Removal: DBGrow (Guide) Represented by Nic Robinette

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Should DBGrow Represented by Nic Robinette be Removed as a Guide?


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Authority Nodes DBGrow DBGrow De Facto De Facto The Factoid Authority The Factoid Authority

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    24
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Per Doc 100, this thread is for discussion and subsequent vote to determine if the Guide DBGrow represented by Nic Robinette should be removed from their position. The following ANOs have agreed they wish to be part of the 10%+ of ANOs necessary to initiate this removal.

Factomize
Factomatic
Crypto Logic
The Factoid Authority
Factoshi

The rationale behind this removal motion is we feel Nic Robinette who represents DBGrow has not sufficiently facilitated governance at the level that is to be expected of Factom Protocol Guides.

EDIT February 22nd - While I believe Nic should be removed, the reality is, it would cause issue with the upcoming election. For this reason, Factomize will be voting no on the removal motion and ask others to do the same rather than vote yes or abstain.
 
Last edited:

Chappie

Factomize Bot
This thread is a Major Timed Discussion and I am designed to help facilitate efficient communication.

Only ANOs may take part in this discussion and vote. Unless this discussion is ended early or extended, it will end in 8 days after which a vote may take place. After 18 hours from the start of the thread or any point up until 24 hours are left in the discussion, you can make a motion to end the discussion immediately or extend the discussion beyond it's initial time frame by selecting the pertinent button at the top of this thread. If someone "seconds" your motion, a poll will take place and if a majority of voters vote yes by the time the discussion is scheduled to end, the time period will be extended for 72 hours.
 

CryptoLogic

Crypto Logic
justification of supporting remove of guide in question:
  • almost not voted on any recent governance votes
  • not uploaded govrnance meeting minutes he was supposed too (show lack of interest)
  • Not responded to almost no questions/requests by other guides for input in #guide-workspace
  • write in governance meeting minuts that will push for creating new committees but nothing happening?
  • not provided votes in ano standing system
  • not leading by good example

we are not able to support guide with so low performance.
 
Hi Nic, I'm sorry we got here.
With an aim for simplicity, if you are willing, could you please answer this question?
"Are you interested in remaining a guide?"
BTW: No is an okay answer. I hope you are well.
Thanks
 
I am fairly disappointed overall with Guide performance this term and in particular do feel that Nic has not performed up to spec.

I'd like to hear why this motion is happening now, though, given elections are less than a month away.

I'd also like to hear Nic's response to this thread and know whether he feels his work this term has been up to par.
 
Doesn’t he have ~60 days to vote, or is it different for guides? Thanks
Technically, yes. But Guides should be leading by example and "Facilitating Governance". I asked him during the Guide meeting when he was planning to vote and he said that evening (that was Monday) and then disappeared until today despite being pinged in Discord.

Again, this was the straw the broke the camel's back. If he was rocking it as a Guide, I wouldn't have thought much of it.
 
I'm actually having second thoughts on this after looking carefully at Doc 100 and the kind of timeline this puts us in.

This discussion will conclude on February 28th and then ANOs have three days to vote which puts us at March 2nd. If the removal motion succeeds, the remaining Guides then have 72 hours to start the new election process (Section 4.5.3). Let's assume the Guides manage to get a new election process started in 24 hours, (March 3rd) and the two week election process takes it's course. It's now March 17th and the newly elected Guide will have roughly a week before having to run again in the new election which must be started two weeks prior to April 7th.

We've known Guides have been under-performing for months and months. Some of us have tried to give them gentle pushes in Guide meetings, in the governance chat channel and on this forum, but it's our responsibility to actually hold them accountable and if they won't be held accountable to remove them. We've had plenty of time to do that and we haven't. Doing it now is doing too little too late, complicates the next Guide election significantly, and doesn't send a strong message anyway. It just says we put off our duties until too late.

Given this, Canonical Ledgers will not be supporting the removal motion. However, we will be a lot more vocal with the new Guide term and will work to ensure Guides have clear expectations set of them and we will hold them accountable even if it costs us social standing.
 
I personally think we can probably remove all guides at the end of this term in favour of specific working groups to facilitate grants etc.

If we can automate timeline notifications/announcements we can save a good chunk of the grant pool in the short term.

For 600 FCT, we simply cannot expect much of Guides and we can do without them outside of bespoke needs.

