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A word about the Foundation, it's mission and directors

Discussion in 'Internal Operations' started by eduffield, Apr 7, 2015.

  1. eduffield

    eduffield Core Developer

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    It’s come to my attention that some people have begun to speculate about the foundation and I thought it was a good idea to address that. Foundations are inherently centralized entities, which is a problem for the long term success of a decentralized project, but at the same time this entity is critical to the success of this project at this stage.

    I just wanted to say that the Foundation was my idea originally. I wanted a legal entity to be setup that could take care of the maintenance of the coin and see to it’s future. Ed reached out to me soon after and proposed starting the foundation soon after, I was quite receptive because I had been thinking about it already. I asked if he wanted to spearhead the project because he had experience setting up these types of entities and Harold & Ed did most of the ground work.

    The other purpose it serves is to allow me to talk to others in a closed forum and get input on ideas on our overall strategy. Maybe this should be more transparent in the future, but I have a lot of ideas and most of them don’t work, so it’s not a good idea to put all of them out there for publish discussion. I believe the foundation has been critical to our success and it's part of the reason why we're doing as well as we are. Lately I’ve read a few negative comments on some board members and I think the conclusions are unfair. Just because all the work is not done in public, it doesn’t mean there's something nefarious going on. There isn't and I really need their help to make this a success.

    As for the directors of the Foundation, these are the people I met early on in the project. I chose them, because each had a separate skillset that I thought was useful to the foundation and advising the project. All of our terms are set to expire after 2 years, at which point elections will happen and the next generation of directors will take over.
     
    #1 eduffield, Apr 7, 2015
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  2. the-baker

    the-baker Member

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    Well, when there is a lack of information, people tend to fill in the blanks according to their predisposition. So there will always be someone who assumes the worst. IMO it would help if the board members themselves were a bit more transparent (so to speak). fernando is pretty active in the forums, but all we know about the others are the two sentences that are written on the darkcoin foundation website (and Chris Rimoldi doesn't even have those). Don't these guys have Twitter accounts and/or Blogs you could link? It might also help if they pop in to the forums every now and then. If we get an idea of what those guys are like, closed-door meetings aren't a big problem I think.
     
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  3. bigrcanada

    bigrcanada Well-known Member
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    Great work Evan....I think that was well implemented. Is there a convenient location for us to view the current board members and minutes? Thanks
     
  4. fernando

    fernando Powered by Dash
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  5. bigrcanada

    bigrcanada Well-known Member
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  6. Minotaur

    Minotaur Well-known Member
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    I posted something about this on the thread that started this discussion but I believe it applies here too. This is an answer to a different user so is not directed at you, just sharing my opinion on the matter, but don't want to edit my original post, so just bear with me:

    "I think you are overstating and misunderstanding the current "foundation" . Truth is the foundation as an entity plays no particular role right now. Some of the users you mention, like masternodes, are great volunteers for Dash and they contribute pro bono like everyone else. They do great things like get pro bono legal advice and promote Dash. They have helped in meaningful ways like helping us get into Bitfinex. All of this is done in their quality of volunteers not by any "foundation".

    Creating a first legal entity was just something that made sense at the time. In the future there may be 10 different foundations. We are really thinking of innovating with something truly decentralized, never done before in crypto, through masternode voting. So we might all end up going in a completely different direction, it is a discovery process.

    In the end, the people that want to help just go ahead and do it. All the active volunteers just do things period. Some of them dont have much in terms of coin some do. But they all have something in common: they act beyond the discussion forums.

    We don't have a defined decentralized management system yet, not even Bitcoin does, we need one. We are working on it don't get confused by the term "foundation" it truly means nothing yet. This is a hard problem but I think we have an opportunity to solve it in a really innovative way, just like we solve the full node issue. That is how we will be successful by coming up with creative solutions to hard problems.

    P.S. excuse typos on the phone at the moment."
     
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  7. the-baker

    the-baker Member

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    I get what you're trying to say, but try to look at the situation from an outsider's perspective: For all intents and purposes, Evan has the final say on the direction Dash is taking (this might change at some point of course). The foundation board is (as he has written above) his private think tank (or inner circle if you will), which puts them in a position where they have more influence/information than other volunteers. People who have invested time/effort/money into this project have a natural tendency to protect their investment, so any unknown factors will make them nervous, especially since hardly a day goes by without another crypto scandal.

    What I'm trying to say is that I'm all for experimentation and such, but it's good to remember that none of this happens in a vacuum.
     
  8. yidakee

    yidakee Well-known Member
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    Any initiative needs a starting point. Especially in the case of any foundation. As the actual name implies, it is the building ground of "something". That something is a direction, and as such, it needs to kick off with a tight group laying the actual "foundations" to which to operate from.

    It would be total caos and quite utopic to think a legal entity would start off from an "open-source" community driven endeavour. That would be like starting a blank github account and say to the community "ok, it's set up, now everyone chip in from scratch, what do we want to do here? First line is - print "hello World"
    Everyone would commit totally different objectives, views, opinions and priorities and all hell would break loose and nothing would get done.

