OrgTech Review #18

A New Format, A Chain for Aragon, A Wiki for DAOs, and a Lesson from Wikipedia

Hello and welcome to OrgTech Review, a newsletter about organizational technologies and the digital organizations using them. If you're new here, check out this introduction to OrgTech and subscribe using the button below.


We’re trying out a new format in this issue. From the beginning we have strived to be the comprehensive source of OrgTech news, but this means we’re only channeling more and more noise as the OrgTech industry grows more vibrant. It’s a wonderful problem to have. This new format aims to strike a balance, providing more curation for our busy readers while still maintaining a comprehensive overview for those who want to dive deeper. Let us know what you think!

This issue was brought to you by Jack Laing and Theo Beutel.


📺 Previously on OrgTech


⭐️ Highlights


🛠 OrgTech

Aragon Chain: a proof of stake blockchain for the Aragon community

Why have Aragon decided to build their own blockchain?

  • Platform Risk: Ethereum network activity determines the cost of using Aragon, making it hard to provide predictable prices to Aragon users, and Ethereum updates can break Aragon smart contracts (e.g. the upcoming Istanbul hard fork). Aragon Chain will make the platform more predictable and reliable for users.

  • Scalability: With Ethereum scalability measures still in development, Aragon are concerned that they'll be held back from onboarding more users when they find traction. At launch, Aragon Chain is estimated to have 2-10x more throughput.

  • Sustainability: Owning the full stack will give Aragon the flexibility to capture value wherever it accrues, making Aragon's economy more sustainable.

What will Aragon Chain look like?

  • Aragon Chain will be a Tendermint proof-of-stake blockchain, using the Cosmos SDK with an EVM module that will facilitate the migration from Ethereum.

  • Along with proof-of-stake consensus, there will be a new staking token called ARA, which will be minted/burned by depositing/withdrawing ANT from an Aragon Fundraising bonding curve. This is similar to Aragon Court's ANJ token economics, which you can read more about here.

  • There will be a bridge between Aragon Chain and Ethereum, which will enable tokens to be transferred between chains and allow decisions originating in Aragon Chain to be executed in Ethereum by an Agent.

What's next?

  • Now that the proposal has been approved in Aragon Network Vote #4, ChainSafe will begin work on Aragon Chain and the Ethereum bridge.

  • Aragon expect to continue supporting Ethereum and upgrade when Ethereum 2.0 comes around.

Further reading: ChainSafe Aragon Feasibility Report here, Aragon Chain AMA with Aragon One, ChainSafe, and Cosmos here, ANT Demand Modeling Framework here, ANT and Aragon Court here, ANT and Aragon Fundraising here, Aragon Court v1 Technical Spec here.

Underscore Protocol + DAOstack Wiki

Underscore Protocol is a content versioning system inspired by git, the leading software versioning system. Documents are stored in IPFS on Ethereum, which means they can only be modified by the document owner's Ethereum address. Edits are made by branching the document into new perspectives, of the full document or optionally just a portion, and then merging with the main perspective according to whatever governance structure is in place. Portions of other documents can also be embedded within your document, then automatically updated corresponding with any changes made in the source document, or you can modify from within your document and merge with the source document according to the governance structures of the source document.

As a proof of concept, Underscore Protocol are developing a wiki tool for DAOstack's Genesis DAO, which assigns the DAO as the document owner of the main perspective, such that any proposed edits to the wiki must be approved by the DAO. As well as wikis, these mechanisms could be used to govern a DAO's constitutions/policies and enable DAO members to collaboratively edit proposal documents.

Similar work was done at ETHBoston by a DAOstack core team member, this time focusing on enabling a DAO to manage the state of the code for its own UI. Use cases identified include constitutional documents, product designs, multi-author articles, videos, and digital art.

Further reading: Demo of DAOstack PoC here, forum thread about DAOstack PoC here, Underscore Protocol demo here, podcast with Underscore Protocol founder Pepo Ospina here.


🦠 Orgs

OpenLaw's "The LAO"

OpenLaw have rebranded the concept of an LLC-DAO (a DAO legally wrapped in an LLC legal structure) as a "LAO" and are forming an eponymous for-profit venture capital DAO called "The LAO", much like the branding strategy of the original 2016 The DAO.

