Teaching & Learning Soft Governance


Initiated from dgov meetup in Amsterdam. Structured as a free flow of mind, paragraphs try to divide points rather than speakers.

Occupy Wallstreet was the bad example – The tyranny of structurelessness. The larger the group it’s harder to rich the decision. There’s a simple method, like showing hands who support to break the information asymmetry.

e.g. Ethereum chain splits. The same process is happening in social media. It could be good if you set up the process where people rising the flag can participating.

Nobody wants to exclude anyone. But we want the right amount of influence from different groups. Should you listen to bigger guys more? Those magicians forum are looking for voices from different places. Can be distorted readings. Some problem with forums – it can be a wrong representation. What was surprising was that miners were happy to reduce, but interested in the alternative PoW / ASIC / ProgPow. It wasn’t the part of the initial roadmap.

It was a shelling point, if Ethereum wasn’t saying that they’re going to PoS – they could never have a chance to go there. The idea of the block reduction – was smth we learned. But some roadmap is being pursued.

Vitalik probably leads the way? He’s leading the consensus algorithm – that’s where he’s leading. But there’s governance among the group of developers, but Ethereum is so big, that groups need own leaders. Difficulty bomb – is smth that allowed escaping the miners’ hostage situation. That was to force to the network updates.

It’s exemplary for DAO – dev do code, but other people who can have a say too. I don’t understand the technical side, but then maybe I don’t need to decide. Most EIPs are tech and are clear. They are coming with a structure and maintaining legitimacy.

What if the product needs to be coordinated with the marketing and law. In colony you can only select the amount to be paid – so it’s fair to any place. All setting became hard and gameable. Presumably, they have the common interest (at least at the wide domain). I couldn’t add skills myself – still a challenge, unresolved.

Interesting quote from sociological research:

The leading narrative of the contr culture from the 60 / 90s – it’s not universal. Reflection of the dominance of Silicon value. The part of the community anywhere will want the ideals – privacy, freedom.

There always would be soft governance. It has to be flexible enough. When you follow the discussion if devs can implement some change – the question is if anybody could code those, it would be only about the majority. If it would be possible for everybody to use (e.g. my family). It’s a social question – how easy you can use this stuff.

There’s no coercive role. They can’t force the change. Part of the balance is in 2 discussions: how to choose forks and how to use blockchain for governance. That was a discussion between Vitalik and Gav Wood recently, and both have a point.

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