Path of Least Resistance

I’m going to be brutally honest.

Since I started helping MaidSafe before the crowdsale, I wanted to make the “perfect” system. I guess you could say I was like CLU, from the movie Tron Legacy. The math had to make sense, balance had to be regulated, and the economy must be sustainable.

Overtime, I learned a lot from others, even those I disagree with. Maybe, I’m going soft. Because my views have changed somewhat. The most recent threads had me questioning. Why are so many inefficient systems still working today?

To answer this question, I had to step back and look at it from a consumer, not producer, point of view…

If I had a choice between the following SAFE Networks, which would I choose?

  1. (Pay to Upload).
    No. I can upload for free on other networks. I can also pre-encrypt my own files before uploading.

  2. (Pay to Download).
    Definitely not. I already download for free on other networks.

  3. (Pay to Upload/Download).
    Absolutely not. This might be the most efficient design for input/output, but it doesn’t make any sense for me financially, when there are so many free alternatives available.

  4. (Free to Upload/Download)
    Maybe. This depends on what is available content wise, and how easy/safe it was to upload/download.

  5. (Pay to Upload, Free to Download) + (Earn Safecoin for running a vault)
    Yes. I would not upload anything, just run a vault until the costs outweigh the potential gain.

  6. (Free to Upload/Download) + (Earn Safecoin for running a vault)
    Definitely yes! This could be the worst idea, economically. But I would show up to the party for all the free booze! I would upload/download and run a vault, until the costs outweigh the potential gain.

My personal opinion may not reflect majority of users. And I’m not suggesting any changes to the current plan, just wondering if paper theory really beats practice behavior?

EDIT: Added Option #7 per discussions… see below.

(Pay to Upload “beyond” Free NSL / Free to Download) + (Earn Safecoin for running a vault)
It makes more economical sense than #6, and offers X free storage for new accounts. This is more appealing than #5 because I don’t need Safecoin to get started.


I think “pay to upload/pay to download” talk sounds a lot worse than it would actually be – Because really the intent is preventing the abuse of the network. If your usage is relatively balanced in that you give about what you receive, all the “paying” can be done on the backend without you even seeing it or worrying about it…

This assumes I’m running a vault to recoup my costs.

It is very likely that 20% of the user population will be running a vault (full time), while 80% will be (part time), or not at all. I didn’t make up this statistic. It just happens in many systems across the board.

I don’t know how to pre-encrypt my data and neither does the rest of my family and friends. So I think it’s a bit easy to put that ability on everyone.


It’s probably because there isn’t a strong “need” to do so… blind trust in the current paradigm.
But honestly, if the demand is there, they can do it for free using 7-zip, or Truecrypt, or any other alternative that makes it quick and easy.

I don’t think you’re going soft - it seems to be a mix of several things.

You probably saw my shelved proposal for discussion which I think translates to this: let’s start with your #4 (Free to Upload/Download) and then see whether #5 or #6 makes more sense.

If I’m only imagining the similarities, it’s my fault.

That’s what I said too, except that I didn’t think there was/is that much theory behind the economics (not the technology!) of the network yet.


I prefer to have a service (SAFE) where all this happens for me automatically. And the only way people will pay for such a network would be if it’s much better/safer etc. (deduplication, self-encryption, self-authentication, built-in-cryptocurrency) than the rest.



If the SAFE Network proves to be more useful… auto encrypts data. This is similar to cars that auto-lock today. People naturally want something that makes life easier.

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Do you think there are sufficient incentives to prevent extreme opportunism on the side of SAFE farmers?
Dealing with a failed disk (in RAID configuration) is troublesome enough and despite the scaleable architecture I am still not sure that the huge amounts of network churn will be handled gracefully and that there must be strong incentives to minimize loss of vaults (and of course to handle it at the same time, that goes without saying).

Encryption and all the features are great, but it’s all about proper economic incentives for cooperative behavior.

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Actually, this makes more sense.

It would be like a grand opening event #4!
Free to upload creates a mad rush of new content because there is no barrier to entry. Then if the Network starts to fill up, we can release Safecoin to attract more farmers and determine #5 or #6.

