Zcash Community Grants Meeting Minutes 6/13/22

Below please find the latest @ZcashGrants meeting minutes and Public Dashboard link.


  • Aditya
  • Brian
  • Hudson Jameson
  • Jason
  • Michael
  • Alex Bornstein (ZF resource)
  • Daniel Wolande (ZF resource)
  • Jack Gavigan (ZF resource)
  • Winnie K.M. (ZF resource)
  • Danika Delano acting as notetaker

Key Takeaways:

  • All members agreed to wait to get questions answered before making a decision on ZGo - The Zcash Register
  • All members were enthusiastic about the Zcash Ecosystem Security Lead proposal but had a few questions about the details of the workload and milestones before making a decision.
  • ZCG approved the Zecwallet and Orchard proposal via Signal after the meeting.
  • Jason announced that Jack hedged $50,000 USD of the ZCG Discretionary budget to cover monthly stipend for 7 months and a cushion for marketing and travel expenses. They also agreed that Jack will buy back ZEC when they make ambassador payments each month.
  • The committee discussed having an allowance for promotional merchandise for ambassadors and leaned toward the idea of making decisions on budgets per request, before ambassadors purchase. Jason will connect the ambassadors with Winnie for design support once the policy is laid out.
  • Aditya will post regarding his coin voting proposal soon.
  • Winnie provided a comms update and summary analysis of last quarters comms strategy.
  • Jason and Hudson brainstormed conferences they are interested in sending ZCG members to.


Open Grant Proposals

  • ZGo - The Zcash Register
    • Jason summarized that this grant would enable vendors to accept ZEC in an affordable way; Michael has reached out and asked about adoption and marketing strategy.
    • Brian stated that he likes the level of detail in the grant and that they started working on the project before applying for grant; he asked if ZCG wants to wait on the marketing aspect to vote. Michael replied that he would like to know if there is some kind of thought put into marketing; the software stack decisions are a bit esoteric; we want something that we can fork so he might follow up with the grantee on some technical decisions; he emphasized that he likes the grant and he’s sure he is going to deliver; he is positive and excited about the grant.
    • All members agreed to wait to get questions answered before making a decision.
  • Zcash Ecosystem Security Lead
    • Jason summarized that Taylor Hornby from ECC applied to do outreach, security analysis, and remediation support for what breaks down to $1,000/day at an estimated 17 days per milestone for a total of 12 milestones; they are proposing they quit their job and do it for 1 year; they didn’t give much detail on the milestones; one of the questions is if there enough work to do to warrant pursuing it, considering the upcoming milestones and scheduled audits.
    • Aditya commented that he is happy that someone may meet RFP needs and added that, sometimes, it’s better to go with specialized audits done by a 3rd party; Taylor’s knowledge will help with Zcash specific projects; we can see how he can meet the gaps and if they still need external support.
    • Hudson said he sees this as the start; he will do this for the first year, then they can see what gaps there are, especially as new apps use ZSAs; his reputation is really good and the pricing is fair; there are other small things to work out regarding cadence, what gets picked, and how milestones are communicated with team.
    • Aditya stated that they should have at least 6 months of workflow ready as seen with any contract work requirements; it’s good to see a series of Zcash software audits in the works.
    • Brian shared that he’s less concerned about the 6 month schedule; he thinks they can leverage the milestones to evaluate what work has been done; he is all for giving flexibility with good communication.
    • Aditya suggested they communicate with a milestone-based approach. Hudson voiced that they could fund 6 months with loose milestones as he is okay having him freestyle on stuff that is not an audit; they can use his expertise to save engineering team hours with larger things. Aditya agreed and added Taylor could write security best practices for Zcash software developers.
    • Brian summarized that they need to get more info on milestones and address the concerns that there is not enough work. Jason added that it seems like the community and the committee has a very high opinion of Taylor, and the rate Taylor quotes is very fair; Jason thinks it’s a very exciting grant proposal. Michael stated that he supports Taylor wanting to work with more autonomy and he doesn’t want to get in the way of him and his talent; he loves it.
  • Zecwallet and Orchard
    • Jason explained that this grant would enable ZecWallet to implement full support for Orchard and experimental support for Zebra with a budget of $114,400; the committee wants to give time for community feedback and for Aditya PK to answer Aditya’s questions.
    • Michael brought up that a major point of contention was signing keys; he also pointed to the forum thread regarding zancas.
    • Aditya commented that if new contributors can lend a hand, he wants to see collabration. Earlier last month, Aditya PK had announced a 6-months of support for existing features following which there was uncertainty for ZecWallet. Developers and hard-core users of ZecWallet stepped up to fix minor issues in ZecWallet for self-use, but there was no official release announcement made from the community developers; Aditya PK has now found a developer to carry on the new feature development for Orchard support and make much-needed improvements to ZecWallet; ZecWallet is Aditya PK’s product, with almost 5 years of history; there are thousands of users who rely on ZecWallet for their Zcash transactions and ZecWallet is best served under Aditya PK given the proven track record; new contributors can lend a hand and contribute to ZecWallet; we are looking forward to learning from Aditya PK’s interest to accept the bug-fix PRs and even feature development into ZecWallet; we must be careful to avoid creating a rift in the community just because newly assembled developers want to take over an existing, established project. Instead, find ways to make the contributions that benefit everyone in the community. Brian told Aditya that was well said.
    • Hudson asked Jack where it landed with someone taking over. Jack replied that he found out Aditya PK was submitting a grant proposal shortly before ZCG found out; to avoid confusion, he didn’t want to issue a RFP before NU5 activated; ZF has had discussions with an organization that would have been potentially interested the last few months; both Aditya PK from ZecWallet and ZF were looking for someone to work on ZecWallet.
    • Aditya asked what happens to ZecWallet after 13 weeks in terms of sustainability and maintenance; he added that one does not fork and give away signing keys; people expect it from the team making it and he views it as a problem if the same name is used for new software.
    • On June 15, the committee officially approved this grant via Signal saying “the ZCG committee held an off-cycle meeting to vote on this proposal due to there being a high level urgency around ZecWallet implementing full support for the Orchard shielded pool in its various wallets and after confirming the ongoing wallet support & maintenance from ZecWallet developers. The committee unanimously voted to approve this grant.”

