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Should we use Web3 and DAOs for our conscious community?
Should we use Web3 and DAOs for our conscious community?

I spent some time learning more about Web3, DAOs and how we could use these tools for our growing community.

Most people see crypto as new way of trading and financial tools, that’s how I have been learning too and the recent debacle on the crypto prices have calmed all of that.

There was a major Internet bubble early 2000 too followed by 2-3 years of “winter”. While the valuation of the Internet companies plummeted, a new generation was quietly born and Google, Twitter, Facebook and all the giants we know well today appeared. Many people did not believe in social networking for example at the time but it became huge in this second phase (phase 1 was the browsers and early websites until 2000 which I am so glad I could see and build small startups in, then go through the crisis myself).

I feel the 2022 “crypto winter” has a lot in common with the beginning of the years 2000… Valuations are reset, those who took part only for short term profits left but there are many believers still here and now quietly building.

I haven’t spent much time myself on Web3 and its tools as a completely new way of running a business and I am willing to learn more now. The Web3 experts who might read this will find it very basic and that’s fine, that’s where I am now. Anyone who feels like correcting me or helping me understand better please by all means feel free to.

Web3 is decentralization

As a contributor to the Pawa community wrote it very well, using blockchain technologies is about decentralization. It is a completely new way of thinking and running businesses.

Antonin wrote on discord:

“Most (if not all) web applications or communities using apps in Web 2.0 are architectured around a central pillar of authority (an administration, a central server infrastructure, central point of governance). With Blockchain technologies, you can decentralize those aspects getting rid of this central authority, as all exchanges, their validation (approval), votes of projects or decisions are held by the members of the communities themselves.”

The second advantage is transparency and ownership as Yat Siu explained very well in this conversation.

Yat talks how he lived “extreme communism and extreme capitalism” and saw how they aren’t optimal.

Teenagers who spent time growing up in gaming want to own data as the most valuable resource on the planet today (after giving it all for some to Blizzard with WOW in the past).

According to Yat we are going to stop giving the data to the Internet giants and keep the value each contributes, this is how Animoca is building its games, the users own their data and what they earn in the game.

For the first time with Web3 now all the things we do and own belong to the users themselves.

-Yat Siu

A mycelium network in high-resolution, photo Loreto Oyarte Galvez

I spent so much time in the Amazon forest that I now like to always wonder “How does nature do it?”

Nature is decentralized, should it be the model for the future of our democracies and organizations?

Daniel Pinchbeck just wrote about “Mycelial Anarchy”. Mycelium networks are the “Woodwide web”, the Internet of nature. Trees communicate through them (read the amazing book “The Hidden Life of the Trees” if you haven’t.

Daniel wrote a fantastic quote from Merlin Sheldrake’s Entangled Life:

Mycelial coordination is difficult to understand because there is no center of control. If we cut off our head or stop our heart, we’re finished. A mycelial network has no head and no brain. Fungi, like plants, are decentralized organisms. There are no operational centers, no capital cities, no seats of government. Control is dispersed: Mycelial coordination takes place both everywhere at once and nowhere in particular. A fragment of mycelium can regenerate an entire network, meaning that a single mycelial individual—if you’re brave enough to use that word—is potentially immortal.

I find this comparison between nature and what might be the future of democracy fascinating.

DAOs can become the basis of a new form of democracy

Yat says:

“We don’t think of blockchain as a technology, it is a political and social decision framework. You’re almost free to do your own things, for example on Ethereum anyone can almost build anything on top of it.

DAOs are a democracy but can innovate at the pace of technology.”

DAOs all start with a community

We have a thriving community on discord with Pawa, focusing on consciousness and technology. We created an event in Paris where the community was very much involved.

What we think we could do with a DAO to begin with?

  • Build reputation for the members of the community who help/contribute the most

  • Create a decentralized governance for the community to decide as a group what to focus on

  • For example we have many zoom calls, some with guests, speakers could be chosen following a vote

  • Many members of the community are providing services that have value (teaching meditation for example) - having a token as a reward they can then exchange for other members services

  • Eventually after a long period of testing and the DAO being successful the token can be traded against fiat and members can make it a revenue source

I am researching into DAOs and Web3 to see how we can decentralize the community and use the basic Web3 tools forming the basis of a small democracy around it.

It’s still early as Michael O’Rourke wrote in 2021 in cointelegraph: DAOs will be the future of online communities in five years. Here is another post by Rhian Lewis: How DAOs can work for communities.

I had a great conversation a few days ago with my friend Joi Ito who showed me how he is building a community in Japan using these tools.

Community basics

  • The token is not traded against Fiat as a first step, which avoids speculation and interest from those only looking after short term gains. Long-term involvement and participation is on the contrary at the core.

  • The community is small and private by design.

  • Each member of the community can invite a new one only after having given ten hours of work helping the community.

  • Members build “reputation” by contributing to the community, it’s like experience points in a game.

