(Harry's Happy Hive Journey)
You can join Hive in about 5 minutes...
…but you’ll probably feel lost & confused. This guide answers the questions you may have as you take your first steps into the world of Hive. You can jump to a section using the Table Of Contents above*, but reading the guide fully is worth it.
I had a rough time learning Hive, so I made this to help others. (Also, it explains deep things in a friendly way, so there’s probably value in here for Hive veterans as well.)
Ready? Let’s go!
*This guide in an easier to read format here: jryze.me/hive
Do you like doodles, Harry?
“Weird question, I know. But I’m asking for a reason. Because my crypto guide showed how a blockchain is like an account-book tracking any (digital) transaction. Sure, most of us use it to track only ‘crypto’ transactions…
But what if we had an ‘account book’ that tracked all social transactions?”
“Yo… you high bro?” Harry's eyes widened.
“No, man, think about it…
Every like, comment, & post you make is a 'digital transaction.'”
It’s you investing your time & attention in a ‘product’ (someone’s post, for example.)”
“I guess. It’s mostly just me clicking around.”
“Exactly. Your ‘clicking’ around is consumerism. It’s you, consuming a product. When you consume something online, that is a transaction. Straight up.”
“So for years, nobody really respected you for it. You didn’t get sh-t for investing your attention. Only the social platforms got rich from it. Same thing goes for content-creation. A post you make on most social platforms can go unnoticed and unrewarded. These social transactions can feel like a waste of your energy, right?”
“Oh, for sure. I’ve wasted energy posting, and I’ve wasted energy swiping.”
“Right. But what if a social platform rewarded you for every like, comment, & share?
What if they rewarded every consumer & creator on the platform in crypto? How great would it be if you were valued for every social transaction you made?”
“Sounds like a dream, homes. Never gonna happen. It’s not like Reddit will pay you to click that upvote button. Or Instagram will pay you to click that heart. Or WordPress will pay you to post a blog. These platforms simply won’t do it.”
“I know. But Hive will.”
"Why Hive?" Harry asked.
“Because social’s got everyone by the balls.
Traditional social platforms know your attention is their product. So they all fight to keep you addicted to their apps. They do this because whoever has the most data is the ‘sexiest’ to advertisers. And whichever social is sexiest to advertisers, becomes the richest. These social giants ‘steal’ people’s attention and sell it. But this has gone on for years, and people are getting fed up.”
“True say. And don’t get me started on their algorithms. They used to give me good recommendations, now they just decide what news I see.”
“And don’t get it twisted, I love all these social platforms, and use them. I don’t judge them or wish them any harm.
I’m just outlining how people are feeling about social in general lately.”
“Man, I hear that. I’ve actually felt all those things. I’m pretty pissed at social lately.” I could hear an edge creep into Harry’s voice. Time to change the topic to something brighter.
"Let's talk on Hive's benefits", I said.
“Well it sounds like I get financially rewarded just to click around and do what I’m doing all day?”
“Yes, you do. But there’s more.
Because Hive has no CEO, there’s no ‘god’ deciding what you can and can’t post. No one’s out there randomly shadow-banning people they don’t like.
Because every ounce of your data is stored on a blockchain, encrypted by your un-hackable key, only you own your data. Only you can delete it. Only you can edit it. Only you can sell your data to advertisers, or whoever. It’s yours.
Because the Hive blockchain tracks every social interaction, it is possible to reward every interaction. (Well, in crypto.)
You can read more about this stuff in my ‘Hive’s Invisible, Just Like Me’ post.
The takeaway here is that Hive solves most of the pain-points people are feeling from traditional social media.
That’s why all the Hive-hype, Harry.”
I relaxed my jaw and shoulders. Apparently I was more fired up than I thought. I laughed at myself internally. I just wanted to get my friend on Hive, lol.
"Alright, I'm psyched, how do I start?"
“That’s kind of a loaded question bro.”
“Because a noob like you doesn’t just ‘start’ with Hive.”
“I mean, you can I guess, but anyone I’ve seen try it just gets frustrated and bounces.”
“It’s Hive’s fault, to be honest. No new platform is perfect, and for all it’s amazing traits, a big issue with Hive is that it’s not user-friendly.”
“Ah, I see.”
“I’m serious, it’s brutal. Like, not easy… at all.”
“So Hive’s user-unfriendly?”
“Yeah, but it’s worth learning. In fact, it’s not just ‘unfriendly’, it’s user-enemy, or anti-user, at least for the average person. Which is a shame, because it really is revolutionary. I want people to benefit from it. I know it can help them. I know it can send a message to Facebook, Twitter, and the rest. But only if people can actually use it. And to be honest, I don’t see the average person being able to use it. It feels like a chemical engineering test or performing brain-surgery just to sign up.”
“Can’t I just Google it?”
“Hahah, I wish. Googling it will turn up a few decent guides. And I’ve read some great materials that help beginners get started on Hive, and they’re great. But none of them have covered it simply enough for you, trust me. Or they do, but there’s always some stumbling block that’s unaddressed, or key info left out. This means you try to join, encounter a ‘seemingly unbeatable’ obstacle in your Hive journey, and give up. So until the devs make it easier, I’ll walk you through it myself.”
“Wow, this feels like personal tutoring.”
“It is! It’s your lucky day, I’m giving you a total beginner’s A-to-Z guide to Hive…
…You’ll go from Hive sign-up to Hive superstar!”
