I have seen the latest announcement of an official partnership between POKT and Unstoppable Domains. I have searched for discussions on it on the forum but I couldn’t find any.
I firmly believe that Unstoppable Domain’s values are incompatible with values of POKT community. So unless this was discussed and voted on, can someone please explain me who makes these decisions on behalf of everyone?
Also, let me explain why I think POKT should steer clear of UD:
Let me explain as short as I can. There is a project called Handshake. It is a decentralized alternative root zone project where the TOP-LEVEL-DOMAINs are decentralized through blockchain instead of ICANN. Handshake reserved well known TLD’s like .com and also reserved the alexa top 100k websites to their respective owners for claim. Unstoppable Domains which was launched after Handshake is a VC funded project that has laid claim to certain TLDs without any merit. One could also argue Handshake does the same but Handshake does not litigate others and actually proposes a whole alternate root zone as an alternative instead of selecting few buzzwords as TLDs and selling them without owning any of them on any root zone… The reason why Unstoppable’s values are incompatible with Pocket Network is because they have been aggressively trying to use their VC backed funds to litigate independent handshake tld owners who sell subdomains on their independent websites. There is also a court battle ongoing here.
For some other blog posts about Unstoppable’s objectionable approach, you can check here, here or can just search on twitter.
So back to the reason of this post. There seems to be a thread discussing integrating Handshake with POKT. But I can’t find a thread where a collaboration with UD being discussed.
I would like to see what the community says about this partnership. It is strange that this wasn’t thoroughly discussed here before implemented. Considering the bad reputation of UD in terms of the latest events, a collaboration like this deserves scrunity. If the community decides that UD values are incompatible with POKT, as I personally assess them as such, than POKT should opt out of the partnership.
So ironically, I am currently favoring a POKT competitor, Lava Net. The post you link to was in a very early stage when I only had some ideas and before I launched my project, lumeweb.com. That project is now in full swing BUDIL mode and is being 501c3 funded by the Sia Foundation on a grant. As a side note, it’s also getting a full rebranding too.
But this PR stunt which I am sort of going to assume was a VC backroom deal (I will admit I could be wrong), is basically making me want to avoid POKT on principle as UD does not hold our true ethos/values. Be aware they tried to trademark .bitcoin in the US and ran the first small-time registrar out of business via a lawsuit. So they don’t respect our culture and just want to use web2 legal hammers on everyone like Big Tech.
I have been personally waiting on the v1 of POKT to integrate into the tech I am building, but this political shift signals to me that someone is caring more about money than they do about ethos, as everything UD has done is pretty much in the public to measure against how they are working in the interests of their community (or how they aren’t), or purely their own and TradFi VC interests. They are also backed by Coinbase and Protocol Labs, who both can be seen as controversial in my opinion.
Great analysis. I agree on all your points about UD. Also I am a longtime POKT community member and I didn’t jump out of the blue just for this. This made me uneasy as I couldn’t find any info on docs or governance about how these matters about collaborations are made. So far, it seems to me like this should have been at least discussed before implemented. So I am wondering, has POKT team decided to do things on their own? What is the DAO for but to reflect the communities’ values on every decision?
Whomever made this deal on behalf of everyone should come forth and explain what happened. I though POKT was a DECENTRALIZED project so much that the DAO doesn’t even require POKT, but require feats to be completed in order to gain access. This collaboration does not rhyme with what has been accomplished so far. The community is owed an explanation at least.
I would like to add clarity about the UD integration with the wallet. This was a simple integration, not any backroom deal.
Pocket Network Inc (PNI) is the company that maintains wallet.pokt.network. There are other independent wallets and products in Pocket’s ecosystem. Like these other independent teams in the Pocket ecosystem, PNI doesn’t need the DAO’s approval to make product improvements.
The integration is very simple: allow wallet users to type an Unstoppable Domain into the recipient field and, if that domain points to a POKT address, the app will automatically resolve this into the POKT address. This is a simple quality-of-life feature that we added to maintain parity with other wallets in our ecosystem. PNI is certainly open to supporting other domain services as the opportunities become available.
I appreciate your feedback and it has been noted for future considerations.
The problem is PNI runs the official POKT Network twitter account and announces these unilaterally decided partnerships from it. This means that PNI’s unilateral decisions which might generate negative feedback will reflect on Pocket Network as a whole, instead of PNI as an independent company.
For the sake of consistency, we can’t have the luxury of assuming PNI is an independent team like Sendnodes or c0d3r when it suits us, but then accept the organic ties PNI has to the project and agree on PNI running the official twitter account of Pocket Network as their own. While I agree that this one is a relatively minor case, PNI using the official twitter handle as their own mode of communication is not in tune with the decentralized attitude Pocket Network community so far has worked hard to achieve.
If you take a look here there is no mention of PNI as an independent organization. Pocket Network and PNI’s reputations should be separated. Anyone from the public would think this partnership is approved by the DAO and community, not an independent company.
This is something we have been having discussions about and the wheels are already in motion.
The timeline is tentative so don’t hold me to it but we’d be aiming for a PNI rebrand in Q2 and to figure out by then how we set clear boundaries in relation to official identities like the Twitter account and pokt.network.
PNI has a marketing team whereas PNF/DAO does not, so severing ties completely would not be wise and we should instead explore how to collaborate within clear boundaries.
In the meantime, the initiatives PNF is driving forward to align the DAO on its identity (DNA) and to fund contributors of all varieties (more to be shared soon) will help the DAO build the capabilities to do its own marketing.
@sztanyel Thank you for calling attention to this.
Given the clarification that (1) there is no “partnership” between Pocket DAO and UD, and (2) that tweets about an alleged partnership emanated from PNI not Pocket DAO, I trust that @pcfreak30’s concerns have been allayed.
On “integrating” Handshake with Pocket, how can the DAO help?
Broadly, since I made that post, too much has changed for me to even begin to explain. That has come together to form the project I lead/founded, Lume Web.
But know that Handshake is a fork of bcoin which is a JS implementation of bitcoin by purse.io.
As of right now I am personally favoring lava net and understanding their tech since the tech requirements for POKT are too high for portability and without centralization. I have been waiting for the new chain, which checking recently, is being pushed out to the end of the year, but even an 80 GB SSD node to self-stake is a tall ask. The open portals are a good starting point, but if portals can be avoided, that would have been ideal.
If the DAO or Pocket Inc wants to implement HNS, it should be no more complicated than BTC. The DB size is around 30 GB right now.