ZOMG: Should it be proactive in finding grantees?

ZOMG has recently discussed whether to be more proactive vs reactive when it comes to grants. Do we just wait for grants to get submitted or do we actively pursue grantees (or some hybrid approach)?

I mentioned in the last ZOMG meeting that I’d present this question to the community in order to get some feedback before we make decisions to adjust our approach. We opened up the grants site for ZOMG applications on December 7, 2020 and since then we have received 8 grant applications. It’s not bad that we’ve had this number of proposals because we have needed time to get acclimated doing our evaluation process for some of these first grants.

My initial perspective: I think we should cautiously approach being more active in our outreach after setting up some guidelines on transparency and conflicts of interests (beyond what we already have defined). If we reach out to people/teams and let them know they should consider submitting a grant that could really help bring in some quality grant submissions. At the same time, we do not want the appearance of ZOMG members reaching out to “their friends” to get them grant money, regardless of if the person/team is qualified. To help with this issue, we could have a thread in the forum where the ZOMG members update who they have reached out to and for what wishlist item they are targeting.

I’d love feedback on if ZOMG should be more proactive and if my perspective written above has holes.

Thanks! :slight_smile:


I believe that in the process of developing guidelines, it is simply necessary to actively look for contractors, while I believe that (previously I gave a detailed argumentation) this work should be done by a hired professional (at the expense of a grant that will be nominated by ZOMG itself), this specialist will work on finding and selecting the best proposals, contact and preliminary discuss the proposals or speak on behalf of ZOMG with a proposal to the contractors.
now mainly proposals related to wallets and some unrelated, but some have already been rejected.
Why do this and not wait:

  1. It is possible not to wait for the proposals that are necessary, now mainly proposals related to wallets and some unrelated, but some have already been rejected.
  2. A narrow range of search, and insufficient market coverage.
  3. Not enough competition.
  4. In this work, moments will come to light that will require a change in the principles of work, the development of principles should come from practice in my opinion.
  5. It is easier and faster to adapt to circumstances and situations (according to paragraph 1)
    With massive demand, you can not accept all of them, there is no obligation to approve, but interesting ideas that appear can give new ideas for development.

This is great! I would like to see ZOMG take a more proactive approach to grant applicants and I appreciate the thoughtfulness behind how to do it.

There are several ways to be more active:

  • 1x1 outreach to specific teams: I think this is what you’re describing. Posting that outreach in a thread (ex - This month ZOMG is in discussion with company x,y,z at the recommendation of Member A) seems sufficient.
  • 1 to many outreach: I’d love ZOMG to present at Gardening Club (or have a regular standing update if that’s not too much of a time commitment). I mentioned this in discord and believe something is in the works :slight_smile: . A lot of people may still be unfamiliar with Zcash community funds, even people working on might not be aware they can apply for funding.
  • 1 to many outreach: other (arguably not as effective?) ideas for 1 to many outreach could be posting a general note to other crypto or dev communities (like Ethereum forum or reddit) or a small newsletter or podcast sponsorship targeting developers.
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The wishlist is a great idea. The more visibility this gets the better, particularly in places where open source developers congregate.

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I’m really grateful that ZcashOMG is having discussions like this and looping the community in, and the timing and topic is spot on.

I personally am very supportive of the notion of proactive outreach with established guidelines for accountability.

I personally often refer or encourage different people to apply to ZcashOMG. If I were the only one doing this, that’d be bad for Zcash diversity since I already have considerable influence in a different Dev Fund org (ECC). In my opinion, the best way to avoid undue bias or collusion isn’t for me to refrain from doing so, but rather for more other people/orgs to do their own independent outreach, because that approach both counteracts bias and increases growth, adoption, and collaboration.

So, not only should all Zcashers be doing their own independent outreach, I also believe ZcashOMG can and should do an excellent job of it with reasonable safeguards and transparency. I believe ZcashOMG can do it best in some respects, such as ensuring that selection criteria and outreach targeting match up well. Another reason is that if diversity is a goal, then proactive outreach can address that in a way that passive grant criteria establishment would not seem to do.

Here’s another off the cuff brainstorm: would ZcashOMG accept grant applications aimed entirely at doing outreach to recruit more ZcashOMG grant applicants? This may be one way to decouple recruitment from acceptance criteria a bit.


Being proactive is a good idea, especially if you are lacking applications for areas where there is a big need

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I hope ZOMG is very proactive, that just seems like the best use of the opportunity. Also, i think the election for zomg members already “priced in” the individuals tendency towards proactive or not, so imo you should go with your instinct


i support zcash developer recruitment idea.

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The majority of outreach should be conducted by the community as there are no limitations whatsoever on the extent to which we may do it. I agree with soups initial perspective that warrants caution with proactively seeking recipients outside of the established guidlines due to potential CoI’s. The ZOMG is suppose to evaluate and execute on grant submissions, not sequester them and I don’t remember (though correct me if I’m wrong) discussions of, at the time, the potential MGRC about having to actively find people to take the money on top of what would be their primary responsibilities. (To be fair, at the time it was more just hammering out thoughts and ambiguous but the idea was the that ZFNDs funding model would be the guide, as they are bound to it anyways.)
So to the ZEAL, outreach as much as you want and to the ZOMG, as much as you can.

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