1. SIGNING UP
"Isn't it like joining any site?
Like I’m asking, isn’t it just like every other social platform? I just sign-up with my email and password, add a photo, and voila, right?”
“Not exactly.” I say, “Because Hive isn’t ‘one thing.’ Hive is, um… at least two things.
Using Hive means using:
- The Hive.io blockchain, and
- Also an app to access Hive’s social media (such as PeakD or Ecency).
Just like using the internet is two things:
- Your internet service provider and
- A web-browser (such as Chrome or Explorer)
“OK, I get it. Just like I need AT&T before I use Chrome, I join Hive.io before choosing an app to browse their social media platform, right?”
“Yes! But unlike AT&T, Hive is free! So head over to signup.hive.io, let’s go!”
“OK, I’m there. I found the sign-up button. Er, buttons. There’s another one. Wait… there’s one more. And another. WTF?”
“Oh, yeah, I should’ve mentioned.
Turns out Hive has like 9 different ways to sign-up. It’s cray.”
“Why?” Harry squinted.
“Sigh. It’ll all make sense, soon. Just get your Hive.io account and bear with me on this, ok? “
“Fine. But which button do I press? There’s Ecency Signup, 3Speak Signup, HiveOnBoard Signup–“
“That one! That one’s fine. HiveOnBoard. It’s fast and they’ll verify you by phone. Click it.”
“K, I clicked it and it’s warning me that I need to install the ‘Hive Keychain Browser Extension’ first. Uh, dude…
...why do I need a Hive Keychain extension?"
“Because signing up for the Hive.io blockchain isn’t just an operating system.
It’s also like getting a bank account at the same time.
If you want to earn by scrolling your Hive feed, you’ll need an account, which Hive calls a ‘wallet.’ And just like a bank doesn’t give you a wallet in real life, Hive doesn’t give you one either. You create your own using a free ‘wallet service.’ The ‘Hive Keychain Browser Extension’ is my favorite Hive wallet service, because it also keeps track of your Hive usernames, passwords, etc., which makes logging in and earning crypto on Hive easy.”
“So you’re telling me I’ve got to open a new browser window, install this Hive Keychain thing, set it up properly, then come back and reload the HiveOnBoard sign-up page, which is really just a service helping me get my Hive.io account?”
Although now that you say it out loud, it sounds pretty silly for a sign-up process.
And, uh, there’s a few apps that refuse Keychain, and require another sign-in app, HiveSigner.com instead. But don’t worry about that, you can cross that bridge later, the Keychain Extension does most of what you need.”
“Sheesh. Whatever… it’s just a chrome extension, I got this.”
Harry Googled it and clicked the first result, then clicked “Add To Chrome” and voila, Keychain installed. He made sure to setup his usual easy-to-remember password on it. It was nice. It gave me a breather to stop explaining. Eventually he made it back to HiveOnBoard.com and refreshed the page.
"Now I choose a username and password?"
“Sort of. You choose a username, and Hive.io will create your account. It will also give you a master hive.io account password. This password will be ridiculously long and unreadable.”
“Do I have to type it in?”
“Not if you setup the Hive Keychain properly.”
“I thought I did!”
“Well, you got it installed and ‘ready-for-import’, but once your Hive.io account is finally created, you’ll have to…
Import your username and password into Hive Keychain, once.
Then you probably won’t need to type them often again.”
“Yeah, but there’s more. Hive.io gives you more than a username & password.”
"What else does Hive give me?"
“You get 4 ‘Private Keys,’ which are kind of like keys in real life. The right key lets people get into the right room, or operate the right vehicle.”
“Wait, there’s rooms and vehicles on Hive? I thought it was social media.”
“Haha, no I just mean that your 4 keys can be used to access different ‘tools’ of your account. This way if someone steals one of your keys, they may only have posting privileges. If they steal another key, they may get wallet privileges.”
“So it’s like my own social media ‘house.’ I have many keys on my Hive keychain, & lend keys to who I want.”
“Yes, great metaphor! As the ‘owner’ of all the keys, you’ll probably hold onto the important ones like the vault-key where you keep your last will & testament. But you may let your kids borrow the car keys sometimes. Because you have separate keys, you feel secure knowing that people can only use the parts of your data that you allow them too. Imagine if you just carried one ‘skeleton key’ around, you couldn’t lend it to anyone to do stuff for you without worrying. Because they could just steal that and take your whole online identity.”
“Hmm… so it’s a security thing?”
“Yeah, most of this stuff is. Hive and the crypto world in general are obsessed with security. I guess it’s good, but it does make teaching crypto tricky.”
"What are these 4 keys exactly?"
“They’re the owner key, active key, posting key, and memo key. They’ll look something like this:
Owner Key: 5KA3mcNgaHrtabqRjjZJ7uiet67vgPhVvNNYMRmh3B3ccojTEg5
Active Key: 5KJsx5CzBzAwbpFjoNzWN4FBSeTy6X3GRkp19GG3de7deo6fNko
Posting Key: 5Jp1f6pf5Y1Q1AuFstK86NkBZkhK5ViAmUaM65ZeAjfwAYqynfx
Memo Key: 5KWg94DPBXSWiVVMpj9VM7tAjYeLLGh6GWYCnoCwpFhbnSBGwCt
NOTE: THESE ARE NOT REAL KEYS. NEVER SHARE YOUR PRIVATE KEYS IN A PUBLIC POST.
