explicitClick to confirm you are 18+

The Unofficial Minds Newsletter Issue #2

JaeBee The Lokean PriestessMar 31, 2022, 3:07:48 PM

It seems a lot of you liked the idea of a quick and easy read to find out the juicy goings-on of the site, so I guess this is gonna be a thing now! Big thanks for all the support, and an even bigger thanks to @klara_sjo for providing the new banner, and to @Drawzooka for our new mascot, Orbo!


The Goings-On of Yestermonth

Comment Spammers Attack, Annoy the Crap Out of Everyone

Oh the comment spam… Good LORD the comment spam. You’ve all seen them by now, clogging up comments sections with their phishing links and choppy english that was obviously proofread by a howler monkey. One has to wonder just how many clicks these beepity boopity thotbot accounts actually gather, since every single one of these either gets ignored, or downvoted to oblivion. One also has to wonder just how much gumption the botter behind these accounts has, because they’re popping up almost as quickly as they’re being taken down by the admins. Remember folks, if you see one of these, report it. 

Anti-Spambot Measures, When?

Speaking of annoying bots, it’s the end of Q1 and there’s no sign of the big changes we’ve been teased with since last year. The Minds Staff has been dropping hints left and right about a new system to fight off the spam accounts, and changes to the rewards system that would unleash a world of hurt on the token manipulators. Neither of these things has happened, and we’re once again left to just scratch our heads and wait. It should be safe to assume that progress is being made behind the scenes, however, since the network score has been steady as she goes for a good while now. 

Token Value Takes a Poo

With all the fabulous goings on in the world, the price of cryptocurrency did a lot of fluctuating, and ETH in particular, which is the basis for the Minds Token, spent quite a long while plummeting in value. Legend has it that if you listen carefully, at the stroke of midnight, you can still hear @Deckenkatze crying in the distance...

But before anyone gets nervous, the value of our beloved tokies never dropped below the $1 mark, and it has been making a steady recovery. 

Ottman Appears on Joe Rogan’s Show!

But not everything was storm clouds and mud puddles. Our own Bill Ottman made a guest appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience! The full podcast is available on Spotify, but there are some clips floating around as well, like this one here: https://www.minds.com/newsfeed/1350903008635916304

 The discussion consisted of the usual topics you’d expect, censorship, big tech, free speech, so on and so forth. But with this podcast came a hell of a lot of exposure for our little corner of the internet, and an influx of new users to our party. In turn, this helped prompt the creation of #FrenFinder2 , the sequel tag to last year’s #FrenFinder, both of which were created by @Klara_sjo to assist users in finding accounts to follow and allowing them to introduce themselves to the community. Sadly, the original tag has since been hijacked by annoying spammers who like to latch onto any popular tag they can in hopes of smearing their crap all over the site. Remember not to feed them, frens. 

Minds Asks for Artwork to Put on shirts

You’ve more than likely seen the boosted posts advertising these by now, provided you don’t have boosts turned off. @QuiteJane has been collecting artwork from local artists and slapping it on some shirts, available for purchase. It’s labeled an art contest, but considering the lack of any contest-like structure, it’s more of a ‘send your art to Minds and they’ll pick what they like and use it’. And no, the artists aren’t getting anything out of it besides seeing their artwork sold on official merch. Kind of a raw deal, but at least it’s a way for us to show off the site and a few of our local artists. Minds has also created a new page specifically for their new merch store: https://www.minds.com/store/

The Minds Registration Page Gets a Facelift

This is something that’s been overdue for a while. This new design is a step in the right direction, but there are still strides left to be made. The UX certainly has a number of kinks to iron out, and some feel the layout needs a makeover, but another concern is the market appeal. 

There have been a number of other “free speech” platforms aimed at the right wing popping up left and right recently, all of which make the same claims of supporting freedom and condemning censorship. While Minds has its token system to stand apart from the crowd to a degree, and loves to trumpet its commitment to privacy so even the angels can hear it, there isn’t much of an appeal to target a more general audience. At least, in this writer’s opinion. 

But it is clear that steps are being taken and progress is being made, so we can only wait with baited breath to see what direction awaits us. 


What’s Coming Our Way This Month?

Building off of the previous criticism, there seems to be some interesting goodies headed our way in the near future! 

Channel Recommendations Gets More Fiddling With

The issue getting most of the focus looks to be channel recommendations. We’ve already seen some tinkering, with the appearance of channel recommendations in the newsfeed, and it seems like this tinkering is going to continue. For one, it seems that the newsfeed version is going to replace the sidebar, and the algorithm will favor showing channels that the user hasn’t seen yet, and upon refreshing would continuously show new unseen pages. There’s also a plan to add a small “who else subs to this user” list on the profile page. The intention here is obviously to better connect the community, but knowing the minds userbase, there’s little doubt that questions are going to arise. 

The Newsfeed Gets Fixed. Hopefully. 

