[Discussion Series] Evolving the Gitcoin Brand: Naming our Protocols & Products

TLDR

In the last Gitcoin Community Call of 2022, we had a community discussion around naming our protocols and the products we’re building on top of them (or, the dApps being integrated with them that will be used by program managers, builders/project owners, and donors. Now that we are gearing up to actually launch the protocols, it’s time to give them final names, so we’re looking for feedback on our top contenders.

The presentation from this session can be found here - and has some helpful additional context

Why we’re here:

  • As Gitcoin continues to evolve, we’re taking the opportunity to examine our brand (across different expressions (from visual to verbal to experiential).
  • We’re looking for feedback from the community on the work being done across workstreams and led by MMM. This post is about naming, and aims to gather feedback on final names being considered for:
    • The set of dApps running on our protocols, working name Grants Suite, latest name Grants Stack
    • Our protocol that enables groups to pool and allocate funds to support their collective goals, currently called Grants Protocol
    • Our protocol that empowers project owners to build a project profile, grow their reputation and apply for funding, currently called Project Protocol
  • So far, there have been three other posts in this series:
    • An explanation of key definitions like Brand and Brand Strategy then walks through the foundational work leading up to the synthesis of the Brand Strategy, which can be found here.
    • A post soliciting feedback on Brand Vision, Brand Mission and Brand Values, which can be found here.
    • A post soliciting feedback on our Brand Personality, Voice & Tone, which can be found here.

Specifically, we’d love your feedback on:

  • Approach: How we’ve approached the naming process and the philosophy behind naming selection
  • Top Selects: The short list of names in the running for Grants Protocol and Project Protocol
  • Anything Missing: Names you like that you think we’ve missed
  • And, if you have time, take a look at the current naming brainstorm here
  • We are aiming to align on final names by end of next week, Jan 13 - although this is not a hard and fast deadline, we’d greatly appreciate if you left feedback by EOD Jan 12!

Anything else?

  • The current naming brainstorm can be found here and is open for input, but we ask that you please leave feedback on the governance forum
  • In addition to discussion and feedback here, we welcome additional discussion feedback in the #brand-pod channel in the Discord.

Defining our Approach To Naming

What goes into developing a successful product naming strategy?

First and foremost, it’s important to understand the target audience for the product. The name should appeal to and make sense for this group.

It’s also important to consider the product’s positioning within the market and the overall brand.

In addition to considering the target audience, positioning, and overall brand image, it’s also important to consider the brand’s mission, vision, values, and personality when developing a product naming strategy - hence why naming has come as a later stage.

In summary, our criteria for deciding on a name looks like this:

  • Audience Aligned: The name will resonate with the target audience.
  • Value Prop Aligned: The name should effectively communicate the product’s value proposition.
  • Positioning Aligned: The name fits the overall product positioning within the market and within the overall brand (e.g., harmonizes/does not conflict with the brand name or other product names)
  • Vision Aligned: The name should align with the brand’s long-term goals and help to bring the vision to life
  • Mission Aligned: The name should align with the brand’s mission and purpose
  • Values Aligned: The name should reflect the brand’s beliefs and principles, and should appeal to people who share those values.
  • Personality Aligned: The name should fit within the overall tone and aesthetic of the brand, and should effectively communicate the brand’s personality.

We also outlined some secondary creative considerations to gut check ourselves once we landed on top names, which included:

  • Cohesiveness: Names that feel like a “set.”
  • Independence: Names that can standalone and feel just as strong as when used together
  • Pronunciation: Easy across languages
  • Ownable: Not infringing on names of other products/protocols in our space

And specifically, one more consideration for the protocols:

  • Openness: Protocol names that give a sense of flexibility, customizability, and possibility
  • No Use of Protocol: Protocol names that don’t need to have “Protocol” in them or following them (e.g., we call Lens, Lens - not always Lens Protocol)

Types of Names

There are several different types of names to consider when naming a product.

  • Descriptive names clearly and directly describe the product and its function, such as “Sunscreen Lotion” or “Quick-Dry Towel.” These types of names can be useful for new and innovative products, as they help the consumer understand what the product does right away. However, they can be limiting and may not allow for much brand personality.
  • On the other end of the spectrum are invented or abstract names, which are more creative and memorable but may be harder for the consumer to understand. Examples include “Nike” and “Apple.” These types of names allow for more brand personality and can be effective for established brands, but may not be as effective for new products as they may be harder for the consumer to understand.
  • Another option is to use a combination of both, such as “Hair Food” or “Life Water.” These types of names provide a hint at the product’s function while also allowing for some creative branding.

