Standard is a blockchain-protocol engineering-focused community centered around link aggregation and discussion, launched on Aug 7th, 2018.

The goal is to be a high-signal community to share and discuss research, design, and code of blockchain and cryptocurrency protocols.

To facilitate high-quality discussion, there is a public invitation tree.

Appropriate topics

  • Consensus algorithms
  • Incentive mechanism design
  • Cryptography
  • State channels
  • Protocol economics
  • Technical whitepapers
  • Distributed computing
  • ... etc.

Specific positive examples might be:

The emphasis of this site is on building and researching cryptocurrency and blockchain protocols.

Inappropriate topics
Including but not limited to:

  • The current price of BTC (or any other asset)
  • ICO promotions or recommendations
  • Shilling coins
  • Rumors of exchange listing

Invitation Tree

New users must be invited by a current user, though there is no formal vetting process. Invitations are used as a mechanism for spam-control and to encourage users to be nice, not to make the Standard userbase an elite club. The most efficient way to receive an invitation is to talk to someone you recognize from the site. If you'd like an invitation, reach out to @eigenjoy on Twitter.

The full user tree is made public and each user's profile shows who invited them. This provides some degree of accountability and helps identify voting rings.

There's no limit on how many invitations a user can send (though that might be prompted by scaling problems in the future). When accounts are banned for spam, sockpuppeting, or other abuse, moderators will look up the invitation tree to consider disabling their inviter's ability to send invitations or, rarely, also banning.

Transparency Policy

All moderator actions on this site are visible to everyone and the identities of those moderators are made public. While the individual actions of a moderator may cause debate, there should be no question about if an action happened or who is responsible.

All user voting and story ranking on this site uses a universal algorithm and does not artificially penalize or prioritize users or domains. Per-tag hotness modifiers do affect all stories with those tags, but these modifiers are made public and usually used to shorten the life of meta-discussions.

If users are disruptive enough to warrant banning, they will be banned absolutely, given notice of their banning, and their disabled user profile will indicate which moderator banned them and why. There will be no shadow banning or other secret moderation actions.

The source code to this site is available under a 3-clause BSD license for viewing, auditing, forking, or contributing to. It is based on Lobsters codebase generously shared by joshua stein.


All stories are tagged by the submitter from a list of predefined tags. Users can choose to filter out all submissions with particular tags, but rather than use rigidly segmented sub-forums that users must each subscribe to, all users see all tagged stories by default.

This helps keep the site on-topic, keeps conversation from fragmenting, and prompts more collaboration. Users who strongly dislike a topic enough can filter it out.

Creating, changing, and retiring tags is done by the community by voting on and discussing meta-tagged requests about them. If you are suggesting a new tag, build your case by explaining why it's vital and including stories that should have been tagged.

Downvote Explanations

Often on other sites, a user would have his or her comment downvoted without explanation and then edit their comment to ask why they were downvoted. On this site, voters must choose a reason before downvoting comments and those votes are tallied and shown to the original commenter.

For submitted stories, downvoting is done through flagging (also requiring a valid reason) and these flag summaries are shown to all users.

Other Features

  • Private Messaging: Users here can send private messages to each other without having to publicly disclose an e-mail address, and can receive e-mail.

  • Story merging to combat the problem of multiple stories at different URLs being submitted in a short timeframe about the same news subject. Rather than have multiple stories on the front page with fragmented discussions, all similar stories can be merged into one. An example of a story having been merged into a previous one, combining all comments on one page.

  • Fuzzy-matching of submitted story URLs to avoid duplicate submissions of similar URLs that differ only in http vs. https, trailing slashes, useless analytics parameters, etc. When using the story submission bookmarklet, story URLs are automatically converted to use the page's canonical URL (if available) to present the best URL to represent the story.

  • Per-tag and site-wide RSS feeds are available to the public and logged-in users have private RSS feeds that filter out each user's filtered tags.

  • Hats: a more formal process of allowing users to post comments while "wearing X hat" to give their words more authority (such as an employee speaking for the company, or an open source developer speaking for the project).


  • Standard's hosting is donated by \newline