It also looks like the newsfeed itself is going to be getting some fixes and new functionality. Some users have complained about the addition of the Highlights section of the newsfeed, myself included. In response to the complaints, the devs will be adding a “Latest Only” sorting function that will show a more traditional version of the feed that only shows posts in chronological order.

The group posts will also be getting a fix. There have been a lot of complaints about posts from groups clogging their feeds, and of a bug that caused unjoined groups to keep appearing. With any luck, this problem will be a thing of the past.

Finally, Minds is looking to add embedding for Rumble and Odysee videos! A lot of users have had it up to their ears with YouTube, and who can blame them? YouTube is a trashfire, and many of us would waaaay rather go elsewhere. Well, Minds is looking to make that a little easier by adding embeds for two popular alt tech video platforms so we can watch them natively without having to go to the sites themselves. One small babystep for alt tech, one more middle finger to big tech. 


Community Happenings

Oh boy has there been a lot going on in our little community this month. Hold onto your butts, y’all.

Tomas the Kraken Charms the Pants Off of Everyone

If you haven’t heard of Tomas the Kraken yet, oh are you missing out. One of Minds’ most prolific artists, @Neutronboar, created an art game featuring Tomas, a baby kraken. Users have the ability to donate tokens via membership to feed Tomas and help him grow, or buy him trinkets for his tank. As simple as it is, Tomas has captured a lot of hearts (and tokens) in his few weeks of life, and many have taken to spoiling the little sea monster with gifts and new frens. Tomas is an incredibly uplifting gem of wholesome in an ocean of depressing current events.

What will Tomas’s journey be from here? Come and find out!


Ottman Runs a Meme Contest… It Goes About As Well As You’d Expect

We all love a good meme contest, especially when there’s a good 1k token prize to be won. Bill Ottman surprised us all with a competition that would award a thousand tokens to the three most upvoted memes submitted. The contest ran from March 18th and ended on the 21st, giving entrants the weekend to submit their memes and gather upvotes. But like many other contests run by the admins, the contest was quickly rife with confusion and problems. 

Ottman’s post didn’t list any rules. It only instructed users to submit a meme under the tag #mindsmemes , so it wasn’t long before things went haywire and corrections had to be made. Ottman clarified that the meme had to be Minds related, and only one submission was allowed per person. Even then, there was still confusion about whether boosting was allowed (ps boosting was slightly broken at the time as well), and later the validity of upvoting accounts came into question. To cap it off, the use of the mindsmemes tag, having already been a popular tag, only made matters worse, especially when the spam accounts caught onto its newfound popularity. As a result of all the madness, contest results were delayed until nearly the end of the week while things were sorted out. 

Now, to be totally fair to Ottman, he did lose a close friend not too long prior, which isn’t the best state of mind to be in when running such a large scale contest. However, it seems that whenever the admins run a contest, the same issues have a way of dampening the fun. It’s all so casual and lacking in structure that the whole thing gets very unorganized very quickly. The cozy, laid back feel of the site is a fantastic one, and not something seen on other social media sites, but there are places the Minds Team could stand to improve their professionalism, and this is one of them. 

Oh, and congrats to the three winners of the contest: @ladyred , @klara_sjo , and @fickleflame !

“Hear My Story” Writing Contest

On the subject of contests, @talexratcliff is running one of his own. His “hear my story” contest for writers is asking for short stories, 2k words or shorter, that would see the winner be narrated on his YouTube channel. All entries are due by April 10th, so get in while you can! 
Details here: https://www.minds.com/newsfeed/1347894888049414158


For those of us who have been on Minds for over a year, some might remember PoggityChamp, a meme/lewd poster who was a regular presence on the site until… he suddenly wasn’t. On April 2nd, 2021, Poggy wrote his last post, a simple goodnight. He hasn’t posted since. The disappearance sparked the creation of PogMeme, a comic based story with multiple arcs and pov’s, the main two made by @megamouthgames and @judge_cronos . 

Hats off and a moment of silence for our lost Poggy. 

FridayMemeWar vs Politiboomers

Ever since the admins managed to finally wrangle the bot problem at least somewhat under control, the soldiers of #FridayMemeWar have found themselves facing down a new enemy: Boomers. Popular tags always have a way of attracting undesirable attention from shallow posters who only hope to bandwagon on the tags popularity and weasel as many views and upvotes as they can. Previously, it was spam accounts, but lately, the beloved tag has seen a number of irritating political posts being sharted out by your typical politics obsessed boomer accounts. 

Time for all MemeWar soldiers to suit up and blast the boomers!

Brick Dropping a New Fireside Review

Everyone probably knows Brick at this point. Our resident based Indian man and the self proclaimed CEO of racism, and one of the bigger channels on the site. Most probably know him via his meme posting and merciless ripping on leftists, but he also has channels on YouTube and Odysee where he reviews films and shows. The content is surprisingly apolitical, but usually goes a great deal in depth about the subject matter, particularly on the aspects of film not often discussed in typical reviews, such as lighting and costume design. 

We can look forward to a new Fireside review sometime early this month, so be on the lookout!