On Bankless Seasons

On Seasons…

We briefly introduced seasons in the Bankless DAO announcement post, but there was a lot left unclear. This post serves as the initial attempt to define seasons with open feedback from the community.

Seasons have 3 core components:

1. Community Projects (generating onchain revenue)
2. Distribution Campaigns (increasing participation)
3. Membership perks (increasing membership value)

Seasons act as periods where the community aligns on a core set of goals, projects, and campaigns. It’s purpose is to clearly outline a scope of work for contributors–what everyone needs to come together on and focus their energy towards.

With so many discussions, and so many projects being proposed, Seasons should serve as the north star for prioritizing the most valuable work streams. Generally, there’s no predetermined time period for a season, it’s all dependent on whether or not the Season’s projects and campaigns have been completed.

Once seasons are complete or coming to an end, the community enters a “pre-season” phase where the objective is to re-align, discuss, propose, and organize around the next season–which results in a culmination of projects and campaigns, all of which have passed via on-chain vote.

Seasons serve as the roadmap for the community. Therefore, a significant majority of the community’s focus, discussions and energy should be towards ensuring the successful completion of each and every season.

With that, let’s dive into the different components of seasons:

Community Projects

  • Goal: Generate on-chain revenue

Community Projects are the core work streams for the community, usually with two main goals: progressing the bankless mission and generating on-chain revenue for the treasury.

Each project should feature a detailed work plan which clearly outlines the project, the mission, why it’s relevant, establishes clear KPIs for both completion and success intervals, assigns the team members responsible, and any other requirements and needs.

All of this should culminate into formal forum proposals for the community to discuss. Ultimately, this is the go-to document for new and existing community members to learn about and get involved with any project involved in any season. This will also be the reference document that moves to an on-chain vote.

Projects are categorized as either internal or external. Internal projects mainly serve to help organize the DAO–it’s the back office work. This includes things like the weekly newsletter and podcast or day to day community management. Internal projects don’t necessarily qualify for seasons, as they’re recurring contributions from a core set of people.

External projects are one’s with clear on-chain revenue KPIs and serve as the backbone for the DAO’s revenue earning capabilities. They could also be projects that aim to attract new talent and members to the DAO. This could include helping with MetaFactory apparel, designing new NFTs, launching new DeFi products, or managing distribution campaigns.

Examples of Community Projects in Season 0:

  • Successfully airdrop the genesis allocations (need to fix Gitcoin & distribute Airdrop 2)

Alpha projects:

Alpha projects are prospective projects that may make it into the next season. All external projects should have an alpha or test version to showcase product market fit and the Squad’s ability to execute on the project before moving to an on-chain vote. Some examples right now include:

  • MetaFactory Merch Drop (external)
  • Genesis NFT Sale (external)

We would not include these in seasons:

  • Find Community Managers to moderate chat (internal)
  • Find Writers for Weekly Substack Update (internal)

Distribution Campaigns

  • Goal: Increase participation & attract new talent

One of the main uses of Seasons is to leverage the community treasury to fund campaigns that attract new talent and encourage broad participation in the bankless movement.

This can be used to fund public campaigns like writing and meme competitions, Rabbithole Quests and even more altruistic initiatives like funding public goods through Gitcoin. Generally the goal with distribution campaigns is to open up the doors for anyone to earn BANK via participation and become a key contributor.

Examples of Distribution Campaigns in Season 0:

  • Genesis Airdrop 1
  • Genesis Airdrop 2 (passed by community)

Membership Perks

  • Goal: Increase membership value

The last aspects of seasons is to calibrate member tiers and empower DAO memberships with exclusive benefits.

Each season the community can vote on the amount of BANK required to join the DAO and the underlying “levels”. This could be either adding new lower and higher tiers or changing the minimum threshold all together. Ultimately, the definition of each tier, what’s required to access it and what benefits it provides will be decided on a seasonal basis.

The main membership perk is access to the Bankless DAO Discord. Currently, anyone who holds 35,000 BANK can join the full Discord server. Additionally, there are other tiers and roles within the community that can be built out on a season by season basis. An example of this today is holding 150,000 BANK which gets you access to the Splash Zone in Season 0.

But beyond basic Discord access, the community can expand the benefits to really anything. Working on a new product and want to give members early access? Perfect. Have a coffee company and want to give discounts to members? Great!

