You are reading content from Scuttlebutt
@Dominic

Hey everyone, this is a Big Announcement :confetti_ball: :balloon:

Back when I was recently in the Bay Area, talking to everyone blockchain, dfinity offered us a large grant to fund ssb development for a while: 200k USD. This is not an equity investment - it's just a grant, we have basically total freedom to spend it how we like, we just keep track of what it is and send them invoices!

Now, because of Conway's Law was a little wary of suddenly having a big bag of money - I don't want to make our decentralized community less decentralized, as much as I'd like ssb to be sustainable, i'd like it to be sustainable in via various ways (and indeed those buds are sprouting).

The idea I came up with was to split the grant into many small grants! so, 200k, becomes 40*5k grants. Because it wasn't a sure thing yet, I started a private thread with some of the most commited ssb contributors who I knew and trusted the most - @cel @mixmix @andrestaltz @matt @dinosaur and well, sold them on this grant idea. I didn't discuss it in public because it wasn't a sure thing yet, and wanted to avoid a massive bikeshed.

This is what we came up with in the end: grants.md

basically:

  • make proposals for something that you think needs to happen to push ssb forward.
  • you should make proposals for things you want to do. (or maybe find someone who could do it and help them make a proposal)
  • grants are fixed at 5k usd for 1 month worth of full time work (but you can work part time if that suites you better)
  • we discuss the proposals as community then pick the best looking max 4 each month.
  • keep a dev-diary so everyone can see what's happening.
  • grants are open to everyone, and even I will also be applying for the same grants!

see grants.md for a few more edge cases!

There is obviously lots that needs to happen for ssb to grow. Developer tools, documentation, protocol improvements. This grant from dfinity, well, now means some people may be able to take some break from other work and work full time on this for a bit!

Questions, thoughts, ideas you want to propose as grants?

@bobhaugen
Voted this
@mmckegg
Voted this
User has chosen not to be hosted publicly
@olizilla
Voted this
User has chosen not to be hosted publicly
@andrestaltz
Voted this
@olizilla

That's amazing news. Good work!

puts on grant proposal hat

@Andrew Nesbitt
Voted this
@andrestaltz

Yes, this is great news! Let's make use of it while believing that more grants and donations and opportunities will come.

Practical question: when will be the first grant month? So people can plan their proposals in time.

@greg
Voted this
@marco28
Voted this
@mmckegg

My first submission is away! :rocket:

@alanshaw
Voted this
@Rich
Voted this
@Rich

What you did in that private thread with trusted contributors is what I call governance. I'm interested in co-designing a governance structure and facilitating it if/when the community thinks it would be useful to have a repeatable /accessible /transparent /efficient /prudent path for decisions like this.

@greg

I think it's interesting that because of subjectivity, that was governance of SSBC, as distinct from governance of SSB.

If someone wants to set up “The SSB Organisation”, do some SSB development, get grants and distribute them in some other way, they can do that too — completely separately, with no permission needed from anyone.

You can lead without needing authority. “Official” is meaningless: nothing comes “from an office”; it comes from a person that other people can choose to listen to.

I, for one, welcome our new consensual overlords.

@cblgh
Voted this
@angelica
Voted this
@mycognosist
Voted this
@jake
Voted this
User has chosen not to be hosted publicly
@ansuz
Voted this
@Suzi
Voted this
@lzlr
Voted this
@lzlr

@Greg K Nicholson's response raises the question:

are there any bulkheads between the various technologies we're using here which, and the specific target of the grant(s)... ? i feel like it's probably less constrained, than more. but asking for clarity.

maybe somebody else thinks it's a good enough idea to work on:
"1-click, paid pubs... primarily for private parties". a simple checkout system that enabled users to pay for & spin up a pub for my friends (or to share) would be pretty impactful for adoption by weird new subgroups & experimenters.