Other Considerations

Product vs. Brand Name: Another important consideration when developing a product naming strategy is how the brand and product names fit together. A strong brand name can be a powerful asset, and the product name should complement and support the brand name rather than overshadowing it.

For example, if the brand name is more evocative and memorable, the product name may be more functional and descriptive to clearly communicate the product’s value and purpose. On the other hand, if the brand name is more functional and descriptive, the product name may be more creative and memorable to add personality and stand out in the market.

It’s also important to consider how the product name will fit within the overall brand name and product portfolio. The product name should fit within the naming system and structure established by the brand, and should not conflict with any other products within the portfolio.

It’s also important to consider the product’s potential expansion and how the name will fit within the brand’s overall product portfolio. The name should fit within the brand’s overall messaging and aesthetic, and should not conflict with any other products within the portfolio.

This is where brand and product architecture come into play. A strong brand architecture helps to clearly define the relationship between products within a portfolio and how they fit within the overall brand. This can include creating a naming system, such as using a specific word or phrase in all product names, or using a specific naming structure (e.g. all names starting with the letter “S”).

Naming Grants Stack, formerly known as Grants Suite

This brings us to our first name: The set of dApps running on our protocols, working name Grants Suite.

Grants Stack is the first-ever solution connecting grants program managers, donors, and project owners to launch, participate, and scale community-powered grants programs. It enables a streamlined process from program deployment to application management to funds allocation, encourages donor discovery and support of projects, and empowers builder participation and reputation building.

Most recently, we began socializing Grants Stack as the new and updated name. Why? Let’s check against our criteria.

  • Audience Aligned: The name will resonate with the target audience - CHECK
  • Value Prop Aligned: The name should effectively communicate the product’s value proposition. - CHECK
  • Positioning Aligned: The name fits the overall product positioning within the market and within the overall brand (e.g., harmonizes/does not conflict with the brand name or other product names) - CHECK
  • Vision Aligned: The name should align with the brand’s long-term goals and help to bring the vision to life - CHECK
  • Mission Aligned: The name should align with the brand’s mission and purpose - CHECK
  • Values Aligned: The name should reflect the brand’s beliefs and principles, and should appeal to people who share those values. - CHECK
  • Personality Aligned: The name should fit within the overall tone and aesthetic of the brand, and should effectively communicate the brand’s personality. - CHECK
  • Pronunciation: Easy - CHECK
  • Ownable: No one else in our space currently using it; while it’s not trademarkable, it’s highly descriptive, so less important here - CHECK

For the first half of these, here’s what we looked at:

  • Audience: Our primary target audience for this set of tools is program managers; the tools will also be used by builders/project owners and donors, but the program managers will be a main driver in getting them to use - thus keeping GRANTS in the name is valuable
  • Value Prop: The value proposition for this set of tools of course varies by audience, but for our core audience, program managers, the value is that this is the first comprehensive solution that enables them to create and scale a program, plus engage/encourage donors and empower project leaders - thus STACK makes sense as a descriptor for these tools
  • Positioning: Similar to the value proposition, we’re positioning this as the only end to end solution, and this name signals the comprehensiveness of this set of tools; we also want this name to signal intuitiveness, reliability, impact, so keeping the name direct and descriptive helps us achieve this

For more reasoning on the second half, take a look back at past posts about Mission, Vision, Values and Personality and you’ll see how this name fits with those as well.

You may be wondering what happened to previous names: Grants Manager, Grants Explorer, and Grants Hub. Grants Stack is comprised of several dApps built on top of our new protocols plus the Passport integration. These names were for those individual dApps. For now, we’ve aligned to not name the individual dApps, but instead speak to their functionality in the context of the Grants Stack (Manager, Explorer and Builder.) We will no longer be referring to the individual dApp names (although it’s likely just out of habit those names will continue to come up - but we’ll be socializing a robust glossary soon that will reinforce the transition away from these.)

You might also be wondering why we don’t mention our new protocols - or why they aren’t part of the naming of the Grants Stack. We’ve aligned on not going too far into the underlying tech powering these dApps, as that will be part of the protocol marketing strategy, which is more focused on ecosystem partners and developers at this stage. For this reason, we are thinking about the Grants Stack name separately from the protocol names.

More will be shared around this thinking in a very near future governance post about Grants Stack Marketing.

Again, we’re encouraging feedback here - would love all thoughts on the Grants Stack name.