This aspect of Seasons should always answer why would the average crypto native or individual want a DAO membership? Here are some ideas from our neighboring community, Friends With Benefits:

Examples of Member Benefits in Season 0:

  • Access to Discord channel
  • Early access to the 1st MetaFactory Merch Drop

Season 0: Genesis

To summarize, here’s what this framework looks like when we apply it to Season 0 and the goals outlined in the genesis announcement:

Distribution Campaigns

  • Genesis airdrop 1 - Genesis
  • Genesis airdrop 2 - Subscribers/Badges

Projects

  • Distribute the genesis airdrop (need to fix Gitcoin & release airdrop 2)
  • Launch the alpha Merch Sale
  • Launch the alpha NFT Sale

Member Benefits

  • Access to Discord channel
  • Early access to merch drops

How a Project Proposal gets included into a Season

Here’s a general outline of how a project proposal gets included into the next season.

  1. Idea is proposed: This could be in Discord or a general forum discussion. It doesn’t have to be overly formal.

  2. Squad forms around the idea: Figure out what talent you need to make this project happen, find like-minded people to work on it, and squad up!

  3. Build out more detailed project plan: Work with your Squad to build out a more detailed project plan and think through some of the problems, KPIs, needs, and more. This doesn’t have to be public but will likely serve as the foundation for your formal project proposal.

  4. Build out Alpha/MVP to display results: This is the hard part! In order to get support from the DAO, you should expect to have an MVP or an Alpha ready. Something to show that you’re (1) capable of delivering on the project and (2) that there’s early signs of success.

  5. Publish proposal for inclusion in the next season: Include all of the details you’ve worked through, a link to your Alpha, and results. Fill out the full project proposal. Don’t leave any details out!

  6. Governance forum soft consensus: Once proposed, the community can review your proposal, the alpha version, and provide some feedback. The community should consider questions like: Does this align with our mission? Is the squad capable of executing? What’s the potential for this project? Are they asking for too much from the treasury? Will the treasury’s funds generate a meaningful ROI for the DAO? Be skeptical!

  7. If there’s soft consensus, schedule specific community call on the project: If there’s soft consensus from the community that this project is worth pursuing, the community should schedule a meeting specifically for this project. Vet the squad, ask questions, and make sure all the bases are covered!

  8. Refine proposal based on community feedback: Following the community call, the Squad will likely need to refine and amend the proposal following feedback. This should be posted as a final draft in the original thread.

  9. Decision Gate 1: Vote on specific projects: During the pre-season, each project will be voted on independently via Snapshot.

  10. Decision Gate 2: All proposals that passed DG1 packed into a formal Season 1 vote. This is where the community checks off on the total amount of the treasury holdings distributed for this season.

Looking Forward: Season 1

As we approach the close of Season 0 with the second genesis airdrop and fixing the Gitcoin distribution, we need to start discussing Season 1 and the main projects we want to work on.

How will we generate revenue? How will we drive adoption into bankless money systems? How can we increase participation? What value does being a DAO member have?

These are all key questions that should be the motivation behind each project proposal. While we’re still early, we are closing out on Season 0, so identifying a handful of projects to focus on for next Season should become a priority.

Here are some thoughts to get us started:

Distribution Campaigns

  • Writer’s League: Prize competition for the best writers in crypto to produce written work. BANK token holders vote on the best one.
  • Rabbithole Quests: public on-chain education to complete basic tasks in DeFi

Projects

  • MetaFactory Apparel Drops
    • KPI: 3 Apparel Drops and $X in revenue
  • NFT Sales
    • KPI: 5 NFTs and $X in Revenue
  • BED Index Adoption
    • KPI: BED reaches $50M in market capitalization
  • ?

Member Benefits

  • Early access to merch drops
  • Discounts to Bankless Premium Memberships?
  • ?

Overall Season 1 KPIs

  • What are general Season KPIs that we want to reach?

This is just spitballing some ideas and building off the existing stuff that’s already in motion. For the Rabbithole Quests and the Writer’s League, expect a project plan in the next week or so. I need help with these so if you’re interested in getting involved, DM me on Discord!

This is just my personal opinion on how to approach Seasons. Please feel free to leave some feedback and we can discuss further!

7 Likes

I do appreciate your thoughts on how the DAO should set its goals an operate but I think this post is quite controversial to say the least.

For starters, it seems that in your view our goal is to find projects that generate revenue. While this is all right it is way off form the mission and vision that we are trying to establish.

