Reply to "General Thoughts and critique on Narrative"

Peter Wagner posted:

After a few days I got a some feelings I want to share about narrative. Maybe some of you can tell me something comforting or explain some stuff to me, since I am very new to all of that.

First of all:

I don't like the bidding system. It is not transparent. Who bids for what? How do prices emerge? Who gets the money? And for what does someone get the money?

Thanks for the candid observations and commentary, Peter.

I am not staff, but I can help address some of your questions.

You can see who bids on auctions.  The following auction page is an example: currently there is one bid, and the person who made it is visible:

Prices (starting bids) are based on 75 USD - whatever the USD to NRVE rate is when the auction starts determines the cost of the first bid in NRVE.

I've made the suggestion that it should be more readily apparent, directly on the bid making page, that the NRVE amount is based on 75 USD according to the rate on [DATE].  Hopefully this will be implemented so there is less guess work for newcomers.

The money goes into the Network Rewards pool - this is where the funds to pay moderators, content creators and niche owners go.  The company only keeps 15% of revenue, the rest goes into the rewards pool - in other words the vast majority of what is paid for niches will go right back to the community.  This is the most fair paradigm I am aware of in any social media platform, so unless I am missing something fundamental, I think you can feel reassured you are safer here than pretty much anywhere else in the social media world if your concern is being exploited.

Next thing:

I don't like is the NRVE oder creditcard payment system. In order to get NRVE (the way suggests) you pay fees at every point (coinbase, transfer fees and so on) so basically you lose 2,50 of 20 bucks before you even get to have NRVE. Which is still better than narratives 15% "service" (quotation marks because: what service?) fee.


Whenever you use a credit card online through a third party processor, there is a service fee.  For security reasons, most online businesses never see your credit card details.  The payment is processed by a third party which mediates the transaction with your card company.  That third party is a business, and operates for profit.  Many businesses pass on the fee that is charged by the payment processor to the customer.

As for what you pay to buy NRVE on exchanges, I know, it sucks.  Just as it sucks to have to pay commission when you buy USD when you visit the US, or Australian dollars when you visit Australia.  Every single currency conversion attracts a fee, again because the people who facilitate the conversion are in business, and have to get paid somehow.  

Just factor in these costs, and decide what you are willing to pay once you have factored them in!


Third thing:

The worst thing for me is: It lot feels so much like fraud, like someone really gets rich while I am just trying to be part of a community. I feel like I want to ask if Narrative or the founders have a deal with coinbase and Latoken and profit from it all - but I know that is probably just the internet paranoia talking. 

Yes - my guess is also that this is internet paranoia talking.  I could be wrong, but I don't think there is any fundamental motivation for exchanges to pay projects like Narrative anything at all.  If you study the way the crypto exchanges currently function, you'll find the opposite is true: many of them charge a fee to platforms in order to be listed!  There are so many coins out there, that the demand is on the exchanges side, so some of them charge for the privilege of listing a coin.

To my knowledge, Narrative has actually made a point of not paying these fees, and instead listing with exchanges that do not charge one.  This was controversial for many people who wanted NRVE listed on more, and bigger exchanges, but the Team opted to spend their money on developing the product we all expect from them, rather than paying to be on more exchanges.  I personally think that was a good call, all things considered.

Fourth thing:

As much as I read about everything I feel like your recommendation reward system is basically a pyramid scheme: Who exploits most of their contacts gets the most. Everyone who hasn't that much contacts or devotes their time and energy to acquire people is left out. Everything about narrative feels a bit pyramid schemey: Who comes first, gets served first, gets more reputation, gets more rights, gets rewarded for getting more people in.

You are not left out just because you don't refer people.  You just don't earn any referral rewards.  The important thing is the choice is yours.  If you don't want to, or cannot make lots of referrals, that doesn't cut you off from any of the functionality of the platform!

Whether you are a content creator or a moderator, you will earn for your work - not your contacts.  You will need far more than just your friends to notice your content, if you want to see any real income from it... so there is nothing pyramid scheme-like about it.  Just like in any situation, the bigger your audience as a creator, the bigger your earning power.  Make good content, and work to get it out there, and you will succeed.

As a moderator, the busier the niche you are on, the more content you will have to moderate, and the more you will earn.  The better the content, the more the community values the content, the more you will earn.

As a niche owner, you get paid for two things: the stake you have taken in the network by buying the niche, and how active and successful the niche is from month to month.  No activity on your niche?  No rewards.  So you have to work to promote your niche, and attract quality contributors.  That's not a pyramid scheme - it is a combination of investment and hard work.  Publications the world over function similarly: a publisher must put up money in order to publish content, and must attract quality content to publish.

Narrative lets people in the alpha basically work for them with no consequences or real rewards for them. They get nothing for it and have to pay in the end for their own niche suggestions?

