[ - by Mart]
After some heated discussions over the last few days, I think it's time to enter more constructive territory again (this includes me. I know that I was quite hard with some people, but also fair I believe(and hope!), it's just that I don't like to dwell in the past and ride past mistakes without offering constructive advice on how to proceed in the future). This might be my longest post yet, so please bear with me. I'm going to offer a TL;DR at the end. This is, in no way, something carefully manufactured over days or weeks, but merely my current thoughts and feelings about the situation. There's mainly three things I'd like to touch, that I think are pretty important right now:
1. IF's communication and Community sentiment
2. How to grow our ecosystem
3. How to be more proactive as a community
1. IF's communication and Community sentiment
Let's face it, things have become stale again and we're walking on the edge again. IF promised to talk internally about removing the "No-ETA" rule, that was back in August, almost half a year ago. I wrote a pretty long post here: 🗨｜general because I was scared that we were about to hit a point of no return, because I heard too negative things from too many community builders and contributors. I was very pleased with the outcome of the initial discussions and the IF's willingness to discuss things and see where change was overdue / severely needed. But I'm starting to feel like this topic isn't treated with the respect or priority it deserves. We can circle around it all day long, but I think (as some of you might have seen during the past couple of days), the relationship is either of symbiotic or of cannibalistic nature, there's no inbetween. Like with any kind of relationship in life, communication is the make-or-break aspect. Communication is not just "Yeah we are going to do X or Y, just wait until we're ready to announce / share more", it's actually everything in between. You need more time to announce the new Board of Directors members? Ok sure, but then tell us why it's taking longer, what are you waiting for, possibly hitting the right macro sentiment?, coupling it with other news to create the maximum outreach?, fine. But tell us your motivation, your plans, everything that you are able to publicly share. If the past has shown anything, then it's the fact that this community is unimaginably sufferable and enduring, if you're only willing to let us sit at the table. This is not supposed to be a small and overachieving endeavour. Dom and many other people have stated, that this is supposed to be a future multi-trillion Dollar project. It's trillions or nothing and we as the community know that as well. Start treating it as such! I'm past the point where I (or we as a community) should not challenge the communication department. Why are they invisible? Frankly, I don't care if they are doing a great job behind the scenes, part of their job has to be the community-facing aspect as well. So if you're understaffed and people have no capacity to even be visible to the community, hire some more people! Again, this is not a funny pastime for all of us, this is supposed to be a major player in the space, start treating it as such in every area. Let's close this point by circling back to my message from last August: I feel like we are hitting this same spot again. Many people, people I love, who have been working in the ecosystem behind the scenes and might not be as visible or popular as other opinion leaders in the Discord, are about to leave, again. This is a battlecry, we need to stand up as community and change things for the better. We need to get pro-active. If you're dissatisfied with the current state of affairs, speak up, keep speaking-up, don't stop until you're satisfied. Be civil, be constructive. We only have this one shot ✊
Now on to the second and third point on my list.
2. How to grow our ecosystem / 3. How to be more proactive as a community
Let's be clear here: With the ongoing bridge campaign and bull market heating up with the Bitcoin halving approaching fast, the first seeds are planted. But I think we can do more as a community and we need to be more pro-active in this area as well. If you haven't seen it, Mat Yarger shared some very good thoughts here: Twitter link edited out, because it might be the reason for the auto-block of my message. I don't want to risk this turning into an even bigger monster of a message, so I try to keep this as brief as possible. But there's a whole aspect of this project, that we as a community need to understand. For example, Dom has stated that integration / preparation for more exchange listings has been made and they could be announced soon-ish. But after the inflation, we have a war chest, that we can utilize. Let's utilize it as a community. If we want to become decentralized and live the dream of a successful, globally adopted protocol lead "by the people", we need to start somewhere, somehow. We feel like we should have even more exchanges because we feel like this will help the ecosystem in the short / medium / long term? Then prepare a proposal, push it through the governance process, let's push it all the way to Firefly, where it will be enacted if it passes. We the community have the power to do that. And the "best" part (Don't get me wrong please "weirdguyemoji")? The IF doesn't need to endorse or even like it, it's our basic right in this space! We have the funds to do it, so let's f###### do it! On to my last point. In my message from August, I didn't go far enough in my opinion and Mat did a great job to inspire me again there:
Let's create a community council, actively pushing for the wishes and needs of the community and acting as an interface between the IF and the community
I think to be effective, we need a structured and organized way to push things forward. This, of course, relies on the willingness of the IF to share operational information with the council, non-NDA stuff of course. But if the community for example thinks that paying a hefty sum to integrate with Kraken or Coinbase (maybe the exchanges where the reason for automod?) to offer our US-based community an on-ramp, we need to know if the IF already engaged with those exchanges or not. Of course, integration is taking time, but we need to start somewhere. Just because it might take more than a year or longer, shouldn't discourage us from starting. I am honestly not sure how to start this whole council endeavor, but luckily swarm-intelligence is a thing and we have a great variety of very talented and connected community members to hit the ground running. The beauty of decentralization so to speak. I have a lot of very early ideas. Some might be very good, others not so much. But as long as it helps bootstrapping this whole thing, it should be sufficient either way. So @kutkraft , @ThomasQv , Jamie, ID_IOTA, @Austin | Blockbytes , Buddhini, Jelle (you're probably pretty busy with Impierce, but your input would be of great value!), let's push this whole thing, let's make our ecosystem more relevant than ever. (Only linking three to not trigger automod, guess it's more than three but don't want to try iteratively and delete part 1 several times over).
On to my very last point: We also need to bring in talent from other ecosystems and we need to spend money on that, too. This might include advisors with experience in currently uncharted waters for us. The future is multi-chain, everyone knows it, everybody says it. Let's find people to help us on our journey. Some might join our ecosystem, others might do it for financial reasons purely. Doesn't matter. Many community members engage in different communities as well, they can act as links and introduce us to the right people. Polygon, Solana, Cardano, doesn't matter. The crypto space is vast and full of talent, we need to tap into this talent to help us reach the promised land. We could, for example, create a "sub warchest" before we approach other ecosystems, to make sure we have something to offer. We also need more dApps to entice as many people as possible. We need to pay for that as well. I guess the purpose of our war chest is not to keep sitting on it, it's about spending it (maybe even large parts) in the most efficient and smartest way possible. That way we will not only multiply its worth, but also create something better and bigger than what we have now. Again, the seeds are planted, but we need to make sure the tree is strong and enduring.
- Communication from the IF needs to improve. We had first discussions in August last year, but I think now is a good time to follow words with actions
- Let's create a community council acting as a link between the IF and the community. The council will (among many other points):
- Push community interests
- Create and drive governance proposals
- Generally drive adoption and growth from the community side in an organized and structured way
- We need to entice as many dApps and talents from other ecosystems as humanly possible. This might be paid advisor roles to help us guide in our journey or new companions. Other ecosystem are ahead of the road and we need to utilize their knowledge and experience.