@joeyh
Voted this
@gb
Liked this
@kemitchell
Voted this
@ev
Liked this
@nanomonkey
Voted this
@substack
Voted this
@jer
Voted this
@Zach
Voted this
@gmarcos87
Voted this
@nichoth
Voted this
@Bob
Voted this
@Anders
Voted this
@miked
Voted this
@lancew
Voted this
@Anders

This is great news! Huge props to dfinity.

@Gordon
Voted this
@gmarcos87

What good news! Not so much for the money but for the people who will be able to develop great improvements. I do not think I can develop anything that is at this level, but surely I will be able to support, report and test in any of the projects.

@tim
Voted this
@piet
Voted this
@ev

This is awesome.

Thank you @dominic and co. for organizing this grant in a way that will give a lot of people an opportunity to contribute to ssb development. Also thank you to dfinity for being willing to sponsor ssb dev!

I also want to echo what @andre said about this leading to more opportunities. Now that there is some money flowing around, it will be easier to talk to additional sponsors and potential clients.

Now what am I going to propose? Hmmm...

@joeyh

Having 40 grants of this size over a year can also lead to additional positive exposure for scuttlebutt. There's obviously some good ideas of what to work on and some good people to work on that stuff in the community here.

But I suggest going wide with some number of the grants; solicit proposals from wider development community. Get people, outside scuttlebutt, looking at it, and talking about what can be built on it using these grants.

@Anders

Is it possible for multiple people to work together on a proposal? I can imagine some proposals needs people of different skills.

Also I hope this will be a positive experience for the community of working together and growing :sun_with_face: I would hate seeing people get envious with a limited number of spots each month.

@olso
Voted this
@Soggypretzels
Voted this
@Dominic

@lzlr I think the main thing is does it help the ssb ecosystem? So I think you could indeed propose integrations and if the community agrees, then sure!

@Dominic

@arj asked: can multiple people work together on a proposal?

Of course! once you receive the grant you can use the money however you like. Since the process is quite informal, it's very flexible. Two people working part time for a month, would also be cool. Or even apply for two grants? this might be a bit more tricky next to other appealing proposals, though.

@neftaly
Voted this
@Dominic

@andrestaltz asked: Practical question: when will be the first grant month? So people can plan their proposals in time.

Well, november I guess? that is next week. There is one proposal already underway. It says grants are agreed "first week in the month" but I think that is just a guide, we can fudge that if we agree.

@Nina

That's so rad. Big thumbs up, this is super inspiring!

@juul
Voted this
@Josiah
Voted this
@Luandro
Voted this
@St I GNU cius
Voted this
@myf
Voted this
@alex

This sounds very cool.
I personally have at least 2-3 wishes that are very important and dear to me that i would like to see happen.

I don't feel I can write the proposal nor do I think that I have the skills to push it in a way that others could do, because I would need quite a lot of time to learn and get familiar with technical details.
One comment that somebody gave to me a couple of months ago, in which that person was talking about "under utilization of high performers" and "over challenging low performers" :-) ...even though things are always relative - in this context I would see myself as a low performer.

Despite that, I'd enjoy having a place to:

  1. propose ideas
  2. express my support for ideas
  3. discuss ideas

...I would like to learn about which ideas make sense or which ideas are not even necessary, because there is already support for certain features or alternative features can already solve the problem for which I am wishing a solution.

By slowly learning more about the underlying technology (ssb?) :-) and by having a place to discuss my ideas and iterate on them, I might build up enough confidence and skill to actually make a proposal and then work on it in a few months or even a year from now.

How could I best do it?
If I make a post on patchwork, should i tag my post somehow? Can I pin it? Should it be on github?
Which tools should I use? Is there a special channel to post proposals to and discuss them?
If I want to discuss or learn, are there special tags for this? ...so many questions

@Nina

@serapath There is this hashtag #ssbc-grants that people use to post their ideas/proposals. So, check it out and you can see all the ideas...

@elavoie
Voted this
@duncan
Voted this
@dangerousbeans
Voted this
@Dominic

@serapath also see #ssb-show-and-tell where people are sharing little things they are have made with ssb (nothing is too small!) This lets people taking the first steps gain feedback and encouragement and also learn from each other!

