Signal Boosting for Gitcoin Citizens Retro #3

In case you missed it, Gitcoin Citizens Retro #3 is live right now (go donate!).

Our retroactive quadratic funding program focuses on rewarding Citizens for their contributions to the Gitcoin ecosystem.

What is a Citizen? They are the people who directly impact Gitcoin’s success to achieve its long-term mission. They can make contributions in the areas of educational content, governance, operations, data analysis, support, platform or protocol development.

With this round we are trying out a novel mechanism: signal boosting.
Next to the available matching funding, we will be allocating an additional 10K GTC to projects deemed impactful by our inner community.

How does this work? Key stakeholders will be ‘airdropped’ an amount to divide among projects of their choice, helping Citizens focus, while simultaneously inspiring stakeholders to communicate on future tasks more regularly.

The following 12 people will each receive an equal part of the available 10K GTC, and are invited to donate to a selection before the end of this round:

They are cordially invited to share in a public place (either here or on X/Twitter) who they voted for* and why. Funds will be sent to the stakeholders by the end of this week, so we expect first results to come in beginning of next week.

*Note: we want to highlight that some of our signal boosters are also participants in the round. We have suggested to them not to vote for themselves or other signal boosters. This is a recommendation to mitigate any potential concerns of collusion, however, signal boosters are free to vote any way they please.

Keep an eye on this post to see what matters most to some of our key stakeholders!

Live thread here

In the meantime, go and support our Citizens. :green_heart:


I’m excited to contribute as a signal booster and share my voting decisions!



I am not much of a college basketball fan. However, the big thing happening in the US right now is the NCAA basketball tournament. The women’s Final Four was last night and the men’s is tonight.

Apparently, this was in my subconscious when I brewed some coffee and connected to the Gitcoin grant explorer this morning to do my signal boosting. I saw that there were at least 30 citizen applicants whom I know personally or have noticed doing good things for the community and would like to support. Why not do it NCAA bracket style??

So here goes. The first and maybe only Gitcoin Citizens Retro Knockout Tourney.


I took narrowed the list from 61 applicants to 32. All of these individuals met my minimum requirement: “I’ve seen them around for quite some time and have a general sense of what they’re doing”. Then, I seeded them using random numbers and made pairwise comparisons of each one, reviewing their profiles and checking out their applications links to fill in any gaps. I stopped a Round 5, after arriving at two co-champions.


There were many great candidates, making it hard to choose a favorite. However, rather than just give a large number of people equal amounts, I feel it’s important to actually signal boost some of the strongest applicants.

Here was my Elite 8 and a few words about the impact I think each of them has had:


  • Luciano DeAngelo - is a friend in NYC and a true evangelist of Gitcoin’s mission. He is doing the hard work of growing the tent (he leads the Greenpill NYC chapter and is onboarding people all over) and creating positive sum things to do inside that tent. He has more than a few strains of degen DNA inside him as well.
  • Jon Ruth - is probably best known for his work in the climate rounds but he is also one of the most generous and humble community weavers I’ve met in this space. He’s continually looking out for others and trying to help then succeed, from applying for their first grants to creating their first hypercerts. Plus, his work around impact measurement via Deresy is very close to my heart.

Other Elite 8 Members

  • David Gasquez - David has built an incredible Gitcoin grants data portal that I personally have used many times. Not only is he a data wizard, but he has been a teacher to at least several in the Gitcoin community (including me).
  • Distributed Doge - just showed up in PR for Then I started diligencing him and saw that he’d also been working with David Gasquez and done a variety of other things in the public goods community before that. Next thing I know we are DM’ing and collaborating on some Gitcoin x OSO data analysis!
  • Rohit Malekar - is the third person in my Elite 8 doing cool things with data. I love the work he is doing to help with grant curation and ensure there is signal at the long tail of public goods. It’s a no-brainer for me to signal boost his work!
  • Kris - is the architect behind this round and a longstanding pillar of the community. Check out his application for full transparency about his contributions, time accounting, and details for how this retro funding will be distributed.
  • Carlos Melgar - has been a tireless advocate for Gitcoin’s mission … I’m guessing three years from now there will be entire communities of grant operators who recognize Carlos as the reason they’re here.
  • Lana Dingwall - has made a wide range of contributions … honestly you have to view her application to see the details. I had the good chance of meeting her for the first time IRL in ETH Denver and left inspired by all of the GPN x Gitcoin related work she is experimenting with. Most of all, I love seeing people who aren’t afraid to experiment and just keep shipping things. Lana is a great example of that!


