Secret Code Podcast Spending Proposal

Initial Proposal is as follows. Updated version being posted to Governance is in the edit at the bottom.

Background

Secret Code Podcast creates content on a weekly basis that connects the community to the network’s contributors. The community highly prioritizes transparency and we believe we have offered that in a fun, interactive manner.

We see our work evolving to include video tutorials. We believe that there is and will be a massive need for both video and written tutorials and for now, written tutorials seem to be the only one consistently outputted (thanks education committee!). Ease of use is heavily connected to good documentation which includes tutorials, resources we aim to provide in video format.

Milestones Achieved

The reception of this podcast, and our aptitude and cohesion in running it has been everything we had hoped and more! We’ve dedicated much more time to it than originally listed, and hope and believe that this shows. Some measurable KPI’s for where we’re at after 10 episodes include:

  • 1200+ Unique Downloads
  • 1100+ YouTube views
  • 292 Twitter Followers
  • 71 YouTube Subscribers
  • 150+ views on Medium (80+ reads)
  • Never missed a deadline!!!
  • Hired out multiple community members!

Now there’s going to be much much more though! Today we released our first video episode, a special with Carter Woetzel revealing Shade and Silk! If this format gains traction we can transition to doing even more of them. Also I know we’ve teased doing tutorials, and we have fully finished a 4-part series on the Secret-Monero bridge, but due to technical incompatibilities (my computer sucked) the videos were too blurry, and upscale rendering attempts proved unsuccessful. I now have the hardware and graphics card necessary to make future videos very high-resolution, so we’ll re-do that one and have it up before this proposal has finished governance (assuming the bridges are up reasonably soon).

Purpose of the Proposal

We believe our initial request for funding through the SNAC proposal was sufficient for what we expected to provide to the community. We are now roughly 11 weeks from the initial proposal and would like to request future funding since we are not self-sustainable yet by any means. We plan to keep access to our contributions completely free for the audience. We would like to go on-chain for this because we feel that it is the community we are directly serving.

Our goal is to expand on the podcast and fulfill our ultimate vision of regularly producing more content. This however requires even more time than what we have been doing since our inception. We aim to work 15+ hours per week to bring to the community more quality content in addition to the podcast. Please refer to our previous work for examples.

This is a bit different from the educational committee which focuses more on written/design content such as blog posts and infographics for community wide efforts. Given that we have started a YouTube channel and plan to grow its content aggressively, we feel that it makes complete sense for us to take on video tutorials. We already have access to many of the contributors themselves therefore we can tailor tutorials for their work given their requests. We are devout users of the network ourselves and believe others deserve some guidance, especially non-crypto natives.

For any video tutorial that doesn’t have an accompanying written tutorial, we plan to provide those as well or communicate to the education committee to write one. If there is a high-quality written tutorial, such as the one Stefan provided for the Secret Monero Bridge, we will provide a link to it.

Details for the Next Three Months

We plan to continue with our current podcast output while also introducing more ways the community can get involved with giveaways. We have also tried out a podcast with video and will likely do more in the future now that we have some experience under our belts. Aside from this, we are content with the podcast and will continue to deliver.

Next is a bit more on tutorials. Similar to how the podcast hosts guests contributing across all facets, we plan to have tutorials for all facets of the network. This includes using tools such as wallets and explorers which are important tutorials for beginners. As you’ll see soon with our initial tutorial series, we will also include tutorials for using the various bridges of the network, important for attracting liquidity :wink: .

Lastly, we plan to provide tutorials for all dApps. This of course includes major dApps such as SecretSwap where we not only walkthrough current features, but follow up with more tutorials as new features/versions roll out. We also plan to make some tutorials for dApps that seem to have gotten little attention such as Secret Auctions and Secret Garden. We believe in assisting devs who just want to develop and we can help take care of video based educational content. These of course are just a few examples but we plan to cover most if not all of the functionality, taking requests from both the community and busy devs.

Outside of any potential dev related tutorials we produce, emphasis will be placed on making the tutorials succinct. We plan to break tutorials down into short segments with an easy trail to other videos to learn about other related functionality. Short videos with a single goal in mind makes the instructions clear to the user. Many people can be intimidated by using crypto, especially when they see long videos. Hopefully, when they see it takes 5 minutes to bridge over XMR, they will be more inclined to become a user.

