PEP-53: Pocket Network Discord Overhaul


  • Author(s): @ethen chatGPT
  • Recipient: Furb
  • Category: Reimbursement/ Ecosystem Upgrade
  • Implementer: Furb with Ethen and PNF Oversight
  • Asking Amount: 25,000 $Pokt


Dear Members of the DAO,

I am writing to propose an overhaul to the Pocket Network communication platform, Discord. The purpose of this proposal is to improve the user experience, cater to new use cases, stay competitive, and support growth and scalability.

The overhaul will focus on improving the overall user experience by redesigning the categories and channels and adding new features. We will improve the user authentication processes to ensure that communications are protected. The overhaul will cater to new use cases by adding new features or functionalities that are tailored to specific needs. To stay ahead of the competition, we will improve the performance and enhance the user experience.

In summary, the overhaul aims to improve Pocket Network Discord’s user experience, security, versatility, competitiveness, and scalability.


Furb, a longtime member of the Pocket Network community, may not be highly visible in Pokt channels, but he is actively involved as a moderator and Discord admin in other communities such as Alchemist and Thunderhead. He has an impressive record of setting up over ten different Discords.


Discord communities can become dead due to a lack of engagement, new members, or effective moderation, as well as a shift in community interests. To prevent this, it is necessary to maintain active engagement through interesting topics and discussions, welcome new members, enforce consistent moderation, and adapt to changes in community dynamics. Regular evaluations of the community’s health are essential to identify and address any issues promptly.

Dissenting Opinions

  1. Resistance to change: Some members of the DAO may be resistant to change and feel that the current Discord categories and channels are working well enough. They may argue that redesigning them could cause confusion and disrupt existing workflows, potentially leading to a decline in user engagement.

While change can be challenging, it is also necessary for growth and innovation. The current Discord categories and channels may be working well enough, but there is always room for improvement. By redesigning them, we can create a more intuitive and user-friendly platform that will ultimately benefit users.

  1. User backlash: Any redesign of Discord categories and channels could potentially lead to user backlash if they do not like the new layout or find it confusing. This could lead to a decline in user engagement and could harm Discord’s reputation.

While there is always a risk of user backlash with any major redesign, this can be mitigated through careful planning and user testing. By involving users in the design process and soliciting feedback, we can ensure that the new layout is well-received and meets the needs of the community.

  1. Technical challenges: Redesigning Discord categories and channels could be a technically challenging task, and some members of the DAO may feel that the technical risks outweigh the potential benefits. They may argue that any major redesign could cause technical issues or even lead to downtime, causing frustration for users and potential harm to Discord’s reputation.

While there may be technical challenges involved in a Discord overhaul, these can be overcome through careful planning and collaboration with experienced discord admins. By taking a methodical approach and testing changes before implementation, we can minimize the risk of technical issues and ensure a smooth transition to the new design.


A new Discord layout.


Copyright and related rights waived via CC0 .


I’m am in favor of this proposal. While I personally spend more time on TG channels than on Discord, that is in part tied to current discord being less than ideal. A good overhaul of the POKT discord could improve engagement and content.

This proposal has to do with giving the best UX to ppl who find their way to Pocket. Could be new investors, vcs, developers, node providers, dAPP builders or whatever. None of these are going to hear about Pocket Network and say, “hey let me find the unofficial tg channels where the cool ppl hang out”. They are going to start their UX journey with Pocket by finding the official web2 landing page and starting a browsing journey there or by finding the official Pocket discord and starting there. Both have to be built to be accurate, provide ppl the information they are looking for, etc… In addition, the discord needs to give a good vibe re the community - how engaged, how value added is content, how quick are questions answered, etc. Indeed it is important enough that some analysts use analytics of Discord engagement as a metric to help gauge the health of a crypto project.

I’ve recently been discussing this with @caesar et all in another thread - we’re spending $$$ on Messari, and perhaps will consider other advertising spends. The way NOT to maximize the effectiveness of those campaigns is to launch those whose interest is perked into crappy UX in their journey to find out more. This proposal is a great start. Perhaps later will be a proposal to update, where needed, the web presence and then also prioritizing the community combing through all official documentation to make sure it is all up to date.

i think changing the “category” to Agreement may make better sense. This is not the kind of thing you can just build and then submit for reimbursement. The DAO has to agree it wants this overhaul first. You may add verbiage that payment can be made after new site design is delivered or whatever.