Naming Grants Protocol

This brings us to our second name: our protocol that enables groups to pool and allocate funds to support their collective goals, currently called Grants Protocol.

As a reminder, this protocol is an open, permissionless protocol that enables and scales community-led funding systems by allowing groups to pool resources and build funding mechanisms that are uniquely tailored to their needs. It will allow for more efficient, democratic distribution of funds through a variety of mechanisms in the long term. For now, our primary audience is developers who want to build on the protocol. Grants Protocol powers two main functions of the Grants Stack - the Manager and Explorer functions.

We kicked off the naming process with a cross-workstream brainstorming session, which looked like this:

We then opened up additional brainstorming prior to our Community Call naming session.

Over the holidays, we gave community members the opportunity to add to this brainstorm here, and then cast a vote.

The short list of names for Grants Protocol came down to:

  • Alo Protocol: Evocative; Alo means feed, rear, cherish, educate, sustain in Latin and is also short for “allocate”
  • Allocate Protocol: Descriptive; tied to core functionality of the protocol which is helping to allocate funds to communities building shared needs
  • Stream Protocol: Evocative; stream suggests a flow of capital but also ties into the more nature-inspired elements of our brands like biomimicry and mycelial networks
  • Pollen Protocol: Evocative; similar to stream, pollen suggest pollination, essential to germination and growth similar to funding for community projects and also ties to the nature-inspired elements of our brand
  • Plurality Protocol: A blend between descriptive and evocative; helps describe our pluralistic tool that is the protocol and simultaneously signals our intention to showcase many and ties into our overall mission and vision

To be clear, there were not an overwhelming number of votes. But it’s time to name these protocols, because they are launching.

So here, I encourage you to go back to our criteria and evaluate these names against those for yourself.

At first glance, most pass the criteria. The key concerns I have are:

  • Alo being latin vs. just using Allo which comes from the English
  • Allocate being too on the nose
  • Stream sounding like it relates to a streaming/music service
  • Pollen already being used for a DeFi protocol
  • Plurality losing its impact if not paired with Protocol after it
  • Descriptive vs. Evocative naming in general - is one better than the other for encouraging devs to build? There are certainly different opinions

Given that Alo has the most votes, I am encouraging us to consider Alo vs. Allo.

I also encourage you to consider this as part the Gitcoin protocol portfolio, which includes Passport and will also include whatever we name Project Protocol.

Rather than running down the list of criteria and evaluation here, will let you do that on your own and leave feedback in the comments section.

Naming Project Protocol

This brings us to our third name: our protocol that empowers project owners to build a project profile, grow their reputation and apply for funding, currently called Project Protocol

As a reminder, this a decentralized registry of projects designed to empower project owners to grow their online reputation, demonstrate impact and connect with funding to bring their vision to life - all with sovereign ownership of their data. It acts as a project’s single home where project owners can integrate their most up-to-date information to easily access resources they need to thrive. Concurrently, the protocol can act as a repository in which funders can source and validate trustworthy, impactful projects that will help grow their ecosystem. For now, our primary audience is developers who want to build on the protocol. Grants Protocol powers a main function of the Grants Stack - the Builder function (previously known as Grants Hub.)

Project Protocol was part of the same process.

The short list of names for Project Protocol came down to:

  • Node [Protocol]: Evocative; In botany, the part of a plant stem from which one or more leaves emerge; in tech, a point at which lines or pathways intersect or branch; a central or connecting point; alludes to the protocol proposition as this being a hub empowering project owners to create a single profile they can then use to establish reputation
  • Seed [Protocol]: Evocative; in botany, the embryonic stage of the plant life cycle, suggesting a starting point from which everything blooms; alludes to the value proposition of being an essential starting point for project growth
  • Base [Protocol]: Descriptive: a conceptual structure or entity on which something draws or depends, a foundational structure; ties into the core functionality of the protocol serving as a hub for projects

Interestingly, none of these were originally followed with “Protocol” in the original brainstorm. There were also many other descriptive names that had a couple of votes, like Project Hub Protocol and Project Registry.

Again, I encourage you to go back to our criteria and evaluate these names against those for yourself.

At first glance, most pass the criteria. The key concern I have is Seed being owned by our friends at Seed Club. Additionally, considering the common association between seed and capital (e.g., seed funding), it feels to me like a better fit for our Grants Protocol. But regardless, I’d worry about us using it. As with Grants Protocol, I’m also still wondering about the Descriptive vs. Evocative question.

Here it again becomes important to consider this name alongside our other protocols, and to consider the aforementioned proposed names for Grants Protocol as well as our existing Passport.

