Proposal for the Zcash 2020 Network Upgrade

Most of the community seems to understand just fine what it means to decrease the “Founder’s Reward” from 20% to 10%. This is the bigger picture after all, isn’t it?

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Presumably this sentence refers to Andrew Miller’s proposal, which is not an official Zcash Foundation proposal. Additionally, his proposal explicitly enables the result of zero ZEC from block rewards going to any possible recipients of a Zcash dev fund.

[Edited for tone / removed some overly inflammatory comments.]

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“Acceptable” or “vetoed” by the Foundation from an admin… It’s language like this that gives the crypto community the impression that Zcash isn’t decentralized.

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Because it isn’t, as you would know if you knew anything about the ZIP process.

Zcash is more decentralized than literally one startup controlling everything. But as software, Zcash is very explicitly governed, both legally and practically, by a nonprofit called the Zcash Foundation and a startup called the Electric Coin Company.

You can always fork Zcash, the codebase or the blockchain, but you can’t change the protocol called Zcash without the agreement of both entities. That is the status quo.

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You can lead a zebra to water, I guess… https://www.zfnd.org/blog/new-zip-process/

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I’m sure someone will interpret this as me being salty that Blocktown doesn’t want to direct the dev fund to ZF. I’m on the record in another thread:

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My understanding is that the goal is to find the greatest consensus among the Zcash community on the FR after the first halving.

Finding consensus around the % FR is the natural first step. Finding consensus on proportioning those funds to whom is second.

Zcash alienated many people in 2016 and still to this day with the % FR. Which entities were given the funds was a secondary concern.

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Indeed. Among the reasons why familiarity with the debate, in which Blocktown is a new entrant, would have been useful when writing your proposal.

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Although a new entrant publicly, I’ve been following the development of Zcash since 2015.

In any case, let’s not miss the forest for the trees on what we are clearly advocating in regards to the future Founder’s Reward—reduction from 20% to 10%.

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Okay, sure, that is more productive. I’ll be interested in your revised thoughts on how the 10% should be allocated, since the suggested structure couldn’t make it through the ZIP process without a dramatic reversal by ZF (unlikely).

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Considering that the status quo has the mining tax ending, it’s more of an increase from 0% to 10%…

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This is a good point.

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Vetoed? What ever happened to the “at the end of the day the community decides”? and what exactly have ZF done that’s good for Zcash, and planning on doing to grow adoption and bring value to Zcash?

From the looks of it only the ECC seems to be fully committed to Zcash. Where were you guys during the Bronx event last week?

Might I recommend you tone down the aggressiveness when you reply to members of the community, especially investors. There is debating and then there’s this condescending tone on your part :point_up_2:. You’re giving Zcash a bad image the way you handle yourself on the forum and twitter and it’s clearly not professional…not to mention constantly voicing your crappy opinions how investors do not matter for the longevity ZEC. Please take it down a notch, or find yourself a replacement. Thank you!

And yes i understand why your salty sentiment. What has ZF done since its creation that deserves a huge portion of a potential dev fund. And why should they be in charge of dictating where funds go and enforcing ECC becoming non-profit. That is just plain ridiculous. There should not be any Veto allowed to ZF or in your vocabulary. Let me remind you the current status-quo is ZERO dev fund for now as per code. Get off your high horse.

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Voting decisions made by the community are then ratified by the foundation board of directors, the last time it happened they approved all of them


Executive Director Josh Cincinnati explained in his April announcement:

“Advisory? So these decisions are non-binding?” Technically yes; the Foundation Board can’t abdicate responsibility for the Foundation, although we want broad accountability and public input for matters that fall under the Foundation’s purview. That said, other ballot decisions may simply be advisory because we don’t (currently) have the authority to make those decisions — e.g., a ballot to redefine parameters in the Zcash blockchain in a future hard fork. (“the blocks need to be 1 terabyte, etc”) But the fact that the community might be strongly in favor of such a technical change should hold weight for the current maintainers of Zcash and for future work of the Foundation."

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The Zfnd only has some limited authority: a software repo, its funding, engineering staff, in the future a position in a trademark agreement. So, “Veto” only has meaning in that context. For example, by only contributing engineering effort to a software branch that doesn’t make mandatory funding to a for-profit.

The community ultimately decides by choosing what software to run, etc. The Foundation has also committed to incorporating public feedback into our own decision making. It’s advisory in the sense that our bylaws say the root authority of the Foundation is the majority vote of board members. Public votes/feedback are useful to the community even beyond guiding the Foundation’s decision - if you had to fire the Foundation for example by moving to a fork we didn’t support or something, the public feedback could help catalyze that.

