Hey Owocki, hows the return to Gitcoin going?

The objective of this post is to share an update on my Sept post entitled “I intend to return to Gitcoin”.

Why did I return?

I returned because I think that I can have the most positive impact here.

I did not return because any outside party asked me to return (although there were a handful of outside parties that told me they’d like to see me return). It was my choice. I’m glad to be here.

What have I been doing?

I want to make Gitcoin achieve its highest impact potential. I’ll do whatever is needed to do that.

I view my work in regen web3 as my life’s work so far. It’s not a LARP, I think we can build way better economic structures here. Everytime someone at a conference tells me how Gitcoin helped/changed their life (or that Greenpill podcast opened their eyes to something new/important) it’s a proof point for me.

What does that mean tangibly? A lot of what I do is chaos magic, and thus defies easy categorization or scoping. But I’ll try to break it down below.

So far, I’ve been focused a lot on doing cartography of the DAO. Understanding what is where, and producing collateral that pays it forward + help others understand the lay of the land.

Pushing back on bullshit more forcefully than others can do is something I’d like to do more of

I’ve also authored a post on a few extensions/changes to what Gitcoin already does:

I’ve got a handful of QF grants programs that I’m administering or doing outbound sales on in the next few months: SheFi, PDXDao, Daily Gwei, Build Guild, etc.

Hows it going? Whats next?

I think that the return so far has been a mixed bag. If you read my working with me guide, youll see some of what the highlights and lowlights are for me.

One main concern I have is that I’ve not yet found a role for myself. I know I dont want to be a ceo, I don’t want to be Executive Director. I know that I enjoy partnering with other leaders, public speaking, network cartography, sense-making. I know that I can add value to things like Grants-ETL (which has been supporting Umar in sybil/collusion analysis) or partnerships (where my rolodex can be useful), or public speaking/ecosystem engagement to create more legibiliy inside-out and outside in, or in providing talent to shore up other workstreams. But this is more like 8-10 little roles, not 1 big role I can be held accountable to. Maybe that’s okay though? My role at Gitcoin in 2018-2021 was to be a utility player.

I was planning on proposing an “Ecosystem” or “Special Teams” workstream during S19, but then I got feedback that there wasnt appetite (or budget) for another workstream right now.

Current course and speed, I think this is probably what will happen:

  1. Ill continue funding my team (myself, Carl, Bliss, Carey, Octavian) for S20/S21.
  2. At that point, (tentatively) Carl will go to Grants Stack, Bliss to a data/anti-fraud group, Octavian to Passport.
  3. We’ll have to evaluate myself/Carey’s position. I don’t know if there is a clear place for us, but we can look for one during S20/S21.
  4. Probably around Summer 2024, I will run out of budget to fund myself/Carey, and it will be time to move towards being disaffiliated again. I know from my interviews with other founders, that founders can disaffiliate from DAOs and then return a couple of times (each time being less central to the network), and perhaps my path forward will resemble this. By the time I leave next time, I think it would be great if Gitcoin’s momentum was self evident, that it’s governance/legitimacy can stand on it’s own, and that Gitcoin itself was in an upward spiral.

I feel like I am walking a few fine lines while I am here.

  1. A lot of what I do involves deep “westward frontier” cartography + frontier knowledge. I feel like a scout on the frontier of the web3 expansion trying to cartography a map of the territory + communicate it back to the early settlers. This might mean from time to time I’m communicating things that sound advanced or complicated. Breaking down the map of the territory so that all material information is public (at least) and consumable (at best), is a goal.
  2. To the external community who thinks Gitcoin is not turning the corner, I am not a panacea. To the extent Gitcoin prospers in the future, it will be the result of the coordination/execution of the sum of it’s contributors.
  3. To the Gitcoin community who thinks I am a bull in the china shop, you might be right (but I am trying to very carefully choose my battles).
  4. Part of my being here means picking the right fights to do whats best for the wider DAO/it’s users, even if some smaller constituency does not benefit. This will mean breaking down complacency, inside out thinking, or status quo thinking, and might result in ruffled feathers. We need to do whats best for Gitcoin, while also being fair to contributors, that is walking a fine line. I will also aim to be firm/respectful in these convos, but I am not perfect and I may err.
  5. The push for credible neutrality will have it’s own tradeoffs and nuances.
  6. As will the 3 transitions.
  7. As we progressively decentralize from socialware to trustware, I will have less & less of a role to play.
  8. I want people to tell me when they think I am wrong. While there are some benefits to building up a public persona for PR purposes, we should not mistake this as an opportunity to create a cult of personality around me. If you are a dao contributor, feel free to do tell me I’m wrong about something (and earn a POAP for doing it).

