Dear Zcash Community,
I am writing today to announce my resignation from the ZOMG (formally: the Zcash Foundation Technology Advisory Board called the Major Grant Review Committee) and my intent to not participate in future instances of the CAP (Community Advisory Panel).
In the interest having this post understood, I will try and keep the following sentences short.
When I put forward my candidacy I did so because the world needs censorship resistant, private transactions. The communities I live and work in need financial privacy.
I believed that zcash had a rare combination of robust technology, a community of amazing technologists, and the beginnings of an ecosystem that had a chance to deliver on that vision.
The events of the last week have shown me that I need to take some time to re-evaluate that belief. It is now clear that the vigorous commitments to privacy and radical transparency I made during my candidacy are not aligned with the current desires of much of the community.
I now see, through recent conversations on the forum and in other spaces, that many of the issues I set aside as temporary and localized are deeper and systemic to core parts of this ecosystem. While those may be fixable on some horizon, I don’t perceive a will in the community to even acknowledge them, let alone work towards fixing them.
On a personal note, I chose to undertake this work voluntarily, but it is clear that any attempt to uphold these principles in the scope of a role on the ZOMG would exhaust far more effort than I would consider reasonable, with little to no expectation of impact, and with a constant background of personal attacks from core community members. There are more effective ways for me to contribute to the larger goal of systems that enforce consent and resist censorship and surveillance.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank my ZOMG colleagues, we have had many great discussions in my limited time on the committee, I do believe that there exists some will on the committee to move in the direction of positive change, but it is clear that while I remain on the committee any such movement would be misattributed solely to me, and not the collective - and as such my presence is likely to hinder any progress that might be possible.
I wish Zcash community the best in the hopes that you can one day see over that horizon and deliver on a vision that the world desperately needs. I will sign off with the following thoughts:
Promising security or privacy is a responsibility you shouldn’t take lightly. It’s not about your brand; frankly, it’s not about you at all.
People will put their lives in your hands, the mission must always be about their ability to manage risk and reduce harm. It must always be about their safety, and informed consent.
The only way to build a robust system is to open it up to the world. To have it be radically transparent from end to end. You must not shy away from accountability.
Privacy is not a responsibility you should take lightly. It’s not fast, or glamorous or easy. It’s not a path to riches. The thing you are supposed to be decentralizing is power.
We don’t do those things because they are efficient, we do them because to keep us accountable to those who entrust us with some of the most precious parts of their lives.
Large amount of funding in this space should come with the expectation of responsibility. If you want trivial responsibilities, take on trivial projects.