The ask is dirt cheap. A steal for what you are offering. I am concerned that the scope and the ask may be too small. Perhaps consider something like a 3 or 4 month agreement…something like 25k $POKT for a new layout. plus 15k (ballpark) $POKT per month thereafter for 3 additional months to provide tech support to PNF to troubleshoot, make tweaks in response to user feedback, help re-energize community engagement.

I recommend providing links to samples of Furb’s work, much as @TheDoc did in his reddit proposals. Hopefully those in the community who have benefited from his work on other Discords in the Pocket ecosystem will vouch for their satisfaction with the work done in the comments section of this proposal.


The reason PNF hasn’t upgraded the Discord yet is we are focused on an overhaul of the Discourse forum, with intent to consolidate most activity into the forum. Once this forum upgrade has been executed, the plan would be to significantly narrow the scope of Discord so that it complements the new architecture of Discourse.

As for the comments on where Discord can improve:

  • Re onboarding - we would also be upgrading the onboarding experience for the server using the new Community Onboarding feature that Discord just made available to us, to help new users join the community and existing users curate their channels.

  • Re moderation - we are in the process of launching a PNF community moderators program, to fund more active moderation across Discord and Discourse.

To avoid confusion, I would suggest that PNF should be permitted to finish our overhaul of the forum, and associated upgrade of Discord, before any separate overhaul of Discord is considered. If Furb feels like they have valuable insights to offer to PNF’s existing work on this, they can share some links to previous work and we’ll explore a Dework bounty to enlist their support.

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You’re putting process over progress im afraid.

Focusing on Discourse over Discord is the wrong move imo. Bringing on the most ardent of community contributors is a funnel. The first place they land is the Discord. Not sure why you would want to narrow the scope of the Discord.

I don’t think many will use this. Majority of people that come into the Discord are investors. They want to poke around and see what kind of action is happening. The last thing they are thinking is “let me customize my experience here”.

Why would Discourse need moderating?
You want to onboard moderators first for a Discord that is not very active? Seems backwards.

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The first place they land is our website, actually. There are multiple reasons to emphasize Discourse as a replacement for most of the activity that takes place in Discord. Discord is useful for onboarding and casual chat – everything else is going to be better on the new version of Discourse.

As far as I’m aware, they won’t have a choice. It’s an official feature and part of the new Discord onboarding flow. We just need to activate it.

The various threads that have derailed off-topic in recent months are proof that we need moderation in Discourse.

We are doing a number of things in parallel:

  • Forum upgrade
  • Discord upgrade (informed by forum upgrade)
  • Moderator program
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I’ll come with a rebuttal one more time as it seems you have your mind made up.

You are further siloing a vast majority of the community and investors by trying to move stuff that happens on discord to discourse. I actually think stuff that is happening on discourse should be moved to discord tbh.

Thats what im saying, they do have a choice, because we have a choice. As Discord modertors and admins, it’s not “oh, look at what discord just launched, shiny new feature, yay”. It’s “let’s build a good foundation and be methodical and systematic about how we usher in new users”.

I did tell you a few weeks back that I was on your time and I’ll go at your pace. But let us put on record that we did a landing page for the DAO, and PoktBlade had that ready to be put up…and you put the brakes on it. A landing page…smh.

Also, I’ve been reviewing new users that join the discord and they all around the same discord join date, which means they are fake.

You’re set on growing the forum which is fine, like I said do you. You obviously have a soft spot for forum governance. But let’s not confuse governance with community.

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Agreed. @ethen can you post some links here

I agree that a Dework bounty in the same ballpark (25k $POKT) is a perfectly good path forward and definitely more efficient than this alternative. But “and we’ll explore…” does not exactly inspire confidence that it will happen any time soon if at all.

I personally don’t see why serial work on website and Discord is superior to work in parallel. Work in parallel is much more efficient - especially when the Discord work can be outsourced to different personnel than is owrking on the website. I’m excited to see upcoming Discourse improvements. Much needed. But it represents a different flavor of engagement than that which happens on Discord. No analyst is ever going to go to the website to gauge community engagement. Nor to TG. They will go to Discord. The last thing you want to do is drive all engagement away from Discord by making Discourse the be-all end-all of all engagement.

