Notes on "The Lifecycle of a Web3 Community"
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November 13th, 2021

Notes from Chase Chapman’s interview with Patrick Rivera on On The Other Side podcast 👇

Mirror is becoming the starting place for Web3 native communities

  • Mirror is not just for writing / newsletters with crypto infrastructure.
  • Token distribution is only one step in the process of creating a web3 native community

Web3 native community: group chat with a shared bank account and cap table

There are some common patterns in how web3 communities emerge

  • Start with group chat, e.g., Telegram
  • Upgrade to Discord to manage higher numbers of members, introduce channels
  • Pool funds into wallet and use multi-sig, e.g., Gnossis Safe
  • Introduce governance proposals, e.g., Snapshot
  • Issue token through crowdfund on Mirror or fractionalized NFT ownership through PartyBid
  • Launch working groups to manage functions like: treasury, onboarding, governance, tokenomics, product development

DAOs are not fully autonomous: “Humans are always at the center.”

Outsider perspective on DAOs:

  • “It’s not great to have 500 people deciding about product decisions”
  • “DAOs can’t scale because they’re decentralized”

How DAOs actually get things done:

  • Community input, but core teams implement
  • Formalize ownership in terms of who decides things
  • Keep teams small and dedicated

The role of a core team vs part-time contributors

First, depends on the purpose of the DAO:

  • Some are just for fun
  • Some are trying to build lasting organizations that change the internet

The purpose affects the type of commitment needed.

Commitment may ebb and flow. Some take a “seasons” model:

  • Core contributor role is only scoped for one month or three months
  • Creates optionality for people to dial up/down commitment over time

DAOs are social places. People want to connect and hang out with others.

In Patrick’s case:

  • Spending most of his time on Mirror (~90%)
  • Also participating in other DAOs he can learn from (~10%)

There should be different tiers in the community

Communities have different models:

  • Open model: easy to join, but need to work hard to get noticed and level up tasks
  • Closed model: hard to join, but once you’re in you can do a lot of valuable tasks

But all communities should be curated: minimize trolls, ensure people share same vision and values.

Types of tiers in the community:

  1. New or passive members. Open sections of Discord to learn, understand what’s going on, join in weekly voice calls, hang out socially.
  2. Active contributors. People who earn token over time through proof of work, participate in working groups, vote on proposals.
  3. Core contributors. In addition to getting work done, need to lead by example and be present, interacting with members at all tiers.

The community IS the platform

This is very different from Web2. Andrew Hong has an essay on this.

  • Web2: Company is the platform. Community is siloed by the app. Hard to import/export your community among different apps.
  • Web3: Your token can be taken to any app that supports it. Each community has its own “GDP”. It should provide benefits and services, give more than it takes, offer ample opportunity and a standard of living.

Governance is a crypto native social feature

Patterns of well-run DAOs:

  • Onboarding: How effective are they at communicating mission and values, taxonomy of org structure, how things work, how you can get involved and contribute, evolve and accelerate your path? How do they distribute the token? How How do people get funneled into different working groups?
  • Discord: How active is the #introductions channel? Are core contributors active meeting members, making connections, and routing people to the right places?
  • Engagement: How do they use voice calls, fireside chats, newsletters? What’s the process for making governance proposals? How do they make governance an active community process rather than static text in a channel?

Creating game mechanics to encourage positive contribution:

  • The Basics: Followers, likes, retreats
  • Reputation: Tallying votes across all governance proposals, badges to show your contribution
Chromie Squiggle #6443
Chromie Squiggle #6443
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