The LAO will be linked to an LLC incorporated in Delaware, require that all funded projects also register in Delaware and tokenize their stock, and require that all DAO members (currently limited to 100) be accredited investors as verified by KYC. It will make use of OpenLaw's tools for linking legal documents to smart contracts, in this case modified MolochDAO smart contracts which will include the "rage quit" mechanism.

During the funding application process, the LAO smart contract will hold the tokenized stock that represents its ownership interest and automatically release funding to the applicant's address (or return the tokenized stock) subject to the results of member voting.

Further reading: Launch article here, technical details here, critiques here and here, rebuttals here.


🧠 Brain Food

What the decentralized web can learn from Wikipedia

Editorial reputation is established over time on the basis of contribution histories. Edit counts are the basic quantitative measure of contributions; talk pages expand on this with qualitative data about actions and interactions with other Wikipedia stakeholders. Eventually, Editors with strong reputations should be able to successfully volunteer as Administrators. Such a reputation system allows users to remain pseudonymous, incentivises users to concentrate their time on accumulating reputation under only one identity (minimizing Sybil attacks), and slows down the evolution of power distributions (minimizing hostile takeovers).

Editorial disputes are resolved using a standard escalation process. If Editors are unable to reach peer consensus after discussions on the articles' talk page, they can seek facilitation from an Administrator, among other measures. If the dispute remains unresolved after all other measures have been exhausted, the matter is escalated to the Arbitration Committee, who have the power to remove Administrator privileges. Editors are incentivised to manage disputes cooperatively because their actions are recorded on the talk page and thus tied to their reputation.

Rather than seeking finality, as many blockchain designers do, Wikipedia's mechanisms are designed to iterate slowly and continuously. Even Wikipedia's governance policies are open to constant iteration, needing only an uncontested edit to policy pages to be changed. This flexibility is also deployed in Wikipedia's approach to security; the whole community is responsible for coordinating to amend malicious actions, rather than proactively restricting actions, meaning over time the community can keep itself clean of bad actors.

Headless Brands

Brands are consensus systems through which reputation and narratives emerge from consumers sharing their impressions. Centralized media enabled corporations to control one-to-many transmission of narratives, which was then undermined by the rise of decentralized media and many-to-many transmission of narratives (e.g. hashtags and memes).

Now, decentralized organizations are taking brand decentralization to the next level, by giving community members ownership and therefore a financial incentive to spread their own brand narratives. Headless brands are the extreme of this, where brand identities are decoupled from founder identities through pseudonymity or gradual ceding of control. This eliminates the founder's personal brand as a single point of failure, lends itself more powerfully to community mobilization and meme-driven virality, and enables the testing of parallel narratives in the search for product-market fit.

However, the lack of a central brand authority threatens the cohesion of the brand, which at its extreme leads to narrative forks (e.g. Bitcoin vs Bitcoin Cash).

To maintain brand cohesion, founders may try making brand ownership centralized (e.g. Ethereum Foundation‘s ownership of the Ethereum trademark), imbuing their philosophy into an organizational constitution (e.g. Bitcoin's whitepaper), hard coding their ethos into protocol design choices that serve as community guidelines (e.g. Bitcoin’s 21M fixed supply), or designing governance models that allow brand tensions to be resolved without forks (e.g. Decred, Tezos, et al's on-chain governance).


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🗞 In Other News


🛠 OrgTech


🦠 Orgs


🧠 Brain Food


🗓 Events

OrgTech Review #17

Introducing OrgTech Network and OrgTech-Fr!

This is a longer issue because it has been a while since our last and August was a rather busy month for DAOs. Before we dive in, we're excited to introduce OrgTech-Fr, a hub for the French-speaking OrgTech community, with original content, curated news, local events, and more! As our first community hub, OrgTech-Fr is effectively helping to soft-launch OrgTech Network, an initiative Jack has been dreaming up since he started OrgTech Review. OrgTech Network is a networked organization that will provide products and services to accelerate the widespread adoption of OrgTech and DAOs. Our first product is, of course, OrgTech Review, but we have a lot more ideas cooking up, and we're on the lookout for like-minded OrgTech-savvy individuals to help make these a reality. If you'd like to get involved, drop us a line or fill in the form on the website. We hope this issue was worth the wait and we can't wait to engage more with you all!

This issue was brought to you by Jack Laing, Theo Beutel, and Phil Honigman.

Previously on OrgTech Review

Most clicked:What is a DAO?, Resolving the Stake-Based vs. Participant-Based Voting Dilemma, How to Create a Thriving Global Commons Economy.