(And remember that you have a Hive.io master password too, that looks like this: YvwBqeGEH6yuChjxLaJLXtY9Heat6kav, and gives you access to all your other keys. )
I know you’ll ask what each key does, so I’ll explain:
Owner Key: It’s like the key to a house-safe, where you keep all identity documents and bank-codes. It lets anyone who has it change your password, recover your account, even alter your keys. (Top Tier Access)
Active Key: This is like your house-key. It lets anyone who has it get in a do a bunch of stuff in the house. In Hive it lets you transfer funds, buy influence-points, even vote on the future of Hive, since as soon as you sign-up, you’re now a part-owner. (Second Tier Access)
Posting Key: This is like the key to your media-room, or living-room. It lets anyone who has it post, comment, vote, share, follow, manage profile, etc. (Third Tier Access)
Memo Key: This is like the key to your mailbox. It lets anyone who has it send/read/receive encrypted messages as if they were you. (Fourth Tier Access)
“Cool, so on Hive, I use different keys for different levels of security. And if I’m getting it right…
I don’t want to give out anything higher than the posting key, right?”
“For the most part yes. There are some apps (like ‘HiveSigner’) where you’ll want to give them your Active Key, but mainly you’ll give the Posting Key so apps and plugins can do cool stuff for you, without giving them access to your wallet.”
“Whew, aight. Got it. So I signed up as ‘@HarryDresdenIsTheBest, what do I do with my keys?
"You backup your 4 Keys & Hive.io main password!"
“Wait, you mean write all five of those crazy-long codes down?”
“Basically, yes. Store them however you want, I’m gonna trust you know how to back something up safely. Whatever you do, a backup is the main thing. And extra important is that your backup is very safe.
Because no one on earth can recover your account if you lose your keys.
It’s like owning the worlds most secure safe, no one’s getting in if the sole owner forgets the code. And you might have a lot of money in there. So treat your backup with respect. Besides, these keys are also how you operate any app on the Hive.io blockchain, including it’s social media apps.”
“Ugh. Fine, if it’s to keep my cash safe, I guess it’s worth. But can’t I just use my normal password, ‘Har0ldDresd3n’?“
“That’s what the keychain extension is for.
You set that up with your normal password, right?”
“Ok, so once you’re done with this HiveOnBoard sign-up service, and you have a proper Hive.io account, complete with your 4 keys plus long Master Password… you go back to your Chrome extension (hiding in the little ‘puzzle piece’ icon in the top-right of Chrome), and ‘import’ your keys. That way, from now on, all you need to do is unlock your Keychain with your normal, easy-to-remember password, and…
Your keychain will automatically enter those keys for you wherever they’re needed on Hive.”
“I get it. But I still have to backup my keys in case I move to other devices, other browsers, or Hive Keychain stops working or something, right?”
“Yes! Your keys are insanely important, back ’em up! The cliche ‘Not your keys? Not your crypto!’ is true. Once that’s done, click ‘Create Hive Account’ and you’re part of Hive!”
Harry clicks the fuchsia-colored button with glee.
"Note: keychain can pop up asking for 'authorization', Harry."
“It totally did!”
“Don’t worry, the keychain just wants permission to start ‘opening locks’ for you. It wants to automatically sign you in to Hive.io and perform digital transactions for you like ‘commenting’ and ‘posting’. It just needs permission first.”
“So I should grant it authority?”
“Yeah, but to do that you have to:
- Enter the (‘easy-to-remember’) password you chose when you first installed Keychain.
- Then you have to click Keychain’s ‘Import’ button.
- Enter your Hive username and Posting Key. Once done, it will import your keys, and Keychain will have them from now on.”
"Woo! So now I can post?"
“Unfortunately not. You now have an account on the Hive blockchain, Hive.io. Remember, it’s like signing up to an internet service provider like AT&T. You also have your very own Hive Wallet for storing crypto-currency. That’s like having an account at a bank. But just having internet and a bank account isn’t enough. Now, you have to actually ‘go’ to the social platform that’s running on Hive.”
“Let me guess, it’s another seven-thousand steps, right?”
“Naw, it’s way easy.
Just go to peakD.com & let your keychain sign you in.
You may have to click ‘confirm’ or something.”
Harry did so. “I’m there!”
“See? Now that everything is setup, you can use any Hive.io app, such as PeakD’s Hive Browser app, and your Hive Keychain will sign you into it.”
“Oh wow, I’m in! Did it auto-select dark mode? This looks cool!”
“Yeah, I knew you’d like it.”
"So what do I do first?"
“Whatever you want. Some people like to explore, vibe out the platform, see what people are up to first. They might lurk for a while, or test out small actions like voting, re-blogging, or commenting. Others love to create first. They don’t care about all that other stuff, they just want to make an ‘introduction’ post and make themselves known on the platform. Some do a combination of both.”
“Hmm, I want to do both.”
“Sure, but choose one to start with, you can’t do two things at once bro.”
“OK, I choose create. Let’s post!”
“Sounds good. And don’t worry, I’ll teach you all the ‘content consumption’ stuff later. We’ll explore how to earn with your clicks.”
Harry flicked his mouse over to the little ‘pencil’ icon, and I knew he was about to start writing, but I realized I hadn’t explained ‘resource credits’ to him. Dammit, that’s pretty important. I don’t want to crush his excitement with yet another explanation, but he’s gonna have a rough time if I don’t.