@mix
Voted this
@mikey
Voted this
@Mischa
Voted this
@mix

I'm looking forward to (me or someone else) writing about this whole grant setup. @dominic s commitment to investing in ecosystem and start as you mean to continue doesn't seem that common to me. As in he could have take $200k for himself or some organisation, and instead he's investing in community and diverse approaches.

There's a story in the why which I think speaks a lot about this community.

@marco28

@mix Welcome back. Any chance we could have something new for the community in next week?

@Rachel Fish
Voted this
@jiangplus
Voted this
@exempli gratia
Voted this
@ter0
Voted this
@Olavi
Voted this
@tim
Re: %JjSO5d5/l

Hopefully this is the correct one: %Qmj97E3...

@Dominic

other ways to fund the scuttleverse

@nate asked a question about how the grants work and said he'd also like to help fund development

So yes the post describing grants is here: ssbc-grants this is the system we came up with to allocate the funds I rustled up (thanks dfinity!).

If you have other funds you want to contribute you can certainly commision your own grants this way! but you can also do other things - it's your money!

We also have a couple of consulting projects underway, you could do this - hire some ssb devs and get them to build the thing you want to exist. Or, find someone who has a problem ssb can solve and pitch them on hiring people to build it or such like!

But those are just two extremes! We want everything about ssb to be decentralized - so much better if the money is not in one basket or being allocated in one way!

@jasongreen
Voted this
@Nate
Voted this
@Nate

So, in my case, I am involved with a company that wants to track resources through entire product life, and afterlife cycle.

I think there is potential for SSB to work for this, but I don't know enough about it.

I am a shareholder of the company, so I am basically going to distribute funds from the company to exploring SSB as an option. I do not need to be paid for this, so the budget is available for any developer who can complete the objectives.

My intention is increased transparency and access to information, so in my consultation with [the company] I have made it clear that any development is open source, and the funding is only to support the existence and access to the technology, not the proprietary ownership of it.

The money from this company will have tax considerations. Am I best to take the money through one of my legal entities in a country I pay no tax, and make the funds available to developers tax free, through crypto or other means?

@Dominic

@nate the typical arrangement for freelance software development is as a contractor. They'd do the work, send you an invoice you'd pay it, then they are responsible for their own taxes etc at their end - working like this as an employee is very rare.

@Nate

OK cool, and is it acceptable here to offer bounties or something similar? or is it just a case of presenting an idea and seeing if anyone is available to work on it?

@bobhaugen

I am involved with a company that wants to track resources through entire product life, and afterlife cycle.

I think there is potential for SSB to work for this, but I don't know enough about it.

The projects I know of that track resources forever use blockchains. For example:

I'm working on a proposal to use gossip networks (best, SSB) to implement economic networks, but I am focusing more on local consensus inside a network, often only between the participant in the implementation of a particular agreement, than global consensus, so this proposal might not be able to follow a resource forever. (And so far, it is only a head design...)

The question of what is the required scope of consensus for different problem spaces is on my mind a lot today, though.Tracking resources forever might need global consensus, but seems like people would find lots of ways to cheat (fake or evade tracking). I'm more interested in webs of trust, especially real-world trust.

If anybody has any ideas, let's kick off a separate thread?

@ev

@nate how is your 'company that starts companies' in Vanuatu coming along?

@interfect
Voted this
@jfr
Voted this
@cel

OK cool, and is it acceptable here to offer bounties or something similar? or is it just a case of presenting an idea and seeing if anyone is available to work on it?

I suggest use a different channel for this, like #jobs or #bounties. The idea of SSBC Grants, as I understand it, is that people propose work they are willing to do.

User has chosen not to be hosted publicly
@crasch
Voted this
@tunabananas
Voted this
@tunabananas

so rad!!! can you share any more info on the funding entity, and how you're handling international grants and bank accounts?

@Dominic

@tunabananas the funder is dfinity and the process (which they came up with) is we'll just send them invoices (their suggestion) and it's okay if they address is to someone overseas.

