AGP Discussion: Seeding Space Decentral with a loan

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–>Read the proposal

Forum summary

In a recent tweet, Micah White, one of the co-founders of Occupy Wallstreet – a protest movement which gave birth to the decision-making tool Loomio, put a compelling case forward about the importance of Space Activism. He makes a great point about how it is imperative to create a social movement to define how future societies on space should be governed, and how space resources should be managed. He makes a great point about how it is important to get ahead of the curve so we do not end up living in a technocratic military dictatorship on Earth, but instead build governance structures that are more democratic and citizen-designed.

Founders of Space Decentral such as myself, @topocount, @rkzel decided to go all-in on the Aragon Project in January of 2019. We recognized how important this technology was for the movement we wanted to create. We recognized that our ideals and vision were very aligned with the vision and movement set forth in the Aragon manifesto.

But, it would be great if Space Decentral wasn’t left on the back burner. When I stopped leading Space Decentral, things stunted a bit. We have a community of people eager to push the vision forward, but it needs a project manager and it needs some incentives. Now that Open Enterprise is live, this can be made a reality. I also found the perfect project manager and new lead for the Space Decentral project: Anja Blaj.

Anja studied space law and has a degree in global law from the University of Ljubljana. In addition to her background in space law, she has been actively involved in the blockchain ecosystem since 2017. She started with Blockchain Think Tank Slovenia, headed the advocacy department in European Blockchain Hub and is currently a core member of the DGOV foundation, an organization focusing on distributed governance, experiments, learnings, knowledge exchange. She’s also part of the Future Law Institute, UK where she participates in program design, strategy, and production of the Future Law Virtual Summit 2020.

Members of Autark will be strategic advisors and will not be beneficiaries of this grant. The collaboration will occur over areas and initiatives that are overlapping with Autark’s AGP-73 and beneficial to the Aragon ecosystem at large.

This is a unique AGP as it’s a loan (for 75,000 DAI), because I think with a bit of love, time, care, and taking full advantage of the tools Aragon has to offer, that Space Decentral can find additional funding sources and replenish the treasury. Some of the deliverables of this proposal and the increased brand awareness for Aragon that comes along with powering a space agency, will at the same time, be greatly beneficial to the Aragon Network at large.

I see that this proposal has synergies with the Aragon Black proposal, and if both are accepted, I encourage collaboration to reduce duplication of efforts!

I will be beyond grateful if the Aragon Network approves this AGP. Besides, I think it will be a great meme and marketing strategy for Aragon, that sets us apart from other DAO platforms – that showcases large-scale DAOs solving large-scale problems. Aragon powers space agencies. I’m looking forward to your feedback!

–>Read the proposal

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This definitely caught me off-guard, wasn’t expecting this at all in ANV5. Tons of questions, but let’s start with:

  • What’s in this for ANT holders?
  • Why would we fund a space agency?
  • How does this help anything the project stands for and received funding for?
  • As a Flock team lead, do you really think the best way for the project to allocate capital is to fund this?
  • Also why on earth would ANT holders approve a 0% interest loan? In which there’s obvious risk but not any ROI.
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Hello @jorge! I totally understand your questions around this, partly I was trying to get a general temperature check from the community. If it catches other off guard, I’m happy withdrawing the AGP.

Thus, I’m not going to defend this AGP super hard for now (I don’t think it’s worth my time or energy as a Flock lead to get too in the weeds on this, if there are strong feelings against it), but will let it marinate a bit. Not adding the interest in the loan was part of the rushed nature of the AGP. If there is encouragement that this AGP should be included in the ballot, things like the budget and interest can be accommodated.

Partly I was inspired by Micah White’s tweet and thought that maybe there was synergy… I’m obviously biased on the matter and I know this can make it difficult to put the case forward. I just want to personally work on the Aragon project and advancing the stack as much as possible, and didn’t see me ever having time in the next few years to actually build my “dream DAO”… so that’s the perspective I was coming from. Hope you understand!

Anja and I will publish answers to your questions & others by Sunday night… that gives more time to get reactions and other questions.

[Edited this a couple times for clarity.]

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Memes, it looks like.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the project being funded and I have great respect for Yalda’s work. But that’s just not how loans work, is it? I’ll be honest, as an ANT holder, I feel a bit disrespected here.

Let’s just use the words in the title and ask ourselves if it reflects the proposal:

  • Seeding: “Seed money, sometimes known as seed funding or seed capital, is a form of securities offering in which an investor invests capital in a startup company in exchange for an equity stake or convertible note stake in the company.”
  • loan: “In finance, a loan is the lending of money by one or more individuals, organizations, or other entities to other individuals, organizations etc. The recipient incurs a debt, and is usually liable to pay interest on that debt until it is repaid, and also to repay the principal amount borrowed.”

Yalda, you’ve earned yourself plenty of credit with your work so I have no doubts many token holders would gladly accept proposals coming from you. That is obviously, given care is given to align interests.

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I pretty much agree with this. I respect @stellarmagnet’s work and I personally really like the vision behind Space Decentral, but I’m not sure how a loan to seed a space agency is beneficial for ANT holders.

