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DAOs: Logistics, Definitions, Reflections, and - yes - their NFTs

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Greetings all,

In this week’s episode of Ventures, my guests Alex Zub, Spencer Graham, and I talk about the details of day-to-day “DAO life” on DAOHaus. We talk specifically about how Raid Guild - a services DAO - manages proposals, escrow, billing, and bridges to the traditional finance system. We also talk about short-term and long-term financial incentives for DAO founders/participants, how DAOs can quickly raise funds and manage risk/assurance/trust, and how newcomers to DAOs can/should think about how to participate to create maximum value for themselves and their communities.

Check it out: Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) operations and logistics on DAOHaus :: with Alex Zub and Spencer Graham

Wait, what are DAOs again?

Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) are a new form of human organization similar to old-school “co-ops”, but with the notable difference of on-chain (and therefore radically transparent) treasury management, governance, and membership.

While DAOs have had a rocky start the past decade in Web 3, the last couple of years - and 2021 in particular - have ushered in a new era of more sophisticated, secure, and widely-adopted DAOs across a wide variety of markets/purposes (from gaming to art to protocol development and everything in between).

The list of notable DAOs is too large to list here. Instead, I’ll link to a few notable lists of DAOs to explore:

  • DAO Cannon (link)
  • A Deep Dive Into How the Top 10 DAOs Work (link)
  • DAO Overview - A List of Ethereum’s Top DAOs and DAO Structures (link)
  • Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAO) - DeFi Prime (link)

If you are reading this, or follow my work - then you have a front-row seat into the creation of a new DAO - from the ground-up - with a mission to to help each other learn Web 3, practice "on-chain" governance, and create/join other DAOs to build a better Internet together (join us → https://www.BanyanDAO.xyz/). Like our DAO, many organize themselves on Discord and a growing set of DAO tools such as DAOHaus, Snapshot, Commonwealth, and Coordinape.

DAO Reflections

At this point I’m in pretty deep.

I’m still writing up my notes from the Messari Crypto Theses for 2022 and Dr. Sims’ PhD Thesis on DAOs (stay tuned), but in the meantime my head has been focused on the initial DAO creation journey.

If you haven’t joined us in the Banyan DAO Discord server yet, please feel free to jump in.

Where I’m currently at is that DAO creation enables yet another “something” we didn’t have before - i.e. advice for founders that - yes - you can go build something with a huge number of co-founders. Typically, the advice for a startup is to find one or two other co-founders and then be very (very) careful with your cap table (i.e. not give away too much, in order to go the distance w/ proper incentives…which investors like to see). Instead, DAOs allow a totally different mindset; a yielding of control in order to build something massive, such that either (1) your small piece of it is bigger than what it would have been before, and/or (2) you did so much “good” in the world that you don’t care how big your slice is (i.e. you made enough money from the DAO along the way to meet your lifestyle needs that you are happy and content mostly from the thing you helped create).

Personally, I’m finding this journey exhilarating.

NFTs and DAOs

I had a bit of an "aha" last month when thinking about NFTs and the power of both using an NFT as a profile pic (PFP) and participating in an NFT "club".  There is a much bigger opportunity here than just bored apes, crypto punks, and the like...

First, I think this is just an incredible opportunity for artists of all kinds (music, photography, illustration, etc...) to get their work out there to a broader community. The fact that these artists can make money to support themselves via NFT sales is a really, really big deal.

Second, as a buyer/collector of NFTs, you can practically support both artists AND causes you appreciate / believe in. This support is both in the form of money and marketing.

Third, in addition to supporting the artists and causes you believe in, NFTs can also be used to support startups/companies that are fundraising and building a community around their product/service. Even better, these new organizations can be DAOs (Decentralized Autonomous Organizations).

So - putting the above thoughts together, I've been asking myself this past month: "What kind of Web3 communities do I want to hang out in/with in 2022?"

My answers:

1. A DAO committed to training Web 3 Product Managers (this is where it all started last quarter with this LinkedIn post. This is BanyanDAO.)

2. A DAO-of-DAOs committed to helping people start DAOs that promote human flourishing (Also stay tuned for details; there’s a lot going on behind the scenes).

3. A DAO committed to helping each other learn Web 3, practice "on-chain" governance, and create/join other DAOs to build a better Internet together. (This merged into BanyanDAO).

4. A DAO committed to physical fitness & nutrition, including education about basic health science (also coming soon).

5. A DAO committed to promoting mental health and interpersonal communication. I'm a HUGE fan of The Enneagram, so why not EnneagramNFTs? → https://www.enneagramnfts.com/

My partners and I quietly soft-launched the idea of EnneagramNFTs over the holiday break. We spun up 9000 unique NFTs (1k for each Enneagram Type) and just put the first handful up on OpenSea. Check it out → https://opensea.io/EnneagramNFTs, and join us on Discord → https://discord.gg/zJgnHkWXJ3 

Needless to say, I have a LOT more details to share with you soon. Thanks for reading this far down.

Have a great rest of your week!