@rtoh
Voted this
@kyrias
Voted this
@ivanoats
Voted this
@robguthrie
Voted this
@don
Voted this
@vms20591
Voted this
@ev
Re: %YfKSzDeMp

I should also mention that I asked to clarify the decision making process five days ago, but didn't get any responses. Perhaps the post got lost?

From my perspective, if I'm going to be submitting a grant next month...

  • If this is a vote, then I want to offer the grant that will be most popular within the entire community
  • If this is @dominic deciding, I want to offer the grant he will be most likely to want me to work on
  • If this is @mixmix deciding, I want to offer the grant he will be most likely to want me to work on
  • If this is the original group of people mentioned in the Big Announcement first message, then I would need to craft a proposal that @cel @mixmix @andrestaltz @matt @dinosaur and @dominic would want me to work on

I'm also unclear how the original group was decided other than 'dominic trusts them the most'. The ssbc is 14 people, and this is only 6. What about the other 8? If this is the ssbc deciding, then we need to hear from everyone in the ssbc and also clarify how you join or leave the ssbc.

It'd be great if we could clarify this now, before the first round of grants is given out. This way, I and everyone else will know how to best participate in the next round.

I should also mention that I'm hesitant to participate at all if these rules are not clarified.

@zandy
Voted this
@mikey
Re: %eSKaY53bi

i'm in favor of evolving our process, even if it's re-stating what was outlined in the original grant thread's: grant.md.

For simplicity, we'll have one facilitator. This can change from time to time. Dominic will start as facilitator.

:+1: for having a rotating facilitator role. i'm happy to be a facilitator (aka gardener) for a round.

do we think this facilitator role is the same or different than being a benevolent dictator?

from my perspective, @Dominic will continue to be the host who is the ultimate authority. since Dominic is the one who provided the grant to the community and he's the one who coordinates invoices with Dfinity, at the end of the day he makes the final decision, hopefully given a clear recommendation by the facilitator who is weaving the wishes of the community. either way, i think splitting out the facilitation role from the ultimate authority role is a great move.

@mikey
Re: %1cmNsvktH

thanks for starting this discussion @dominic, it's been on my mind too.

i've noticed that the SSBC is currently just a GitHub org, but doesn't always overlap with various examples of project governance. as @rich said here about the latest Dfinity grant:

What you did in that private thread with trusted contributors is what I call governance. I'm interested in co-designing a governance structure and facilitating it if/when the community thinks it would be useful to have a repeatable /accessible /transparent /efficient /prudent path for decisions like this.

i wonder then how the SSBC relates to our governance structure. or if we're a group who stewards Scuttlebutt, what are we stewarding?

I'd amend that we don't just add "anyone". I think we add people who have made a few good contributions and who we trust and want to empower.

on the flip side, we have no formal process for adding people. i think it mostly matches the advice process. this is to say, there's no consensus when adding someone to the SSBC.

@dead_dan2
Voted this
@mikey
Re: %KSloGLgP6

hi @dan_mi_sun!

%Qmj97E3...

@rain
Voted this
@kewitz
Voted this
@SoapDog
Voted this
@bencevans
Voted this
@tim

For the benefit of recent joiners, a very brief explanation of this channel.

Two months ago Dominic got a large grant to fund SSB development. Rather than keep it for himself to use, he opted to share it with the community.

After discussion with the core active ssb contributors he came up with a proposal to split the grant into many small grants.

Anyone can propose a block of work that they intend to do to push ssb forward.

The proposals are made in this channel and discussed in responses to the proposal.

There is no formal voting system. A distributed, subjective network like ssb cannot have a formal voting system as it is impossible to be certain that all possible voters are visible. Nonetheless everyone is entitled to have their say and explain why they like one particular idea or another. People may describe this informally as "This proposal has my vote" but that is just a metaphor.

The final decision will be made by @Dominic based on his understanding of the needs of the project, the proposals made and the responses to them. For those less familiar with typical open source governance patterns, he will be acting as a Benevolent dictator for life (BDFL) in doing so.