Why do you say this? Could be 50/50, idk. That is why attention is needed on both as I mentioned earlier. I know that for myself my first touchpoint for POKT was on Discord, not a website (as it turns out not the official POKT discord but the Discord of one the ecosystem providers). And I can vouch that the investment subscription services I use (e.g., James Altucher) will usually point to Discord to find out more about a crypto recommendation they make, not to websites.


I want to focus in on some realities that might be getting lost…

Pocket Network’s IP is a complicated topic. PNF is navigating how to reorganise all of this in a way that gets us past the complexities and conflicts of having a lot of it tied up with PNI. Everyone understands we can improve a lot in this area and I think it’s fair to say PNF wants to see this happen as soon as possible.

The challenge is one of progressive decentralisation. It simply cannot happen overnight and it cannot be driven bottom-up, for now at least. PNF is responsible for IP and platforms whether people like it or not, and we will prioritise our time where we think it can have the largest impact. It’s not a question of if we support this proposal (which I actually think will be very valuable in future) but rather a question of where can @ethen and the community help most right now. And that frankly is on updating the forum. I would love to see Ethen and his team take on the upgrades to UX and aesthetics of css/html of the forum and us PAY for that work to be done. Can we just do that, like starting today…?

I acknowledge that everyone has different feelings about where priorities are but the difference here is that what PNF is responsible for is ultimately theirs to decide how they prioritise.


Furb will be chiming in here soon. We are also getting together a test server and can invite anyone who would like to see the layout and give feedback.

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PNI put their proposal up 2 months ago. PNF, 6 weeks ago.

Pocket Networks IP is not complicated at all. I see it as being owned by the DAO. If the community should put a proposal to vote, and the DAO vote to pass it, such is the way of things.

how long will you guys continue to sit back and not figure out a way to grow the community and change up the narrative to a positive one? I’m not saying the discord is the only thing needing done, i’m saying that its a starting point. The year is already 20% over with.

We can certainly give the Discourse a redo, but the pokt forum is not the problem right now.

I understand y’all got your processes and order of doing things, but that doesn’t mean I can give my voice where I see fit. I will likely give it a couple more days and put this to vote.

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100% agree which is why I can agree the discord needs to be improved while also strongly saying I think the proposal to force timing isn’t a good approach.

Great, let’s do it

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I certainly don’t want to come across as trying to force anything. If it comes across like that, my apologies.

I see this as the natural order of things. As MSA pointed out, one of the first places a new community member touches down is the Discord, I think we all know that.


True. But I am also a pragmatist. I’d say if PNF is set to do the web first and is offering an olive branch to extend paid work to utilize the proven skill set you bring to the table in this arena, I’d say take the olive branch being extended and let’s move on.

Why do I say this? because I figure getting your team’s involvement to get the website in order helps get that task done so that attention can shift to Discord faster than will happen by getting bogged down in a PEP that is contested by PNF and for which they could slow-roll even if the PEP passes and for which they could even theoretically decline to honor according to the bylaws of the constitution if they feel and can make a bona fide case that doing so (or doing so at this time) could harm the ecosystem.

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There are some misunderstandings here that I’d like to clarify:

  • PNF has been scoping out a Discord overhaul in parallel to our Discourse overhaul. We haven’t been sequencing the behind the scenes work, we were going to sequence the implementation of the upgrades, to get people comfortable with using the new version of the forum before refining the scope of Discord, and to minimize the frequency of disruptive upgrades on either platform. Discourse has taken more attention internally since it’s a larger upgrade that also informs the refined scope of Discord.

  • We do not plan to discontinue Discord’s role in our community, only refine it. Discord is great at onboarding/engagement of community members, not so great for deeper discussion by contributors. The upgrade would look to lean into Discord’s strengths as an onboarding/engagement platform, and push contributor discussions to Discourse. Narrowing the scope of Discord, by removing certain contributor channels, shouldn’t happen until Discourse has been adopted, which is where some of the sequencing comes in.