Here’s a table showing the 32 projects I supported in some way (and the total in USDC contributed to each).

Profile Rounds Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4 Round 5 Total
Ana :deciduous_tree::monkey::studio_microphone: 1 7.50 7.50
bestape 1 7.50 7.50
Bob Jiang 1 7.50 7.50
Carlos Melgar 3 7.50 15.00 30.00 52.50
Cori 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
CryptoReuMD 1 7.50 7.50
David Gasquez 3 7.50 15.00 30.00 52.50
Distributed Doge 4 7.50 15.00 30.00 60.00 112.50
Earth Based Soul 1 7.50 7.50
Eugene Leventhal 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
Graven Prest 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
Humpty Calderon 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
Ivan Molto 1 7.50 7.50
Izzy 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
jengajojo 1 7.50 7.50
Jimi 1 7.50 7.50
Jon Ruth 5 7.50 15.00 30.00 60.00 120.00 232.50
Joshua Davila 1 7.50 7.50
KarlaGod 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
Keith Comito 1 7.50 7.50
Kris 3 7.50 15.00 30.00 52.50
Lana Dingwall 4 7.50 15.00 30.00 60.00 112.50
Luciano DeAngelo 5 7.50 15.00 30.00 60.00 120.00 232.50
ManuelOlariu 1 7.50 7.50
Monty Merlin Bryant 1 7.50 7.50
Paul Burg 1 7.50 7.50
Rod Mamin 1 7.50 7.50
Rodrigo NuñΞz 1 7.50 7.50
Rohit Malekar 3 7.50 15.00 30.00 52.50
sohto.eth 1 7.50 7.50
TheDevanshMehta 2 7.50 15.00 22.50
Wasabi Citizens 1 7.50 7.50
ZER8 2 7.50 15.00 22.50

Bracket Details

Here’s the complete results of the head-to-head matches for all you nerds. Please don’t read too much into results – I’m excited to support everyone here :slight_smile:


Here’s my transaction on Arbiscan and donation history.


Hi, I am “MN at Week in PGF & Blocktrend,” a participant in the Gitcoin Citizens Retro #3. I’m here to share some thoughts and observations, particularly from the perspective of a Chinese-speaking Gitcoin Citizen.

The Gitcoin Citizens Retro #3 initiative is a remarkable step towards recognizing and rewarding the contributions of various community members. The allocation of 40K GTC to the matching fund pool, decided by global participants with a Gitcoin Passport score above 15, showcases the commitment to democratic and inclusive decision-making.

However, I’d like to raise a point regarding the additional allocation of 10K GTC for signal boosting, which is distributed among specific representatives. While this mechanism is innovative, it might inadvertently pose challenges for non-English-speaking participants like myself and other Chinese-speaking Citizens.

The essence of Gitcoin’s growth lies in its expansion into diverse and heterogeneous communities. The signal boosters, selected for their proximity to the core Gitcoin culture, might have a natural inclination towards projects and individuals within their linguistic or cultural sphere. This could potentially limit the visibility and support for valuable contributions from other linguistic backgrounds.

It’s vital for the signal-boosting process to consider the linguistic diversity within the Gitcoin community. By acknowledging and addressing this, we can ensure that the distribution of resources truly reflects the global and varied nature of our ecosystem.

Thank you for considering this perspective, and looking forward to seeing how we can all contribute to a more inclusive Gitcoin community.


Hi, thank you for this feedback!

This is a valid point and can only help signal boosters in being aware of their own potential biases.
However, do note that with this round we are zooming in on impact in the application questions (with a request for as much data as possible). So I do hope and believe signal boosters will look beyond the projects they know personally - they have some numbers they can look into.

