Transparency vs. Efficiency March 18, 2020

Thanks so much to Lauren who took extensive notes this time. Check it out!


From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 02:27 PM

Mark Pascall: the importance of differentiating between transparency with stakeholders and transparency with the world.

Jeff Emmett: The tension is that it needs to be navigated with more than a binary: it’s not just opaque or transparent.

Juliana: has been to Sweden many times and is impressed by their organizational ability and ethics. They pay attention and “spy” on their neighbors to make sure that they are putting their recycling out on the right day. The level of transparency is total, but people spend so much time regulating each other and controlling each other instead of doing their work. Max transparency is beneficial, but you’ve gotta get stuff done as well.

Jeff: Interesting tradeoff between efficiency and resilience. Threats in the body: a many-to-many response with cells. In Capetown when they had a drought, it became more socially acceptable not to shower. There are different social dynamics that can encourage certain behavior. If there is a loss of efficiency, there can be a gain in resilience.

From Sxmbra to Everyone: 02:29 PM

My internet connection is quite bad today, if it keeps freezing i’ll catch up later

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 02:37 PM

Gus: I have seen DAOs, that, at the end of the day, have only 2-3 persons doing all the governance work. When DAO members are struggling to have information, they sometimes disengage from the DAO. I think more transparency could engage more people.

Mark: One of the problems in DAOs that he has been involved with is a massive flow of information, that’s hard to keep up with. Thought processes are buried in a channel.

Martin: (Picking up from Jeff’s point): it’s not to be opaque or flat, or thinking about access controls. This is an argument for trust between stakeholders. Not just one single view of access levels: this isn’t a binary choice. There should be certain levels of cross-community, multi-DAO situations to be built.

Juliana: There are a lot of discussions in the thread of a Telegram channel, information that can get lost. You have to go through keywords to find stuff. In our DAO, we have an open Telegram channel. Now we have a Slack, where at least you can have hashtags. At least it is curated by topics and it is easier to find. I saw that MakerDAO had a massive distortion in their governance. They had to have a press release. You have a whole trail of their decision making. It’s important that people read and participate when it’s actually happening. Discussions should be curated with hashtags

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 02:38 PM

Mark: Regarding Jeff’s nonbinary comment: I love the concept of Holocracy, where they bring in areas of group roles. One person can have many roles and be in many circles. You can jump in and jump out as your role changes.

From Juliana to Everyone: 02:38 PM

Maker DAO:

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 02:39 PM

Jeff: What we need to consider, in the context of transparency, is eliminating time-based attack vectors. I would like to see conviction voting, where you can check in the community sentiment; like preference streaming.

From Juliana to Everyone: 02:39 PM

I like the organization of the forum discussions

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 02:42 PM

Jeff: there are a lot of new opportunities for transparency through governance mechanisms.

Grace: Interesting about the transparency of the conversations. People are talking about this like it’s inevitable that chats suck. Even this conversation is completely inadequate for what we need for a real governance system. One thinking limitation: “This is how our chats our, and that’s what it is,” instead of “what would better conversational tools look like?” Our chat tools are causing people to be anti-social. The other thinking limitation is around voting. Most decisions in the world are not made by voting. These are really important, especially when the minority opinion is important.

From Jeff Emmett to Everyone: 02:43 PM

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 02:54 PM

Mark: I found it useful in trying to conceive new DAOs, thinking about different types of decisions. A leaf decision is something someone can make within their role, but there may be other decisions which can affect others that they should get other opinions to make. There needs to be clarity and clear role definitions.

Gus: What are reasons for not being transparent?

Victor (Sxmbra): If everything is transparent by design, or by necessity, then people must behave differently. In this world a lot of decision making goes by unofficial channels.

Juliana: When you want to pass something quickly without discussion, you can fastback things. The only benefit of not being transparent is not getting a quick decision. But if the majority doesn’t agree, there will be protests against a quickly-passed decision.

Gus: The only way to move the system forward is being transparent.

Victor (Sxmbra): It’s a very personal thing, but I am not that good at group meetings. When I was in a collective, the decisions were always taken in meetings, and my views were totally overruled by the social flows of other people. I preferred one-on-one settings. It’s almost like delegated voting, when I give my view to someone with more social power: but this isn’t necessarily transparent.

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 03:00 PM

Mark: We need to be more open to some people having a bigger picture group, but not in a power/control way like in a traditional hierarchy. The MakerDAO problem could have gotten out of that better if they could have made a faster decision. A small people who can make decisions quickly, but who are maybe elected. But they should have a different ability to make decisions quickly.

Martin: separation of roles, concept of strategic vs. operational. There’s a focus to the participation, and a common/whole understanding about how things are working. Also inward vs. outward looking: what’s happening in the environment? Vs. internally focused concerns. Amongst cooperatives, that have been around since the 50’s-60’s, it’s interesting to hear people talk about their experience. We can take some of that learning to the digital space.

Grace: one of the things that hasn’t come up at all is space for testing. We talk a lot about making a decisions and not enough about what leads up to it. What autonomy could people have to do something between people to test it out in small trials before the entire DAO did it.

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 03:07 PM

Mark: interested in dAO structures built on hierarchy of purpose instead of control. Interested in whether anyone has good resources here

Martin: As a technologist, I feel that Holochain offers closest underlying tech fabric on which you can build those sorts of human systems.

Mark: How is Holochain going?

Martin: I’m not on the core team, but I am a technical architect. I don’t believe it’s a donkey at the moment. Strict agent-centric approach. You have your view. There’s a shift in mindset, and the kind of system you are building. If you need a singe source of truth, a blockchain consensus is the way to go. However, many times you don’t need that and have more technical efficiency.

Victor; are there DAOs that work without a consensus system?

From Sxmbra to Everyone: 03:08 PM

But any specific DAOs

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 03:11 PM

Martin: The Holochain point of view is about bringing in the elements or nodes that needs to strictly agree. You can parcel off elements, subjects for agreements, into their own DHT to validate each other. Network of circles of guarantees. This can help build reputation and trust.

Gus: MolochDAO Has been successful because it allows people to disagree and to disengage with ragequit option. The right to disagree is necessary.

Martin: I used to do work on making legal agreements, and one of the learnings was the often people need to keep agreements deliberately ambiguous. They want to come together in a room and leave with an agreement, but they know that the detail is too hard to hammer out. They have deliberate holes in the fine detail. To put that into computer terms, that was difficult. That situation is bound to manifest itself. They want to be seen to agree, but that somehow entails agreeing to disagree.

Mark: that implies that you need a dispute resolution system that you can agree to. I am following the Aragon court thing.

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 03:14 PM

Martin: Perhaps it’s okay not to have a resolution on every detail. As a technologist, I like to nail everything down, but I can also see the value in this ambiguity

Jeff: That’s the main offer of Holochain; you are not guaranteeing a global state of the world. I don’t think that there is one architecture to rule them all. If you don’t define governance, you can get a lot of strongman/gossip….governance is always defined, even if you don’t define it. We think that there is one architecture that can solve the social problems, but it is more like a commons.

From Lauren Nignon to Everyone: 03:25 PM

Victor: getting to the core is about selection and choice. Who is deciding what is the core message? You may get differences in opinion as to the core curriculum.