E.g I’d support a 3 month grant to introduce Standing Party voting procedures, but not keen for a full year.
 

Chappie

Factomize Bot
We are now 18 hours into the discussion. You may now make a motion to extend this Major Discussion by an additional 72 hours or end this conversation by selecting the pertinent button at the top of this thread. This option will end when there are 24 hours left in the discussion.
 

Chappie

Factomize Bot
Colin Campbell has made a motion to extend the discussion. If someone seconds this motion by selecting the button below, a vote on the motion will start.

A majority voting yay will pass the motion and the discussion will be extended for 72 hours. This motion will remain open until the normal discussion period ends or a motion to end the discussion is passed by a majority.
 

Chappie

Factomize Bot
Schalk Bower has seconded the motion to extend the discussion.

A motion is now active at the top of this thread to vote if you want to extend the discussion. A majority voting yes will pass the motion and the discussion will be extended for 72 hours. This vote will remain open until the normal discussion period ends or another motion is passed.
 
As I mentioned elsewhere, I agree with @Samuel Vanderwaal that timing isn't helping here. It seriously messes up the guide election happening anyway really soon now. I get that people want to prove a point and make sure that next terms guides feel more engaged if there is a next term.

But I have been saying in public for several months now I regard current guide term (and guides) failed and have been doing behind the scenes from something going back to June. So executing now and then having a potential guide get in for only something like a week or two to get reelections is not helping an already over extended governance system.

Havent't looked at the grants yet, but we even might get into trouble there, as it is partially backpay and also partially future pay if I am not mistaken. So are we going to do a coinbase cancelation if that is the case?
 
The timing of this motion in terms of the guide elections makes this action difficult. So we will not support this motion.

I look forward to @Nic R 's response.

I do believe the guides facilitate work that would be very hard (like really really hard) to coordinate without them. I do think the work can be overwhelming at times. I find just keeping up on selected issues and topics challenging, and guides are expected to not just be informed, but "guide" these discussions and efforts.

When the protocol is under such pressure and the token price so suppressed it can be both difficult to work the business efforts and the protocol efforts. This conflict is massive for me, where I've been forced to put in effort year after year behind the scenes that gets no credit by the community. I don't know @Nic R 's work load, but I'm prone to give the benefit of the doubt in this time frame.

It will be okay to understand more, and make decisions in the election process about the guides. At least for us at Factom Inc.
 

Valentin Ganev

Factomatic
I want to make one comment regarding the price of the token, respectively the remuneration of the Guides. While I agree 600 FCT/month is not a lot, it's clear that some of the Guides are not only doing what's asked of them, but I'd argue even more.

Using the FCT prices on the days of the last three payouts, as well as a guesstimate of $3/FCT for Mar 1, which I pulled out of somewhere, the gross remuneration of Guides for the last year is close to $31K. I don't think it's unfair to expect at least 2-3 month of full-time work from Guides for this amount and it's clear some of the Guides are not even close to that level of involvement.

Looking at it from another angle, 600 FCT/month is very close to the monthly revenue for one server for ANOs operating at the current average efficiency of ~42%. ANOs have server expenses and should be available 24/7 in case of network pauses.

The point I'm trying to make is that the token price cannot be used as an excuse for lack of involvement and commitment from Guides as it impacts the entire ecosystem and a lot of entities have been doing their bidding, despite the significant depreciation.
 
I want to make one comment regarding the price of the token, respectively the remuneration of the Guides. While I agree 600 FCT/month is not a lot, it's clear that some of the Guides are not only doing what's asked of them, but I'd argue even more.

Using the FCT prices on the days of the last three payouts, as well as a guesstimate of $3/FCT for Mar 1, which I pulled out of somewhere, the gross remuneration of Guides for the last year is close to $31K. I don't think it's unfair to expect at least 2-3 month of full-time work from Guides for this amount and it's clear some of the Guides are not even close to that level of involvement.

Looking at it from another angle, 600 FCT/month is very close to the monthly revenue for one server for ANOs operating at the current average efficiency of ~42%. ANOs have server expenses and should be available 24/7 in case of network pauses.

The point I'm trying to make is that the token price cannot be used as an excuse for lack of involvement and commitment from Guides as it impacts the entire ecosystem and a lot of entities have been doing their bidding, despite the significant depreciation.
To be clear, the pressure to perform is higher when the token is under pressure. And most of us have a pile of work both public and private to make something happen.