Apart from this, thank you very much for these valid points - this is only the first time we run this experiment, so we will definitely continue to improve!


Props to @krrisis and @umarkhaneth for innovating on QF. This is a great way to use domain expertise to combat the Keynesian beauty contest problem in QF.

Similar to lists in RetroPGF3, this could be a great way to let the broader community know what type of contributions Gitcoiners value most. This is important because many high impact contributors are excited to do the work, but despise having to compete against prolific Eth Beggar cliques

Congrats to Gitcoin on continued improvements to QF with every iteration.

@meglister @Sov @owocki @M0nkeyFl0wer - Any chance this is integrated to GG20? Would be cool to see top Arbitrum delegates and core team be engaged with this newfound GTC utility? Not much overlap with their top delegates, a last minute “Apply to become an Arbitrum signal booster” could be a great way to entice the ArbitrumDAO contributors to participate in Gitcoin governance. :white_check_mark: Network Effects :white_check_mark: increased participation in governance :white_check_mark: better ecosystem ROI / impact results :white_check_mark: meaningful growth for the Gitcoin community


This is a great idea, thanks @carlosjmelgar ! Not sure what it would take for us to pull it off internally but will chat with @Sov and @MathildaDV tomorrow :slight_smile:


This is a great experience, and cool experiment for supporting public goods (as well as Gitcoin Citizens).

1 Like

it’s an interesting methodology for support citizens.

thank you for your sharing and hard working. (it must be lots of work to filter/select the talent citizens)

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Hey Carl!

Thank you for sharing your allocations as a signal booster. Much appreciated.

I fully respect your allocations but sincerely I think it has not been the better method or way to expose them.

You were selected as a signal booster for all the good work you are doing and you have done in the open source ecosystem, OSO, impact metrics, Gitcoin and lot more places…But not for using a random seed.

In my humble opinion a signal booster is a responsibility as you are signalling (and influencing) not with your own money but with the community money.

And a random Knockout Tourney between the people supporting you it’s not the best for signalling with the community funds.

And classifying Gitcoin Citizens as co-champions and Elite is not the best for the people supporting you and less with the community funds. Gitcoin Citizens can generate more or less retro impact. That’s all.

I can agree that trying to get the most from the matching pool is like a competition between all the Gitcoin Citizens and your attached image feels like this.
But what about if the random seed would match all the Elite Gitcoin Citizens between them in the First Round?
Fortunately, we will never know.
But that is what we say “bolas calientes” in Spain.


Hi Ivan,

I appreciate the feedback. I had a longer response but decided to keep it brief and if you want to discuss further we can chat 1-1.

  • Random seeding has it’s drawbacks, as you mention, but at the same time, I felt uncomfortable ranking everyone or coming up with a scoring rubric.
  • I’m not sure what you mean about supporting people who support me. I just attempted to signal boost in the areas that have been most visible to me since the last Citizen’s round, first by choosing 32/61 and then by highlighting a smaller set of citizens from within that group. I stand by those signals.
  • Gitcoin is a big community and as one person I don’t see all forms of impact. Hopefully my blindspots are compensated by other signal boosters who bring a different perspective.

Again, appreciate your perspective and the work you’re doing here :saluting_face:


Thank you Carl for your kind response and understanding.

As I said it is my humble opinion and of course fully respect for the allocations.

I am a person that I always try to innovate and find my niche without the need to compete directly with anyone (Knockout Tourney). And this is the reason why I like your rounds table but sincerely I don’t like the bracket details.

But also happy to see that others are loving it. This is the greatness of Gitcoin.

And about what I mean by people supporting you is… Gitcoin Citizens - Support the people supporting you. Because each one of the 61 (at now) Gitcoin Citizens are supporting all of us. With more or less impact but they are supporting all of us.


Love this initiative and the convo around selection.

The conversation about localization and ensuring non-English projects get a fair shot is crucial. We’re a global community, and our support should reflect that. It’s important to make sure we’re not just supporting the projects we know because they’re in our immediate circle or language group.

