Today we are introducing some changes to the voting model that will make it much easier for you to earn money by voting. In fact you will be earning almost twice as much as you earned before (in expectation).
Before I explain the changes we made, let me explain the reasoning behind the voting model. The goal of the voting model is to make it easy for everybody to earn money on Yours. You do not have to be a content creator. If you have an opinion you can make money on Yours. At the same time, voters provide value to the community by finding good content early.
Here is how it works. When you vote on something you make a prediction that the community will like this piece of content. If your prediction turns out to be true you will profit. If your prediction is wrong then you donate to the content creator and the people who were just a little bit faster than you. Content creators can vote on their own content, and we recommend to do so to increase your earnings.
Every vote costs 10c and this amount is split between previous voters weighted by the amount they voted. If you vote early you get payments from later votes and profit. If you are particularly bullish about your prediction you can vote multiple times to increase your potential payout.
Shortly after we launched this model a few weeks ago, we started giving out two votes for free: the first vote to the company Yours Inc and the second to the content creator. The goal was to fix a bug where creators could vote for free on their content. However it turned out that this cut quite substantially into the amount of money our users made from of voting: nearly half of the revenue went to Yours Inc, making it harder for you to earn money.
Starting from today Yours Inc will no longer get the first vote. The content creator still gets a free vote. To prevent free voting by the creator we add the following rule: If the creator votes on their own content they pay 10c like everybody else and this money goes to Yours Inc. All subsequent votes go only to users.
If you are confused, here is an example. Sue writes a beautiful poem and posts it to Yours. She pays 10c to publish and gets one free vote in return. John finds the poem, loves it so he decides to vote. He pays 10c that go to Sue. By getting just one vote, a content creator can recover the cost to post. Later Marie finds the post and votes too. She pays 10c that are split equally between Sue and John beacause they have both voted equal amounts.
Another example: Sue writes a short story. She is confident that she will get votes, so she votes on her own story. She pays 10c to post, gets one free vote, and pays an extra 10c for a second vote. Then John finds it, pays 10c to vote, and the 10c all go to Sue as the only previous voter. Finally Marie finds it and pays 10c to vote. Because Sue voted twice and John just once, 2/3 of the new vote fees (6.7c) go to Sue and 1/3 (3.3c) go to John.
The voting model is far from perfect. We will continue to iterate. If you have any ideas on how to improve it, please let us know in the comments or by email (not that hard to guess :).
Edits: As suggested by Gianfranco in the comments.
 

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I am sorry Clemens there's an error where you write "Sue writes a beautiful poem and posts it to Yours. She pays 10c to vote and gets one free vote in return." I believe you wanted to write "She pays 10c to publish and gets...".
The later example can also be rewritten to be much, much simpler to understand and more consistent with wording:
Another example: Sue writes a short story. She is confident that she will get votes, so she votes on her own story. She pays 10c to post, gets one free vote, and pays an extra 10c for a second vote. Then John finds it, pays 10c to vote, and the 10c all go to Sue as the only previous voter. Finally Marie finds it and pays 10c to vote. Because Sue voted twice and John just once, 2/3 of the new vote fees (6.7c) go to Sue and 1/3 (3.3c) go to John.
In general, you could have described the change by just saying that, from now on, Yours stops being considered as a voter in calculations, and just cashes on the fees the author spends to upvote herself.
Please also consider doing something like this https://www.yours.org/content/code-is-law--yours-org-fees-and-prices-specified-in-pseudocode-1558be4bf7bb . I am very happy to help further if you want me to.
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   1yr ago
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Thanks for the input Gianfranco. Have taken the liberty to use your version above :)
Great idea to write up the algorithm in pseudo code. Will try to put something together these days. Would be cool to get your input on it.
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   1yr ago
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... and thanks for welcoming my input! Ryan, too, knows that I'm a big supporter and eager to help. Coming to San Francisco in a few days...
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   1yr ago
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Having recently been a victim of payments reaching dust levels I've thought a bit about an alternative model.
Being able to receive 0.3¢ is great and proves that Bitcoin Cash can be used for such small payments. Nevertheless it's not without its problems. After 34 such payments, we can use those to vote 10¢. The problem is that the transaction size grows to around 5kB and you will be actually paying 13¢ (10¢ + 3¢ of fees). This example is not so bad but note that you receive 0.3¢ when votes reach $3.40 and it gets worse after that and with any BCC price increase (currently $600/BCC). I've recently paid 23¢ in a vote, for example.
So my idea for a new model would be to limit the fractions to 1¢, that is, instead of dividing 10¢ by the number of votes you always divide by 10. Then those 10 cents are distributed randomly. Sometimes you get 1¢ and sometimes you don't. As before, there's still a benefit to voting early and putting multiple votes in. It just gets statistical and not certain. Obviously this is a compromise between always receiving something and the potential future cost of using that payment.
The algorithm would be something like:
  1. let payments be an empty map of user to value
  2. let votes be all the previous votes of a content
  3. for each 1¢ of the 10¢
  4. let v be a random selection of one of the votes
  5. let u be the user that voted v
  6. add 1¢ to value of u in payments

If done like this, there is a chance 1 voter gets 10¢ and the others nothing at all. For example, with 2 votes there's 0.1% chance the author gets 10¢ (the same chance as winning in the Lower than 64 at Satoshi Dice) but also ~38% chance the author gets 6¢ or more. On the other hand, a person that is the 34th to vote (the point where currently payments start to get lower than 0.3¢) has more than a ~30% chance of getting the 10¢ back by the time the post reaches $9.20, in 10 or less payments obviously. I mention the $9.20 mark because that's where, in the current model, the same 34th voter would recover (in 58 payments) their 10¢.
Like I said, it's a compromise and just an idea.
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   1yr ago
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nice
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   1yr ago
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Great input Claudio. In fact we have discussed exactly the model you propose. Like you say it has very nice properties: It saves transaction fees and in the long run users get the same amount of pay as under the current model.
The problem is that when you mix user payments with randomness things start to look like gambling. There are very strict regulations surroundings gambling and we want it to be very clear that Yours has nothing to do with that. For this reason we have picked a 100% deterministic model, there is no randomness involved whatsoever.
There is another model that is quite similar to what you propose. It would pay out to the last 10 voters instead of all voters. This model is deterministic and has low fees. However the maximum you can earn from a vote is bounded: if 10 people vote after you, you 10x your money. However if 100k people vote after you you still only 10x your money. In the current model the amount you can earn from a vote is unbounded. We thought it would be fun to watch a post you voted on go viral and get money from each incoming vote.
I'm actually pretty torn between our current model and the one described above. If anyone has thoughts, I'd be keen to know...
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   1yr ago