"Wait! Let me explain 'resource credits!'"
“Chill homes, we good. What are resource credits?”
“Well, you know how the Hive.io blockchain tracks every digital transaction made, down to the shortest comment, or tiniest upvote?”
“Well, tracking all that stuff takes a lot of computing power. And like everything in the world, all those computing resources and electricity cost money. So, there has to be some way to stop a spam-bot from jumping on the platform, upvoting everything, and eating up all the resources. It would crash Hive and there’d be no computing power left for anyone else.”
“Makes sense. Smart way to handle abusers!”
“Yes, it is!”
"So Hive invented resource credits?"
“Yeah, Hivians (or Hivers?) call them ‘RC’, and every account has a certain amount of them to spend. When they do any kind of action (posts, likes, comments… the only thing that doesn’t cost resource credits viewing/reading stuff), it automatically spends their RC. When their RC hits zero, they have no more actions until it recharges. This way people take proper actions and don’t spam.”
“I guess not. OK, so how much resource credits do I have?”
“Basically none. For all Hive knows, you might be a bot that signed up. You might be looking to spam. If you try to do anything right now, with zero credits on your account, Hive Keychain will just popup and give you a weird error. Hive ain’t handing out resource credits to bots, right?”
“Yeah, but, hold up. If I need RC to do stuff, and I start with zero RC… how do I ever do anything? You know this is dumb right? Other socials make sign-up easy, & let me post freely.”
“Yes, but those places don’t pay you. Money is involved here.
Things have to be a little more secure, and handled a bit differently. And don’t worry, RC is easy to get. Stay with me.”
“OK, but I’m sayin’, most people would bounce if –after all this– they can’t even post. I would’ve been gone without you explaining this stuff.”
“I know, I know. So let’s get you some RC so you can start crushing this platform. But I’m gonna throw yet another new term at you, OK?”
“Sigh. What is it this time?”
"Why do I need to know about Hive Power?"
“For so many reasons which I’ll explain later. For now you just need to know because Hive Power helps you get resource credits.”
Harry rolled his eyes. “Seriously? Fine, I’ll bite. What’s Hive Power?”
“Well, Hive Power and resource credits are tied together.”
“Great, but I didn’t ask ‘why,’ I want to know what it is!”
“My bad. Hive Power is basically clout, or influence. The more Hive Power you have, the more influence you have on the platform. Your votes & comments ‘mean more’ and your shares ‘reach more.’ And most importantly for you, dear Harry, you can physically ‘do more’ because…
Your resource credits are proportional to your HP.
And before you ask, yes, Hivians abbreviate everything.”
“So what you’re telling me is, that since I’m new, I have no Hive Power (or influence) yet. Which means I have no resource credits. Which means I can’t do sh-t.
How do I get Hive Power?”
“The easiest way is to be gifted some Hive Power, so that’s the method I’ll teach you.”
“Hmm, but I’ll need Hive Power all through my Hive journey right? Shouldn’t I know the other ways?”
“Fine, I’ll list them real quick. To get Hive Power…
- You can earn HP by interacting. Posting, commenting, voting, and re-blogging all earn resource credits (but new users can’t do this.)
- You can wait for HP. Resource credits recharge daily. It takes about 5 days to fully charge.
- You can be delegated (loaned) or gifted HP. We’ll talk about this later.
- You can earn HP through dApps. We’ll talk on this later as well.
- You can buy HIVE (from exchanges) into your wallet, then convert it into Hive Power, which gives you resource credits.”
“Holy, nevermind, lol, can you just ‘gift’ me some?”
“I could delegate you some, but it’s basically money, in crypto form. I can’t go around giving everyone new Hiver my money to fool around with, you know?”
“But I’m your amigo!”
“Yes, so I probably will delegate you some eventually. But this guide should teach you to be self-sufficient. If I hook you up, then you’ll be relying on me for more.
I’d rather teach you how to get your own Hive Power and/or resource credits. It’s easy.”
"Use this site to be gifted Hive Power & resource credits."
My phone had giftgiver.site loaded up, and I was waving it in Harry’s face, but he just stared at me, confused.
“I’ll explain. You can gift yourself resource credits instantly. Just…
- Go to giftgiver.site/faucet
- Enter your Hive.io username
- Verify with the ‘captcha’
- Click submit, and there you go.
You'll then have a tiny bit of resource credits to get you started.”
I waited patiently for Harry to visit the site and submit.
“So now I have HP & RC, can I finally use this platform?”
“Yes. And if you comment and post reasonably well, you’ll get rewarded for that with even more RC. But even if your posts suck, you can always head back to that giftgiver.site when you run out to get a bit more.”
“Psssh, please bro, my posts are god-tier.” Harry stuck his tongue out. “Anyway, thanks. So now can I click that little pencil icon and start writing?”
“Yes, please do.”
Harry clicked and was met with the editing page. It had a text editor on the left, (complete with bold, italics, and ‘upload image’ buttons.) On the right, it had a preview pane and a ‘publish’ button.
3. CREATING A POST
Harry wrote a witty intro post.
Harry wrote up a witty little intro and tagged it as #introduceyourself, but still had more questions.
“How do I resize this image I added?”
“Unfortunately, this isn’t beginner friendly. I’d skip it.”