I’m keen to explore similar methods that encourage thorough evaluation, especially those that can bridge the language divide and bring a spotlight to valuable contributions from all corners of our ecosystem. I appreciate @ccerv1 approach (because it’s how my brain works) but value your opinion on signal boosting fueling competition vs collaboration @ivanmolto.

Hopefully my blindspots are compensated by other signal boosters who bring a different perspective.

I think this group is well-suited to round out each other’s allocation(s). I’vw participated with my own funds based on impact I’ve witnessed firsthand (and intend to make sure I have higher visibility in future rounds).


circling back – discussed today and are going to try rolling this out during GG20 with 10k in ARB allocated to top ARB delegates. (cheers to @Sov @MathildaDV and team for jumping on it!)

thanks so much for the great idea! as we have more details will share in a dedicated post.


While you use this mechanism to improve project discovery, and to signal to the community which projects deserve more support, there is another use case.

In QF pilot in City of Split, we are planning to run a rounds for cultural projects. Traditionally and by law, these grants are given out based on a decision of experts from the field of culture. It’s the common understanding that these experienced, renown, senior cultural experts can best evaluate which proposals create higher quality culture. They don’t evaluate by popularity, but by quality and impact. There is value in this, and we probably shouldn’t get rid of it fully.

I was thinking on how we could combine QF and (somewhat nerfed) experts decisions. Maybe the public would make 70% of the decision, and the experts would retain 30%. Now I see that this can easily be achieved with this mechanism.


I am stoked to share my journey as a signal booster for the Gitcoin Citizens Retro #3 program, and have the distinct pleasure of being the only contributor solely concentrating on Gitcoin Passport.

My focus has been on evaluating contributions based on two main criteria: the advancement of Gitcoin Passport and the enhancement of safety within the Gitcoin community.

I decided to select five citizens to reward with my allocation.

Kris – The backbone of this program’s success. His work and dedication to the program has helped to fund numerous citizens that have been impactful to not only Passport, but the greater Gitcoin ecosystem.

Humpty – Ever since my first conversation with Humpty, his dedication to driving the Passport and Gitcoin has been clear. His Mosaic Drops campaign has successfully deepened user engagement with Passport—an impressive feat that speaks volumes about his dedication.

Keith – Though my interactions with Keith have been limited, his Proof of Philanthropy project resonates with our goals. We’re exploring a few different ways to weave his contributions into Passport, promising exciting possibilities ahead.

Drew – It’s a dangerous world out there. Passport is here to protect programs from Sybils, and Drew is here to protect Gitcoin from literally everything.

Carl – Lord of data. Prince of insights. I don’t even know if he’s aware of this yet, but his work is going to help Passport further develop our budding model based detection verification program. THIS IS THE FUTURE!

Final note
Funding citizens for work that they’ve done without any direct expectation to be paid is a beautiful thing. It breeds a highly engaged and dedicated community of builders and friends around a product. I truly wish I could have implemented a similar program with my previous Twitter Developer Insiders back in the day, and am excited to see this program spread beyond the Gitcoin ecosystem in the future!


Hi, this is Swift Evo in Citizen rd 3, another Chinese-speaking Gitcoin citizen.

I love the idea and make it become a true execution plan on signal booster. and thanks all the signal booster as all of them have to face huge pressure to think how to distribute their funding in a fair way. For me, it is an action and strong message from Gitcoin, which shows the willingness on how to improve the public goods funding continously.

Although I don’t have another 10K to do the signal boosting, I made four different lists for the boosting:

GreenPill friends

Chinese speaking contributors

DeSci Citizens lists

Not the last 10, but top 100 lists


Thanks for choosing me as a signal booster. This was not an easy task as there are so many great grantees. Taking inspiration from the upcoming OSS round I chose to boost citizens who have built open-source software and tools that support the Gitcoin ecosystem.

Here is a thread about my choices:


Both myself and @CoachJonathan have put our heads together to do our signal boosting. This post/comment is intended to highlight the criteria that was used to determine the distribution of funds.

I’ve also included my own personal reflections I had while I was doing the reviews that I’ve included below.


