[Draft2] BanklessDAO Season 1 Proposal

Title: BanklessDAO Season 1 Proposal
Authors: wolfehr, 0xLucas, frogmonkee, Kouros, mamer
Created Date: 6/08/2021

Original draft:

SUMMARY

This proposal gives form to the idea of Seasons. It introduces a specification the DAO can follow to operate fluidly by adding some rails to the ride we are on. It also implements a slightly modified version of the spec for Season 1.

Background

In the BanklessDAO announcement post, the Gensis team introduced the idea of Seasons. The term was deliberately vague and the first one was supposed to start on June 4th, 2021. The concept of a season was deliberately vague and left up to the DAO.

This proposal is an attempt to capture the trends and lessons of the past month into an actionable guidebook for Seasons as a whole.

SPECIFICATION

Summary

About Season

  • Seasons are three month periods that align the DAOs collective energy to a few key objectives
  • These objectives are in the form of funded initiatives that BANK token holders vote on before each season.
  • Projects that do not require funding or generate revenue are free to operate with minimal procedural constraints.
  • Seasonal proposals that go to snapshot must be comprehensive. They must be thorough in scope, clear in communication, and have a chain of accountability.
  • During each season, a Grants Committee of 5-7 people will review and vote on proposals to fund from a multi-sig separate from the DAO Treasury
  • Furthermore, Guilds will have their own multi-sigs and can request funding from the DAO as part of the Seasonal vote. Guilds can use this funding for internal projects, contributor rewards, and/or funding bounties.

Special Considerations for Season 1

  • Starts one week after this proposal is passed on Snapshot
  • Two months long, with an option to extend the Season at the one month mark
  • Priorities are to complete the Onboard MVP and generate multiple revenue streams
  • No Seasonal voting period before launch
  • All treasury funding goes through a grant committee, including Guild funding

Funding Projects

This section outlines an operational procedure for moving a proposal from its initial stages all the way to vote. The Discord, Forum, and Scope Squad are optional steps, but most projects will go through the entire flow.

This DOES NOT apply for projects that do not require funding.

Methods to Gauge Consensus

Tools like Discord and the forum are great places to gauge and workshop your ideas

  • Find the relevant discord channels for your idea. Pitch it, see what people think. Workshop in the channel, or even move it to a private chat. Find people that get excited about your idea. (Example)
  • Use the #poll channel to get community feedback (Guide). This is perfect if you think your sample size is small or want the community to help you make a decision. You must include a description of what you want and why. Provide context to help others make the right decision.
  • Get your thoughts down on paper and post in the General Forum to discuss in a slower paced environment than Discord

Methods to Confirm Consensus

Projects that feel like they have sufficient soft consensus can now start scoping.

  • The Scope Squad phase gathers the gritty details and creates a properly scoped proposal with a chain of accountability. For example, a scoped proposal may include:
    • Identifies a champion(s) responsible for executing on a proposal
    • Guilds that overlap with each proposal have representatives that are responsible for executing their particular function
    • Has a central repository for all information and files related to the project
    • Proposed a timeline and measurable indicators of success
    • A quorum and voting threshold for moving to snapshot
    • A snapshot voting threshold

(Note: This is when steps become mandatory)

  • Create a forum post using the proposal template. Copy and paste that forum post into a Google document for others to provide comments/suggestions.
  • Discuss, workshop, and iterate on drafts of the proposal, posting updated copies in the forum. (Example)

Methods to Formalize Consensus

  • Once a proposal has been thoroughly scoped and refined, it must go through a quality control filter in the form of a review by the Ops Guild. The Ops guild will:
    • Verify a proposal has met proper quorum and voting requirements
    • Verify that proper formatting has been followed
    • Verify that no information is missing
  • A one week Snapshot period to meet the threshold defined in the scope

Seasonal Projects

Seasonal projects are initiatives that the BanklessDAO has collectively decided to focus resources towards.