New people are as welcome to contribute comments and proposals as more established people are. If you are new, however, you may get more questions about what similar work you have done in the past as people have not yet had a chance to get to know you. Please do not take this personally if it happens :)

Please remember that the highest goal is to advance ssb. There are many, many cool things that might be built on this platform but priority will be given to those that best match the goals on the roadmap published by andrestaltz here.

The full terms are here: grants.md

Have I missed or misrepresented anything @Dominic @mix @andrestaltz @dinosaur @cel @Matt McKegg ? Please shout out and correct me if I have.

@robert
Voted this
@mnzaki
Voted this
@reqshark
Voted this
@mijkl
Voted this
@ktorn
Voted this
@ktorn

(sorry to bump but) that is great news! Congrats @dominic and everyone else involved!

@Harsha
Voted this
@wildstyle
Voted this
@yi
Voted this
@apolom
Voted this
@masukomi
Voted this
@masukomi
Re: %BYsRn4hZo

Apologies if this has already been covered (such a big thread), but... We've got a bunch of new people, and many of them are geeks filled with enthusiasm and excitement, and they've probably seen posts like this one about the grant system, but it's not easy to figure out how to apply for one, or even that they are still being given out.

I'm not sure what the right solution is to this. I was able to find the original grants post but i'm not sure if that was luck (findability still feeling like there's an aspect of luck to it for me), but as noted above I still don't know what the right way to apply for one is. I'm not looking to apply now, I'm just looking to make sure that people who want to easily can.

I feel like there should be some central doc for this, but I also don't think it should be posted on the general web site for google bring in just random people looking for money.

@masukomi

This week in Scuttlebutt

(butt-summaries #5: Feb 05-11 2018 part 1)

Totally Random

(#)cats had an encounter with The Perfect Blep via @noffle

(#)dogs encountered a suspiciously human looking dog via Grampian Batz

I stumbled across @𝕷𝖎𝖆𝖎𝖟𝖔𝖓 𝖂𝖆𝖐𝖊𝖘𝖙 who has a username that is simultaneously the looking and least typeable on the network (IMNSHO).

Meanwhile @Jackalope may have the coolest colored beard on the network, while @Lerana rocks the funkiest glasses.

@A-pantz posted details for making an "Un-dumb wicking bed" for those of you who want to keep your plants watered but don't want to have to constantly water them.

Community

@mix started discussing "some of the patterns we've explored while community gardening"

They also added a post to Pause & Review: SSBC Grants. More specifically, to "discuss what's working / not working about this whole grant money thing."


@ev is going to be talking about ssb at Chicago Node.js on Wednesday February 21st 2018 at 6pm.

Community Geeky Intersection

@AndreSaltz has released version 0.0.11-Alpha of MMMMM our first mobile SSB browser (for Android). As this is very early alpha software I would strongly recommend you do NOT use this with your primary identity. Instead use it with one you can connect to your primary via sameAs

Installation appears to still be in the "geeks only" stage, but that's fine for alpha software.


@kas mentioned how to get rid of metadata in your images before uploading. Useful if you're uncomfortable about the where, when, and other info in them being shared. @arj pointed out that we should have an option for that when uploading.


@mix made a Pause & review : SSBC-Grants post

I think we should pause and discuss what's working / not working about this whole grant money thing.

Like how's it been for the ecosystem. How have people felt receiving / not receiving grants.

An important post for people participating in the grants process. Unfortunately the post had some unnecessary drama injected into it. The original grants post is here.

If you're interesting in applying for one you should follow #ssbc-grants tag. This is the February grants thread and Tim's explanation of the grants process. The rules are reposted with each month's post now.


@Richard D. Bartlett raised their hand to act as a facilitator for the grants process, and posted some thoughts about what that role would be.


post 1 of 2

@mix
Re: %aee5Py6cL

Dfinity grant

Announcement : %Qmj97E3... (2017-10-25)
Amount : $200K USD

The following is Dominic speaking:

A group called Dfinity approached me (@dominic) offering a grant to support with the development of Scuttlebutt. They have proposed $200k USD, and are giving total freedom about how we manage it (their only requirement is that they need invoices for work / expenses).