  • We are not opposed to this proposal’s intentions, only to the implementation of a workstream that would duplicate/conflict with a workstream that PNF has already started. This is why I earlier invited ethen/furb to share their insights and explore a bounty with us. I’ve also now reached out to ethen in PNF’s group chat with SendNodes, to share more details of the work we’ve done so far defining an upgrade for both Discord and Discourse. Ethen reached out to us 3 weeks ago about a Discord upgrade, and we could’ve avoided some of this confusion if PNF had been quicker to engage and loop him into our work on this, but we’ve been dealing with several more urgent workstreams and just got back from a major conference in Denver. You do not need to bring constitutions, vetos, or olive branches into this - our plan moving forward is to incorporate ethen/furb’s feedback/insights into our existing workstream, as well as other community members who may be interested, and implement both Discord and Discourse upgrades imminently.


Hey all :slight_smile: I’m furb - nice to meet you.

First, probably I have to correct chatgpt here - as im not an admin at Thunderhead. I currently hold the admin/mod role because of the recent discord revamp to be able to react to user feedback / issues with new structure. This will be removed shortly.

A Discord structure is always very dependent on what the project wants to show, what is desired and what is not. Of course, it is essential to formulate the goals - who do I mainly want to address, who do I allow what, what do I want to achieve. Therefore, in my opinion, a direct agreement is important, which should also allow to revise things if they do not meet expectations or user behavior. In my opinion, a thoughtful setup of a Discord server is more conceptual work than it is really technically demanding. It’s more about creating a good and appealing environment on which to build instead of - it’s important to formulate what you actually want to achieve.

Some shower thoughts / brainstorming about the concept:

To be fair the discord onboarding feature is nice BUT its only available for 5k+ ppl server - i currently don’t have access as an admin for such a server. The faq is really good and shows what is possible - could be part of the concept.
I need to play with it to make a better judgement.

The other good thing – there are already a lot of bots that release updates for stuff on the Pocket Discord – they’re good because they usually take some time to run smoothly, the onboarding feature would be a good example of this if users prefer not to want this. Basically this is also possible to opt-in (and out) with reaction-roles - i would personally prefer the path with roles because it allows users at any time to switch with ease and is a common practice on almost every bigger discord server.

Carl-bot’s auto answer is something i don’t appreciacte (image). Instead of giving plain wrong answers, give insight in those recommend chats with the telegram bridge - the den, pokt price and others. They would love to post their feed on the official discord of pocket. Probably not a bridge, more a feed - but that’s easy to decide - and even to switch. Evaluate the demand.

In general there are not too many channels - but there are a lot of channels where it is just a feed / no real interaction with users/community. I agree that there should be more for them to make it a place where they want to hang out. Its a good sign to show activity but from pov of the user those channels are not very useful or even get them excited.

What could help is to give pokt-ecosystem projects like thunderhead, sendnodes etc. a space - maybe its a forum (channel) - maybe it is an own category - but i believe there will be too much channels. Either way by giving those projects a showcase will encourage founders within the ecosystem to be present on the discord and represent their product to the whole community. By doing this it will automatically help to bundle engagement where it should belong. The perfect metaphor is an expo where the overall topic pocket is and all the daps/solutions/service providers are booths.

About governance - i think its fair to have the “heavy” discussions on something like discourse - yes. But a simple discussion about those matters should still be more like a chat - this also the preferred way by many users - Many exchange ideas in a direct discussion, try to understand the points of view, objections to confirm or refute - a forum is the appropriate place to summarize these thoughts, to make an opinion/assessment and thus to make weighty statements, for reference you can find those governance chats on numerous tgs.

This not something for the discord but it think this could be beneficial to have by pocket as well - its interactive, you can filter, you can even see upcoming or soon launching projects:

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I strongly support this proposal. After comparing Pocket’s discord with others in our ecosystem and also competitors, it’s plain to see that a rejig is needed. If the proposal passes, how long would it take to redesign and impement?

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I had posted this a couple of days ago when the proposal first went live but my account was on hold for some reason and the post only got uploaded today. Even though I still support the proposal, I’d like to give PNF the chance to unveil what they’ve been working on first.

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I don’t really have much to add to this thread, as I know PNF has a revamp in progress, so waiting to see the outcome of that. I don’t have any specific desire to feed the Den or Price channels into the Discord, since the whole point of third party community channels was to have a place where things like price could be discussed, and talking price and trading has generally been disallowed in the official Discord.

That being said, I’m sure the vendors you referenced would like their channels fed into the Discord, since it’s marketing for them.