Anyone can submit their proposal for funding by adding it to the project page. This allows the DAO to easily view the projects that are planned or took place in a given season. If a project needs funding as part of a season, the squad can add a “Requesting Season [season #] Funding” tag to the Tags column. Project funding can and should include rewards for contributors, including individuals that helped create the proposal but won’t participate in the execution.

Two weeks before the start of each season, the operations guild will review projects with the appropriate “Requesting Season [#] Funding” tag for the upcoming season. Projects that do not meet the requirements will have the tag removed and the project Champion will be informed and be provided with the reason the tag was removed. The operations guild can only review for the required information and approval. They cannot remove a funding request tag for any other reason.

The squad can update the proposal and submit it to the Grants Committee if they don’t want to wait until the next season for funding. The operations guild should also attempt to provide feedback on proposals when they are posted so squads aren’t surprised.

A snapshot vote with a seven day voting period starts the next day to approve the projects requesting funding that have been confirmed by the operations guild. The snapshot vote will include a list of projects and a link to the proposal for each. There is one vote for the overall project list and 50%+ approval is required. This method may change in the future but is sufficient for now.

If the vote fails, the operations guild will schedule an emergency meeting to collect feedback and determine the next steps to update the project list and bring it back for a revote. Any projects that are not ultimately approved for a season can try to get funding via a grant.

If the vote passes, the “Requesting Season [season #] Funding” tags are changed to “Approved for Season [season #] Funding” and the approved funds are added to the approved funding column.

At the start of each season, once a project list has been approved, the Treasury Guild will distribute approved funds to project Champions. Any unused funds upon project completion should be returned to the treasury.

Funded projects will need to provide at a minimum bi-weekly update. Updates must be included on the wiki project page, and are encouraged to also be provided via a forum post. The update should include:

  • Funding used
  • Updates on KPIs and progress towards goals
  • Blockers

Bankless Grants

Grants Treasury

There will be an evergreen project to fund a grants treasury that’s controlled by a Grants Committee. The grants treasury will be used to fund projects that are ready to start mid-season and can’t or shouldn’t wait for the next season for funding. The treasury can also fund projects that don’t align with the current DAO priorities but align with its mission and values and warrant funding.

Each season, the Grants Committee will propose a budget allocation to replenish the Grants Treasury. If the budget proposal passes, requested funds from the Bankless Treasury will be allocated to the Season Grants Commmittee multisig, controlled by all commmittee members. From there, the Grants Commmittee can allocate funding at their discretion based on the budget proposal along with weighing in any input from the community.

Any unused funds from the initial distribution are retained by the grants treasury. It can effectively be considered an interest free loan from the DAO against future seasonal funding.

Generally, each and every project will be allocated funding based on milestones or KPIs. Projects will receive an initial grant upfront, and will be required to complete each milestone or KPI in order to receive further funding.

Project squads can request a grant by adding a “Requesting Grant” tag to their project page and informing a member of the Grants Committee.

Grants Committee

We’re proposing the Grants Committee consists of 5-7 members along with a multi-sig with all commmittee members as signers. Similar to Aave’s Grant Program, this will include a Grants Lead and Reviewers. The Grants Lead will be the key individual responsible for organizing the program and ensure that things move smoothly and efficiently. The lead will likely dedicate a significant amount of time to the program.

The Committee is responsible and accountable for managing the grants system, reviewing grant applications, and managing the grants treasury, with the help of other guilds as needed (e.g., treasury). Grants must be distributed to the project Champion or a Champions multi-sig wallet for larger projects.

The Committee has a quorum with five members, but is otherwise responsible for their own operations. The Committee cannot change the application process to be a Committee member without a snapshot vote and is encouraged to accept the DAO’s proposal template.

The Grants Committee is required to be transparent and communicative with the DAO, such as access to Committee meetings and an opportunity to voice opinions and feedback.

Grants Leads: Key individuals responsible for organizing the program and ensuring that things move smoothly and efficiently. The lead will likely dedicate a significant amount of time to the program. There are two Grant Leads to ensure there is not a single point of failure. Serve a two-year term and can resign at any time.