There has also been plenty of discussion around the member levels and I understand that there is a majority that think that we should remove as many levels as possible and make the governance as transparent as possible. So having private chats for whales, etc is somehow seen as an elitist thing that in my opinion doesn’t bring any value to the DAO and it generates a certain discomfort among some members that can easily be prevented.

Then how do you feel about rewarding contributors? You don’t really say it. In my opinion contributors should be rewarded as they are the ones committing their time, talent and energy to this DAO on a regular basis. At the moment all members get the same deal no matter if the contribute or do nothing for the DAO.

On the other hand, I agree with you on things like the consensus on projects and the way seasons can be planned and executed.

Many of us like Frogmonkee, EliteViking or even me have attempted to describe a governance process. It is probably one of the most discussed topics that we have and we will need to agree on something whatever it is.

Allright, pretty straight forward if you ask me.

I do partially agree with Kouros here regarding levels, but I also understand the need to differentiate a bit and reward members that contribute more than others.

I have an idea for a project that I will try to verbalize in discord when time is right and try my best to bring it to life for Season 1.

Registered under a wrong username, will change it later if possible. My discord handle is @gecko007

1 Like

Thanks for the feedback!

I think contributors fall into 2 buckets drawing from themes in investment banking: Front office (external projects) & back office (internal projects).

Front office = Contributors that are generating on-chain revenue and have a split agreed w/ the DAO in return for support. This would be an artist minting an NFT or designers creating new merch and splitting the proceeds as agreed upon. These people are committing their time, energy, and talent and in return receiving a split of the revenue they generate in return for support from the DAO/community.

Back office = Contributors that are working on organizing the DAO and do a lot of the day to day management. This would include community managers, writers for the weekly update, etc. that don’t necessarily earn a revenue for the DAO but obviously commit their time and energy into it. The solution here would be coming up with a proper compensation plan for contributors on a season by season basis (see Yearn & Sushiswap on how they approach it).

Regarding levels, I’m not completely following the issue. The only thing that’s being stated in the original post is that levels (which I think will be rebranded to roles) can be added, removed, and changed on a seasonal basis via governance. I don’t think the 150K BANK Whale Channel is meant to stick for the long term but it was implemented as an MVP example of what could be done with different tiers and how curation needs to play a part in assigning roles.

Personally I prefer adding tiers based on BANK + some NFT that anyone can earn. The problem is that this isn’t support with Collab Land but I’m working with them to get it added.

Hopefully this answers some of your questions!

2 Likes

Yes, ok. I can agree on those contribution terms. So we need to agree on some sort of compensation for the back office.

Thanks so much for making this post, Lucas!

I really love the idea of choosing on major initiatives before each Season. That also works well for snapshot voting – We can have a short period of snapshot voting where we choose the priorities for next season. From there, it’s mostly off-chain consensus in forums, community updates, discord, etc.

Seasons serve as the roadmap for the community.

:heart_eyes:

Overall, I don’t really have any problems with this. It’s similar to what I was chewing on myself, from the separation of community vs distribution campaigns. I can see the advantage of membership perks, but it seems like a touchy topic. Could lead to conflict, but if done right, it’s a great way to retain membership.

+1 to having an Alpha/MVP. Projects are basically a request to monetize. For example, @DefiDeluxe has a great podcast. A few episodes will reveal some metrics that we can then create KPIs based on. From there, he goes to BanklessDAO and says "I want to monetize. Let’s come up with a split and we leverage BanklessDAO’s sponsorship network to start generating revenue.

I can see this approach running into problems though. Namely that if we stick to external projects decided in the prior Season, would ideas that form during the season have to wait until the next one? In other words, if I can spin up an MVP within a season, can I keep the project going during the season?

+1 to back of house contributors needing a compensation model.

(see Yearn & Sushiswap on how they approach it).

Do you have links for this?

1 Like

But do all projects need to bring revenue to the DAO?
Certainly there can be other type of projects, don’t you think?

I’m not sure it was said that every project needs to bring revenue.

But the DAO must generate revenues in order to accomplish its mission (which has a cost).

The focus on revenue to start is in my opinion just to ensure the treasury has positive cashflow, having a negative cashflow would just mean that the DAO would have an end.

By focusing first on projects that can generate revenues, we will be able to fund more projects while ensuring a positive overall cashflow.

4 Likes

Solid post @0x_Lucas!