Project News

Aragon

Colony

  • Glider, the first release of Colony, has been live since the beginning of the summer, and now the Dapp is being rolled out to select users. Get in touch with the team to request early access.

  • The Colony Dapp is now open source, under GPL v3. Clone it!

  • Podcast: Auryn Macmillan was on DAOcast on July 22nd to discuss the launch of Glider. The conversation also covers how Colony organizations might integrate with other DAOs running on different frameworks such as Aragon or DAOstack.

Commons Stack

DAOstack

Democracy Earth

ditCraft

GovBlocks

  • This is one we missed in our previous issues. GovBlocks launched on the Ethereum main-net alongside Nexus Mutual on May 24th 2019. They are taking a pragmatic approach to governance, with a focus on modularity and the perspective that it's okay to start with relatively centralized governance if you have a vision for becoming decentralized.

Jur

MetaCartel DAO

  • MetaCartel DAO Wave 1 Funding, including web app frontend for MetaCartel DAO that works without MetaMask using the Abridged SDK, research on supporting reputation through NFTs, as well as Orochi DAO, an event management-DAO by Kickback with an initial test event at DevCon5 in Osaka.

Moloch DAO

  • Moloch Pool launched, making it possible to donate to the DAO without becoming a voting member.

  • Introducing “OrochiDAO” and “The year of DAOs” event. A fork of Moloch designed to manage event sponsorships, starting with a DAO celebration at DevCon5.

  • Rise of the YangDAO. A fork of Moloch designed to coordinate supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang and enable them to collectively fund memes.

  • DAOHaus Bauhaus. The team behind the mobile-first Moloch frontend hacked together a dashboard that will make it easier to find and create Moloch DAOs. They aim to scale this project into a DAO social network that integrates with other DAO frameworks.

  • Check out other Moloch hackathon projects here, including a vote selling tool and a Nexus Mutual integration.

Nexus Mutual

  • As with the GovBlocks news above, we mistakenly overlooked this one in our previous issues. Nexus Mutual is an insurance platform that provides smart contract cover. They pioneered the notion of defining DAOs legally as membership corporations known as "digital cooperatives" (work we featured in our 12th issue). They are now live, linked to a legal entity in the UK, and the mutual pool is being actively governed by members. See more details on how it works here, check out their governance portal here, and listen to a podcast with their founder here.

Opolis

  • Opolis Off-White Paper – The Employment Commons. Opolis is a framework for self-sovereign workers that aims to resolve the legal challenges of DAOs, using "Decentralized Employment Organizations (DEOs)", aka employment cooperatives, which will be legally defined as Colorado-based Limited Cooperative Associations. The goal is that workers just need to join one DEO, through which they can participate in any DAO, because their DEO will receive all of their DAO work payments and take care of legal and tax compliance. Opolis is currently preparing a closed beta test and plans to launch its first public MVP in Q4 2019.

The DAO [2]

  • Ryan Zurrer, Director at Web3 Foundation, moves on to revive 'The DAO'. The former partner at Polychain Capital announced on Twitter that he will be gradually off-boarding from Web3 Foundation until the end of this year to explore the "dream of a sustainable decentralized organization". In the midst of what "feels like a DAO renaissance", Zurrer called it "the most compelling project" at this time. The daily activities of this Aragon-based DAO will be managed by "leagues": sub-DAOs (departments) who can coordinate using SourceCred-based reputation and will specialize in different functions of venture capital. For example, three of these leagues (Treasury, Venture, and Compliance) will own a multi-sig that has the sole authority to execute payments. DAO members, who can buy in and out of the DAO via a bonding curve, will have the power to approve any mandates proposed by leagues and to remove malicious leagues. Check out the whitepaper here.

  • Why Ryan Zurrer Would Like to See a New DAO - Unconfirmed Podcast. Laura Shin hosts Zurrer to discuss how today's tools can improve upon The DAO [1], how The DAO [1] could have helped temper the ICO craze, and how Zurrer thinks his approach relates to U.S. securities law.

The DAOfund

  • The DAOfund. Building upon the notion of fractal DAOs and the increased interest in for-profit investment DAO models, DAOfund follows a three-layer architecture, including a contributor DAO, a fund manager DAO, and one or more venture DAOs, and will eventually use bonding curves to enable automated market making.