As before, rather than running down the list of criteria and evaluation here, will let you do that on your own and leave feedback in the comments section.

Next Steps

Are the names here? I’m not sure. Personally, I would love to see more options and a robust discussion here. We already have Passport - it’s simultaneously evocative and descriptive. It’s not a literal passport - but the name alludes to what it does, while also describing it as a tool.

Does Allo do that? Does Node do that? No. Names that would align with Passport would be things like Wallet or Bank, Hub or Home.

If we go with a latin name for one, should they all be Latin? Honestly, it probably doesn’t matter - we don’t need to be rigid.

The point of this post is to lay out the considerations and the criteria so you can evaluate and give feedback for us to consider as we evaluate next steps. We will likely not have a vote here on the forum, but again, feedback here will help determine that.

We are aiming to align on final names by end of next week, Jan 13 - although this is not a hard and fast deadline, we’d greatly appreciate if you left feedback by EOD Jan 12!

ALSO! You might be wondering when we’ll be sharing the most up to date information on Grants Stack and the other protocols - this will be shared in forthcoming governance posts in the next week.

Share your feedback!

We are aiming to align on final names by end of next week, Jan 13 - although this is not a hard and fast deadline, we’d greatly appreciate if you left feedback by EOD Jan 12!

Looking for additional context? Here’s a quick reminder of how we got here and our objectives of this work

After months of foundational work that included reviewing past iterations of our mission and vision, speaking with different community members and thought leaders, surveying stakeholder audiences completed, and coming back together to synthesize, we started to distill key pieces of our Brand Strategy (as a reminder, you can learn more about Brand and Brand Strategy in the last governance post in this series, here.)

The Brand Strategy is not meant to be overly prescriptive. Rather, it aims to offer a framework as well as a set of tools that should give contributors and the community a clear sense of direction. It also helps to inform design development and decisions.

Our intent is to develop a Brand Strategy that builds upon our existing Brand Purpose, creating a cohesive Brand Narrative - giving us more clarity around key strategic elements and considerations that can inform the evolution of our visual identity.

In its entirety, the Brand Strategy will define vision, mission, core principles, and strategic approaches for the foreseeable future (until another revision is deemed necessary by the community). The aim is to align the DAO around a set of common values and objectives so we can collectively do a better job in allocating resources, setting priorities, executing, and evolving towards a shared “North Star.”

To better understand how we reached the below, and to understand it more comprehensively, visit our Brand Evolution Board as well as the original Brand Attributes Workshop, which kicked off this work. We’ve referenced our community’s past work - including the Other Internet work and the Mission and Vision work

5 Likes

Thanks for the thorough lesson on product naming @alexalombardo

I wanted to pull out a few questions/comments for folks to address that may have gotten lost in the mix"

  1. Grants Stack

would love all thoughts on the Grants Stack name.

  1. Alo has the most votes for the name for grants protocol and you are soliciting thoughts on that

There have been comments made re: why we can’t keep the name “grants protocol”. The reason grants protocol doesn’t fit is because it’s actually a funding allocation mechanism that won’t necessarily be tied exclusively to grants programs in its future state. The new name is meant to future-proof the product from being pigeon-holed.

  1. A call for discussion

I would love to see more options and a robust discussion here.

We are aiming to align on final names by end of next week, Jan 13 - although this is not a hard and fast deadline, we’d greatly appreciate if you left feedback by EOD Jan 12!

Anyone who would like to peruse the list of proposed names, please do so here.

2 Likes

As for my personal opinions…

I want to share this diagram to make more sense of Grants Stack and how the protocols fit together:

I am very bullish on “Node” for project protocol. I actually think it’s quite descriptive in that the project registry will act as a point from which any project can plug into the resources it needs to thrive.

“Node” also has a definition in botany which I think could illicit some cool visuals that are emerging from the visual brand refresh work.

As for Alo (or even Allo), I’m less attached to this one. I did propose the name and love the essence of what it represents: Alō refers to the transitive act of causing someone or something to grow or develop - which I think is very fitting for the essence of the protocol but as an integrated name it feels slightly less connected.

I do love that it’s shortform for allocation as well and–although maybe not immediately obvious as an “Allocate Protocol”–the name could be a quick reference for users once they are familiar with the protocol.

I also like the idea of using “Alo” (not Allo) and potentially playing with visuals of aloe plants.

That said, Alo feels more disconnected from “Passport” and I think the visual identity would need to be slightly more technical to bridge that gap. I don’t think this would REALLY matter in the grand scheme of things but I understand your hesitation with this name.

