Newsletter: The Ownership Game
Welcome to issue 132: This week we cover Metropolis team on Ownership, Gaby Goldberg on Web3 Consumer Products, Jacob Horne call to Mint, 0xJustice Decentralized Autonomous Corporations plus the latest mainstream news and more...
By Forefront - Mar 20, 2023
Welcome to edition 132:
▹ Metropolis team on Ownership
▹ Gaby Goldberg on Web3 Consumer Products
▹ Jacob Horne call to Mint
▹ 0xJustice w/ DAC Manifesto
▹ Arbitrum Upcoming Token Airdrop
▹ Mainstream news and more...
---This edition is brought to you by Otterspace
In this piece, David Phelps takes us on a journey through his own life, from graduating college in the summer of 2008 -- just before things went bad -- to his own economic "coming of age" story living through the recession, and so much more. David weaves together each story to paint us a picture of how own view of the economy, its meaning, and its impact.
The writing is emotional, engaging, and deeply relevant to the events of the last two weeks.
"But I am trying to say something else too. I am trying to say that the job of banks and the job of going bankless is really not so different at all---it's to cushion us from that trauma. A trauma that's often self-induced by both parties. And that's it.
I'm glad we look to have escaped another era of bailouts, and I'm glad I didn't lose all my money over the weekend. But I also wonder when we'll create lasting value outside of arbitrage. And I wonder if there's a world where the job of finance isn't simply cushioning us from its own trauma, but giving us tools for mutual aid and support.
The last recession taught me to ask questions of the world that I'd never asked---and that even today, feel desperately unanswered. What would finance look like if we actually stopped relying on the approbation of central authorities to relieve us of their anxieties? What would finance look like as a collective belief system that we governed? What would finance look like as a collective distribution network to make sure we had the support we needed?"
Take Note If you read one thing this week, make it this piece. It might be the single most engaging and thoughtful crypto-related writing you read all year.
Hidden Keys. Ownership is often referred to as a foundational element of web3. Yet, how ownership is encoded and enforced on-chain is often overlooked. This paper from the Metropolis team explores the relationship between ownership rights and permissions, introduces classifications for permission types, and discusses a few examples of how permissioning impacts ownership. For example, Nouns DAO has agent permissions, the ability to control resources directly, where "resources" include executable access to smart contracts, money, or other on-chain assets. On the other hand, the ENS Endowment has meta permissions, or the ability to control how resources are controlled or who has control over resources. The team also discusses some key implications of permissions on ownership, such as Yuga Labs blocklist and Oasis smart contract upgrades. This is a must read.
Better Interfaces, Better Products. For the inaugural Boys Club Zine, Gaby Goldberg writes about her wishes for web3 consumer products. She first explores wallets as browsers: "What's a Music NFT if I can't listen to it? What's a piece of Digital Fashion if I can't try it on? Wallets are more than just a display case." She then dives into the world of block explorers, arguing that "The tools to parse, share, and curate this web of information aren't just tools, they're interfaces, and the interfaces with better outputs will lead to better inputs, which is why we're here to begin with." This is a really straightforward, interesting look into where crypto may be headed, and how our defined outputs impact the quality of inputs.
Mint First. Jacob from Zora has a simple message: mint your content to take ownership of it, and then share it as far and wide as possible across all of your favorite social media platforms. He argues that in the worst case scenario, you'll now have a public and permanent archive of your media. In the best case, your community has a direct channel to collect and support you and your work. There isn't much to lose. This is ad-free, permissionless opportunity for folks to interact and pay for your work. He argues that as a creator, you are already minting your content as NFTs. It just happens to be that those NFTs live on the private databases of platforms like Youtube, Instagram, and Spotify. This is an incredible reminder and manifesto for the new creator economy, where creators have complete ownership over their media and the way that folks interact with it across the web.
