The website took over and now it's sitting pretty at 272k members. It's large, but generally devoid of useful content, and certainly not meeting the expectations I originally had. The depth, originality, and spirit have been replaced with superficiality (which has its place, but should not be the sole purveyor of content).
Sad stories aside... Hive gave me a new hope that a better version of this community could be built, and this time I'd be able to run it the way i had originally intended. I'd be able to have a tight grip on the community, and possibly counterintuitively, allow more freedom to users than could ever be possible on a centralized Web 2.0 platform.
Due to its inherent properties, I do see Hive as a platform where ideas can blossom. I understand that Steemit was the original blockchain iteration of Hive, and the underlying idea likely interested thoughtful, creative people like yourself.
@josephsavage: That's really exciting that Hive would give you new hope and inspire you to build again. Now your enthusiasm is giving me new enthusiasm after dealing with some crypto burnout. I hope that we can inspire others, too.
@josephsavage: Can you share how you learned about Hive SBI, and give an overview of how it fits into your project?
@freecompliments: It's a very understandable time to experience crypto burnout, given our general economic environment, not to mention the trials and tribulations that HSBI experienced over the past few years (at least from what I've read). As far as discovering HSBI, it was generally through scouring the website to learn about different aspects of Hive. I did also notice the @steembasicincome account votes on various posts and read further. It was only when I really delved deeper into the reading, understood Hive's general functionality better, and tried out some calculations that I understood the practical value of HSBI.
The FreeCompliments Community essentially uses HSBI as a reward system for various activities, as well as some jobs. Currently, we use the following rewards (they usually end up much higher):
The rewards and jobs continue to expand, and the idea behind using HSBI is to gradually increase rewards both for our most active and quality-producing members, and to increase our own rewards so that we can help each other grow. It would also incentivize continued activity, rather than one-off posting. Indeed, so far the quality of content that's been submitted in the community has far exceeded my expectations, and I'm thrilled with the current trajectory that it is taking. I believe that using HSBI played a significant role in attracting people to participate and plan to continue using it on an expanding network of FreeCompliments-related accounts for a very long time.
@josephsavage: It sounds like you've really done your homework! What do you like & dislike the most?
@freecompliments: With HSBI, I particularly like the fact that you're able to reward users with an incentive to post more in the future without penalizing them for not necessarily posting on a daily basis. When someone writes up a quality post or comment, showing a lot of effort, uniqueness, or creativity, I will gladly give them HSBI - and the higher quality the content (whether or not it suits my own worldview), the more HSBI I'll give out. This keeps people coming back because they can see actual rewards for their efforts, and mentioning the rewards as part of a comment adds to a key element on Hive that sometimes goes missing: the direct person-to-person interaction. When I reward HSBI, I make sure to include this aspect.
As far as dislikes, at this point, possibly the fact that the estimated rewards on hivesbi.com don't always match up to the actual rewards. To my understanding, that's due to the Hive price not being completely up to date - my concern here being that it can mislead people into thinking their reward is different, which can affect trust. I wonder if there's a way to incorporate a live price feed for accuracy? I'm not a programmer myself, so I hope I'm not providing a goofy suggestion. 😅
@josephsavage: That's something I will definitely keep in mind for our next round of improvements!
@josephsavage: What's next on your roadmap for the FreeCompliments community?
@freecompliments: Currently we're finishing up the introductions of our themed days (every day of the week has a prompt that people can write about; it is not exclusive to those days, but just serves as a reminder). After this we're going to start posting daily themed day reminders with the community account and promote them so that we have permanent publicity throughout Hive; this will also help us grow our curation account so that it can provide larger votes over time. A bit later, we're going to enhance our monthly contests and possibly introduce new ones. That's just over the next few weeks! Once this is all completed, we'll have set down the foundation of the community.
Looking further down the road, I plan to introduce even more jobs within the community (also to be paid with HSBI), initiate ongoing realistic discussions about the concepts of complimenting and free speech, mental health discussions and outreach, possible onboarding, and come up with ways in which the community can use Hive's features in ways that have not been used before. Innovation is the name of the game.
Maybe someday I'll also participate in our themed day called Talent Tuesdays. Not yet though... I'm quite timid, haha.
@josephsavage: Exciting times ahead! Do you have additional socials or contact info that you would like to share with our readers, aside from your hive name and community links?
I'm not really present on other social media platforms at this point - you're about 100x more likely to reach me here than anywhere else! 😁
Wow, I just noticed that even our Discord surpassed 50 members. Sweet! We're growing faster than I imagined possible.
@josephsavage: Thanks so much for participating in this interview! Is there anything else that you'd like to add before I wrap everything up into a post?
@freecompliments: Thanks so much Joseph! I do greatly appreciate your interview and your genuine interest.
I'd only add that Hive SBI is quite an underappreciated program at this point in time. I hope more people will discover and use it. Thanks for creating it. 😊