What I want:

  • growth of the ecosystem
  • happy healthy community
  • learning
  • simplicity (in the process)
  • excitment + celebration
  • movement towards other sources of income for ssb dev

What I don't want:

  • people burning out
  • too much paperwork
  • 100% perfect completion

The most valuable thing we have is the community. Half the reason for grants is to give everyone
a fair opportunity to get paid to work on scuttlebutt.

Read more:

User has chosen not to be hosted publicly
@rads
Voted this
@Dominic
Re: %YshVpy9UQ

@matt I really appreciate what you wrote in response to @johnny. I never really knew for sure how you felt about ssb, so it was great to read you spell it out. I can totally relate to how stressful it is to maintain patchwork - I started to feel like that when I was maintaining patchbay, and only a handful of people were using it!

I think you are acting in good faith by changing your proposal. patchwork is essential to ssb. And remember, one of the goals in grants process is no one burning out. Maybe we should divert some (say, half) of the remaining grant funds to be maintainance funds? I would especially be in favor of the idea of having other people help, so that knowledge of patchwork internals is shared.

@teq
Re: %qEppDlYEv

Thanks for sharing as you go @corlock.

Please respond with any relevant threads that you have in your #bookmarks that you think should be including here for any reason!

I'm not sure about should, but I can offer some of my bookmarks that might be relevant (depending on your eventual scope).

Funding threads:

Dev-Grant Announcement: %Qmj97E3...
Funding META thread: %aee5Py6...
Enspiral grant announcement UPDATE %Ar3BEM8...
Pause & Review SSB grants %BYsRn4h...

Experiencing SSB Threads

Experiences in the Panopticon %1XtMQPW...
Refactoring our principles %b1pH4LZ...
The more friends for Scuttleville thread %YZ8dY4z... (this is an older thread, but provides a good example of how discussions about the uses and values expected/experienced in the scuttleverse can lead to changes in the features available).
A privacy #faq Part 1 and Part 2
Patchwork user experience improvement brainstorm list %ORS73as...

Tech-tree/ Road-Map Threads

@Dominic's TechTree %kDrsaJX...
@cel's TechTree %ksFB43i...
@andrestaltz's ssb-mobile roadmap %jeAzYsg...
(though I've yet to check whether these are up to date... )

@elavoie

How to Become an Effective Contributor through the SSBC-Grants Process

Evolving document: https://github.com/elavoie/ssbc-grants-howto

Introduction

In October 2017, Dominic announced the first large influx of money into the community as a grant from Dfinity. Since then we have gone through 9 rounds of proposals, discussions, and allocation decisions and collectively funded 29 proposals.

Introducing money in a community relying mostly on volunteer contributions is a double-edged sword. One the one hand, it enables some members to focus more on their contributions and therefore significantly increases the reach of what can be collectively achieved. On the other hand, it also uncovers all sorts of implicit assumptions, thinking habits, motivations, and wounds around money, as well as questions of fairness and worthiness. As a consequence, the process and the people running it have found themselves in the cross-hair of plenty of drama that is having a large emotional toll on core contributors as well as the wider community.

With this guide, I want to make some underlying assumptions behind the process explicit (Part 1) and provide suggestions on how to participate as an Proposer (Noted Adventurer) (Part 2). That should make it more accessible and especially fairer to those who are not used to grant processes, as currently done in academia, non-profit, and philanthropic organizations. Hopefully, that can also serve to defuse potentially dramatic situations by serving as a reference for future situations. In turn, this will enable the community to spend less energy handling internal tensions and focus better on changing the world to make it a happy and healthy place for everyone.