Reviewers: Process applications, weigh in on discussions surrounding budget planning, ensure that the lead is acting in good faith and is effective in their role, and will operate a 4 of 7 multisig which disburses funds to grantees. The reviewers will also hold the program accountable to its goals and objectives and return any excess funds to the Bankless Treasury. Reviewers are likely to dedicate a smaller amount of time to the program.

Committee Member Elections

When there is a vacancy on the Grants Committee, there is a two week period where anyone can volunteer by submitting an application on the proposals section of discourse that includes

  • Discord handle
  • Role
  • Reason for applying
  • Qualifications
  • Sponsor(s) (i.e., someone who will second your nomination)

Any candidate that receives 30+ votes and 66%+ approval moves on to a snapshot vote for a final decision from the DAO.

If one DAO member qualifies for a snapshot it is a hire or do not hire vote that requires 66%+ approval to pass. If there is more than one candidate there is a runoff in discourse managed by the operations guild where the candidate that receives more votes moves on to a snapshot vote.

Any candidate that isn’t approved can collect feedback, improve their resume, and reapply for future vacancies. Multiple vacancies that occur at around the same time (e.g., Committee genesis) can be grouped into one snapshot vote. Runoff votes are based on the number of hire votes.

Committee members can be recalled with a 51%+ snapshot vote. Committee members can leave the Committee at any time by submitting a written resignation note to the Committee.

Genesis Grants Committee

A one-week application period will commence upon approval of this proposal.

  • If 4-7 candidates pass the discourse application, they move on to a snapshot vote to be the genesis committee
  • Up to two Bankless LLC employees will be given preference. If more than two Bankless LLC employees apply, the two with the most votes will be accepted and the remaining will be included in the runoff for the remaining five positions. This ONLY applies to Season 1. In future seasons, LLC members are subject to the same voting criteria as all other members.
  • If 8+ candidates pass the discord gate there is a runoff and the seven candidates with the most hire votes move on to a snapshot vote. Voters will be allowed to place four votes.
  • If less than four candidates pass, the application period will remain open until there are four candidates that pass the discourse application.

DAO Contributor Rewards

There will be an evergreen project funding DAO Contributor Rewards that is allocated funding each season.

At the end of each season, DAO member can opt in to an “epoch” in Coordinape and claim 1000 GIVE tokens to allocate to the DAO members they think contributed to the DAO during the season and haven’t yet been rewarded for their contributions. Tokens must be allocated to other people; you cannot allocate tokens to yourself. There will be a seven day voting period.

A Contributors Dashboard will be created to help people make informed decisions. This will include information about contributions (e.g., projects on the wiki) and rewards (e.g., grant payments).

Guild Funding

Every guild will get an allocation of funds each season for them to pay for operating expenses, bounty boards, and rewards contribution as they see fit. Some example use cases might be to fund bounties or do seasonal Guild Contributor Rewards.

To be allocated funds, the guild must have a section on discord, page on notion, and a multi-sig wallet with the wallet holders approved by the guild. For smaller guilds, operations can fill in as a signer until the guild is able to find enough guild members to control the wallet. The guild should request this assistance if needed and can replace the operations guild singer at any time.

Guilds must request funding as part of seasonal funding to receive an allocation. They can do this using the process outlined in the DAO Seasonal Projects section. The expectations will be different from standard projects in that there will be financial implications like funding for bounty boards or salary for people who perform operational tasks within the guild

Managing Budgets

The DAO projects page will have columns for “Available Funds” and “Allocated Funds”.

When funding is allocated, the team allocating those funds (e.g., Grants Committee for grants, Operations Guild for seasonal projects, guilds for guild funding) will add those funds to the “Allocated Funds” column.

At a minimum of bi-weekly, the squad or guild that was allocated those funds must update the “Available Funds” column to indicate how much funding remains.

The DAO will not micromanage budgets.

Special Handling for Season 1

There will be no Seasonal Funding for Season 1. Instead, our collective objectives are aligned towards:

  1. Onboard Project MVP
  2. Generate multiple revenue streams

Funding within the Season will follow a special one-off process where Bankless Grants will fund all DAO activities. This is to allow us to start funding projects and rewarding contributors right away.