If you have feedback, feel free to comment below, DM me on Discord (Owocki#1337), or book some time in my office hours.


Who’s on Owocki’s team?

Carl

0-1 builder and tinkerer currently working on a voting platform for Optimism’s RetroPGF Round 3 and Grants Stack. Searching for the intersection of technology and regenerative communities (online and offline).
https://twitter.com/carlbarrdahl
carlbarrdahl (Carl Barrdahl) · GitHub

Carey

Owocki’s Executive Assistant and team admin. Coordinator for call scheduling.
https://twitter.com/careymurdock

Octavian

Visual designer working with anything from print to digital, 2d and 3d, stills and animations. In love with anything eyes can see. Currently working on Gitcoin Passport. https://twitter.com/b1rdf1sh
Octavian (@b1rdf1sh)

Bliss

Software dev currently working on regendata.xyz (Grants ETL)

https://twitter.com/ghostffcode
ghostffcode (Bliss) · GitHub

13 Likes

Gitcoin needs you, and you are doing great work. If there is any problem or challenge facing Gitcoin, you will always be able to be part of the solution.

But if you allow me, I have a comment on this statement.

“One main concern I have is that I’ve not yet found a role for myself I know I don’t want to be CEO; I don’t want to be Executive Director.”

just an opinion

In Web3 and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), we are creating and changing the future and creating new concepts in management, and we can also change old concepts with new and revolutionary ones. Later, the old traditional companies will follow these concepts that we are creating now.

It is possible to design a new role with a new title and a different job description, and maybe it’s completely new and combines the tasks you are interested in doing. This role will be a result of the actual needs of Gitcoin. You need to do things this way, so Gitcoin needs this role with this different design.

We can also create any other roles we need, or even other departments, and give them names and design job descriptions for them, even if there are no similar ones in traditional companies, as long as we need them and they cover the real needs of Gitcoin.

We can define the responsibilities of any role and its relationship with other roles, even if this role did not previously exist in traditional management.

3 Likes

Thanks for the comment!

I think the main reason I’m having a hard time finding a role rn is that there’s no one “owocki shaped hole” in Gitcoin right now. There are a handful of smaller places where I could (and am) adding value.

The closest thing I can think of is something related to “Ecosystem” - helping Gitcoin understand the ecosystem and the ecosystem understand Gitcoin. I also am really obsessed with the infinite game of sybil/collusion resistance, and could see myself rabbit-holing there for a bit. A third area I could see things coalescing is around governance.

I think were also still figuring each other out. I’m meeting lots of new people (contributors, users, partners, etc) and building rapport & common understanding over time.

Money is tight right now. And that’s a factor too.

I have patience & faith that we’ll figure it out over time.

7 Likes

That was indeed an interesting read. I appreciate and admire the commitment to building in public.

Just wanted to say that this part reminds me of the principles of eco-cycles, which, in my opinion, should be adopted much more within the Web3 realm.

Learned about them at Regens Unite London during a workshop held by a couple of friends working with Liberating Structures.

Integrating natural eco-cycles can lead to more sustainable, efficient systems that are much more open to contributions from different types of builders.

Hope to see more nature inspired mechanism in these realms!

2 Likes