Also when the token is under pressure, many start looking at others, and comparing their efforts against each other.

I'm not suggesting the level of effort can be acceptably reduced when the token is down.
 
I would just like to provide input in terms of the timeline for the upcoming Guide election.

The new process requires the election to conclude 14 days prior to the term commencing on April 7th.

The timeline for the upcoming Guide election thus looks like this:

2020-04-07 - Guide term starts.
2020-03-24 - Voting period ends (election concluded)
2020-03-21 - Voting period starts
2020-03-20 - 24 hour period starts (to answer any remaining questions)
2020-03-16 - 4 Days for community to ask the candidates questions
2020-03-09 - Guide election round opens for applications.


On the other hand a guide removal by the ANOs takes 11 days. The above motion was started on on the 20th of February, so it will be concluded one way or the other (if discussion not extended) on March 2nd.

I.e a successful removal action would finish exactly 1 week prior to the scheduled guide election starting.

If the removal passes then the guides will have to start a new special guide election to fill the slot within 3 days (72 hours).

Speaking hypothetically my solution would be to host the special election as required by the governance process (the guides cannot unilaterally decide NOT to do this), but suggest to the community that nobody should apply for this position. If somebody does, and gets elected they would only be "in office" for a period of 4 days prior to the new guide term starting on April 7th.

The two elections (special election and scheduled guide election) would then commence in parallel but only the scheduled guide election would be populated by applicants.... And even if somebody would apply in the special election it wouldn't really matter in the big picture.
 
Also when the token is under pressure, many start looking at others, and comparing their efforts against each other.
That's part of it. We need leaders in important positions, not people who disappear and say they'll do something and then don't.

The whole token price argument is nonsense. I wouldn't accept it for a grant and I don't accept it for Guides. If a Guide is so affected by the price of a token, then they do the right thing and step down.
 
That's part of it. We need leaders in important positions, not people who disappear and say they'll do something and then don't.

The whole token price argument is nonsense. I wouldn't accept it for a grant and I don't accept it for Guides. If a Guide is so affected by the price of a token, then they do the right thing and step down.
I agree with leadership.

Why refute me by saying exactly what I said in the following sentence, that you conveniently omitted?
 
To the Factom Protocol Community,

I understand the reasoning and motivation to remove me from the Guide role, and I’ll try to respond as fully and truly as I can. In the near 11 months that I have been a Guide, I cannot say that I have lived up to my own standards or to what I believe are adequate community leadership and work ethic standards. All excuses and non-Factom-related life context aside, there have been deadlines I have missed, statements I haven’t fully upheld, and processes (such as Committee/Working Group formation) that I should have pushed forward with greater expeditiousness. To be an effective leader, as a Guide should be, it is necessary to be proactive, responsive, and to implement the changes, as voted on as worthy by the community, that push our ecosystem forward. In these respects, I agree that I have underperformed and under-delivered.

I will now address the points brought forward by @CryptoLogic:

- “Almost not voted on any recent governance votes” – I believe I have voted in every recent document ratification vote, and in general, have voted in every or near-every governance vote since I have been a Guide. I did miss some of the informal polls and a few of the issue polls, but I do not believe I have missed any formal governance votes. Still, a leader should vote in every poll.

-“Not uploaded governance meeting minutes he was supposed to (shows lack of interest)”- This is largely fair. I have uploaded many Meeting Minutes throughout the Guide term, as I am usually the one fulfilling the Secretary role in our Guide meetings and transcribing the meetings, but it’s true that I have also not uploaded a substantial amount of Meeting Minutes that I should have uploaded. I apologize for my negligence on this one, and can understand where the frustration on this is coming from.

- “Not responded to almost any questions/requests by other Guides for input in #guide-workspace.” – I think this is a reasonable stance. I do sometimes reply late (sometimes days late) to inquiries or prompts in #guide-workspace. There really is not an excuse for this. I should have been more active and prompt in my responses.