UniDAO

  • UniDAO, an investment DAO with DeFi integrations. After successfully experimenting with Agent and Frame to interact with Uniswap and Compound, this Aragon-based DAO aims to scale up and leverage the full range of investment opportunities in the DeFi ecosystem. Draft whitepaper here.

Brain Food

  • 5 Trends Appear on the Gartner Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2019. When you hear of the word "DAO", do you still think of the 2016 hack? Time to take another look: according to the Gartner Hype Cycle, DAOs are among "the 29 emerging technologies CIOs should experiment with over the next year".

  • Cells As Firms. Simon de la Rouviere explores biomimetics applied to the theory of the firm, essentially by comparing firms to biological cells. The metaphor goes deep, from genetic material to metabolism to gene transfers. The metaphor may provide insights regarding strategic decisions, such as when to split or merge firms, or what should be in-house vs. what should be outsourced.

  • Incomplete Contracts (and Scaling Crypto). Jesse Walden of a16z distinguishes deterministic "complete" crypto projects from complex "incomplete" ones, which require dynamic and subjective judgements to withstand uncertain or adversarial conditions. While the crypto space is born out of deterministic machines (such as Bitcoin or Ethereum), most interesting projects today are incomplete. While incomplete projects can still leverage the complete machine layer to coordinate ownership and deterministic governance processes (e.g. triggering bounties or transferring funds), the key differentiator may be how well they build models for organizing effectively at scale.

  • Why Do Public Blockchains Need Formal and Effective Internal Governance Mechanisms?. This paper offers a critical examination of the ability of public blockchains to establish social coordination between strangers, de facto replacing or playing the role of a modern legal system. Drawing on Hart's concept of law, the authors argue that public blockchains lack essential elements of governance, and as a consequence they are doomed to suffer from constant forking, ossification, and instability.

  • Are DAOs beta-doomed?. Pepo references a tweetstorm by Andrew Certain, a 20-year Amazon veteran who emphasizes the unscalability of distributed systems in which communication is established between every agent ("beta" being the coefficient that models the negative return of additional agents). Pepo's tweet sparks a discussion about DAO scalability that touches on DAOstack's holographic consensus and mesh DAOs.

  • Becoming Decentralized Enough: The Case For DAOs. DeFi protocols will eventually arrive at a crossroad where they either delegate all control to a DAO or turn into centralized businesses that offer non-custodial financial services. The article analyses how DAOs can benefit from DeFi protocols, zooming in on Maker and Uniswap.

  • Values-based DAOs. Eric Arsenault raises the question of how to prevent the founding values of DAOs from being compromised over time. Possible solutions centre around preventing outside investors from accumulating influence that outweighs the voices of core members. The conversation continues on DAOtalk.

  • Towards Complex Governance Systems. Phoebe Tickell shares her views on DGOV, a community of practice created to further innovation in distributed and participatory governance. DGOV acknowledges the potential of technology, but puts culture and complex systems thinking first.

  • Proposal making in DAOs: the limitations of “Anyone Proposes Anything”. Grace Rachmany questions the ability of current DAO frameworks to differentiate relatively non-impactful "just go ahead" decisions from those that affect many stakeholders. She uses the opportunity to enumerate a number of collective decision-making mechanisms that can be used for these different types of decisions.

  • I want to live in a DAO. Could we revive the Kibbutz, a traditional Israeli institution of collective communities, using DAOs as a way to tie together a local community with its value flow and governance system?

  • Last Night A Distributed Cooperative Organization Saved My Life: A brief introduction to DisCOs. Stacco Troncoso introduces DisCO, distributed cooperative organizations, a cooperative alternative to DAOs. DisCOs are based on 4 fundamental tenets: Commons/P2P, Open Coops, Open Value Accounting, and Feminist Economics. They combine a cultural and legal approach to a (future) tech stack using distributed computing and public blockchains.

  • Social Networking in 2030: How Could Crypto Change Things?. Chris Dixon of a16z discusses how crypto and blockchains could solve social networks and internet platforms' flaws relating to privacy and inequality of value distribution, by leveraging token network effects, community-controlled governance, and open data marketplaces.

Events

OrgTech Review #16

Moloch DAO replicated in Aragon, Colony launches developer colony, dOrg building DAOstack fundraising module, and more!

Previously on OrgTech Review

Most clicked: Dynamic Governance - Where Cybernetics Meets Sociology, Introducing Gauntlet, The Era of Legally Compliant DAOs.

