ZOMG Google Meet Meeting: August 3, 2021
[Minutes taken by Danika]
Alex Bornstein acting as ZF resource
Danika Delano acting as notetaker
- Whitepaper Open Call Meeting
Chris asked how the Whitepaper Open Call meeting went. ML said it went well; Hanh put together a 14 slide summary of issues & DC from ECC thought they were all on point. Many of the issues were technical and included work on servers, and clients. ML is going to see if Hanh can convert the slides into a more understandable format and add it to the Whitepaper; two people put a hand up for mastering Zcash; both Aditya’s (ZecWallet & NightHawk) didn’t show up but she noted that it wasn’t all bad because it gave other people a chance to speak up. ML ended by saying she is not sure if she thinks it’s a good idea to arrange another session because she doesn’t want to squander more of ECC and ZF’s time (it was 2 hours) and it is good to have them present so projects that are built that are relevant.
*Zcash Thorchain Bridge
Hudson relayed that Shawn was unable to attend the meeting but sent the following statement: “As far as Thorchain I’m still a no; not convinced of the need/value for Zcash. And the ideas around lobbying that were brought up yesterday, I think is out-of-scope for ZOMG and requirements of ZIP-1014 to be more directly beneficial for Zcash itself.”
Holmes summarized that ZOMG decided they are going to wait until they complete their last milestone of the other grant. Chris replied that he doesn’t mind pausing it until Nighthawk delivers on the other grant; he volunteered to respond on the grants.zfnd platform. Holmes replied that he had responded on the forum thread. All members agreed that there should be a better way to respond to applicants on one platform.
ML mentioned that Hanh had ideas to build a platform so this works better. Chris explained that he just uses grants.zfnd.org as it is more manageable than the forums but he also recognizes the forum is the main watering hole. Holmes brought up that many people are not posting on the forum. Alex replied that if ZOMG lets him know what they need from the grant platform, then he can request changes and send them a proof.
Holmes suggested they ask Allison about their background on previous experience.
ML pointed out that when they first posted an application, they sent everyone a DM on the forum; they conduct interviews and have a good network of people/sits in the think-tank category. ML agreed that the idea behind the podcast is a good one but it feels too loose and she doesn’t know if any of these lead to anything that grabs people’s attention.
Chris brought up that his view on marketing and content creators for standard content is to ask, “what is their provable distribution?”; all publishers care about is distribution since content is subjective; how do you prove that you are getting your content to people?; he might not agree with the content of something (like on Tik Tok), but if they have a wide reach, that is more important when thinking of what matters to Zcash.
Hudson agreed. He pointed out that the application said they had up to 80K views. Holmes reviewed their YouTube account and shared that most have 1K views, and a few are in the teens which is not bad for the existing scale for videos on Zcash. Chris found that Bitcoin videos have 7K, 35K, 97K, 50K views so the applicant’s visibility is kind of in that range on the lower side, but they’re on the map. Holmes researched that the top all-time Zcash video has 220K and almost all are about mining; the non-mining video high has about 50K views. He pointed out that if a video about Zcash got 80K views, it would be one of the biggest on YouTube.
Hudson asked if they are creating video interviews or podcasts? ML replied that there was a reference to a podcast. Chris summarized that they are applying for a one year prototype with a monthly release so a total of 12. Hudson replied that it’s a lot of money for 12.
ML observed that the attitudes of the committee were not too hot and asked if they should take a vote. Holmes asked if the committee would want to approve it for 3 months. Hudson replied that he also thought it was a good idea. Chris said he is okay with $17.5K. Holmes added that they could make a milestone with view- related deliverables and if they don’t hit it, ZOMG could potentially continue if things are going well. All agreed. ML summarized that they want to fund for 3 months and if they hit xK fews, then ZOMG will consider an extension. Holmes asked if they could require 10K total views since they want to know that at least one of them has reach. ML voiced that she wanted to set a stretch goal of 20K views and prefers the dollar view metric that Chris calculated. All agreed and Holmes volunteered to respond.
- Zcash Mini-Documentary & Educational Series
ML pointed out that many people are excited about this one; it is a series of high quality videos by a media production company that has a good portfolio online, mostly commercial. Chris added that he read that they have a studio but he doesn’t know the reputation of the studio. Holmes shared that he saw the commercials they posted.
ML commented that some of these concepts are not new, but what got the community excited is the quality of material presented and it may be more compelling to share amongst a larger community so she likes it; $200K but seems reasonable per person and they are giving a discount because they feel strongly about it; she is conscious but excited.
Hudson said he likes it a lot; the stuff they have to show from previous work is impressive; a well-produced video to share about Zcash can go a long way and videos he saw about Etherium is what got him into ETH; in summary, it is lacking currently for Zcash and if a pro is willing to do it, he is willing to fund it.