  • Every single grantee was reviewed to familiarizing ourselves with their application
    • Notes included what they worked on, whether they have received funding and the kind of work they were doing for the Gitcoin Ecosystem
  • Each project was assigned an “impact score” on a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being the lowest, 5 being the highest)
    • 1 = Exemplifying what we feel are desired citizen behaviours
    • 3 = exemplifying 1 + driving towards a strategy that will capture value for Gitcoin
    • 5 = exemplifying 1 + 3 + actually capturing value for Gitcoin
  • Impact score is subjective and was determined through several factors:
    • Those that directly aligned with Gitcoin’s goal of advancing our tech and advancing the grants space as a whole received more funds.
      • This included net new builds on Allo or tools that extend our ability to create impact with our tech stack (e.g, data dashboards, impact measurement tools, etc)
    • Previously uncompensated grassroots round managers scored well (since it is a ton of work!) – especially if they fundraised themselves and brought additional GMV through Allo
    • Marketing and onboarding initiatives (though important) scored lower for us than other projects due to the sheer amount of applicants doing that work.
    • We favored projects that focused on adoption within the global South vs. global North
  • We took our total amount of funds to be donated, split that by the total sum of the scores (1600USDC for Laura/169 = $9.47 per point, similar formula for CoachJ at 1447 USDC) and multiplied that number by the score for each project, meaning:
    • Impact score of 5 = $47.30
    • Impact score of 4 = $37.84
    • Impact score of 3 = $28.38
    • Impact score of 2 = $18.92
    • Impact score of 1 = $9.47
  • We were initially going to reduce amounts for those who have already had payouts but…more math felt less desirable.

You can dig into the results here, if desired.


I really enjoyed this process and got to sense into how Citizens are currently contributing to Gitcoin and how aligned (or not) they are with how I envision contributions to the ecosystem.

I absolutely appreciated all the applications and distributed my donations across everyone as I wanted to signal that all contributions are valuable ones. Here are some of my top takeaways from this process:

  • I noticed some duplicative efforts going on in some cases. One thing that I’d love the Ecosystem Collective to focus on in the future is how we might create connections between Citizens so that work is amplified vs. duplicated.
  • Lots of people are keen to educate around Gitcoin Grants in particular, how can we incentivize and enable just as much passion and participation for building cool things on Allo
  • There is a large opportunity to deepen our presences in LATAM through keen Citizens. I noticed that a lot are focused on onboarding folks into Gitcoin Grants – how can we work with them to help us build more connections to onboard DAOs onto Grants Stack and/or Allo

One thing that I’m really excited about is @rohit and @harryeastham are currently working on detailing and socializing where and how Citizens can add the most value to our ecosystem so that we’re all more aligned strategically and can move forward with much more clarity and direction.


Thanks to @krrisis and the entire Citizen’s team for facilitating signal boosting this time! I’m fascinated to read others explanations of their funding and am posting my own below.

I interpreted the purpose of signal boosting to bring focus on the most impact projects in the round. I decided to focus my allocations on a small number of high impact projects vs dividing it broadly. Though there were many wonderful applications, I narrowed it down to 5 by taking a list of about 40 high-impact contributions from some other signal boosters ( @jon-spark-eco , @Viriya and @CoachJonathan and @ccerv1 ). I reviewed those all with a specific focus on efforts that drive Allo GMV which is our north star for 2024.

1- Carl Cervone and OSO. Carl contributed some awesome OSO data to the gitcoin whitepaper that has helped promote gitcoin 2.0 and onboarding more partners.

2- Lana Dingwall is training more individuals to operate grants rounds and experimenting with impact measurements like hypercerts that directly address a scaling pain for grants (proving ROI of money spent)

3 + 4- Graven and Stefano had the best applications I saw – clear demonstration of work and impact on Streaming Quadratic Funding. Their work is driving GMV with new Allo builds

5- Ygg Anderson and tunable QF. Tunable QF creates new quadratic funding algorithms that allow grants managers to more precisely allocate grants based on their goals, addressing pain points we heard from round managers recently about how “scary” standard QF can be without a way to tune results algos.

Twitter thread: