Will the Manifold Creator Partner Program be seen as unsuccessful by EOY 2024?
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Resolves YES if the program is discontinued for lack of participation, technical problems, or financial unsustainability. In case of discontinuation for other reasons, I will hear arguments about how the question should resolve.

If the core terms of the program are substantially changed for similar reasons, I will hear arguments about whether to resolve YES, NO, or N/A depending on the circumstances.

In close cases involving judgment, I might use a poll to resolve.

If the program continues in largely similar form through December 31, 2024, I will resolve according to the results of a poll of Manifold users.

For clarity, success or failure is intended to be determined by results, not by whether starting the program was a "good bet" at the time.

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Oh hey that reminds me. One month to go

It’s a good step at least. Trading platform needs market makers just like sports need referees. Gold miners needed shovels and picks and saloons. I’ve seen a fair amount of griping about trader bonuses, etc being “free mana” and “giving out mana like candy.” Paying real money instead of trader bonuses is a fine solution, let’s see how it works.

I'm very certain it will be unsuccessful, but as with Manifold Love, Manifold is likely to get attached to the idea, not track KPIs in a good enough way, and double down on an idea that is not working.

I think it'll be successful, in that people that already use the site will make slightly better markets. That's all you really need from it: Always having something interesting on the home page that you can feature and show new users to.

I don't think it really makes it worth it to focus on, the way some people build entire businesses around affiliate programs.

It might be a little hard to judge success if all your popular people signed up and you accepted them all, and they only do slightly better than average such that you can't tell if the program did anything. Maybe accept a random sample to make weak effects easier to see.

I am already noticing an uptick in high quality markets from people so I think it's working!

If one of the people in the creator program gets 1 hit market, how do we know that they only made it because of the program? If it's just 20 people making some free money for things they were already going to do anyway, I doubt I'd call that a success.

I want to see multiple new creators who were not part of the first wave of people added, who become prolific creators with numerous high quality markets and get added to the partner program. That would show at least some kind of success.

I want to see a creator in the partner program who figures out how to wield their markets outside the platform to profit in $$$ on the platform (and grow the platform).

Another version is "the program directly attracts someone who has an audience, but was not on the platform -- they join and make many popular markets and get referrals".

opened a Ṁ2,000 NO at 35% order

I'm quite excited about the partner program overall - bet against me if you're not!

Other random musings:

  • A general concern is that a relatively small amount of cash might be more offensive than just offering mana or nothing -- there are classic substitution findings around intrinsic vs extrinsic motivation. I think that concern is a bit overblown but curious to hear what people feel after the first payout cycle.

  • I think it'd be pretty cool to pay out partners in Manifold stock (instead of/in addition to cash) - kinda like what Reddit's doing with their IPO. Logistically tricky, but would better align our top creators with the Manifold company too.

  • The most obvious success case for the partner program is if it produces additional Manifold hype cycles like LK99 or Sama Drama

  • Other success cases look like "finding really talented market creators and influencers and convincing them to create high quality markets" - even without a single viral hit, if Creators Program produces much more consistent & good markets, that counts as a win

Would love to hear the rest of y'alls thoughts!

@Austin solution to #1 - pay out in mana up to a certain threshold. this also reduces the operational overhead of paying out <$10 to small partners?

@strutheo eh -1 to that particular idea, personally. the difference between burrito and not-burrito is vast

@Austin it certainly seems to favor viral hits and already famous/ established users. that's to be expected, but I'm not sure it provides decent aspirational incentive for newer users. will it trend to more high quality markets about real world things? in the short term, maybe yes, but in the long run I expect the most consistently "profitable" options for creators will trend to memes

(that might still increase userbase! I'm definitely no critic of Manifold as a fun social space. but it depends on what Manifold's incentives are as a platform)

@Stralor Serious chicken and egg thing though. Here’s a fine market I created early on because I actually would love another source of information on the topic. Turned out Manifold userbase doesn’t include much of anyone who has this specific expertise (I’ve come to that conclusion based on more datapoints than just “no one noticed my one market”). In theory I could rope in all my buddies and colleagues and all, but in practice that’s not feasible. Plus would defeat the purpose of getting outside my bubble.

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