- “Write in governance meeting minutes that will push for creating new committees but nothing happening?” – I agree that I have been noticeably slow in pushing forward the formation of (what now would be) the formation of new Working Groups. However, I think it is relevant to point out that in this particular Guide term (April 7, 2019 – Present Day), I am one of the only Guides that have composed a governance document (Doc 109, which became Doc 006). It is entirely true that other Guides have edited and provided high quality feedback to this document, but I can affirm that I composed the document from the ground up and incorporated other Guide and community edits. I also composed Section 5 of Doc 107 which describes the choosing of and roles of Sponsors in the Grant process. From a doc creation standpoint during this Guide term, I feel I have been above average. –

In addition, in my work shortly before and transitioning into the Guide role, I composed the rank-based voting (RBV) Proposal for voting on Grants, which I ultimately incorporated into Doc 153, Section 4.7 and Appendix B. I also worked extensively with Mike, from Cube3, on the development of the new ANO application process. And I worked on things like composing the bulk of the “Factom Protocol Governance Background”, shown here.

In terms of pushing the working group formation forward, responses to participate in the working groups from the community have been few and far between whether publicly or privately. I have publicly pinged every member and/or Chairman of the Marketing Committee on multiple occasions. As we know, interest in participating in committees and working groups has substantially waned over time. If I were to remain as a Guide for the short remainder of this term, from my guide position I would aggressively talk with the individuals that I pinged to gage their interest by seeking a firm “Yes” or “No” response. As of this time, I have not been firm enough in this regard.

- “Not provided votes in ANO Standing System” – At the time of CryptoLogic’s post, this was 100% true, and I’ll 100% own that. I should have upheld my statement to David (as made in the Guide meeting on February 17th [US-PST]), where I responded that I would make my votes of Support or No Support that night. I failed to do so, and did not respond to David’s reminder on Discord to do so on February 19th (US-PST). The following day, the motion to remove me from the Guide role was posted. I can understand the frustration here, especially knowing that David and others have put an immense amount of work and time into the ANO Standing System document and its eventual implementation on the Factomize forum. I wanted to post substantive feedback for each ANO, which I had not finished by this point, but finished the final feedbacks and votes the morning of this motion and posted them.

At the point in time I posted my votes, two other Guides had not finished voting yet, though they had started posting their votes and feedback. I do though acknowledge the big picture here, that to David this was the “final straw that broke the camel’s back”.

-”Not leading by good example” – I think that some of the admissions I have made above and points made previously by others in this thread adequately substantiate that this is largely true. I should have been more proactive, I should have acted and responded with more urgency, and I should have showcased a much stronger work ethic as a Guide and leader in our ecosystem rather than being slow and not effective enough. This is especially true toward the end of this Guide term. So while I do not believe that I have been a negative influence, I surely have not been the positive influence I could have been.

@Jason Gregoire – Thank you for the question.

Yes, I am interested in fulfilling my full term as a Guide which would end on April 7th, 2020. I do not intend to run in the forthcoming Guide election for the next term, but given the very short time that any replacement would fill in, I would like to finish my term through April 7th. I want this because I will wrap up the committee/working group formations that are still needed (this is a firm promise), and I care about the Protocol and my own reputation within the Protocol. I realize my reputation is already weak, but I aim to change that. I also acknowledge that I should have made this change much earlier.

@Samuel Vanderwaal – Thank you for this important question. Honest self-assessment is necessary here.

I do not think my work has been up to par in a lot of ways. For one, active Guides in prior terms did a TON of governance doc creation, demonstrated innovative thinking and leadership, and were basically rockstars. I don’t feel that I have performed anywhere near that level of commitment or energy. In this term, while I have contributed in governance doc creation and many relevant Factomize threads, I have sorely lacked in urgency and responsiveness. Relative to the other current Guides, I would say I was towards the bottom in this metric.


I will respect and understand the community’s decision on this Removal Process regardless of the outcome, and I understand the dissatisfaction and frustration that has been expressed. I sincerely apologize for not being as effective as I know I am capable of. Lastly, I will continue to execute on the above promises made for the end of this guide term regardless of the decision here. I appreciate and love this community and the Factom Protocol, and I am proud to be involved (as a Guide or not as a Guide) in something so uniquely innovative and with so much potential in the grand scheme of things, as well as being involved with the DBGrow team; I know they are working so hard to try to make things happen for the protocol. Thank you.
 
Despite having supported the removal motion, Factoshi will abstain from this vote. The reason being the timing of the vote relative to the guide election and the fact that Nic has decided not to run in that election.

Nic, I appreciate your acknowledgement of the issues and I hope to see your continuing engagement with community governance once your term has ended.

David, I am grateful for your willingness to hold Guides to account.
 
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