@mikey
Re: %xAlzJXkpP

It's not implemented in the clients yet

i'm pretty keen for this, as i want to reveal some important private threads :closed_lock_with_key: : the private thread before the rusty sunrise choir announcement and the private thread before the dfinity grant announcement.

here's a pull request to add support to Patchwork: https://github.com/ssbc/patchwork/pull/856

/cc @matt

@mikey

dfinity grant secret thread reveal :key: :unlock: :love_letter:

in the dfinity grant (ssbc-grants) annoucement post, @dominic mentions a secret thread:

Because it wasn't a sure thing yet, I started a private thread with some of the most commited ssb contributors who I knew and trusted the most - @cel @mixmix @andrestaltz @matt @dinosaur and well, sold them on this grant idea. I didn't discuss it in public because it wasn't a sure thing yet, and wanted to avoid a massive bikeshed.

for more consent-ful transparency, here are those messages revealed! :smiley_cat:

you will need the latest Patchwork release, or another client that supports message links with unbox keys.

#ssbc-grants #community-gardening

@Dan Hassan

This is the :seedling: of a piece of writing I am doing reflecting on the experimentation with money that I am seeing. It is rough first draft. I am happy for people to comment or question, but I may not have capacity to answer or take on board comment. If you would like to contribute you can either comment or help with the draft here: https://hackmd.io/usp39WoETCybRGZd3oI_Ig

I am mostly writing this for my own clarity of thinking and also mainly for the Chorus, but may share with Default at some point


Experimenting with Distributing Funds within SSB

studio-gibli-counting-money-cat.gif

This post is about one of the many things which I find very interesting and unique about the secure-scuttlebutt ecosystem

What is Scuttlebutt

Scuttlebutt is a peer-to-peer open protocol for social networks. It was started by Dominic Tarr (and other NodeJS hackers) in 2014.

Initial Funding Experiment: DFINITY

A year ago Dominic made a post with the following:

Hey everyone, this is a Big Announcement :confetti_ball: :balloon:

Back when I was recently in the Bay Area, talking to everyone blockchain, dfinity offered us a large grant to fund ssb development for a while: 200k USD. This is not an equity investment - it's just a grant, we have basically total freedom to spend it how we like, we just keep track of what it is and send them invoices!

Now, because of Conway's Law was a little wary of suddenly having a big bag of money - I don't want to make our decentralized community less decentralized, as much as I'd like ssb to be sustainable, i'd like it to be sustainable in via various ways (and indeed those buds are sprouting).

The idea I came up with was to split the grant into many small grants! so, 200k, becomes 40*5k grants. Because it wasn't a sure thing yet, I started a private thread with some of the most commited ssb contributors who I knew and trusted the most - @cel @mixmix @andrestaltz @matt @dinosaur and well, sold them on this grant idea. I didn't discuss it in public because it wasn't a sure thing yet, and wanted to avoid a massive bikeshed.

What I noticed

There are a few things I noticed about this. DFINITY gave Dominic this funding. Dominic had an idea and pitched this idea to early (time, attention and effort) invested contributors. As I understand it there were different ideas at the time about different approaches to grow the ecosystem in a distributed way. This is the way that was selected.

Lets take note that a trusted and foundational person, Dominic, was given the funding. He then spoke with the early invested contirbutors all of whome were white (passing?), cis (maybe?), hetero (maybe?). As with most open source projects early adopters are often typically male, with access to the capcity to consider contributing to open source. I spoke about this more in Privilidge Petri Dish.LINK

Next Funding Experiment: Mobile SSB Quests

About 7 months ago Andre Staltz made a post

Hey folks! Some people gave Dominic 50 ETH to support development of Scuttlebutt on mobile.

Dominic has handed over figuring out what to do with that money to me, as I've been doing a bunch of work on MMMMM (a mobile Scuttlebutt app). SSB on Mobile has been a big challenge, but it's finally taking shape and there are just a few obstacles left to solve, and we need your help. In exchange for some ETH, you can perform a quest that pushes mobile development forwards.