"But I want to resize my image, it's way too big."
“Seriously, it’s too hard, I’m not explaining it.
You need to be comfortable with URLs, HTML code, pixel-dimensions, etc. If you know HTML, maybe you can figure it out from this example of a re-sized Hive Image.”
<img src="<img class="markdown-img-link" src="https://images.ecency.com/100x50/https://files.peakd.com/file/peakd-hive/bashadow/jdaoftGk-DSC_9461macroresizedupload.jpg""/> />"
Harry shot me a smug look and said “It looks like you just add ‘images.hive.blog/WidthxHeight/’ to the beginning of your image URL.”
“Oh, so now you’re teaching me? Seriously, good luck. Until Hive makes it more noob-friendly, I’m not touching this subject. People will have to suffer with big images in their posts.”
"Fine, show me how to quote someone in my post?"
“Type a ‘greater-than’ (>) symbol at the start of the line, in front of your quote.”
> "this will be a quote because of the greater-than symbol." - J-Ryze.
"What are these weird symbols in my post?"
“You’ll see symbols like , #, and _ being added to your posts, because that is how Hive detects bolds, headings, italics, and so on. If you highlight a sentence click the ‘bold’ button, for example, Hive’s editor will put an asterisk () at either end of the sentence.”
*italics* , **bold** , ## heading2 , etc.
“Can’t I just use HTML? We learned it in school.”
“I noticed, show off. Yes, you can use HTML as well, Hive does support it.”
"Can I create a link to other sites?"
“Yeah, use square-brackets around your link text , and parentheses for your link address ().
[Display Text](https://linkaddress.com) The above will create a link displaying the words 'Display Text', that takes a user to linkaddress.com.
"How about add bullet points?"
“Yes, use a hyphen (-), followed by a space, then your text.
- Bullet one - Bullet two - Bullet three - Etc.
“Thanks, now my post looks sweet. I’m launching it!”
"Fine, just don't plagiarize even a single part of it!"
“I wasn’t! Why are you yelling at me?”
“Because, Hivers are batsh-t insane about plagiarism.”
“Will they harm me for it?”
“I wouldn’t put it past some of them.”
Hiver’s will downvote you into oblivion for plagiarism or spam, and they are very active about discovering it, so don’t even try getting away with it. Just post normally, like a decent human. And credit anyone and anything you use or borrow from.”
"What actually happens when I click publish?"
“What do you mean?”
“Well, Hive is different–“
“–different in so many ways. I assume this part is different too, right?”
“You’re right. Smart man, Harry. Let me ask you, what do you think you just did when you clicked ‘Publish?'”
“Um, I posted on PeakD, which is Hive’s social media?”
“No you didn’t.”
"You posted on Hive.io, using PeakD as a front-end."
“Yes. Remember that Hive.io is a giant account-book (or operating system.) You have an account on it, and that’s where everything happens. PeakD is just a pretty interface used to access it.
You use PeakD to make a post, but you’re not posting on PeakD.
PeakD doesn’t store any of your data (nor does Hive.Blog, or Ecency) because it’s just a front-end too.
They’re like browsers you use to surf Hive. Or like skins or plugins in other apps. You can use many decentralized apps (dapps) to browse Hive’s social media. Hive.Blog is the original app, but PeakD has overtaken it in popularity. Whichever one you use, it’s still just storing your social interactions on the Hive.io blockchain. Since we started talking, what you’ve actually done is:
Created an account on Hive.io (‘blockchain’), then logged into it using your Keychain, and finally posted on Hive.io. Only, instead of using the Hive.Blog ‘browser’ to do it, you used the sweet dark-mode interface of PeakD.”
“¡Pinche! amigo, ok, ok, I think I get it. I could’ve used the default Hive.Blog skin to post instead, right?”
“Bingo! The same way Windows has themes and plugins that make it look and feel different, Hive.io does too.
Just know that Hive calls these things… dApps."
"Can you quickly explain dapps, then?"
“Sure. For example, PeakD is my favorite dApp for beginners, but we’ll get into other ones down the road.”
“Is it pronounced ‘dee-apps’ or ‘dah-apps?'”
“I say ‘dee-apps’, but it’s your choice. I’ve seen it spelled with a small ‘d,’ other times a capital ‘D,’ and sometimes even a capital ‘A.’ It’s another fancy new word the crypto community has coined. We’ll explore them more once you’re familiar with Hive.”
“So couldn’t I have got my ‘bank account’ at Hive.io, then headed right to Hive.Blog to start posting? That’s the ‘official’ skin right? That way I could skip the Keychain, PeakD, and all this dApps stuff, right?”
You can’t skip the keychain, ’cause to use a social platform that pays for everything you do on it, you have to have a Hive Wallet.
And though technically you could skip PeakD, you’d be mad if we did.
Firstly because it’s a much better experience, and more importantly, because Hive.io is an operating system that runs many powerful dApps. These dApps are essential, so you’ll need to get used to them. I figured we’d make your first dApp PeakD, since it makes posting and browsing Hive’s social media so much nicer.”
“Hmm, thanks J. You went the extra mile to teach this and dig deeper, all so I didn’t end up lost and confused out in the crypto-social-world.”
“I think I’m blushing. That’s the nicest Hive-Focused thing anyone’s said to me. Thank you! But let’s keep going. Surely you don’t just want to learn how to post, then bounce, right?”
