Internet of Peers

Spreading web 3.0 ideas, projects and code around the world.

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DAO, Decentralized Autonomous Organization


DAOs connect people and businesses worldwide quickly, seamlessly, and efficiently; agreements can be committed and settled automatically, generating a fast-paced chain of irreversible events all around the ecosystem.

DAOs solve many organizational and trust issues derived from working in an international and heterogeneous world, and they are becoming more and more relevant every day.

When founded on solid trustless frameworks, DAOs can express valuable capabilities like governance and automation, becoming core elements of the Web3.

About DAOs, Alison McCauley posed some questions. My answers follow.

What questions do DAOs raise?

DAOs can move funds and assets, control contents, force decisions. They put in charge a more extensive, international, and pseudo-anonymous audience.

Because of this, the first issues will raise about regulations and ethics, especially with DAOs based on people’s ideas and feelings.

We are all the same, we are all humans, and we feel each other, but we must comply with very different laws around the globe.

Suppose you raise funds to help Iranian students to learn how to develop applications with Ethereum. In that case, the U.S. government can shut down your project. Or, you raise funds to help protests against closures for COVID. Again, the Canadian government can shut down your project.

You cannot shut down a DAO, so, for those situations, it could have opted for the same or an opposite decision. In both cases, it would have been just a matter of choices; someone makes a decision eventually, and that has consequences.

So the questions are:

If you are afraid of delegating the responsibility of choices to a broader audience, you will be scared as hell by the spreading of DAOs.

Instead, if you are afraid of delegating the above responsibilities to a small group of people, DAOs can fit you better.

Whatever is your response, I’m sure about one thing: like it or not, DAOs are here to stay, and you’ll have to deal with them.

What kind of DAO would you like to see?

I’d like to see more decentralized platforms for personal messaging and social networks at first, and I’m sure I’ll be satisfied sooner or later.

LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Reddit, and so on, will not own users and their users’ data anymore, and you will be able to share contents and data in the same efficient way, without giving up control on your data.

There are already decentralized projects, like DTube or Peakd, that will benefit from switching to a DAO for their governance.

With this new model, participants can control how platforms behave; they can control features like distribution of fees derived from advertising, the allowance or prohibition of specific contents, the development of new features, etc.

Participants own the platform, anyone determines its fate, and no one can stop the service.

Everyone can build a business on those platforms without worrying about denial of services, censorship, unexpected changes in fees and functionalities; the willingness of users, influencers, creators, and advertisers guide every critical decision.

With Web3, platform providers lose all their governance power in favor of DAOs.

What DAOs or DAO tooling is most exciting to you?

If you want to build a DAO without starting from scratch, look at great tools like Aragon or Colony.