Project News

Aragon

  • Aragon Network Vote #3. Voting begins July 25 16:00 UTC and will last for 48 hours. Eleven Aragon Governance Proposals (AGPs) were submitted and eight were approved for the final ballot. The proposals include Flock funding for Autark (AGP-73), a new DAO to govern the Nest grant program (AGP-70), and a 'quiet ending' period for Aragon Network Votes (similar to DAOstack's) to prevent last-minute vote flipping (AGP-64).

  • Aragon Fundraising & the return of the commons. Aragon Black released more information on its DAICO platform (formerly Apiary). The tool will allow patrons to stake tokens (DAI or ANT) on a given DAO and receive a DAO governance token in return. This token entitles the patron to certain rights within the DAO, such as a vote on funding decisions. A customisable token-bonding curve defines the price of staking and allows the DAO to access and allocate funds. Aragon Fundraising is expected to go live in a few months.

  • 1Hive's "Dandelion Orgs" request for funding approved by the Nest program. Luke Duncan (Aragon researcher) and his 1Hive team will spend the next 5 months replicating Moloch DAO's functionality by building 5 new modular Aragon apps. The popular "rage quit" mechanism will be executed via the Redemptions app, demoed here.

  • Demo of upcoming Frame release 0.2 with Aragon Agent integration. This will allow users of Aragon DAOs to engage with any other Web3 application or DAO. The official release is estimated to arrive in a few weeks.

  • Aragon upgraded its apps through on-chain vote. Ahead of the upcoming Aragon Network vote, ANT holders participated in the first ever vote to upgrade the apps of the Aragon governance organization.

  • Aragon Nest mid-2019 update. An extensive update on the progress of Nest grantees, featuring Autark, BrightID, DappNode, Pando, Frame, and more.

  • Autark / Open Work Labs - June 2019 Update. Autark is nearing completion of the work they received funding for via Aragon Network Vote #1, which includes better communication between Aragon apps, commenting, user profiles, reputation, and project management applications. Check out their AMA here.

  • Aragon Black Monthly #3: Anonymity & Transparency. A philosophical exploration on the differences between transparency, anonymity, pseudonymity, and privacy, and the role of blockchain in a world of mass surveillance. Features an interview with BrightID.

Bounties Network

Colony

  • A Colony for Developers. Colony launched their own developer's colony, which will reward CDEV and reputation to any developers who contribute to Colony's open source repositories. The developer dashboard integrates with this colony so that all you need to do to start earning is login and link your Metamask and Github accounts.

  • Colony also launched their Discord.

Commons Stack

  • Conviction Voting: A Novel Continuous Decision Making Alternative to Governance. Jeff Emmett explains conviction voting in more detail, the continuous voting mechanism in which your vote accumulates more power over time if you don't change it. With continuous voting, vote buying becomes more expensive and voter apathy is less problematic because members with consistent preferences can set and forget. With the conviction mechanism, last minute vote swings are eliminated and long-standing minority opinions are protected from sudden inflows of wealth. You can check out a discussion about this article between the Commons Stack team, Glen Weyl (Quadratic Voting researcher), Vitalik Buterin (Ethereum founder), Luke Duncan (Aragon researcher), and Rich McAteer (Humanity DAO founder) here.

DAOstack

dOrg

  • dOrg are working on a fundraising module for DAOstack, which will use bonding curves and facilitate more transparent DAICOs (like the Aragon Fundraising app). Check out the spec here and give them feedback here.

Humanity DAO

MetaCartel DAO

Open Law

Panvala

  • Panvala Beta Release: What Would You Fund?. A year after inception, Panvala releases a beta version of their funding allocation tool. Aiming to be a "decentralized Ethereum Foundation", Panvala holds a public vote among holders of test tokens to choose which projects will receive PAN token grants. Mainnet launch is planned for August.

Wetonomy

  • Wetonomy's Building Blocks Overview. Building upon their smart contract framework StrongForce, Wetonomy designed an architecture with three main elements: 'Members' classes which define the actions and permissions of participants; 'Units of Work' classes which define tasks and track their progress; and 'Token Flow' classes which support minting, splitting and burning of tokens. This blog post describes these classes in greater detail.

