DAO Tooling Workstream: Mapping, Timeline & Further Discussion

As the next step in the Re-evaluation of the RadicleDAO stack process, I wanted to provide a clearer breakdown of DAO tooling needs based on some of the issues mentioned in my previous post, along with new considerations and questions that have developed from further discussion with community members. I will also propose some tools to start trying based on the pain points discussed in my previous post.

For simplicity, I would like to propose refering to the “Re-evaluation of the RadicleDAO stack workstream” as the “DAO Tooling Workstream” going forward. Speak now in the comments or forever hold your paece.

Below are the (slightly revised, condensed) guiding questions from the Re-evaluation of the RadicleDAO stack post as a reminder for readers.

DAO Tooling Mapping :world_map:

When picking apart DAO tooling needs, there are two main categories that keep reappearing in discussions: governance tooling and DAO “operations” tooling. There are various subcategories that fit under each of those, and a variety of tools that could be used to fill those needs. I believe this is a helpful distinction to make all of the tooling options easier to digest, but also prioritize what is needed when.

The full mapping of tooling categories and the corresponding tools that could potentially service the Radicle community best is found on this Miro board: DAO Tooling Mapping.

Note: This mapping is an extension of the DAO Tooling Archive. The Archive is where you can find all notes and links from project demos we hosted on Discord over the past few months as well as other projects & ideas that can be seen on the mapping board.

Open Tooling Needs Questions :brain:

While there are some obvious needs for specific tooling, there are a few areas that will require further discussion before deciding on what the best tooling option will be for the community.

Many of the points are being discussed in the Org Design Workstream, the Distribution of Ownership Workstream and Distribution of Influence Workstream, but I wanted to highlight the questions I have from the tooling side for these workstreams to take into consideration during their discussions.

  • Onboarding & Resources: Gated vs non-gated? Should certain things be gated? What are those things? This could include things like specific Discord (or other messaging platform) channels, on-boarding for different kinds of contributors, access to different documents/resources for full-time contributors (benefits, payroll, tax services, etc.). This is being discussed in the org design workflow, and clarifying this will help us decide on tools and design processes best fit for our needs.
  • Treasury Management: What is the short and long-term treasury management strategy? What is the timeline for diversification? Who should be making these decisions? There are a lot of different tools out there and it kind of depends a bit on the long-term strategy which one will work best for us.
  • Distribution of Influence: How are we going to introduce a new means of distributing influence within Radicle’s governance system that’s based on a non-financialized governance primitive will be critical? (to be discussed in the Distribution of Influence Workstream) What tools/services could we use to build this non-financialized governance process?
  • Contribution tracking: How do we want to measure contributor activity? What ratio of value vs quantity do we want to use to measure in contributions? What exactly does the DAO want to use contributor metrics for?
  • HR/Payroll/Benefits: What expectations does our community have for HR support? This includes things like employment contracts, tax documentation support, payment structures/currency options, etc. How much is the DAO willing to provide to contributors?

Proposed Tooling to Start Trying :hammer_and_wrench:

There are a few platforms that I could start setting up and testing for the community in July. I have listed a few of these below along with reasons why I think they will be a good place to start. All of these are simple to set up and try out. If we decide we don’t like them, it is easy to off-board as well.

1. Version Controlled Governance Docs on the Radicle Website (Radicle team task)

Currently, the governance documentation and resources are found in the Governance Hub, a notion page that many folks have trouble finding, or under the Governance Topics category on Discourse. When most folks look up a new project, they usually go to the project’s website first (in Radicle’s case, this would be radilce.xyz). At the moment, there is nothing on the radicle.xyz website that suggests that Radicle is a DAO or how to find governance information. This needs to change for ease of onboarding and discoverability.

2. Boardroom - DAO Management Platform & Governance Portal

This would act as a one-stop-shop governance portal, which is something we currently don’t have. Instead of having to go to various sites to see voting history, proposal updates and delegates, it will all be in one, easy to find place. Boardroom is one of many options for this, but seems to have the best functionality and integrations.

Why Boardroom

  • Much simpler and quicker set than creating our own governance portal (i.e. on such as MakerDAO’s). Creating our own platform is something to explore in the future.
  • Boardroom has all of the capabilities and plugins we need for our current governance process. Highly customizable, has automated voting schedule calendar (+Google calendar integration), delegate platform.
  • The team will be able to add new integrations our community or governance process needs as we move forward on our transition to the DAO.
  • No setup from our side required (meta data pulls automatically to site). Users simply connect address to interact with platform.

3. Common Ground - web3-native messaging and voice platform

This would act as an alternative to Discord. The personalized interface for each user displays highlights from all communities you follow.