This is all my best attempt at explaining what “veto” and “foundation governance” means. It’s consistent with everything the foundation has written so far. Hope it helps!

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@amiller Sorry if this is a little off topic here, but since you mentioned the ECC for-profit status, maybe the foundation should emphasize that dev fund proposals can include mandates such as to build a voting system for future funding or for the ECC to become a non-profit.

If none of the proposals mandate this then I would take it as a sign that the community is OK with the ECC maintaining its current legal status.

I read the ECC statement and found their argument that there are strategic advocacy things they can do as a for-profit to be a pretty convincing argument. So I am intentionally not putting that mandate in my proposal. I think this should be made clear to everyone working on a proposal, so the Foundation can get a clear idea if this is actually so important to the community.

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Vetoed? What ever happened to the “at the end of the day the community decides”?

My wording was intentional. The key phrases are “as software” and “the protocol called Zcash.”

and what exactly have ZF done that’s good for Zcash, and planning on doing to grow adoption and bring value to Zcash?

You are literally on a forum with a section dedicated to talking about ZF’s activities. I considered just linking you to our blog, but honestly. Come on. Don’t talk to me like ZF’s work and future plans are clouded in mystery. If you have specific questions, I’m happy to answer them.

Might I recommend you tone down the aggressiveness when you reply to members of the community, especially investors. There is debating and then there’s this condescending tone on your part :point_up_2:.

I reserve the right to condescend to people who haven’t done their homework and still want to bluster in here and tell the Zcash community what to do.

In fact, I’m surprised that no one else seems to feel insulted. If I were playing D&D 5 and someone showed up wanting the whole campaign to follow Pathfinder rules, apparently unaware of the existing arrangement and the work that went into setting it up, I would be equally annoyed.

You’re giving Zcash a bad image the way you handle yourself on the forum and twitter and it’s clearly not professional…not to mention constantly voicing your crappy opinions how investors do not matter for the longevity ZEC. Please take it down a notch, or find yourself a replacement. Thank you!

Look, I’m not a corporate PR person. One of the reasons why I like this job is that I get to be human and tell you what I really think. I would never want to moderate a forum where I wasn’t also an active community member.

Zcash is an open-source project, and ZF specifically exists to serve the public at large. In my capacity as a spokesperson, I am supposed to be transparent and direct. I can’t always tell you guys 100% of what I know due to confidentiality, but I will never lie to you.

No, it’s not the typical smooth-everything-over-doublespeak-only comms experience. It doesn’t smell Official™ — but is that what anyone wants? Aren’t we trying to do something new and revolutionary here?

Of course I try not to jeopardize ZF’s reputation. But ZF actually deserving trust is far more important than ZF affecting the rhetorical veneer of a normal think-tank. Personally, I’ve never trusted someone who talks like a LinkedIn testimonial. Why ape that style?

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We realize our full proposal above is fairly lengthy. We just published an executive summary that highlights the salient points.

As always, we are happy to hear feedback from the community.

Our goal is to unite the Zcash community as much as possible while hopefully welcoming new members/investors who were put off by the original 20% Founder’s Reward instituted in 2016.

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Eh, that’s only a strong argument against 501©3 status. Coin Center is a nonprofit and talks to regulators all day long — there are various different nonprofit statuses.

ZF’s main focus is legally binding accountability. The specific legal status is a red herring / relevant-but-not-the-point rabbit hole. It’s worth discussing, but we should also explore alternative structures that achieve the same goal.

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I don’t see any restriction for a 501/3 to talk to regulators.

Organizations described in section 501©(3) are prohibited from conducting political campaign activities to intervene in elections to public office.[26] On the other hand, public charities (but not private foundations) may conduct a limited amount of lobbying to influence legislation. Although the law states that “No substantial part…” of a public charity’s activities can go to lobbying, charities may register for a 501(h) election allowing them to lawfully conduct lobbying activities as long as their financial expenditure does not exceed a specified amount.[27] 501©(3) organizations risk loss of tax exempt status if any of these rules are violated.[28][29]

A 501©(3) organization is allowed to conduct some or all of its charitable activities outside the United States.[30][31] Donors’ contributions to a 501©(3) organization are tax-deductible only if the contribution is for the use of the 501©(3) organization, and that the 501©(3) organization is not merely serving as an agent or conduit of a foreign charitable organization.[32] Additional procedures are required of 501©(3) organizations that are private foundations.

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