Witness Voting: An Exercise of Democracy

Image from Pixabay, edited through Canva

Greetings Pinoy Hivers around the world.

In today's article, we will talk about the use and importance of voting for a Hive Witness on the perspective of the Filipino Hive user.

Let us start with the conceptual discussion of what is HivePower.

HivePower (HP)

Hive Power is a measurement of how much "influence" a user has in the Hive network. The more Hive Power a user holds, the more they can influence the value of posts and comments. Hive Power is less liquid compared to Hive and HBD. If a user wanted to “Power Down” HP, they will receive equal distributions of the HIVE weekly, over a 13 week period.
Influence can be simply defined as the ability to transact on the blockchain like upvoting content, posting content, transfer of tokens, voting for proposals and witness voting.

What are Hive witnesses?

The Hive blockchain requires a set of people to create blocks and uses a consensus mechanism called delegated proof of stake, or DPOS. The community elects witnesses to act as the network's block producers and governance body.

There are 20 full-time witnesses, producing a block every 63-second round. A 21st position is shared by the backup witnesses, who are scheduled proportionally to the amount of stake-weighted community approval they have. Witnesses are compensated with Hive Power for each block they create.

In simple understanding, Witnesses are the politicians managing the country(blockchain), the users (every account holder) are the citizen voters. The voting power of each account user depends on the amount of HivePower they possess. This means that the greater the amount of HP that you have, the greater your influence to elect your choice of witness. Much like a voting power of a stockholder of a company.

Why it is an exercise of democracy?

Just like in real election, people can and have the obligation to vote for their own witnesses. The will of the community will prevail.

Simple? Not really. Here's why.
The vote is not per account as in the real election. It is NOT a one account-one vote rule.

Where do the voting rules rely?
Your HivePower. Circle back to the definition above. Further explanation can be read about the meaning of HivePower and other Hive tokens on the HivePh article "The Importance of Powering Up Your Idle Hive Tokens".

The amount of HivePower that you have determines the power of your vote. The greater your HP, the greater your chance to elect your preferred witness.

This means that someone who holds a large amount of HP has the power to control who sits as a witness.

Doesn't it look a bit unfair?
Not really. In the blockchain,those who have more tokens most likely either bought and/or mined their tokens. Tokens can be bought from cryptoexchanges or from individual token holders in market prices. Mined tokens are those created from signing up blocks of transaction by people that maintain the server of the blockchain.

So the rich token holder has always have control of the chain?
Both yes and no.

Yes because like in any other blockchain, token holdings are investments. It means you put your money into it. A rich investor would want to earn more from his investments and protect his investments from possible bankruptcy.

It is said that when you hodl (hold or keep tokens) you are giving yourself more skin on the game. Some view blockchain as an investment game or a gamble.

No, because since everybody has equal opportunity to invest on or mine tokens (on HIVE, tokens are earned by posting and curating contents) and has voting power proportional to their skin on the game, it is but fair and just.

Does the "small guy" have a voice on the chain?
Yes, when ten to a hundred small guys" join together and pull their resources together, they could be a force with enough power to influence the chain.

Real life example:

Remember the SteemHostileTakeOver?
When after Justin Sun bought Steemit Inc., Sun decided to "unseat" those community witnesses, replaced it with "sockpuppet witnesses".

But, the community banded together around the original community witnesses. Voluntarily bought Hive tokens and powerup to support the legit witnesses.
That community effort resulted to a stalement. The top 7 witnesses manned by former witnesses, then from the 8th to the 20th witness from Steemit Inc.
Then the chain forked. Hive is born.

Why democracy?
For as long as individual have a potential to be part of governance, when two or more people can join together to make change, when the system is run by real people on which there is a natural bond to the community, when you can protect your own assets, then I call it an exercise of democracy.

'Til next time. Have a wonderful week to us all.

Hive.blog FAQ https://hive.blog/faq.html
Anatomy of Justin Sun’s Hostile Takeover of the Steem Blockchain https://medium.com/steem-world/anatomy-of-justin-suns-hostile-takeover-of-the-steem-blockchain-bf28de9c6e2b

The author is not a financial advisor, nor does solicit any form of investments. The articles posted on this community page is for educational purposes ONLY. All investments that may be undertaken by readers of this article, is the sole responsibility of that individual.

About the Author:

@guruvaj is a senior high school public school teacher in Mabini Batangas, Philippines. Started his journey into cryptocurrency November 2017.He is currently the modeartor and maintainer of the Facebook Page Batangas Steem Community.
Visit his Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/rmcatajay/

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