The Committee will be allocated 11M $BANK to fund projects, guilds, and DAO contributors during that time period. Any funds left after Season 1 will be considered a free loan from the DAO treasury that is a lean against future seasonal funding starting in Season 2.

  • 5M $BANK allocated for projects
  • 5M $BANK allocated for Guilds
  • 1M $BANK allocated for contributor rewards

Guilds could request a grant during Season 1 once they’ve become eligible (see #Guild Funding). The Grants Committee will fund DAO Contributor Rewards at the end of the season at their discretion based on the outcome of the Season 0 experiment.

NEXT STEPS

  • Vote on snapshot
  • Update notion based on this proposal
  • Properly scope existing projects
  • Begin Genesis Committee Process
  • Create Grants Treasury multi-sig wallet
  • Transfer 11M $BANK to the Grants Treasury

HELP NEEDED

  • Treasury
    • Distribute approved funds
    • Provide guidance and advice during planning on the impact of projects on the treasury.
    • Contributors Dashboard
    • Assistance with financial requirements on proposal template
  • Operations
    • Managing planning
    • Confirming seasonal projects have the required information (i.e., squad, financial implications, and brand usage)
    • Recruiting a Grants Committee
    • Inform treasury of approved budgets so they can distribute funds
  • Analytics
    • Contributors Dashboard
  • Development
    • Contributors Dashboard
  • Grant Committee
    • 2x grant leads
    • 5x reviewers

APPENDIX

QUORUM PROPOSAL

This section allows for two passing criteria. A full wait period and an expedited path when support is overwhelming, whichever is completed first. If the expedited criteria is met, a forum admin will provide stats on new sign-ups for sybil resistance.

  • 1 week and >66% in favor
  • 50 votes with 80% in favor
  • Move to snapshot
  • Minor changes
  • Major changes
  • Full rework

0 voters

6 Likes

Thanks for this massive effort to coordinate Season 1 @frogmonkee @wolfehr @0x_Lucas @Kouros @mamer !!

@frogmonkee will shoot you a message to get the requirements for Contributor Dashboard (Analytics) :+1:

5 Likes

This looks amazing and well-thought. Looking forward to Season 1 for sure!

1 Like

I’d suggest that the Grants Committee be specified at the top of that section as 2 Lead + 5 Reviewers. It’s somewhat buried in the Leads provision, and Reviewers are mentioned as the balance of a 4-7 member committee.

As it stands, there is nothing in the draft that helps distinguish who will be a Lead and who is a Reviewer. Is that a designation in the individual’s Snapshot vote (i.e. Memb1 is running for Lead)? Is the Lead designated by the winning 7 committee members? Can the Lead be Lead for 5 terms in a row? 15 terms? 2 terms? And there’s no compensation for this role?

Additionally, the Lead has a defined term length of 2 years. But there is nothing for the Reviewers. Generally, it’s recommended that elected seats have rotating election cycles, so that the whole committee isn’t up for re-election at any one time, which typically stops productivity in its tracks. I’d suggest that 1 year for Reviewers is a good length - enough to be able to see multiple projects put in front of them, and to have consistency and stability in the administration of the grants. But not so long as make the committee stale or intimidating. Generally, we should prefer to have as many hands on deck as possible, and not centralize too many functions in small numbers of repeat contributors? Having 7 people administering a significant chunk of the ad hoc operations of the DAO for long periods of time would seem to go against that ethic.

3 Likes

Hey Everyone, Glad to see the proposal for the Grants Committee.

Question
Is the Grants Treasury multi-sig wallet will be on Gnosis Safe? If Yes, MultiSafe & Boardroom would love to help :-

Regarding Treasury

  1. Distribute approved funds
  2. Contributors Dashboard

You can use Multisafe for the Grants committee to do the mass payouts from the Gnosis safe and community can see contributors dashboard on Boardroom.

We are also working on linking these passed proposals with treasury payouts in the Boardroom dashboard.