What

Unlike the grant proposals for #ssbc-grants, in this process there is a predetermined pool of 3–4 tasks ("quests") that I've scoped out. People can apply for a quest, by picking one of them, and writing an open application as a public message on Scuttlebutt tagged with #mobile-ssb-quests.

There will be one person taking the "Coordinator hat", who will be the decision maker around awarding quests, and coordinating support around the quests (including technical support, and helping integrate work from various quests). The person using the coordinator hat is me, and as an experiment in valuing coordination, the coordinator will pay himself $3k USD (in ETH) once for this role. I'll be supported by Dominic and Mix.

A quest for a selected applicant is worth approximately $5k USD (the payment is done in ETH), and can start whenever, we are not doing beginning-of-month rounds.

What I noticed

We see here a different experiment. Rather than Dominic thinking of an experiment and then asking the advice of a subset of trusted peers he handed the choice space to Andre. The pattern of gifting and experimentation continued.

Most Recent Funding Experiment: Handshake Grant

Handshake reached out to Dominic 2 months ago to offer 50k USD. Dominic started a private thread which included me, elavoie, zelf, alanna, mix and andre.

I'm not intimately informed about everything they are planning or how they are running things, but they did say:

We have admired your contributions to open source for a long time, and we would like to pledge $51,000 to your organization for the first phase of the pledge.

elavoie made a public post %jTL7v2H...

  • establishment of a institution ACCESS from DFINITY
  • dominic actively taking backseat / boat
  • elavoie actively investing in establishing wider contirbution to legitemacy
  • elavoie facilitating a process with a vision
  • 7 seats
  • composition LINK

( #ssbc-grants )

cc: #grants #money #non-capitalistic-funds-distribution

@Gordon
Re: %0J2lmxvCH

verses (note: this is just my interpretation of it) - We sometimes talk about 'verses' (like scuttleverse / manyverse) because scuttlebutt is kind of its own distinct universe away from the centralised web / centralised stuff of the internets. We also use it because there are different 'pockets' of scuttlebutt that only some people can see (because they're friends with people you aren't, and syncing with each other but not you) - so they're kind of like their own little universes / galaxies / communities within the same scuttleverse. there's actually a good attempt at a definition of the scuttleverse here %DppHTvu... from someone studying the community :D.

there could even be completely separate scuttleverses if people made clients that used different 'network keys' which makes accounts / posts part of different networks ( %g4LytHH... )

grant writing - we're exploring different sources of money to allow volunteers to get paid for helping further the project in various ways. for example, we have open collectives for donations ( https://opencollective.com/secure-scuttlebutt-consortium , https://opencollective.com/manyverse ), gitcoin ( https://gitcoin.co/profile/ssbc ) - supported in part by a grant from gitcoin itself, i think. We've had grants in the past ( %Qmj97E3... ), and there's members of the scuttleverse applying for other grants, too!

there's a lot of talk about grants because we want to be careful about how we administer the grants in a way ( %jTL7v2H... ) that is in line with our decentralised culture, fair and applied to the areas we want to focus on ( %8WKVsDV... )

i was lucky to be able to get a grant to do some bluetooth functionality for Manyverse, which was a very inspiring and wonderful experience :)

the people investing the effort to follow these grant processes and administer how successful grant money is used do an amazing service for the community!

manyverse - manyverse is an android implementation of a social network which uses the scuttlebutt protocol under the hood, and uses the same network key as the Patchwork / Patchbay clients (so they're part of the same scuttleverse.) the name reminds me of the term 'scuttleverse' in how i understand it above, and the philosophy - and the 'many' part also reminds me of how you can connect with your friends in many different ways on manyverse (internet, bluetooth, wifi, DHT, etc.) See https://www.manyver.se/ :D

camps / meetings - a bunch of people working on the project / community members were lucky to meet recently at the first scuttle-camp. There's a lovely post about what it meant to one of the participants here: %Tn/e+AF... .

community - a lot of us are passionate about this project, and feel like we're connected as part of a community trying to build something special =3

feel free to ask me any questions, @jmes :D. welcome to the scuttleverse =p

Join Scuttlebutt now