Brain Food

  • Outsourcing Sybil Resistance in your DAO with Modifiers. Blockada DAO distinguishes humans from non-humans not on its own but by requiring its users to be registered in Humanity DAO. Describing Ethereum as "financial Lego Technics", the post calls for more cross-contract communication and reuse of existing components.

  • Resolving the Stake-Based vs. Participant-Based Voting Dilemma. Discusses the benefits and shortcomings of stake-based (one token, one vote) and participant-based (one person, one vote) voting mechanisms. With functionality as money, risk management and holders’ representation in mind, the authors propose a dynamically balanced participant-stake voting, using the Gini coefficient to prevent hostile takeovers.

  • What is a DAO?. This article attempts to break down the various (often conflicting) definitions of a Decentralised Autonomous Organisation (DAO). "Decentralisation" can refer to the absence of hierarchy, meaning the DAO is subject to decentralised decision making, or it may refer to the decentralised infrastructure that the DAO is powered by. "Autonomous" refers to the fact that the DAO's rules are self-enforcing, meaning processes can't be stopped by anyone if the smart contracts' conditions are met. "Organisation" refers more broadly to any digital organism that coordinates human activity, including blockchains, ecosystems, and natural resources.

  • Conspiratus Podcast #5. Recorded live at ZCon1, Sunny Aggarwal of Tendermint/Cosmos and Drew Stone of Commonwealth Labs discuss Edgeware, the governance of ZCash, and the implications of Facebook's new Libra project.

Beyond OrgTech

  • Study: 25% "don't trust a coinvote as a viable governance tool". That is according to a survey on the governance of Ethereum among 282 respondents, of whom 94% identify as Ethereum community members, 45% work in organisations building on Ethereum, and 24% are developers. The study also highlights challenges and gives recommendations on issues around diversity, collaboration, leadership, communications and tooling.

  • How to Create a Thriving Global Commons Economy. In this long read, Vasilis Kostakis and Michel Bauwens of P2P Foundation explain how the phenomenon of commons-based peer production may act as a "seed" in a post-capitalist transformation of today's political economies. The authors observe a new institutional ecosystem of value creation emerging, consisting of the three institutions of the productive community, commons-oriented entrepreneurial coalition(s), and the for-benefit association. This article outlines key practices, challenges, and a vision for commons-based peer production.

  • Blockchain and Distributed Workforce. The report proposes four main categories of solutions using blockchain in HR and work. Firstly, self-sovereign identity, with individuals owning their identities and controlling the use of their personal data. Secondly, "career wallets" with verifiable work credentials such as work history, references, employment history, courses, university degrees. Thirdly, work matching platforms that reduce transaction fees by 15 percent points and more. Fourthly, work payment platforms, which not only run payroll on blockchain but also experiment with new ways to pay, reward and motivate workers.

Events

OrgTech Review #15

Colony mainnet launch, OpenLaw legal wrapper repository, new Autark roadmap, and more!

Previously on OrgTech Review

Most clicked: Aragon, DAOstack, Colony, Moloch [a comparison], Memorandum of Understanding between dOrg, LLC and Open, Esq LCC, Wetonomy embraces the DAT paradigm.

Project News

Aragon

  • Autark Flock Proposal for Aragon Network Vote #3. Autark is rebranding That Planning Suite to Open Enterprise, to reflect its evolution into a suite of apps for the general coordination of organisations. They're targeting a soft-launch to mainnet during Q4 2019 and aim to expand the functionality of the existing suite (e.g. add support for bounties that aren't connected to GitHub issues and for reviewers to get a percentage of the bounty), to enable new governance mechanisms (e.g. new voting patterns, dispute resolution, and vetoing), and to work on various initiatives that will support the Aragon ecosystem. Lots more details in the linked proposal.

  • The Founding Episode - In Flight by Aragon One Podcast. Aragon co-founders Luis Cuende and Jorge Izquierdo introduce their new podcast and discuss the evolution of crypto since 2017, IEOs, blockchain fundraising, and decentralised infrastructure.

  • Aragon Black Blog: A blockchain for Bookchin. A follow up to last week's "A History of Decentralization" post, this essay explores Bookchin's "libertarian municipalism" philosophy in relation to blockchain technology.