Why Common Ground

  • It is a web-3 native platform
  • Many folks are sick of Discord or are reluctant to use it in the first place
  • Channels are customizable - also have gated options
  • Working on setting up voting integrations into the platform
  • Highly customizable spam controls for private chats and channels
  • Working towards handing ownership of platform over to users

Downsides:

  • Currently do no have integration with Discourse/community forums (only allow articles to be posted on their platform). However, there is a possibility they could add a ticker-style link that at least displays latest forum activity and links back to the forum.

4. DaoLens - Onboarding flow for contributors

They offer customizable onboarding flows for individual DAO contributors. At the moment there is no formalized onboarding process or flow for contributors. This has resulted in everyone getting a different onboarding experience and individuals having to hunt for resources and the right people to talk to. This could help streamline and simplify the process.

Why DaoLens

  • Simple but powerful onboarding flow - highly customizable. Helps eliminate Discord support message clutter.
  • Directs new contributors or community members to helpful resources to get started (based on what they select in the flow), shows relevant Discord channels, helps them set up calls with relevant team members if they so choose
  • There are also gated options which could have various use cases for the DAO
  • Analytics to track why new members are joining and what resources they need the most

5. Otterspace - Soulbound contributor badges

This is currently an open grants application. Explore ways to coordinate and empower different contributors with NFT badges to improve member engagement, coordination, and distribution of power and permission.

Why Otterspace

  • The Otterspace team has been working closely with various Radicle core teams over the past months to create custom badges that could unlock coordination options that we can use with other tools (onboarding flows, gated channel access, grant coordination, etc.)
  • Otterspace is working on integrations with all major DAO tools to support this new primitive, including (but not limited to) Wonderverse, Snapshot, Discourse, DeWork, Coordinape, Utopia Labs and Clarity.

Next Steps :soon:

Tooling Implementation Timeline :spiral_calendar:

As described above, there are some discussions that still need to be had before we can start choosing & implementing tooling for certain aspects of the DAO. However, there are many areas we can already start implementing and trying out available tools. Below I have created a tentative, very basic timeline for tooling implementation based on priorities of needs as well as what is readily possible and what needs further consideration. Please correct or suggest adjustments to this timeline if you see fit.

Tentative Tooling Timeline:

Q3 2022

Governance Tooling

  • Set up version controlled governance documentation/resources on the Radicle website
  • Set up and test new governance portal
  • Create a more streamlined on-boarding process to the governance process
  • Explore and discuss voting power distribution to core contributors (as outlined in the Distribution of Ownership Workstream
  • Flesh out infrastructure for non-financial governance layer as outlined under the Distribution of Influence Workstream

DAO Operations Tooling

  • Continue exploring and defining community needs through the efforts of the Org Design Workstream. As these start to take shape we will be able to better choose what tools fit our needs best.
  • Start discussing treasury management strategy. There are a lot of cool tools out there but which ones would be the most useful depend a bit on the long-term strategy.
  • Discuss in more detail the process & structure of how different decisions will be made in the future. What decision will be made by who? What do these different decision making processes look like/how are they structure? This will determine the tools we need.
  • Implement a more streamlined on-boarding process to the DAO for Radicle contributors

Q4 2022

Governance Tooling

  • Review and adjust tools if needed that had been implemented thus far
  • Continue exploring and testing tools
  • Have a clear and uniform governance onboarding process in place (including any necessary tools for this)
  • Start experimenting or implementing processes that come out of discussions from the Distribution of Ownership Workstream or Distribution of Influence Workstream

DAO Operations Tooling

  • Choose the best tools for the Radicle community based on research and discussion from the Org Design workstream
  • Set up and onboard team members to necessary platforms

Feb 2023 & Beyond

  • Have governance tooling and any new processes fully in place and have all core team members onboarded to necessary platforms
  • Continue to collect community feedback on RadicleDAO stack and process. Make adjustments as needed

DAO Tooling Workstream To-Dos :clipboard:

  • Collect feedback here from community members as well as in community and governance calls.
  • Start trying out tools with the community (see “proposed tools to start tying” below)
  • Create a more detailed “pros” & “cons” list for each tool on the DAO Tooling Archive list.
  • Connect with the Org Design workstream to see if we can already start coordinating with each other on needs and priorities.
  • Run a workshop/session on DAO tooling options at the next Radicle offsite in Paris.
  • Continue to host community demos with DAO tooling projects and start testing out new tools with the community based on the timeline presented above.

Community call to action: things you can do to help! :heart_hands:

  1. Review the DAO tooling mapping link and let me know what categories/needs you think are still missing.
  2. Send any cool DAO tools you come across to me and I can set up a community demo with them. Reminder that all notes from all project demos can be found in the DAO Tooling Archive.
  3. Read and respond to the other workstreams. This will ultimately help determine what DAO tools we will end up using.
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Happy to start trying out Common Ground! I think it makes sense to try it out with a smaller group, and provide feedback to their team about features we’ll need to fully switch.

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