1/ 100% agree that DAOs in of themselves & decentralized governance are not “the thing”.

But the structural unfair advantages that “DAO tech” offers (especially when paired with DeFi) and the applications they can enable will be revolutionary, very, very soon.

Let me explain 👇
2/ Bitcoin, blockchains, crypto, DeFi & NFTs were all at one point misunderstood. Many of them are now well understood, but it’s important to remember they were once viewed very skeptically.

People now get DeFi. NFTs are getting there.

DAOs are still further behind IMO.

3/ Let’s take NFTs. They started over 3 years ago in 2017 with @CryptoKitties.

There was a boom, there was a bust, then we didn’t hear about them for years until recently. What changed?


DeFi infrastructure enabled things with NFTs that weren’t possible before.
4/ When you now look at NFTs and how they’re being created, accessed, and used, it’s very different than 2017.

NFTs with embedded DeFi primitives like auction markets @ourZORA. Superfluid exchange of NFTs with social & governance tokens. NFTs as collateral in lending protocols.
5/ DeFi infrastructure has evolved and expanded the way we think about NFTs and their role in the world.

NFTs are also not just digital collectibles. NFTs are internet media assets owned by internet users—that prove we showed up, love something, belong, or identify. That’s big.
6/ When we see NFTs this way, their potential applications are massive.

- social media
- entertainment
- creator economies
- gaming
- e-commerce
- and so much more to come

How will this happen? We need to think about the unique *properties* NFTs bring to the world.
7/ Here are some of NFTs’ unique properties—especially when combined with DeFi:

- Permissionless
- Composable
- Provable ownership
- Scarce ownership
- User/community owned
- Embedded provenance
- Price discovery and liquidity
- Global transfer on the internet
- and more
8/ Physical collectibles don’t easily have these properties—but more importantly, none of these properties are true about today’s internet media (music, writing, video, games, images).

NFTs will be transformative to the internet, and everything—the content and platforms—on it.
9/ So when it comes to DAOs, the same is true.

“The DAO” happened 5 years ago in 2017. A lot has changed since then.

Now people think of DAOs for governance.

It’s very interesting, but that’s not only what DAOs are or where they’re going in the years ahead.
10/ We need to unpack DAOs—like crypto, DeFi, NFTs—and understand the *unique properties* they bring the world.

When looked at this way, people will see how revolutionary “DAO tech” will be.

It’ll expand the way we think about and define DAOs.
11/ DAOs as just a decentralized governance tool is a very narrow way to think of DAO tech.

When viewed this way, DAOs are only a tool for coordinating governance decisions over protocols, which today are mainly protocol upgrades and how project treasuries should be deployed.
12/ But DAOs are much broader in scope than that. And their implications are significant.

DAOs are tools for rapidly, efficiently & limitlessly coordinating human capital, resources, creativity, energy, compassion & output globally over the internet.

That’s a big deal.
13/ DAO tech similarly possesses and brings many unique properties to the world:

- global
- open
- composable
- process automation
- rapid syndication
- rapid coordination
- rapid collaboration
- provable social connections
- provable behavioral histories
- collective ownership
14/ When framed this way, it opens the design space for DAOs—and more importantly, it opens people’s imaginations to what DAOs are for, what applications they have, and what their impact will be on our world and lives.
15/ Where are inefficiencies or limitations in coordinating human capital, resources, creativity, energy, compassion, or output globally causing really big problems in the world?

I’d argue everywhere.

- government
- business
- philanthropy
- investing
- art
- education
- etc
16/ So how do DAOs solve this?

Like every over tech in history: by being designed & applied to specific problems, in specific contexts, for specific users, with specific uses.

Specific doesn’t mean small.

Specific means focused. Specific drives adoption & real impact.
17/ User-centric applications powered by DAO tech are coming very, very soon.

And these DAOs—like DeFi and NFTs today—will have a massive impact in ways we couldn’t have possibly imagined.
18/ We should frame DAOs not as “decentralized autonomous organizations,” but instead as “decentralized automated organizations.”

This is closer to the potential DAOs have in our world.

If you’re working on this, join me & others to show the world what this can mean.

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More from @ianjohnlee

18 Mar
1/ Very excited to share that @WillPapper & I are launching @SyndicateDAO, a protocol & social network to democratize investing for all.