If it was structured like an equity investment or something like that, it could be brought to ANT holders and they could analyze it as such. By taking in mind the risk, ROI, etc. and then performing a rational investment decision.

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I find the vision for a collective space effort quite powerful.
I also believe Yalda has the capacity to put together competent individuals to cultivate such an effort, as also seen by this proposal.

While I also find zero interest loan as a sub-optimal instrument for this particular case, I would strongly encourage using Aragon Fundraising for this upon mainnet deployment. This way, given the right inputs (vision, attention, resources) a seed community can achieve a coherent economic alignment and enjoy a price discovering asset through which the community can fund the rigid & tangible steps towards a collective space agency in an accountable way. This also enables granular participation in contrast to a monolithic (&binary outcome) network funding.

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that’s seem to be a very unfair question Jorge. You should be asking in this case why on space we’ll do it! :slight_smile: :smile:

jokes beside, I do recognize this as a powerful initiative and I’d love to see this project happening thanks/powered to/by Aragon, this kind of things are very meaningful but unless we see before a proclamation AGP being accepted to extend the Aragon Project scope to something like spacial governance, I wouldn’t make this proposal pass to the ANV.

From the Aragon Manifiesto:

We are committed to a world in which every person can participate in these new organizational structures.

we seem not to be commited to the multiverse… yet!

T O T A L L Y !!!

We thank everyone for providing such amazing feedback and we have talked about it with people involved in the project. We appreciated the constructive criticism that was provided in this thread and realize that the current proposal was not very clear about the benefits for the Aragon Network at large. The main hypothesis was that it may be a unique and important mission that can lead toward more exposure with what is possible with Aragon. You can read about that more in the detailed reasoning below. If what is presented is still not a convincing enough argument or you feel is too vague and doesn’t directly address your concerns, we can spend more time in the next few months, instead of the next few days, in refining the strategy. We are also happy to organize a strategic brainstorming session in Berlin and inviting anyone to participate who is excited to see Space Decentral launched on Aragon - get in touch if interested!

Thesis

In order to achieve a coherent and transparent governance of resources and investments we allocate for space exploration and utilization, we must use all possible technology providing us with the option of improved and advanced frictionless design. Aragon and its tools are where one can start to implement mechanisms and provide users with deep analysis that will allow us to adapt and remain agile, even when we are dealing with abstract mechanics in the outer space.

Many people think creating a global international space agency is impossible. But what if the impossible can be successful with Aragon? Of course, such a mission will not be what you call an overnight success. But I think that it will happen in our lifetimes, especially if the initiative is composed with at least a small group of people that will never give up until it is successful and self-sustaining.

This is one of those endeavors where before a platform like Aragon, it would never be possible to accomplish the mission:

  • You cannot grow a global, citizen driven space agency without Aragon.

  • It would never be made as transparent in the way in which Aragon supports.

  • It’s one of the perfect initial guinea pigs for the Aragon Court and Aragon Fundraising

  • Case studies can be written about it, that can inspire new ways to bring people together to solve the world’s worst problems

Aragon is a fully featured platform that can enable such complex initiatives which can in turn lead to more adoption and utility for ANT. The community and platform can grow to be something that evolves into the X Prize. Aragon is much needed for impact assessment and effective agency and co-ownership dynamic, both in space and on Earth. Moreover, it provides a strong signal for censorship resistant governance and control of the broader environment in which we operate today. With Aragon and transparent open source practices, we can avoid situations like the Challenger or recent Boeing 737 Max fatalities, where it would be made more easy for information to be revealed in a bottom-up fashion. Additionally, the Aragon Court can be the accountability measure to ensure that grants awarded in a space agency are allocated as proposed, and the AGP process can be adapted to an SGP process, so contractors of the agency are selected in the most transparent fashion.

The higher strategy proposed that this Space Decentral proposal is crafted around, is that more generally, I believe we should consider allocating a percentage of the treasury as small grants, investments, or loans to new DAOs that aren’t necessarily building apps or enhancing the SDK, because right now we have a lot of tools and features. What we need now is more users!

PayPal grew in the early days by giving users $5 each to experiment with their new technology. Gitcoin has also been growing their community by offering grants simply for creating bounties on their platform. This AGP is essentially about partially giving money to adopt new users, and adding more weapons to our legal offerings. It’s a little bit better than merely giving away money since it is a loan contingent upon success. Upon making an organization succeed with Aragon. With more DAOs compliantly fundraising, it can lead toward organizations being more at ease that their projects won’t become at risk with the regulators. With more DAOs successfully fundraising on Aragon, it can also lead toward more money that an organization can allocate toward work — which means more users for Aragon.

Whether we allocate grants to space agencies, social impact projects, or new companies that will organize with Aragon, it will immediately grow the number of users especially as a portion of the funding is going toward compensating work as that is the nature of Aragon’s core Finance app or new apps developed by other teams. Through this increased exposure to Aragon and its services, people will learn about how it can improve how we organize and we can learn about how we can improve what we are building. People will opt-in to the new digital jurisdiction that we are building in increased numbers, and we can improve the services they need so they can truly decouple from traditional jurisdictions which take away their freedoms.


Thank you!

Yalda Mousavinia & Anja Blaj

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