“Right! I posted. So now I’m thinking ‘show me the money!’ The coolest part of everything you’ve told me is that I get paid for doing ‘normal social media’ things. What do I do to get my hands on that cash?”
“Hold your horses, partner. People are already replying to your post, probably because you added that ‘#introduceyourself’ tag. You sure you wanna ignore ’em to chase money that’s already on it’s way?”
“Good point, let’s tackle commenting then!”
“Good choice, Harry. One thing: I know I said we wouldn’t talk payment yet, but let me explain rewards to you before we get into commenting, ok?
4. REWARDS (CRYPTO!)
"Understand rewards before consuming, Harry."
“Uh-huh. So enlighten me.”
“OK. In real money, you can’t get smaller than a cent, right?”
“I mean… I could “guinsoo-knife” a penny in half I guess.”
“Sure, and no one would take it.
Crypto is different though. Many rewards are given out as a percent of a coin. Because you’re doing so many clicks and stuff on social, it’d be nuts if they were all worth a cent each.
And since rewards are given in a cryptocurrency, they have to be worth 0.001 of a token, or something.”
“So it costs others some of their Resource Credits to comment on your post. And it will cost you some RC to reply.”
“I think I understand. And since they each count as ‘posts,’ to Hive.io, they start earning RC/HP back for the people who make them and those who interact with them, right?”
“Exactly! Although it’s ‘potentially’ earning.”
“Wait, I thought you said everything earns? Whatchu mean ‘potentially’, mang?”
“Well, weak-a$$ comments don’t earn. If you say ‘great post’, it’s very unlikely to earn rewards.”
“Because rewards are only paid out once they cross the ‘dust threshold.'”
"What the f--k is the 'dust threshold?'"
“It’s the earnings-bar Hive sets. Your ‘digital interaction’ (post, comment, etc.) has to cross this bar before Hive starts paying out.”
“How high is this earnings bar?”
“Hahaha, good one!”
“Wait, you’re not joking?”
“Nope. It really is two cents. Think about it. If you make a post or a comment, people can vote on it. So they start voting, and your post starts earning. But remember, rewards are earned in tiny pieces, as a percent of a token. So, lame comments like ‘great post’ won’t earn enough ‘pieces of a token’ to even cross a single cent, let alone the $0.02 threshold.”
“Hmm. So everyone’s posts, comments, and votes all earn. But only decent content gets engaged with enough to pass the dust-threshold and begin paying out. The rest sit there at less than two cents, paying out nothing.”
“Yep, and those non-earners are called ‘dust votes!’ We’ll explore rewards more when we talk ‘earnings.’ For now, I’ll just say, very good summary, Harry. You learn fast.”
“I mean, dude, you’re teaching this better than every f--king human on the planet.”
“Please, my ego’s already big enough, I don’t wanna go back to my ‘cocky a$$hole’ years.”
“Okay, okay. Heh. So what’s next? Why did I need to know all this before replying to comments?”
5. CONSUMING CONTENT
"Because... look at the comments on your post, my friend."
“OMG, I have 3 comments already! Is this for real?”
“Yeah, Hive’s pretty new. There’s thousands of people using it, but not nearly the same as the hundreds of millions who use Facebook or Instagram. This means you get the benefit of standing out in a world that hasn’t buried you in noise… yet. This also means people can get overly focused on votes and comments. Hivers sometimes seem to all be fighting over the sparse attention available, and since money is involved, they can get a bit carried away. S’all good though. You benefit from 3 comments in 3 minutes now, but it may not stay this way.”
“Aight, so do I reply? Do my replies cost resource credits?”
“They do, you’re really getting this. When I first started posting I used up all my RC replying to comments and then couldn’t do anything for days.”
“So, are you telling me not to reply?”
“Look, it’s like this: Comments are treated as ‘mini-posts’ by Hive.io. It stores them the same way on the blockchain. Imagine if you left a really long comment? You’d want that to count and earn, similar to a post, right?”
“Right, so Hive.io rewards people who interact with comments, the same way it rewards people who interact with posts. So by all means, reply to your followers, but understand that this isn’t like other social media where you can just write ‘great post!’ all the time. Each comment matters, and each comment has the potential of getting upvoted or downvoted… which can actually affect people’s cashflow, yours included.”
“Now I’m scared!”
“Don’t be, man. I’m not telling you this to scare you, I’m telling you this so you understand what people are doing when they comment on your post. Yes, they’re engaging with you. But they’re also contributing their own ‘posts’ in the thread beneath yours, and they may deserve those ‘posts’ (their comments) to be upvoted.”
“Right, so I literally have the power to reward them with my replies.”
“Yes, and it's more that your upvotes reward them, your replies are mini-posts you may earn on.”
“Oh god, please don’t tell me upvotes are some special thing too…”
“They are. And they have to be, because people are earning through them. It can’t just be some random ‘click like’ and hit the explore-page sh-t. It has to make sense (and cents).”
Voting (Votes Are Money!)
"Fine, explain voting before I comment too."
“Ay! What’s with the attitude? Are you not interested in earning crypto by voting? Because it took me insane effort to understand all this, and even more to explain it this simply. I’m happy to stop and go grab a beer, just say the word.”
“No, no, my bad. I just– it’s just a lot to take in at once.”
“Well, no one’s forcing you to digest it all now. We can always stop and pick up our conversation later. You can learn Hive bit by bit.”