I will continue to be investing @IDEOVC (which led Syndicate's round) & am excited to continue to work with founders in my new combined role.
2/ In fact, because of what Syndicate is and enables, it's already led to many new relationships, collaborations & opportunities—I'm excited to continue investing at @IDEOVC & helping take the firm to new heights.

Especially since we believe Syndicate is the future of investing.
3/ I've been in crypto since 2014 and have dedicated my life & career to it because of its transformative potential to make our world more open, free, fair, equitable, democratic & meritocratic.

This passion is part of my life's quest to bring more equitableness to our society.
Read 38 tweets
30 Dec 20
1/ Crypto’s biggest potential impact to society is in sustainably distributing wealth, capital & ownership to a larger % of the world.

This is also its biggest risk: crypto can exacerbate inequality if it is not made accessible to everyone—especially those who need it most.
2/ Inequality is growing to unsustainable levels comparable to that in the early 1900s prior to WWI & the 1700s prior to the French Revolution & sweeping changes throughout Europe.

The top 1% (~80M people) now owns the same amount of capital as the remaining 99% (~7.9B people).
3/ Historically, there are only two solutions to extreme levels of inequality:

1. Revolution: Violence or war that leads to wealth redistribution to those who fought & won

2. Intervention: Political change that raises taxes on the rich & increases benefits to the poor
Read 13 tweets
5 Dec 20
How I learned Solidity programming in a month:

In April during lockdowns, I decided to invest in learning Solidity. Given that I haven't seriously coded beyond HTML in almost 20 years, it was daunting 😨

But it doesn't have to be hard or scary to get started.

Here's how 👇
1/ Latest Solidity Documentation

Here's all the latest dev stuff/updates to @ethereum Solidity. I search for things in here a lot when I'm trying to see how to do something very specific. Don't try to read this like a book. Just search for things in it.

2/ @udemy Solidity Course

For me this was really great and fun. Starts from first principles and teaches via real smart contract examples. It cost only $14.99 and I did it in 3 weeks very casually. You could do it in less than a week (I have a day job!).

Read 16 tweets
5 Dec 20
1/ IMO, @iearnfinance's DeFi Voltron is the most interesting in thing happening in DeFi right now. 🤔

Are these just friendly collaborations like anything else in crypto? Are several semi-closed DeFi Collectives starting to emerge?

A thread on what I call "DeFi Collectives" 👇
2/ Is it nothing to think about? Or could it be laddering up to something more profound in 2021 and beyond in DeFi?

One view is that it's an innocuous thing (which could be true, for now). Another is that it'll take competitive strategy and game theory in crypto to a new level.
3/ I wrote a lot about competitive strategy in DeFi this year when @SushiSwap vampire attacked @UniswapProtocol via a fast follower fork. Below is my piece in @BanklessHQ in September about Fork Defense Strategies in DeFi.

Read 12 tweets
12 Jul 19
0/ THREAD: Yesterday, we @ideocolab announced our new Startup Studio to accelerate the world's best blockchain startups, in partnership with over 20 leading organizations and protocols.

In this thread, I’ll share why and how we decided to do this.

1/ First I want to thank @coindesk @DanielGKuhn @pete_rizzo_ and @TheBlock__ @Yogita_Khatri5 @mdudas for covering yesterday, as well as the support from our partners and the general blockchain community.

2/ For many people in the #blockchain and #crypto community, this was the first time they've heard of @ideo, @ideocolab, or the fact that we've been working deeply in the blockchain/crypto space since early 2015 with many of the industry's leading crypto projects and people.
Read 55 tweets
4 Dec 18
{THREAD} For a decentralized project to succeed, it needs:

1. Team
2. Vision
3. Governance & economic model
4. Plan
5. Capital
6. Service (usable in market)
7. Users

Not enough importance, energy, or discipline has been put into #7, nor how it affects #1-#6. I'll explain how...
1. Team.

Most projects don't have experienced product or design co-founders, or they hire a head of product or design too late.

Like startups today (e.g., Airbnb, Slack, Pinterest), bring them in at the beginning to balance deep tech with user-centric design.
2. Vision.

@m2jr looks for founding teams with "earned secrets," which often come from deep experience in the field working (& seeing pain points) with customers & users at a granular level. Teams & visions should be configured this way. How do we know X should be decentralized?
Read 9 tweets

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