Colony

  • Glider has launched. Colony's mainnet was soft-launched 2 weeks ago and is now ready to go public. This first release brings reputation, the ability to use any ERC-20 as your colony's native token, task management and payments within single-level domains, role-based permissions, and the ability to distribute rewards according to reputation earned. Check out the contract here and the release notes. The dApp is not live yet, but developers can start interacting and building with the Colony Network (e.g. to integrate Colony with the dxDAO).

ditCraft

  • ditCraft released updated ditExplorer with UI improvements. Previously, ditCraft announced dit v0.2 with support for deploying smart contracts on POA Network's xDAI network and an integrated Twitter bot for (Twitter-)KYC. ditExplorer is a graphical interface to dit, a decentralised Git which uses staking with reputation-based "knowledge tokens" (KNW) to coordinate and vote on merge requests.

Edgeware

Open ESQ

  • The operating agreements of dOrg, LLC and Open, ESQ LLC were published on Open Law. Both agreements, as well as their Memorandum of Understanding (reported last week), were written with the legal support of Open ESQ. With their assistance in forming the recently launched PoolTogether LLC-DAO, it looks like Open ESQ are building up the experience to be the lawyers of choice for new DAOs.

OpenLaw

  • The Era of Legally Compliant DAOs. OpenLaw has built upon the earlier work of Open ESQ and dOrg, with the launch of the OpenLaw DAO, a free legal repository for people to easily deploy Limited Liability Wrappers for their DAOs. These wrappers will prevent DAOs from being defined by default as general partnerships, which would result in joint and several liability for all members. This dramatically expands the use cases of DAOs, empowering them to take on more traditional contractual relationships and manage physical assets.

Brain Food

  • Dynamic Governance: Where Cybernetics Meets Sociology. Dynamic governance, or sociocracy, is a management approach where decisions are made with consent where nobody objects, as opposed to consensus where everybody agrees. Teams ('circles') are interlinked through individuals who belong to two or more circles across all hierarchical levels. As a consequence, dynamic governance can help organisations to move forward with decisions quickly while also make use of knowledge throughout the organisation.

  • Introducing Gauntlet. Designing cryptoeconomic systems is a complex endeavour as their decentralised governance often involves lengthy update processes and their decentralised architecture may be subject to lucrative attack vectors. Gauntlet is building a simulation platform to run agent-based modelling which "leverages battle tested techniques from other industries to emulate interactions in crypto networks". By modelling the choices of individuals, the tool could map emergent patterns and ultimately contribute towards more secure and effective incentive designs and governance mechanisms.

  • Risk-adjusted token bonding curves. Most token bonding curves follow a fixed pricing function of token supply and demand. Due to external factors and information asymmetries, such bonding curves can be subject to market failures. The ixo Foundation proposes an adaptive impact financing mechanism, with an alpha coefficient as a modifier on the bonding curve. As a result, the adjusted price accounts for risk information. For instance, in the case of impact investing, the price of such a bonding curve would reflect the chance of reaching an impact milestone. Open questions include how the risk factor can be deterministically calculated.

Beyond OrgTech

  • A dose of democracy in corporate governance may help save social media. Social media businesses thrive by fine-tuning algorithms to optimise their platforms for user's attention and engagement. Yet, scandals such as Cambridge Analytica raised awareness of the political power that is influenced by these platforms' business decisions. In this political backlash, social media may benefit from involving users directly in the governance of their platform's rules. When legitimising output is not only costly but also politically controversial, a more reasonable approach would be to legitimise inputs by co-creating the rules of a social media platform with the user.

  • Blockchain and Public Companies: A Revolution in Share Ownership Transparency, Proxy-Voting and Corporate Governance?. Traditionally, shareholders of publicly listed companies were registered personally, yet today's systems are optimised for transaction throughput which resulted in the creation of new intermediaries. Non-transparent and highly complex ownership structures inhibit corporate governance to reach and engage the large and fluctuating amount of shareholders. While the complexity is currently mitigated by proxy-voting mechanisms, transparency remains low. Along with digital identities and progressive regulation, blockchain could increase such share ownership transparency and provide the basis for a "shareholder democracy".

Events

OrgTech Review #14

dOrg Limited Liability DAO, StandardBounties 2.0, Ethfinex DAO, and more!

The latest issues of OrgTech Weekly haven't been strictly "weekly", due to time spent on developments behind the scenes. The hope is that these will allow me to scale OrgTech Review and bring more original insights on top of the news roundups. The first development is the introduction of Theodor Beutel to the team, who helped me co-write this issue! Theo is a long-time community member of the DAO space, who is working on governance innovation across fields, from international development at GIZ Blockchain Lab to organisational technology at DAOincubator, and was the first ever guest on DAOstack's podcast. As for the rest, watch this space!