“No, it’s fine, please continue. I want to know what I’m doing so I can succeed here.”
“That’s better. Hmph.” I folded my arms in a huff.
Seeing my posture, Harry took a big breath and sighed. “So… uh… voting?”
“Yes, right! Voting. Voting is a pretty big topic with Hivers. It seems everyone has something to say about it. The reason is that every vote is money. Money can be wasted. Money can be abused. Money can be invested poorly, or wisely. Same goes for votes. Three different people told me three different approaches to voting when I first joined Hive. The conflicting views were nuts. It took me way too long to figure it out.”
“Can you give me it in a nutshell?”
"Yes, but first I'll cover 'reputation' score."
“Are. You. Kidding. Me?”
“More terminology. I know. Look, I didn’t make all this stuff. If I was in charge it’d be better, but I’m not. I’m with you. I’m not blind. I can clearly see how over-complicated it is, and we both know I could simplify it.”
“Anyway, reputation score is one way Hive, and Hivers, can understand your value on the platform. A brand new bot who just spams the platform will have a crappy reputation score. A founder of the platform who’s contributed thousands of quality posts and comments for years… will have a great reputation score.”
“What’s my rep score?”
“If you’re on PeakD, it’s next to your name. It goes up when people vote on your stuff. Getting downvoted can hurt your rep and make your posts less visible. Every new user starts off with a reputation score of 25, so that’s what yours is at. Maybe a tad higher because you got three upvotes already.”
"Ah, so voting directly affects rep score."
“Exactly. Which is why I had to explain it first.”
“OK, so should I like… upvote the people who commented on my post? Or should I reply to them? Or should I do both?”
“Good questions. And the answer is: it depends. Remember, everything you do spends your resource credits. Which means, everything you do better be ‘worth it’ to you. Let’s say you read a comment. You like it, but not enough to reply. You could upvote it, right?”
“Yeah, I do that all the time on reddit. I be spamming votes like crazy yo.”
“Yeah, but on Hive, upvotes are money. You have to be a bit smarter about it.
Make sure it’s really worth it if you’re going to upvote.
Same for commenting. Same for replying. Make sure it’s worth spending your resource credits.”
“How do I know if voting, commenting, or replying is worth it? I don’t want to waste my resource credits…”
“Yeah, that was a big question for me when I first started. Still might be. A good rule of thumb is: if you’re a newbie, don’t upvote comments. Period. As a newbie with little Hive Power / Resource Credits , it isn’t worth it.”
“Well, it has to do with ‘vote mana’, ‘voting power’, and ‘voting weight.'” I knew Harry was going to spaz out because I was introducing even more new terms. “Please don’t get pissed, I’ll explain these terms too.”
Harry ground his teeth as if they were crushed glass. “Dude. I am seriously trying here. I’ve taken SATs with less to remember.”
“Bear with me, man. I’ma do my best.”
"What are Vote Mana & Vote Power?"
“No one has unlimited votes on Hive. Your votes will run out. Which means that every vote matters. Which means you’ll want to put some actual thought into your voting.”
“Sounds fair. How do I know how much votes I have?”
“You check your ‘Voting Mana.’ It’s like an ‘energy-meter’ in a video-game. You start out with 100% voting mana, but it drops a bit for each vote you make.”
“What happens when my voting ‘mana bar’ reaches zero?”
“Then you can’t vote, but don’t worry, Hive recharges your voting mana by a good chunk (20%) daily.”
“Cool! I wanna see my current bar, it should be 100% full since I haven’t voted yet, right?”
“Yep! Only thing is, your voting mana can only be seen on external sites. Check out
“I love it! Hey, there’s a downvote bar too!”
“Yeah, it’s pretty similar, slight differences. Oh, and sometimes this Voting Mana is also referred to as your ‘voting power’, don’t let it confuse you.”
“OK, so mana, power, whatever… when people talk about it, they really just mean how many votes I have available, yes?”
“Basically. They call it ‘power’ because as your voting mana decreases, your votes have less ‘impact’ and ‘influence.’ They pretty much earn you less money if you burn them all up and drop your mana bar low.”
“Hmm. K. You said they recharge though, so I should be able to use like 10 votes a day and just have my voting mana refilled the next day, right?”
“Yep, this is what many users do, so they don’t drop their mana low, and they don’t really lose voting power.”
"Cool, I get it. So what's Vote Weight?"
“Ah, you remembered that eh? Vote weight decides how much ‘money’ you’ll invest in your vote.”
“Do I control it?”
“Yes, if you’re using PeakD as your social dApp (skin), you do. When you press the ‘vote’ button, PeakD will display a ‘slider’ that goes from 0% to 100%. Wherever you set that slide decides how much ‘weight’ your vote on that post (or comment) will have. It also decides how much money that vote will earn or be worth. Slide it to 100% and that vote is worth a good amount. Slide it to 0% and the vote is worth no money.”
“So at zero, it becomes a ‘like’ on Instagram… worthless.”
“Haha, you joke, but that’s basically what happens, yes. The vote earns you (and the person you vote on) zero cryptocurrency. A 0% vote-weighted vote earns no HIVE tokens at all. But at the same time, it also doesn’t hit your mana bar very hard.”
“So if I make my votes a lower vote-weight, they’ll be worth a bit less, but I’ll be able to get more votes out of my mana bar, am I summarizing this correctly?”