I also like the proposed “Stream” - I hadn’t thought of it in the context of a streaming but I like what it represents and I also like the potential of incorporating water into visual references.

2 Likes

The Grants Stack naming for our apps built on the protocol is fantastic. I’ve already started using it. :white_check_mark:

I’m still unsure on the protocol(s). The two difficulties I would raise are with ‘Node’ and ‘Stream’ as these have existing technical meanings in the space that I feel would be confusing or misleading.

Alo, Allocation, all feel in the right direction. I‘ve got Ostrom on the brain and have been thinking about cooperative irrigation systems and Common Pool Resources. Maybe there’s something there…

Thanks for the great work. Feels like we’re getting close!

3 Likes

Love hearing your perspective as an eng, @kevin.olsen - we would like more input from our devs if possible.

I’ve just added Ostrom Protocol to the list of proposed names.

I highly encourage you to vote in that document. Send in the devs! :robot:

Hi from supermodular.xyz !

(I hope it’s okay for me to chime in as an external stakeholder here)

I really like these two because they’re descriptive. Its completely obvious to me as a Dev what Base Protocol + Allocate Protocol are in the context of Gitcoin Stack. Descriptive = easy to understand = less learning curve.

For example, if the brand name is more evocative and memorable, the product name may be more functional and descriptive to clearly communicate the product’s value and purpose.

These are the types of names I think are the best for Gitcoin (which is an evocative/memorable name IMO!).

5 Likes

Oh and I forgot to say but I love Grants Stack as a name. It evokes “This is a software stack I can use to construct neat Grants stuff”.to the builder in me.

Incidently, I just saw this thread about OP Stack, and I realized that the OP strategy for L2s is very similar to Gitcoin’s (as I understand it) for democratic capital allocation.

Beyond the names, these are the parallels I see from understanding both the OP Stack/Grants Stack.

OP Stack positioning Inferred Grants Stack parallel
Optimisms 's OP Stack is going to COMPLETELY change the landscape of the #Ethereum L2 ecosystem If it’s successful, Gitcoins’ Grants Stack is going to COMPLETELY change the landscape of the DAO/democratic capital allocation ecosystem.
The OP Stack is one layer “more meta” than just being an L2 .The OP Stack is a scaffolding standard for ANY possible rollup construction The Grants Stack is one layer “more meta” than just being an Grants program. The Grants Stack is a scaffolding standard for ANY possible capital allocation construction
The OP Stack is a structure to modularize all components of an L2 into: 1. Standardized 2. Open source 3. Modules …for L2 Chains The Grants Stack is a structure to modularize all components of an Grants into: 1. Standardized 2. Open source 3. Modules …for any DAO
We need more devs, re-using the same codebases, for the ‘hardening power’ of open-source to take effect We need more devs, re-using the same codebases, for the ‘hardening power’ and network effects of open-source to take effect
With modularity, an L2 module can slip-n-out of any L2, without rugging the rest of the stack With modularity, an Grants module can slip-n-out of any Grants program, without rugging the rest of the stac
With the OP Stack, you can have an EVM Rollup that uses Fault Proofs (therefore, an Optimistic Rollup) But! You could swap out that Module for ZK-Prover, turning it into a ZK-rollup🤯 With the Grants Stack, you can have an Grants Program that uses Pairwise Quadratic Funding. But! You could swap out that Module for MACI Quadratic Voting, turning it into a QV capital allocation tool:exploding_head:

Idk exactly what the competitive positioning is for Grants stack, but this is what I see by watching things unfold. Feel free to correct me if I got anything wrong, this is just my perspective as an outsider!

6 Likes

My top choices for Grants Protocol:

  • Alo Protocol
  • Allocate Protocol
  • Stream Protocol
  • Source Protocol

My top choices for Project Protocol:

  • Node Protocol
  • Project Hub Protocol
  • Base Protocol
  • Seed Protocol

I appreciate hearing this again (@kevin.olsen also brought this up in a live chat).

Would love to have more builders chiming into this convo! @DanieleSalatti @thelostone-mc please tag others and get them in here :slight_smile:

3 Likes

Thanks so much for putting this together @alexalombardo. I think we have a really strong framework for coming to a decision here given your efforts. I’m also biased but glad to see my suggestion for moving Grants Suite to Grants Stack was well received.