Previously on OrgTech Review

Most clicked: DAOstack - The Future of Smart Companies, Colony - Introducing Glider, MetaCartel DAO - Accelerator Applications Now Open.

Project News

Aragon

Bounties Network

  • Ushering In a New Era of Bounties: Going Live with StandardBounties 2.0. Bounties Network have released a significant upgrade to their generalized bounties smart contracts. Bounties can now include non-fungible tokens, multiple payout recipients, and dynamic payouts (e.g. milestone-based piecemeal payments). Also, with their new Meta Transaction Relayer, the gas for transactions can now be paid by third party sponsors. Note that these contracts underpin Gitcoin and Aragon Projects, so you can expect this functionality to find its way into those apps too.

Commons Stack

DAOstack

  • Holographic Consensus - Part 2. After discussing the model conceptually in Part 1, Part 2 defines an MVP specification that is embodied in v0.2 of DAOstack's Genesis protocol. DAO members can attempt to highlight (upstake) or minimise (downstake) a proposal by staking DAOstack's GEN tokens based on their prediction that it will pass. The proposal will be "boosted" if the confidence score (upstakes/downstakes) is persistently greater than the boosting threshold, which grows exponentially with the number of currently boosted proposals. More details on the GEN Predictors Network here.

  • Ethfinex Launches Funding DAO. The 21 founding members consists of three equally sized groups - the largest token holders, active community volunteers, and existing Ethfinex team members - who will govern a trial budget of $5,000. Others can join the DAO by successfully submitting proposals.

  • KyberDAO Experiment #2 on DAOstack. After their first experiment with Aragon, Kyber Network are now running a test DAO on DAOstack, with a trial budget of $4,500.

dOrg

Edgeware

  • Edgeware's Unusual Lockdrop: Get Tokens Even With Frozen Funds - Unconfirmed Podcast. Dillon Chen appeared on Laura Shin's podcast, explaining lockdrops as a novel mechanism to distribute tokens and looking ahead at Edgeware's role in the Polkadot ecosystem. Edgeware's lockdrop is ongoing (stats here).

  • Edgeware introduces OurNode. This DAO for Web3 server infrastructure operates like Moloch DAO, in that you can't withdraw money but you can "rage quit" after losing a vote. You can earn OurNode DAO tokens by donating server resources or donating EDG/DOT tokens. To access the server resources, you will need to burn OurNode DAO tokens.

Moloch

Wetonomy

Brain Food

  • At the first talk of YC's Summer 2019 batch, Airbnb advocated for startups focusing more on community stakeholders, echoing the principals of the crypto movement. a16z Crypto partner Jesse Walden highlighted the link to OrgTech and DAOs, concluding that "the next frontier [of crypto] is providing online communities with new tools to harness their collaborative energy."

  • Can DAOs compete with platforms?. Digital platforms fail due to pricing decisions, lack of trust, amongst others, according to this study. Through transparent and self-enforcing smart contracts, DAOs may increase a platform's chance of survival by creating trust among stakeholders, even when they are anonymous. However, decentralisation may be a hindrance to agreeing on politically controversial yet critical pricing decisions when subsidies are beneficial to network effects and long-term user growth.

  • Aragon, DAOstack, Colony, Moloch. A comparison. Aragon provides a modular backbone that supports any decision-making mechanism, which may make it easier for them to build out a developer ecosystem. DAOstack explicitly prioritises decentralised decision-making at scale, targeting the problem of attention with their "holographic consensus" model (linked above). Colony's focus is designing mechanisms that don't rely on voting, overcoming inertia with time-driven reputation mechanics that help workers "get shit done". Moloch is a "minimum viable process" for resource allocation, which prioritises minority protection with a novel "rage quit" mechanism.

Beyond OrgTech

  • Libra Association, the entity behind Facebook's newly revealed digital currency, may be governed in a more "open and collaborative" way than some anticipated. The white paper states that the Libra Association "will develop a path toward permissionless governance" and aims to "start this transition within five years". It remains to be seen whether such intentions materialise, given that key decisions require a two-thirds supermajority among validator nodes, which are initially provided by the founding members, including VISA, PayPal, eBay, and Uber, and carry a $10M membership fee.

Events

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