Brainstorm Meeting Follow Ups

  • Discretionary Budget
    • Jason summarized on June 6 he reached out to Jack about ZCG’s decision to hedge the discretionary budget by converting $50,000 worth of ZEC to USD to cover the ambassadors’ monthly stipend for 7 months and a cushion for possiible marketing and travel expenses; on June 6th and 7th Jack sold 535.29 ZEC for $50,000 USD.
    • Jack showed the committee some changes he had made to the Dashboard to account for the hedging.
    • Jack reminded them that they pay ambassadors and grantees in ZEC. To date, with regards to hedging grant liabilities, ZF hasn’t bought back any ZEC after paying out milestones because the value of milestones paid out has been exceeded by the value of new grants approved. Over the rest of 2022, if all scheduled grant milestones are paid out, we will pay out $2.7 million.
    • Jason asked about the mechanics of the hedge; what happens when ambassadors are paid. Jack said that we can buy back ZEC or not; the simplest thing would be to buy back the ZEC but there will be some difference between the price the ZEC is bought at, and the price when it’s sent. Jason commented if Zcash hypothetically dropped to $20 USD, ZCG may want to reverse hedge, and if ZCG approves a grant, it will increase the liabilities.
    • Jason said that they will further discuss hedging the discretionary budget in their brainstorm session and will come back to Jack on their decision; for now Danika will let Jack know when she pays out Ambassadors and Jack will buy back the ZEC that was sent.
  • Global Ambassador Program: Allowance for promotional merchandise
    • Jason explained that Michael2xl asked if there is a merchandise allowance when ambassadors go to events and conferences; he thinks back in 2018 ZF sponsored meetups and asked if ZF sponsored merchandise and if there should be a cap; how does ZCG best keep ambassadors from abusing allowance? Jack replied that no one on the call was at ZF when ZF sponsored meetups; he believes they decided to stop because it wasn’t getting a good return but things change and that is not a comment on the current ambassadors or situation; the short answer is he doesn’t know.
    • Alex said one solution is to provide an allowance for a specific period, not to exceed x thousand and trust they are buying decent stuff. Winnie also voiced that they can lower the cost by designing in-house. Hudson brought up that they could print a ton of stickers or assign one ambassador to mail 250 stickers to each ambassador.
    • Aditya asked about trademarks and suggested they source designs locally. Alex agreed that ZF doesn’t want to get into shipping but we can help with designs; they should procure locally as shipping could take months; ZF’s best support is design; trademark approval won’t be a problem for ambassadors. Aditya replied that the ambassadors will appreciate any designs approved from ZF. Winnie added if they want to customize, that ZF can work with them. Jason summarized that they can finalize a policy then give an update and put Winnie in touch with ambassadors.
    • Brian asked if they should discuss spending caps. Jason said he’s not sure that they agreed or came up with a number yet. Winnie commented that there are things that can be financed without breaking the bank, like stickers. Jack suggested telling the ambassadors to get a quote for what they want to do; they tell you how much and you see if you are comfortable with it so it is more fluid; sometimes if you set a policy, they work within it, which constrains creativity. Jason agreed that that is a great point, if Michael attends a conference in Brazil, he can get a quote on t-shirts and ZCG can use quotes to gradually set a guideline. Aditya brought up that it is still a good idea to set a cap so they don’t risk unmonitored spending. Jack clarified that he is suggesting that before they spend money, they come up with a quote then they spend; it’s not a case where they spend whatever they want. Michael agreed that that would not restrict initiative; it’s good to leave it up to discretion. Aditya commented that they don’t want to be evaluating a request every day. Jason replied that he thinks that the requests will be few and far between, like attending conferences; maybe 4-5 a year. Brian agreed; if ZCG receives a lot of requests he’ll be excited.
  • Coin-based voting
    • Aditya brought up that he has a coin based voting plan to share updates with ZCG, then with ZCAP and forums; it is non-binding and he wants to share it with the community soon and introduce an RFI.

Comms Update

  • Winnie provided a comms update including an evaluation of the recent press releases and ideas for effective outreach to reach the target audience.
  • Jason mentioned the idea of ZCG members attending conferences like LA Blockchain, Messari & London Token 2049. Hudson suggested Stanford Blockchain. Cryptoeconomics, ZK Summit, and Grace Hopper.


  • Jason asked if there were other items on ZCAP besides the election. Jack replied no, that’s it; the deadline for candidate applications is June 15th 9:00 UTC and the community call will be the next week on Tuesday June 21st; we will have people post questions on the forum and the most upvoted questions will be asked to the candidates.