On protocol naming, my view is that we probably need to dive deeper into the why for each of them (and it sounds like that’s partly the goal of this thread which is great). In particular, many of the names (e.g. base / node / core) or (seed / roots / garden) define broader categories of thought that set the stage for a broader conversation about a ‘type’ of name. Is it going to be something that sounds more technical (e.g. node), or something that sounds more natural (e.g. seed)? Knowing this can then better help us pick ‘sets’ of names that fit together.

I know you’ve outlined the importance of ‘sets’ already, so I don’t want to belabor the point, but there are currently many names that don’t map to the same ‘set’ as a name in the other protocol category (e.g. Alo doesn’t really neatly cluster with Node for example). In addition, there are many names that wouldn’t mesh super well with ‘Passport’ which I think we’ve been intending to keep right?

In general we should always think about how we can build a narrative landscape (consider this a kind of world-building exercise) that is:

(a) authentic and true to who we are, meaning it ties back in some way to the ethos and view the community has of us;

(b) that deeply defines some set of internal principles we want to live by and intend to enact in the next 5 years; and

(c) is easy to expand upon / build lore around with the community over time.

To be more practical / tangible I’ll give some more thought to specific names and come back to edit this post later, but first I want to mention some web3 names that I think are very strong in terms of the above framing.

  • MetaLabel – Inventive, but allows for the co-creation of a totally new category of ideas that ties back to the core thesis of the product.

  • Supermodular – Descriptive, but still elegant and deeply ties back to the concepts at hand, building systems that are positive-sum and help others as they scale.

  • Juicebox – Descriptive but also evocative, playful, and gives a sense of why it might actually be enjoyable to raise capital to get the energy you need to build with friends.

  • Moloch (DAO) – Evocative, with a rich lore that has been now taken up (by Gitcoin and others) as a key framing for the kinds of coordination problems we’re solving for in web3.

  • Optimism – Simple, descriptive (optimistic rollups) yet evocative and striking at the heart of the broader techno-optimist vision their team has for the world.

and to throw in one that’s also plant based but a bit more off the beaten path:

  • Radicle – Speaks to the kind of ethos (radical change) their core team wants to see, but also to the way that this happens by setting the very foundations for growth as a radicle does in nature.

Right now none of the names listed feel like they hit the mark for me the same way as these names from close collaborators do, and I think that’s kind of expected as we only had about an hour to go through and brainstorm right before the holidays. I’ll give some thought on my end too and I think the framework that’s been outlined will be super helpful in guiding this further.

2 Likes

Thanks for getting this going @alexalombardo

Grant Stack
I’ve heard @kevin.olsen mention Grant Stack and I’ve started using it in my conversations.
This makes sense cause we are offering a protocol stack which folks can build upon / use to build layers on top of it.

Grants Protocol

I would lean towards Allocate / Alo

Stream → traditionally refers to streaming music / funds aka like drips and that’s not what the grants protocol is offering. So I don’t think
Pollen → already used for defi project. Would cause confusion
Plurality → this doesn’t speak to me :stuck_out_tongue:

Allocate Protocol while the simple and easy to understand.
Alo does have a nice ring to it so I’m split between the two

Project Protocol

Honestly I’d say Base protocol as it’s the foundation structure

It makes sense when I tell myself
The grant stack offers the community a means to decide:

  • what constitutes as it’s base (provided by Base Protocol)
  • which sections of the base needs to be allocated funds to strength the community (powered by the Allocate Protocol)
2 Likes

Appreciate these comments and want to bring up a few additional points.

@ceresstation I really like the additional considerations you outline for us around worldbuilding, authenticity, principles and expansiveness/lore.

With regard to the why for each name - it was originally asked that people who write in names also give their reasoning, which we still are missing for quite a number of names in the brainstorm (I too am at fault for this and will work on getting some why’s in there) - so I encourage everyone to contribute to the “why” section of the Notion brainstorm.

Since these protocols are being named as part of our immediate Gitcoin ecosystem - essentially, our “portfolio,” - attributes of each name would ideally align with our brand characteristics - hence why it was important to discuss these prior to naming:

  • Knowledgeable not pretentious
  • Relatable not casual
  • Dynamic not brash
  • Intentional not chaotic
  • Generous not overbearing
  • Open not reckless
  • Optimistic not naive
  • Delightful not silly

To @owocki’s point, I think it’s important to recognize we our brand name that is separate from our protocol names (unlike some of the aforementioned web3 brands, like Optimism and Juicebox, whose protocol and brand names are shared.)