Yes.  There is no earning during the alpha, but only because the platform that will allow the content economy to function is still being built.  When you buy an apartment off the plan, you are buying something that does not exist yet, and you have to wait for the building to be built.  That's just part of buying something off the plan.

If you believe the platform has enough strong points, and you are seeing the team deliver regularly, then it is based upon these things that you either decide to buy a piece of Narrative 'real estate' (niches) or not.

I understand that it can seem disconcerting, but only because big social has fooled people into believing they were getting their communities for free.  In reality, literally billions of dollars were being made on the backs of contributors to Facebook and the like.  Contributors to those networks are truly working for free because they will NEVER get paid.  On Narrative, you just have to wait until Beta Launch for the economic engine to start up.

The question then becomes: will your niche earn you more than you pay for it?

That is the only real question here.  And the answer depends on many factors.  Will you work to promote it?  Will you work to bring great content to it?  Will the Narrative Team deliver a stable platform, and fix problems as they are made aware of them?  Will their marketing be smart and effective?  Will their on-platform advertising model be smart and effective?

There is some risk involved.  Those of us who are here believe the risks are acceptable, and are sufficiently confident in their own commitment to work towards the success of their niches, and the success of the network as a whole.

It is a much more honest, and adult paradigm than the old big social.  Here the message is: there are no free lunches.  But you will not be exploited economically by the platform.  Your data will not be sold without your knowledge.  You will not be invasively targeted by advertising.  And if you contribute to the success of the network, you will share in the proceeds of that success to an unprecedented degree.

Sometimes we are so brainwashed by a paradigm, that when a more honest one comes along, it seems like a scam.  This might be a case of that.  We've all been brainwashed to expect small things for free, while big things are taken away from us.  Let's get used to something better.


Last but not least:  Everywhere it is said that 85% of revenues will go to the creators. But I did not read any article where it is clearly explained how. It is said that niche owners get 10 per cent, that creators get 60 per cent of the content they put into a niche. How does that make 85%?

All of this is detailed in resources available on the Narrative site:

There used to be a pie chart directly on the site, but I don't see that anymore - if it is truly gone, perhaps the @Narrative Network Team can consider bringing it back.  I don't know that people should have to delve into the dense Specs document in order to absorb this sort of fundamental information, so maybe worth bringing back the pie chart on one of the main pages of the site itself.

And you get paid in NRVE which you then have to transfer and sell and do all the cryptocurrency stuff to get some actual money - i mean in the real world where you have to pay rent. Does anyone but me see how this is not working for the creators or the community but for the whole system and all the cryptocurrency platforms built around? What if the courses between ethereum and NRVE crash? What if the Beta doesn't work out and no one joins Narrative - everything lost? 

You will be able to withdraw your earnings in fiat.

As previously stated, there is risk  in getting involved early with any project.  But also the potential for great reward in this case.  It isn't for everybody.  You have to decide whether or not it is for you.  I hope you do decide so: Narrative are doing a lot of much needed things, and they are mostly doing it right.  Where there may be room for improvement, it must also be said that the community is listened to more than in any other social platform context I am aware of.

That is a very important factor, and if that were not the case, I would not be here right now.  I'd be sitting it out on the sidelines, waiting to see if Narrative pulls it off or not.  It is precisely because Narrative listens more to its community than I've seen anywhere else, that I take the time to contribute my ideas, observations, etc...  Just as you are doing (which makes me suspect we might be lucky to have you).  Community powered projects do best when honest, committed community members participate.


What are factors for me to trust in the Narrative except for "community driven" "creators get payed"? How do Narrative ensures it not just becomes the next ViVo - a network with an awesome idea no one uses? How does Narrative make payment and money transactions easy and transparent so that users don't feel weird by shoveling their money into an absurd financial system. And how - in the end - is value created anyway?

Read up on how the platform is being designed with crypto being optional.  People won't need to know anything about crypto to use Narrative. 

Beyond that, judge the work of the team - their execution and vision.  There is no 'ensuring' anything.  No guarantees.  If there were, everybody would be here from day one and there would be no benefit to being an early adopter.  Either you enjoy that role, and take pride in contributing to the success, or you don't.  If you don't, you can just wait for 6-12 months and see how Narrative is doing then.  You will have missed some great opportunities, but you will not have taken any risks.

Even after watching the YouTube clips (with the annoying music and voice) and read most of the Q&A, tutorials and so on I don't get it. If Narrative was a niche I would disapprove it because it is so unclear. The whitepaper on Narrative is not available any longer - why?

Ha - I agree the music and voice are not great.

And no doubt the platform can improve communicating the whole thing to new people.  It already has greatly improved on that front, and I'm sure it will continue to.

For now, many people are getting how desirable this platform is already, some with the help of other community members right here on the forums!


I don't want to be overly critical but I maybe you get where my question marks and bad feelings are coming from.

I really love to hear from all of you and discuss all of the above. Thanks for your attention. Keep up the good work!


I hope this helped address some of your questions!