DAOs, DACs, and On-chain Org Design: A DAC Manifesto. 0xJustice is back with another banger. He argues a renewed case for Decentralized Autonomous Corporations, or DACs, which are the for-profit version of what we usually call DAOs (at least according to Vitalik). He lays out a manifesto for DACs, including assertions like "Value before Community" and "Coordination games over Governance." We all know the public goods narrative, but someone pays for those public goods. When markets shift and grants dry up, there should be a strong backbone of revenue-generating companies; else, the whole system has no hope of gaining greater adoption. The Web3 movement has promoted the narrative of providing for the unbanked, but we may have overlooked the need to equip the industrious. DACs, address these things by rearticulating the value prop of building on-chain in a way that speaks to founders and traditional organizations.
How I Think About Choosing Guardians For Multisig And Social Recovery Wallets. No more blog posts -- only Vitalik reddit posts. Vitalik took to the r/ethereum subreddit to explain how he thinks about choosing guardians for multisig and social recovery wallets. He uses a multisig wallet personally to store the bulk of my funds, as does the Ethereum Foundation. A close cousin of multisig wallets is social recovery wallets, where a single key can be used to sign transactions but if that key is lost, a group of keys held by other people can be used to recover the funds. Vitalik lays out some best practices for how to choose guardians and how to maintain safety of your funds when stored using either of these vehicles. This is a very practical, useful post that everyone with meaningful onchain assets should read.
LinksDAO Wins Bid to Buy Scottish Golf Course. LinksDAO, a community formed with ambitions to purchase a real-world golf course, agreed to do just that on Thursday: the DAO secured the winning bid to purchase Spey Bay Golf Club, an oceanside 18-hole golf course in Scotland. While the deal terms have not been disclosed, the over 100-year-old Spey Bay course was listed with an expectation of receiving bids over 750,000 GBP, or nearly $910,000. GolfDigest reports that the deal may close higher than the list price. The deal is expected to be finalized in the coming weeks. LinksDAO continues to make moves with an active, productive community -- congrats!
Latest on Mainstream...
This week, Instagram announced they're shutting down support for NFTs on the platform. The decision means Meta will end its tests of minting and selling NFTs on Instagram as well as the ability to share NFTs on Instagram and Facebook in the coming week. Instead, the company is focusing on "areas where we can make impact at scale," like messaging and monetization on Reels and on improving Meta Pay.
Next, Coinbase is looking for a new home offshore as US crackdowns on crypto continue. According to Bloomberg's sources, Coinbase has informed its institutional clients about the intentions of setting up a new trading platform offshore. Given Coinbase's active engagement with US policymakers, it remains to be seen how these particular plans will play out.
Finally, leaders of the Effective Altruism movement were repeatedly warned beginning in 2018 that Sam Bankman-Fried was unethical, duplicitous, and negligent in his role as CEO of Alameda Research, the crypto trading firm that went on to play a critical role in what federal prosecutors now say was among the biggest financial frauds in U.S. history. They apparently dismissed those warnings, sources say, before taking tens of millions of dollars from Bankman-Fried's charitable fund for effective altruist causes.
▹ Read - Kaiseki
▹ FF Library - Rethinking the PFP Thesis
▹ Opinion - Meme-Utility Spectrum
▹ Raise - Daniel Allan Raises $1m
▹ Fresh Take - Musicians <> Web3
▹ New - ARB Airdrop
▹ Techy - Smart Contract POC Templates
▹ Tooling - POAP Drops
▹ Tweet Check - About Rage Quit
◎ Check out Signal for daily top web3 social headlines
Looking for a way to support Forefront? We’re opening up the FF Newsletter to sponsors interested in sharing their company, project, or community with +10,000 of web3’s most curious minds. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, check out our Sponsorship Page.
The information in this newsletter is not intended to constitute legal, financial or investment advice and should not be construed or relied upon as such. Any opinions reflected are the opinion of the author(s) of the newsletter only and not necessarily of Forefront. Please DYOR.