I’d encourage us to think about how these all fit together, how the protocols share our brand values and personality traits, but also embody their own, which were also shared as part of the brand positioning work:

Grants Protocol:

  • Informative not overkill
  • Flexible not confusing
  • Effective not overpromising
  • Intuitive not lazy
  • Practical not boring

Project Protocol:

  • Structured not rigid
  • Functional not cold
  • Adaptable not wishy washy
  • Intuitive not lazy
  • Practical not boring

I think a lot of the points raised here come down to brand and product positioning, so I encourage everyone to think about these names in that context.

Nowhere in the above do we specifically highlight technical or natural - but they are softly alluded to throughout the traits.

Additionally, visual elements will complement these names - the most recent work can be found in the Community Call takeover presentation here, which also brings to life these traits visually and gives a sense of how we might do the same with the protocols.

Lastly, I personally dont have the context around the naming process for Passport, but there does seem to be alignment around keeping the name. That said, without that context I don’t know if I can justify holding ourselves to names that best fit. Plus, these protocols while modular can also stand alone. While we don’t want Passport to feel like the one that doesn’t belong, I don’t know if we need to be beholden to the style.

Really enjoying these comments and looking forward to more feedback!

Hey all - after chatting with @ceresstation yesterday about world building and naming the protocols based on a conceptual framework that marries everything together, I realized that we may be able to use the Quadratic Lands (QL) as this conceptual framework to guide protocol naming and wanted to share this perspective in case it provokes some new thinking.

If Passport is a Citizen’s “entry visa” to the QL then Project Protocol is our…(just spitballing here - some of these names I would veto but including for the sake of brainstorming)

  • Base(camp) (still aligned enough I think)
  • Home
  • Corner
  • Neighbourhood
  • Casa
  • Habitat
  • Domicile
  • Stoop
  • Tower
  • Castle
  • Lodge
  • Pad
  • Abode
  • Hut
  • Box
  • Hovel
  • Range

And Grants Protocol is a place that resources and/or nourishes our needs. It is our…

  • Banq
  • Mint
  • Treasury
  • Source (I like this one but it’s already a DeFi protocol)
  • Spring
  • Well
  • Pool
  • Fountain (this is also taken)
  • Gardin
  • Geyser
  • Market

Some other places that are less about physically resourcing us but more about emotionally/socially resourcing us

  • Square
  • Coop
  • Community Hub
  • Park
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I hadn’t thought explicitly about the quadratic lands as a conceptual landscape but it’s a cool idea + makes in the context of the collection of terminology we’ve used historically:

If we go that route I’d love to figure out ways to dive a bit deeper on the exact terms we’re proposing (e.g. I’m not sure hovel or abode will really vibe / something like market or pool might be too generalizable) but I’m interested in the path itself. I do like Coop, or something that leverages co (since we’re co-funding, co-curating, co-attesting etc).

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Ya I’m liking this direction too and am curious what @alexalombardo thinks of using the Quadratic Lands as a conceptual framework for naming.

Something that @ceresstation suggested in a DM is to rework the way we use “aqueduct” (as I know that was a product we tried but I think are officially sunsetting - maybe @kyle can say more.)

Aqueducts are a technology that carries an important resource for livelihood (water) from a specific source to a specific destination. It seems fitting

So one name I’d throw in for Grants Protocol is (Gitcoin) Aqueduct.
Would also like Reservoir but they are an existing OS NFT project.

I’m not sure if co-op protocol really aligns with the product’s future vision and would like @nategosselin’s opinion here if we’re considering this name. It’s my understanding that we’re creating a foundational funding allocation lego.

Project protocol

If we furthered the conceptual framework of a city for Project Protocol, then in might opinion, it could be likened to some kind of central point for to house an individual and/or an individual’s private information but ALSO it allows you to plug into different resources so that’s where the house or home analogy breaks down. We might still experiment with the concept of home or house but wondering if there’s another word that denotes a “plugging in” of sorts.

Would love to hear @michelle_ma’s and @kyle’s opinions here.

I don’t know if I like these but maybe it will spark more ideas here:

  • Grid
  • Module
  • Infra
  • Biblio
  • Centre

Imo Base also still works well.

Loving the direction this is going and appreciate the idea of a framework. I think QL is fine as a frame of reference… But if we’re going to do that, then I think we need to commit to this idea, and educating around what it means. I’ve seen the term used in various ways, so I’d love for us to all align on a narrative.

What does QL mean to us? Is that how we see a better world, more than it actually being Quadratic Lands (e.g., does it matter if we’re talking about future mechanisms that dont involve QF/QV)? The protocols will live on beyond the short term - how would we describe this concept to someone in the future?

