The dollar value of Steem (STEEM) struck a new 28-month low recently, while its value measured against Bitcoin only just began recovering from its own all-time low.
Once ranked among the top 30 projects by market cap in 2018, Steem now finds itself ranked 79th. Its coin price fell 40% since 2019 began, at the same time other altcoins such as Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash and Ethereum doubled, trebled or quadrupled.
Descent of Blockchain Social Network Coin
This past Thursday, two days ago, Steem’s value plummeted to all-time lows in both USD and BTC terms. From a weekly high of $0.203139, the dollar price of STEEM coins fell 22% to $0.157059 – a price point not witnessed since April 2017.
At the same time, STEEM’s BTC valuation dropped to 1647 satoshis – a price point never witnessed in the coin’s history.
Since Thursday’s depths the coin price embarked upon a recovery attempt. There was a slight rally of 6.74% against the dollar, and 5.5% against BTC. The peak of that rally came at time of writing, with STEEM up 2.95% in the past 24 hours.
Regardless of the weekend recovery, the coin price remains down 98% from its peak on January 3rd, 2018. The fall of the blockchain social network (Steemit) token could be taken as a stark reminder that all of our beloved decentralized applications still suffer from lack of a user-base.
Or it could be a sign of a simple lack of faith in Steemit itself, after the company was forced to lay off 70% of its staff during the crypto winter. Perhaps even more worryingly, Steem’s drop to an all-time low aligns almost exactly with the successful implementation of Hardfork 21.
Hardfork 21 Introduces “New Steem”
Hardfork 21 went ahead 4 days ago, and introduced a number of changes to the way Steemit works. One of the main changes was increasing curator rewards from 25% per post, to 50%. This puts curators on an equal financial footing as content creators themselves when it comes to rewards.
A curator is someone who upvotes a post on Steemit. At the end of the payment window, the total amount of money a post has earned will now be split 50/50 between the creator, and all of the curators who upvoted their post.
Also introduced was a DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization), for use as a community funding tool. Users can submit funding proposals and have them voted on by the Steemit community, while voting for those they find laudable.
As a former user of Steemit, back when it was shiny and new, it’s rather sad to see its native coin fall so far in such a short time. That’s not to write it off prematurely, after all: we’re still talking about the first blockchain application to (allegedly) cross the 1 million user mark.
But with the market going the way it is right now, it won’t be too surprising if the value of STEEM drops even further.
Disclaimer: The author owns Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.
Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. Chart via CoinMarketCap.