“You are. And I’m glad, because explaining voting on Hive has been, um, tricky, at best.”
Harry and I high-fived with a resounding ‘smack!’ It seemed like he was really getting it, and maybe his introduction to Hive wouldn’t be the chaotic nightmare mine was. Still we had more to go. And I still hadn’t told him whether or not to reply to his comments or upvote them.
“Okay, but you still haven’t told me whether to reply or upvote or what here. I’m staring at my post with 3 people who commented. I could be engaging with them by now! I could’ve given them an instant reply on another platform.”
“You can reply instantly here too, I just wanted to make sure you understood what you were doing with your resource credits.”
“My Hive Privileges, you mean.”
“Heh, pretty much.”
“Well, thank you then. But please… for the love of god… can I reply?”
“You tell me. Did you understand how posts, comments, replies, upvotes, and resource credits affect everything on Hive? Did you understand how your choices with them affect your reputation score, your Hive Power, and your influence? Because if you did, you’ll know how to proceed in a way that suits you.”
“C’mon man. Maybe I forgot some of the stuff. It’s too much to take in. Aren’t there people who join Hive and don’t learn all this stuff?”
“Yep, and they have a rough time of things. In fact, they often create an account, post once, and leave.”
"Because their ignorance of Hive Etiquette attracts haters."
“I haven’t seen any so far.”
“Well, maybe not, but their ignorance results in less success on Hive, a less comfortable experience, and yes, maybe even some ‘haters.'”
“Haters, please. So dramatic.”
“Well I mean, they obviously don’t see themselves as haters. They're often doing a good thing, defending Hive and making sure people ‘vote properly’, etc. I just call them 'haters' for ease of explaining.
I mean you may have unpleasant interactions with other Hivians.”
“So you’re telling me if I joined without learning all this I would’ve had unpleasant interactions?”
“Someone likely would’ve, yes. Or at the very least you’d be ‘firmly corrected’ for not knowing. Users on Hive can get… overly passionate…about improper voting etiquette. They see it as an attack on Hive and the community, even themselves.”
“Gimme an example?”
“Sure. I joined Hive and in my first few posts, I was told to only use 10% weighted votes on comments. I was also told not to vote on comments at all because I’m new. It was also suggested I be a good Hivian and ‘always upvote’ comments that I find sincere. I literally clicked vote, and somehow people noticed what I was doing…
…and all three had a ‘correction’ to make.
And I’m grateful they took the time to correct me. I thanked each of them. But in my head I was like… ‘I was new, and had already learned more than any other new Hiver in less time, and getting multiple correction still didn’t feel good enough.'”
“Yep. And here’s another…
...Apparently you're 'forced' to vote."
“Wait, that sounds terrible! Who’s forcing who to do what now?”
“Well, not exactly, and it's quite minor. But the idea is that since your voting mana recharges daily, you basically have about 10 ‘free’ votes to use each day, because they’ll just be restocked for you. So if you don’t use these 10 ‘free votes’, you’re wasting a chance to put ‘free money’ into Hive, by voting on the content of others. So others may see you as ‘hurting’ their content by your unused ‘free’ daily voting power.”
“So they see it like being miserly with your votes, locking them up in a vault, when they could be flowing to others.”
“Yeah, remember, your votes can earn… for everyone. Just as you like to get upvotes, others do too. And since you have ‘free votes’ daily, you’re kind of ‘forced’ to use them by social pressure.”
“But nothing will happen to me if I don’t, right?”
“Well, nothing from the Hive system, but you know cancel-culture. Who’s to say people won’t start mass downvoting you, killing your reputation score, and making your posts invisible on Hive?”
“Dude! That’s dark AF. That’s like a crypto-based cancel-culture mob! I’m bouncing from this platform!”
“Wait wait wait! Chill. I was just joking around.
I mean, technically that’s possible, but you’d have to be a giant jerk for everyone to hate you like that.
Nothing major’s gonna happen if you don’t use your daily votes.”
“Swear. But my point is, your life on Hive will go easy if you understand the culture.”
“Yeah, same goes for any new ‘world.’ Try moving to Colombia without knowing the culture, right?
“You said it. If someone is new to Reddit, and they aren’t aware of how anti-self-promotion Reddit is, they may just share a link like they do on any other platform and be banned from a sub on their first day on Reddit. If someone is new to IG, and they’re unaware of how conservative Instagram is about nudity, they may post an implied nude and be instantly banned on their first day.”
“Got it. So if a newbie like me is unaware of Hive’s focus on voting, I may get banned on my first day?”
“Nope! That’s the beauty of Hive… your stuff is yours. There’s no governing body who can ban you, as far as I know. But there can still be negative results from ignorance. That was my whole point.
Know the etiquette of whatever platform you’re joining, right?”
“Understood. Any other culture shock I should avoid?”
“The big players at Hive (aka ‘whales’) are pretty sensitive to community contribution. If you seem like you’re here just looking to get paid or cash out, things may go poorly for you. I was scared to even use the word ‘paid’ in this guide.”
“Good to know, I’m here to contribute, just excited is all. I think I get all the etiquette.”
TO BE CONTINUED.
Due to Hive's post-size limits, I'll stop PART 1 of this guide here. You can read the entire thing on this (beautifully formatted) webpage: jryze.me/hive or return here for a link to PART 2 once it's posted. (EDIT: Here's the link to part two!)