Then I think we’d really need to define what each protocol is in the QL framework - so we say Grants Protocol would be our source of support, a lifeforce; and then Project would be the home, the hub - is this 100% accurate? For Project i feel like node is more accurate because its one point in a network. For Grants I feel like it’s not the lifeforce, its the mechanism for coordinating it.

What i like about these names is that they are infrastructure concepts - and our protocols are infrastructures. Although some of these names are what gets built on top of the infrastructure. I’d like to see us go more the route that these are the rails, or the tunnels, not the trains (those are the dApps).

So, for Grants Protocol, instead of Square-esque words, maybe something more related to infrastructure:

  • metro
  • municipal
  • groundwork
  • buttress
  • pylon
  • totem
  • lattice
  • trellis

I actually love Aqueduct - do we think that will resonate with developers?

Some others for Project Protocol could be

  • Cornerstone
  • Keystone
  • Linchpin
  • Crossroads
  • Junction
  • Pillar

Also, side note, but if we went that route I love the concept of Blueprint for Grants Stack

That said, these feel man-made vs. the more natural and therefore feel slightly in opposition to some of the brand creative - so I’d love @birdsoar’s input here as well.

Some that could fall in between:

  • Cloverleaf: NORTH AMERICAN: a junction of roads intersecting at different levels with connecting sections forming the pattern of a four-leaf clover.
  • Hatch: an entryway but also the idea of birth, hatching projects

We also haven’t talked about names as action verbs instead of nouns. Hatch could fall into both. Others:

  • Tend: Like tending a garden, nurturing; gardens are also a source of sustenance (for Grants)
  • Fare: Also sustenance, but also to fare well (for Grants)
  • Spring: A source of sustenance but also to spring into action
  • Vault: Place to keep valuables/money safe but also leaping to success
  • Shelter: Like a home but also keeping safe (for Project)
  • Harbor: Like a place that shelters boats, where they come in and out of/connection to land. from the storm but also to harbor someone is to keep them safe (for Project)
  • Fort: Like a place for safekeeping but also short for fortify (for Project)

Other comments:

  • Co it makes me think of Coordinape and I know they’re going to be leaning into the use of Co more.
  • Some of these names (Basecamp, Mint, Box, Square) are used by major tech companies so I suggest we avoid just for brand recognition/ownership purposes
  • I don’t like abode but i like Bode, an allusion to abode but also ties to boding well

Definitely will keep thinking on this but overall liking the direction…

Hi all, I was discussing branding direction with @ceresstation over the weekend, and I did some brainstorming as well.

Really resonate with the points made above about finding a conceptual framework like QL to ground our protocols. I feel that the best brand names lend themselves versatility and room for imagination.

Some results from my brainstorm for Grants Stack:

  • topia - latin meaning: place
    The suffix approach aligns with our core mission as it allows people to envision their own world that they’d like to build with our tools, ie: utopia, ecotopia, technotopia, etc.
    Other variations for consideration include topias (for plurality), or co-topia (for co-creation, co-existence, coordination, etc)
  • Copia - latin meaning: abundance, multitude. From co(m)- (“together”) +‎ ops, opis (“power, ability, resources”) +‎ -ia (“abstract noun suffix”).
    The meaning perfectly aligns with our mission, and reinforces ideas related to reservoirs, pluralism, co-existence, etc.

The above names suggest invitations to new worlds to me, and this would tie in our current metaphor with Passport, which we can keep extending to other protocols as well. If Passport is the ticket to another realm, then Project Protocol can be the landmarks, and Grants Protocol the infrastructure that connects these landmarks for the Passport holder to access.

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The standing definition is: the place where the laws of economics have been rewritten to support the commons & ImpactDAOs

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Yes, would also love to hear from LH.
I think that if we framed our visuals based on nature & man coming together to make a flourishing world, it could work. Especially with LH’s suggestion to have QL more lunar/solarpunk themed.

I really love this QL framework as an anchor point for the naming — it feels like it opens up a lot of design possibilities.

If we go this route, though, I think we should try to steer more towards solarpunk / future cities / biome-style names as opposed to terms that feel more like industrial infrastructure.

Grants protocol as a place that resources / nourishes feels super powerful. The food-oriented names are jumping out at me:

  • Fountain
  • Spring
  • Garden
  • Larder
  • Provisions
  • Orchard

Loving this new direction overall!

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+1
my mind went to some of the primary flora in the “hanging gardens of babylon” , eg:

names like Olea, Quince, Pyrus, Ficus, Phoenix, Vitis are some of the ones that stand out to me!

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