    This, on the other hand, done responsibly, will pave the way for a solid project. Especially being a legal entity with very objective regulatory requirements. As time goes by we can all judge the work done, and quite obviously as soon as plausible, voting and elections will quite certainly prove its legitimacy. If not, then well, we have BTC's case as prime example.

    Have faith in Evan's judgement. Not the word crypto's like to hear, but the truth is exactly that, when you cross the line from p2p into the "real" social mainframe. Despite all bumps in the road, I think we can all appreciate it has been Evan's vision that got us here.

    Also, anyone is free to create their own independent foundation. You could even call it The Super Dash Foundation.

    Point being, I support the Darkcoin Foundation because I personally believe its has tons of merit, and that the current board is qualified and aligns with Evan's vision. Proactively helping solve problems that can't be coded into the protocol, helping support it's progress.
     
  9. Minotaur

    Minotaur Well-known Member
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    Got it, like I said before, I really think we may need a completely different solution than the traditional crypto "foundation" , this is one area in which we can learn from BTC mistakes and try something completely different.

    Yet again, everyone involved is just trying to help and are just normal community members, the foundation as an entity has not acted in any formal way for the most part. People that are on this foundation board have acted in their normal quality of volunteers to help the project, yes, but not through any formal "foundation" business, not yet.

    That legal entity is just a tool in our tool box for when formal things are needed like formally registering trademarks, thats it. You just need an entity for certain things, nothing else. The direction of the coin still comes from the development team, active members and the community in general just like with any other normal coin. The people in that board just stood up to the challenge at that time, it was a good move to add some formality to the project. People like Fernando who happens to be on the board just because he is another awesome community member that took the responsibility back then. Formally representing a crypto project comes with some liability, and Fernando has done nothing but work really hard for this project, with no special power of any kind. Others like eltito were really active at the time, and then life happened and he had a newborn baby, and is taking some time with his family. Ed has been an asset to this community, yes he is not the posting type but he has done a great amount of work, like getting us into Bitfinex. He brought Harold the lawyer that did all the legal work for free.

    These are all great people and all they did was step up to the challenge and collaborate on this particular task of creating our first legal entity. We are going to need a decentralized management system and I think we have the ingredients to solve this in a way not even Bitcoin can. The masternode voting mechanism is the key.

    I have one thing to add, about the think tank, I talk to Evan quite often lately and I am not on the foundation board, nor are many of the people that I know bounce ideas with him, like tungfa, flare, Udjin, tantestefana, fernando (is on the board but we don't really think of him that way). Truly the "foundation" thing is blown out of proportion as we don't have a mature solution yet, we are just setting the base and thinking in the direction of the long term viability of the project, it is a hard problem. Evan is an accessible person, if you have a great idea or something really relevant to discuss and want to talk to him, just send him an email. Yes, he is really busy working for all of us, but if the ideas are really good he will listen, he is just a dude working hard for his dreams like we are all doing.
     
    #9 Minotaur, Apr 7, 2015
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  10. masternode

    masternode New Member

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    Yes, Evan knew I had access to resources that could help make this happen. I recommended an attorney I've worked with in the past, Harold Boo, whom has experience structuring 501(c)6 legal entities and has had interest and involvement in cryptocurrencies prior. Anyone who knows Harold knows he's meticilous, fair, and an all around solid guy. So we started the process of setting up the foundation which took a couple of months. I covered the initial legal expenses of setting up the foundation which were later reimbursed.

    During the initial discussions with Evan, we felt it was an obvious choice that he be on the board representing the tech. We thought Harold should be on the board being the only one of us with expertise in setting up and operating foundations and to help make sure everything runs smoothly (which he has done very well). We knew for certain there should be a privacy advocate and both Fernando and Kristov Atlas were initially recommended. I volunteered to be on the board to represent Darkcoin as an investment, as I knew many of the largest holders. And lastly we knew it was critical to make sure the community had a voice on the board to which Evan recommended Chris Rimoldi.

    In the end we feel we have a very balanced and fair board that represents all the aspects of the coin each with an equal voice. Tech, Privacy, Community, Investment and Foundation.
     
    #10 masternode, Apr 7, 2015
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  11. g8F98FF3gjafogj4

    g8F98FF3gjafogj4 Well-known Member
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    Is "Otoh" your business partner? Do know approximately the date when he first became aware of the name change? Are there any written bylaws of the foundation to prevent board members from using information obtained at foundation meetings for trading purposes?
     
  12. Minotaur

    Minotaur Well-known Member
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    I hope you understand that what you are asking is offensive. I will try to reply in the name of the community, because if I was masternodes I would not reply to your message. Plus you seem to just ignore everyone on this thread trying to give clear explanations to your questions and just continue pushing your agenda, just because you don't agree with everything.

    There are a few things that you don't seem to understand:

    First, Evan and the development team do not wait to have foundation meetings to actively discuss the direction of the coin or new features, that is an active conversation that happens every day in the forums, among the community, development team members, extended development team, etc. Some of these people happen to be in the foundation board which is just a legal entity that we use as a tool when needed, because to act in the real world outside of the computers you need an entity. You continue to try to give the foundation a relevance that is does not have yet. I really hope when we finally define a management system it starts really playing that role, as we need that for the future.

