Pre-Proposal: Increase the DAO’s execution power

Hi Community,

This is Yemel, one of the early contributors of Decentraland.
I helped during the first iterations of the project till the ICO.
Then the Foundation took the lead for the next few years.

Recently I heard the call to come back and serve the DAO.
I’m not under Foundation’s payroll, but I’m in close contact with them.
I’m acting as a volunteer member of this community.

I joined the DAO Committee and participated in the migration to Snapshot. I have been updating smart contracts, sending grants, doing research, crafting reports, and following up on some non-binding polls.

In this journey, I have seen that the DAO has a lot of resources and a thriving community but lacks executing power. We need to invest more money and time in the building of core infrastructure for the project.

The DAO is the beneficiary of a 10-year vesting contract for a total of 222M of MANA, that is 1.8 million MANA vested per month. This has been mentioned in the docs and in the blog before, but many may not be aware of it.

At the moment the DAO has 4 teams:

  • Security Advisory Board: 5 people to address security risk.
  • DAO Committee: 3 people to enact proposals on-chain.
  • DAO Facilitator: 1 person to produce reports and organize meets.
  • Wearable Curation Committee: 3 people to review applications.

At the moment the DAO is supporting contributions in the form of grants aimed to individual contributors. As an open-source project, we rely on external contributors being The Foundation the most important one.

The Foundation team has ~45 people working under their wing, they have been doing an amazing job and brought us a great decentralized platform and a world explorer to enjoy it.

But in order to accomplish the wider goal of becoming a more capable and powerful DAO, we need to take action. We need to invest our resources in lifting up the weight on the shoulders of The Foundation. We need to create our own teams capable of executing the vision of the DAO.

I want to propose a plan to do it.

We can start by speeding the development of our Governance dApp. This app is a critical piece of software for the DAO and it needs to be well maintained. It’s also a small project in terms of scope, which makes it a great place to start.

We need to assemble a team of highly capable full-time contributors.

I propose to form a squad of 6 people with the following roles:

  • Product Manager: To lead the team.
  • Researcher: To investigate implementation paths and current tech limitations.
  • Technical Writer: To document and communicate.
  • UI/UX Designer: To design new features and user flows.
  • Solidity Developer: To develop smart contracts and automate on-chain processes.
  • Front-End Developer: To develop decentralized applications.

The DAO will set a budget and formally delegate the Governance dApp to the team. The team will be free to work on ideas that make the conversation in the governance more fruitful. The team will report their progress and consult their roadmap with the community.

A list of things to work on the Governance dApp:

  • Automate generation of reports.
  • Replace Aragon’s UI to ease DAO Committee operations.
  • Add a Treasury page showing stats of the current treasury.
  • Add a Grants page showing all grants that have been funded by the DAO.
  • Add a Members’ page listing current teams and members.
  • Load forum comments on the proposal to encourage discussion.
  • Implement automatic status updates of proposals in the forum.
  • Work on reports on technical viability about discussed proposals.

If they have extra time they could contribute to other open-source projects in order to enact quicker passed proposals.

Funding a team to work primarily on the Governance dApp will produce faster development than relying on individual contributions because of their capability of shipping cross-cutting features.

This is a push to boost Decentraland’s ecosystem. We’ll start with one piece by building a team to improve it. If this strategy proves successful we could build more scoped teams to maintain and build other projects.

This proposal is a work in progress but I wanted to share it with you all as soon as possible. There are clear open questions about this proposal that I would like to hear your input about:

  • What are the next steps we need to define to make this happen?
  • How might the DAO hire the best candidates?
  • How should they be paid?
  • How could the greater community oversee their work and intervene if needed?
  • [just to mention a few, feel free to include others]

Looking forward to reading your comments,