I am worried about investor backlash. But we can show the benefit of having a Network FULL of pre-uploaded goodies (APPS + Content). This means Safecoin has something to buy and large population of users to boot!


Even if the system is inefficient. Real life examples show they still exist… which is a conundrum for people like me (analyst). Worst cast, we make v2.0.

This wont bring in this mad rush you speak of, or at least the statistical likelihood is low, the cost to begin with is going to be minuscule to begin with anyway providing far more than enough incentive to join, the rewarding farmers helps populate the network as well as give the space those content creators need to add to the network, having loads of content deliverers and very little people actually surfing the network would be pretty bad long term leading to less and less incentive to actually join the network

How would #6 ever work?

If nobody puts SAFEcoin back into the network, eventually the network would run out of coin to pay…

If you just print money and try to buy something with it - people would have to be foolish to take it. SAFEcoin obtains it’s value a value exchange happens with the network… If you remove the “what it can buy” its just an worthless coupon. If you make it just another altcoin - it is just another altcoin like the 1200 others…

I do think that most of the reward is the network itself – so I don’t think Farmers need to be paid exorbitantly – but there must be some “give and take” in order to prevent the “take” from killing the network…

True, the actual PUT costs may be low. But this assumes I already have Safecoin. Honestly, it’s a PITA to acquire through exchanges or a third party right now.

I have the option to run a vault. But I need data to farm. Wouldn’t it be better to have more data than less?

I still think more people will upload if it’s free, compared to paying, or running a vault for several days before they can upload.

Good Question,

The intention is to distribute 4.3 Billion Safecoin. So technically, we do want the unowned pool to run dry… meaning all 4.3 are owned by users.

The SAFE Network could payout SAFE GB after the last Safecoin is minted. This allows Safecoin to transition away from storage into a multi-purpose currency. And SAFE GB can take over as the storage incentive. Just a thought…

I doubt it, looking at the majority of tech “explosions” in recent years, the projects with the best growth , and exponential growth and continous expansion have been those offering financial incentives or economical models with built in financial incentives .

Not everyone can make a website, even with the super simple GUI that maid will be introducing, the majority of content creators putting useful data onto the network will know how to buy the coins, if not already have some waiting ,

You make it free to upload, you completely remove the financial incentive , farmers will be paid because 3 billion+ coins lay in wait to be created over the next 10 years to pay those farmers, but the method described is making them practically pointless

instead of having a strong economical model, turning hard drive space/storage into a trad-able commodity

you are building the economic abilities that will strengthen the network and simply ignoring them to try and draw more “data” which for free most likely wont be top selling apps or popular content , more people testing it by putting 15000 cat pictures online.

Don’t see the point of trying to draw extra people into joining the network at the beginning by completely crippling the longevity of the project at the same time. damaging it’s future potential .

Everything I have read says SAFEcoin will be recycled.

Could work your way though… SAFEgb are only a theoretical discussion as far as I know though…

I still think SAFEcoin is going to be more valuable if it is tied to tangible network resources.

Really all we need is an anti-abuse system… You can set up a free fountain to get people enough to get started – But that fountain ought not make it feasible to store their DVD collection of SAFE.


yeah literally a faucet solves this problem, didn’t think of that but actually provides a real genuine use to a faucet , instead of people just using it to milk a coin backed on nothing (i mean other blockchain coins)

Respectfully disagree,

If this were true, there would not be any special sale events. I see it being done all the time. These businesses sacrifice a lot of money to start: trends, and build a customer base.

Maybe you’re just opposing #4 alone. But your quote of me also included #5 and #6 as well.

This is correct, but uploading a file to BitTorrent to share with a friend?? It can be a real PITA to find the right site, tracker etc. That’s why I would use Dropbox or Google or WeTransfer. But these have limits and might ask some money as well. And they also scan your files. Why should they scan my VHS-rips from good old holiday times with friends. I just want to share these files with some friends. So to compare this to SAFE is not completely fair. SAFE provides much more.

It will be very cheap, so I actually would buy some Safecoin or share some with friends. We could connect, share a private blog, share some files, tip a blog for a nice article. Look at how much money is spent on Netflix and games etc. People don’t mind to pay some. Especially when they Farm their own coins while they enjoy surfing on SAFE fro free.

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