ML asked the committee if they liked the idea of not funding them completely to make sure the point is on target.
Holmes replied that the process usually starts with a lot of storyboarding, then they do an animation so they could bring some artifact before they go in on the whole thing (not public); maybe ZOMG asks for a storyboard with script for tier one.
Hudson pointed out that the applicant provided a link at the top of the proposal that breaks down the proposal more; they do it month by month in bullet points; the 1st milestone is $39.5K; the deliverables are great and he is comfortable with how they have it laid out.
Chris voiced that he thinks they should approve, but if milestones aren’t met, ZOMG voids it. Holmes added that they reply with the caveat that we recognize this is hard to do and we need this to be right. Hudson also added that they are very impressed and if they stick with it, it will be cool. ML brought up that they need to make it clear that ZOMG will not move forward if they are not happy to avoid confusion in the future.
Chris said he is happy to respond saying ZOMG is approving but is strict with milestones to ensure that the quality they anticipate comes through; he will also ask for plans for distributions. Hudson joked that he would like a DVD with bonus features Chris found David Boyer on Twitter and observed that a number of reputable brands use them. Holmes suggested they ask them about this and, given that there is attention to the politics of crypto (especially in US), they might get more distribution if they focus on that; the angle of needing privacy coins instead of just Zcash could be an idea to suggest.
Alex brought up that they have to be careful about straying into lobbying in that they can’t affect the passage of laws because it would be a problem for the Foundation; they need to tread the line carefully. Education should be the focus. Chris said that makes sense and volunteered to respond.
- ΚΣ Labs / 1y R&D Fellowship
Chris commented that there is nothing tangible here that allows ZOMG to spend money. Hudson agreed that it doesn’t have a lot of detail in working intentions and a lot of ambitions that are vague so he’s a no. ML said she was playing devil’s advocate and asked them if they liked what they did with the Brazil project to believe in them and ask them to be more specific? Chris replied that they appreciated their work in growing the Brazil community but this proposal is too vague. Hudson and Holmes agreed. Holmes pointed out that 17 days ago they posted a video about Moeda but the vagueness is still an issue. Hudson volunteered to respond saying they are not going to approve because it’s vague.
- ZPublish – Open-source Social Network With Microtransactions
Chris said that different people have gone after a decentralized network and it’s not a $25K lift. ML pointed out that it’s a proof of concept. Hudson commented that Zcash is not here adoption-wise yet; if they have skills and an interest, their skills should be put to use for usability of Zcash; he doesn’t think anyone would use it.
Holmes read that in the proposal the user would sign in through Twitter and postulated that they could ask questions to see how someone could use it, but he thinks they will find out that it doesn’t make sense for someone to use it; he doesn’t see a path for someone to use it.
Hudson volunteered to respond saying that ZOMG doesn’t feel like this particular project would grab enough user’s attention and requires jumping through some hoops to interact with it.
- Temp Check for Political Work for Privacy Coins
ML brought up that it’s likely that the hammer is about to fall on privacy coins and asked the committee if they do want to fund an organization that can do advocacy work.
Holmes replied that he thinks they should first have blue sky convos and recognize ZOMG/ZF would talk to lawyers later since no one is an expert in tax law.
ML stated that it is not the top of the priority list; it’s important but could be challenging.
Holmes commented that he doesn’t think it’s a legal issue.
Hudson voiced that with the amount of money ZOMG has, they should focus more on projects that will fund more on the technical side and advocacy should not be a top priority.
Alex stated there are specific things that ZOMG/ZF can not do related to advocacy and there is a lot of grey area; in his experience, when an organization is under scrutiny, it’s not the time to push the envelope; if ZOMG is interested in pursuing this, he is happy to relook at the information, do the leg work, and talk to an external expert; he added that going this route makes him really uncomfortable and as he likes to err on the side of caution.
Chris said that he is not sure what the intended positive deliverable is; the US is well funded through Coin Center so he feels okay about the US; Europe feels like a mess and he doesn’t know how to begin; it will be a war with regulators when there is change in an existing economic situation; the question is. “how do we make Zcash resilient against regulatory attack?”; the protocol should not be susceptible to be taken down by a nation-state regulator.
Holmes stated that the most concrete thing they stand to lose is that some listers would drop Zcash
Alex told the committee that this is one of the conversations where words matter; education as a form of advocacy is fine but ZOMG/ZF have to stay in that lane; deliverables are important and education is what all advocacy groups do; it is left up to the legislators to make decisions and we are not trying to influence people to vote in a different way. We need an informed public and informed policy-makers.
Holmes agreed that the intention would be to educate regulators on what the best thing to do is.