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Here are some of the Web3 tools Joi uses.

  1. An ethereum wallet and basic training

Everyone needs to own an Ethereum wallet no store what they own. It is a must to access the community. Some people are dedicated training new members who need it. They use the most popular Ethereum metamask wallet.

  1. A central place to share tasks and for everyone to decide where they contribute.

Joi’s community chose dework for project management. Tasks are listed, people can apply, a team attributes the work.

A team of members reviews the work and rewards bounties or tokens.

Those who work build reputation in the community and dework makes it transparent.

3. Governance with a voting system

Active members can decide the future of the community what it does through a decentralized voting system. Joi chose snapshot as a governance tool.

  1. Share important documents with the community members

Charmverse is recommended by Joi for document sharing. This tool is trying to do it all though.

  1. Create a coin

Members can first get bounties, exchange work for access to governance and other community generated services, or build up a stake in the enterprise by contributing their time. Joi told me to look at Coinvise.

In Joi’s community to inviting someone costs 1,000 token (=10 hours of work).

“To get in, someone has to be willing to spend 10 hours to invite you”

I love it. You cannot buy your way in other than someone working to get you in.

So what does the token get you if it’s not traded against Fiat?

Joi gives away books, access to events, some of the things can have Fiat value. Joi is starting a co-working space and a bar that where people will be able to spend tokens.

Joi also recommends setting up a peer-to-peer exchange so that people in the community can get tokens for helping others in the community.

It won’t be easy initially obviously as people need to find value in the token while it doesn’t really have one at the beginning. When I started the discord community there was also very few reasons to stick around and the benefits for members took a long time to grow, we launched it 1.5 years ago… It’s like very slow cooking top Chef food, not fast-food…

  1. Prepare one day to turn it into a business benefiting all members

As Jesse Walden wrote for Andreessen horowitz full decentralization must be progressive and the steps are well described there. Here is another great post from Jesse, Progressive Decentralization A playbook for Building Crypto Applications.

Initially I am planning to look at a token that isn’t traded for Fiat and keep the community quite closed to limit the risks. The only risk is that the community doesn’t like the experiment and doesn’t adopt it or does not support the shift.

I believe that everyone can benefit financially in the end and it will also become obvious, but that might take years. The first members “who get it” won’t be so many and that is okay, this is with them that I would like to build it.

Helping people monetize their knowledge and work, find work in a new way and a new type of organisation

Many people in the community have skills that they are or are not yet monetizing though so I am really interested in testing a new model for work where making one day the token traded for Fiat gives everyone value for what they worked on and make it eventually a revenue source for them.

As Joi does, establishing a token that isn’t traded against Fiat seems to me the best start so everyone trusts it.

The benefit for the organisation is a unique solution to find talent, a complete new way to do project management.

The benefit to the members is a unique solution to find and apply for work and benefit from it.

See “The future of Decentralized Work” by Jack McCarthy about Dework.

I don’t want to do anything illegal however, even though the token won’t be traded for Fiat initially. Someone (please comment if you read it) recommended I look at Wyoming as they legalized DAOs.

Combining Web3 with a conscious community isn’t obvious…

We have been very focused on combining ancient and new technologies and our event PAWA was the first public form. It wasn’t obvious to combine two crowds and speakers from indigenous worlds with technology entrepreneurs, but it worked.

I took this photo from the stage where you can see indigenous leaders, consciousness experts and participants and technology entrepreneurs all in the same room, from 35 countries.

In “The spiritual Layer of Web3” I was glad to read “Web3 is a movement disguised as technology” and agree with the “Paradox of Spirituality and Web3”

-Spirituality: disconnecting, community, self-practice, getting in tune with self in a disconnect manner
-Web3: plugging into a computer to do work
-There's the paradox, a dichotomy of the two, — having a sense of community but also maintaining balance in own spiritual practice. Making sure to not get too lost in all the information in the online world and be in consumption mode.

Bringing tools to connect to conscious people who are making it a practice to disconnect is the core of the PAWA community.

I will write more on what I find on Web3 and conscious communities and how we progress or not on implementing it from our discord.

Welcoming any help from anyone who resonates with this, please drop a comment or an email, thanks.

Zoom call Tuesday November 8th 18h CET to discuss how to build a DAO.

These calls are generally for the community only but since we will need help to build it I am inviting here anyone that would like to help. That way you can also get a feel for the community, the call will last one hour. Zoom link.

Thanks again, Joi Ito and Yat Siu for inspiring me and guiding me as you have already done so many times in the past. There are few friends I can say changed my life, you two have and always do.

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Loic’s Newsletter & Podcast is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.


Loic's letter - Exploring the Mysterious

Loic Le Meur's Podcast

After launching startups and conferences all his life Loic spent a year in the Amazon forest with indigenous and came back exploring consciousness but staying grounded in business. See also Loic's newsletter at http://loiclemeur.com