Boardroom dashboard examples

  1. Compound Grants example for Round1 , Round 2 & Round 3
  2. Multisig Transaction Details

Happy to answer any questions regarding how we can help in streamlining the payouts process.
Thanks

3 Likes

Thanks for the excellent questions :slight_smile:

A few things come to mind:

Is that a designation in the individual’s Snapshot vote (i.e. Memb1 is running for Lead)?

As part of the application, members have to specify what role they are applying for. Top two votes will get the lead role. If you apply for lead, you cannot apply for reviewer and vice versa. Thoughts?

And there’s no compensation for this role?

As of right now, no. I’m sure they will be some compensation model discussed after the commitment is experienced.

Additionally, the Lead has a defined term length of 2 years. But there is nothing for the Reviewers.

Yes, I think my view on this has changed actually. I think reviewers/leads should serve per season with an option to automatically re-enroll for next season. Then we have an election in the weeks preceding the next season as part of the pre-planning sprint.

3 Likes

@tarun1475 Thanks for popping in. We’ve spoken with some people at Boardroom, will reach back out when the time is right.

2 Likes

I’m not sure if members need to apply for a role. I Think it’s unfair if you apply for a lead and not getting it … then you are not a member of the Grants Comitte altogether… I think each candidate apply to be a reviewer but there is also a box so you can choose if you are also applying for the lead.

So the LLC member with the votes for the lead gets that position. The non LLC member that gets the most votes for the lead role gets it.

Then the reviewers are the 5 with the most votes.

Regarding the compensation. I believe the Grants Committee should have its own operational budget to reward its members. It doesn’t make sense that the rest of the DAO gets compensated and the Grants Committee do not.

Regarding the terms. I believe that probably 2 years is a lot, but maybe having to change the grants Committee every 2 seasons is too often an it’s a lot of work and bureaucracy too frequently… maybe we can do a 1 year term for the leads. 6 month term for one of the Genesis Grants Committee lead so we dont have to change the whole lead at the same time. I think the same should apply for reviewers.

1 Like

I’m not sure if members need to apply for a role. I Think it’s unfair if you apply for a lead and not getting it … then you are not a member of the Grants Comitte altogether

I see this as higher stakes. It’s not just a popularity contest is there’s risk to losing. Not really sold on this though, so happy to change my view.

Regarding the compensation. I believe the Grants Committee should have its own operational budget to reward its members. It doesn’t make sense that the rest of the DAO gets compensated and the Grants Committee do not.

Agreed, but I think we can sort this out later. But generally, yes I agree.

maybe we can do a 1 year term for the leads. 6 month term for one of the Genesis Grants Committee lead so we dont have to change the whole lead at the same time.

6 months for genesis grants committee makes sense, but I really don’ think seasonal changes is going to be too disruptive.

2 Likes

For the elections… is this done in discourse or snapshot??

For the terms. Ok lets do 2 seasons. In DAO’s terms it’s like a long time.

1 Like

For the elections… is this done in discourse or snapshot??

Snapshot I think

1 Like

Ok fine :slight_smile: not a big deal. Having 2 seasons terms will change members a lot so more people will have the chance to be in the Grants Committee.

1 Like

I think my preference is that the application process is to be on the committee, and the committee members vote on who their leads should be. The way I see it is that the leads take care of the operational work and are accountable for the committee, but don’t have any extra voting powers. So the DAO votes on who should have control of the purse strings and the committee decide who they want to have leads responsibilities.

I’m also okay with the application being for a role, but I think you should be allowed to apply for both. If you are accepted for both, you get the lead position and the next person in line gets a reviewer position (since one person wouldn’t be both).

I think the committee should request a salary as part of their request for funding (i.e., we’re requesting X BANK for grants and Y BANK for operating expenses and salaries)

I would support 1 year term for leads, and I agree on staggering them. I had proposed for the genesis the leads would have 2 year and 1 year terms. Halving that to 1 year and 6 months works for me.

I originally didn’t like the idea of terms for reviewers, but I’m coming around to that idea. I think reviewers should probably also have the same setup (i.e., 1 year term, with half having 6 month terms for the genesis committee so everyone doesn’t leave at the same time).

3 Likes