    Second, Otoh is not on the foundation board or in any of the active teams, he is a community member and a great supporter of this project. He learns about things just like everyone else and is completely irrelevant to the topic of this thread.

    Finally, I don't really understand what you want anymore? What are the constructive proposals you have for the future? What are you trying to accomplish?

    Just go read the bylaws is all there: https://www.darkcoinfoundation.org/about/conflict-of-interest-policy/
     
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  13. TanteStefana

    TanteStefana Grizzled Member
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    The foundation only does planning behind closed doors before making ideas public. This way, bad or controversial ideas don't freak people out. When something is presented, it's presented with all the reasoning behind it and pros and cons already thought out. Then the members can get all the facts without a bunch of hoopla, have a focused discussion and make an informed, non-emotional decision. As I understood it at the time, this was one of the biggest reasons to create a foundation. It used to be, Evan had an idea, and expressed it to everyone, and BOOM! Crazy argumentative off topic nutziness went on, causing price fluctuations and FUD. We can't have the market constantly reacting to everything Evan says when all he wants is feedback. This is too big a project for such things.

    However, when it comes to spending foundation funds, that's entirely different. Once a plan of action is agreed to by the members (that's everyone who joined and has voting rights) the funds will be allocated, openly visible to anyone, as the addresses are right there on the Foundation page to see, you can see, actually, that at the moment, I believe 1 coin was used (probably to test). These guys have been donating their time and spending their own money to set all this up. I think the Foundation plans on paying some of it back, but frankly, it may never get paid back. These guys are seriously putting out for all of our benefits. I've heard in the 50-100s of thousands of dollars. I only heard rumors, but I don't doubt it's been a few bucket fulls of money, and I'm eternally grateful to them and to have discovered this project and to Evan for creating all this for us!

    So please understand the purpose of the foundation, the transparency that they've conducted business in, the financial and personal commitment they've given, and please join the foundation, become active when asked to, and finally, please try to donate a % of your masternode earnings if at all possible. Thanks!
     
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  14. g8F98FF3gjafogj4

    g8F98FF3gjafogj4 Well-known Member
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    Hey Minotaur,
    If I haven't responded to you it's because I haven't found your posts to be very substantive. I have no agenda, but I do have some additional questions. Should I wait for the previous ones to get answered or blurt them all out at once?
     
  15. the-baker

    the-baker Member

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    I don't know this guy's post history, so I don't want to get into your argument, but Otoh did say on BCT that he knew about the rebranding in advance. It could of course be that he made that up to calm the market or any other reason, but the poster's question itself didn't seem too unreasonable to me (but he could have asked a bit nicer). Anyways, it's good to know that the bylaws have provisions for this situation.

    EDIT: Sorry, I was confused above: It wasn't Otoh who said he knew in advance, it was masternode:

    https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=421615.msg10719505#msg10719505
     
    #15 the-baker, Apr 8, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 8, 2015
  16. fernando

    fernando Powered by Dash
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    Thanks for your words, we do have put time and money into this in the hope of advancing the coin to the best of our abilities. One quick note about the funds, that coin spent was not from the foundation, I sent it and it was sent back to me to test that everything was right with the multisigs addresses. Same thing with the BTC one. We have not touched a duff yet :)
     
  17. TanteStefana

    TanteStefana Grizzled Member
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    Like I said, it looked like a test, LOL Also, I have no idea how much money has been invested into the foundation, but I have no doubt it was a lot and it was private and we're all benefiting from it. So we all should be and believe are very grateful for all of your dedication, you Fernando, Evan, and the others (not sure who everyone is, LOL)

    I got to meet otoh, a great guy! He's just a crypto currency enthusiast. He's been into Bitcoin since 2011 and a huge supporter of DASH.

    Did you mean that to sound so rude? Or was that an accident. Minotaur has made some of the best observational posts I've read on the forums. Anyway, sure, if we don't know the answers we can have fun speculating together :D
     
  18. souptacular

    souptacular Well-known Member
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    I think the Foundation is doing a good job overall. There is only so much community volunteers can do as far as development, advertising/image, legal, and so on. The foundation is needed to advance the coin and they seem to be actively working on becoming "more transparent", like with the meeting minutes. I have not witnessed anything nefarious from my vantage point. In the future, I hope that the channels of communication and roles of the foundation are further defined and refined as DASH grows. Excellent job Foundation members :)
     
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  19. bigrcanada

    bigrcanada Well-known Member
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    I agree. This is very much a work in progress...it is always good to have those check and balances in place, but we had to start somewhere.
     
  20. raze

    raze King of the Morlocks
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    I don't think his questions are really offensive or even necessarily unwarranted (although maybe they could have been expressed in a less confrontational tone). I think he raises some legitimate concerns about a large investor who is not on the board potentially having access to insider information regarding the inner workings of the foundation due to his business partnership with a board member. I can see how this could be perceived as giving him an unfair advantage in the marketplace and creating a possible conflict of interest. I'm not suggesting that there's anything nefarious going on, only that I understand the concerns.
     
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