Deliverables

  • Weekly podcast released 8am est every Sunday, Secret Sundays :wink:
    • Possibly some podcast episodes with videos / livestream
  • 1 weekly tutorial
    • Either roughly 1 series of multiple short videos (2-5 min),
    • Or one standalone tutorial close to 10 min.
    • It depends on the function we are building the tutorial for
  • Interview people cross-chain and bigger crypto players @Elon Musk :wink:
    • Realistically people from Terra, Cosmos, Monero, etc
  • Get community more involved with suggestions for both podcast questions and tutorial suggestions

Goals

  • Reach 300 youtube subscribers
  • Have a video reach 1000 views
  • Have a total of 10k YouTube views
  • Have 2.5k unique downloads

Members:

  • Eric | Secret Code Podcast & Paul | Secret Code Podcast

Compensation:

We would like to ask for

  • Eric | Secret Code Podcast: 2,000 SCRT monthly

  • Paul | Secret Code Podcast: 1,500 SCRT monthly

Current Prices (September 16) $1.79 (30-Day Average)

Discretionary Budget:

  • 100 SCRT Monthly - This will be used as giveaways.
    • We plan 50 SCRT as giveaways for promoting the podcast i.e. liking, tweeting, commenting, etc.
    • The other 50 SCRT would be for rewarding questions curated from the community to be used in podcast episodes, and other community engagement. Not only will SCRT be provided but giveaways can include merch, NFTs, and more.

Total Amount

10,800 SCRT

Final Note on Advertising:

An interesting piece of advice we received to achieve sustainability is to auction off ad space on each episode and collect advertising fees. A fun twist on the advice was to auction it off on Secret Auctions. We are curious as to what the best approach is for ads moving forward and would like to hear people’s thoughts on this in the comments, as we have some interesting ideas of our own.

Also we do intend to have at least 2 publicly available AMA’s about this proposal so that questions can be asked and responded to live in discord!

EDIT:

Thanks to everyone for the engagement and feedback. Paul and I have discussed your input and our options, and have decided to move forward with this proposal to governance as follows:

  • We are removing the KPI for weekly tutorials. We will likely still do some, but that will be of our own volition, and not included in the mandatory measurables.

  • We have removed the ask for a discretionary budget. Should we get substantial delegation and/or raise advertising money, then the goals we have had in mind for this budget can be done on our own.

  • Updated Compensation Request:
    - Eric | Secret Code Podcast: 1,500 SCRT monthly
    - Paul | Secret Code Podcast: 1,000 SCRT monthly

For the 3 month period of 10/01/2021 - 12/31/2021 this would be a total ask of 7,500 SCRT.

7 Likes

Hi, I thought this was under a SNAC funding, could this be lumped in awareness / education committee if you do awareness and tutorials ? Also curious how you plan on allocating time between 60/80 hours on secret swap committee and 15+ hours on this endeavor, I don’t think working this amount of hours is sustainable for the network. I do think that this is spreading thin and the usual comp discussion vs dev work should get brought up.

Edit: SNAC was 4000 SCRT total for 3 month at around 1$ per SCRT so $4,000? The amount was said to be starting a « self sustaining » business ? If so I m curious why this is now worth $19,300 for 3 months

Best

1 Like

Thank you for your feedback!

Yes we got $4,000 up front to start this with a SNAC and mentioned that if we weren’t self-sustaining after 10+ weeks we might attempt a community spend proposal. Our platform has been independent from the committees from its onset, but if the community felt strongly we be incorporated we’d field discussions. Keep in mind that much of the work done in those fields is done by hired consultants, and not paid under the committee structure.

Yes I’m spread thin, but while I won’t always be able to put in 85 hour weeks, I can consistently put in 60+ hour weeks. If after 3 months either the community or I think that it is too much, either can make the decision to reduce my output on either project. That being said I’ve been doing it, I’ve been successful, and I’m not burned out.

We’re open to new types of discussions about funding, as it has become apparent that many aren’t happy with the current way the committees and their leads have been funded. This is in part why we want to take Sandy’s idea and have open AMA’s to discuss this. Whether it’s ad revenue, using auctions, paying back the community pool what value we capture independently, getting paid on a per-content basis, if the community thinks that is important.

1 Like

I’m also a little surprised by the 350-400% jump in costs for what was originally supposed to become a self-sustainable business.

Not saying people shouldn’t be paid but would think that such a large jump comes with some explanation.

Replying to the edit:

We purposefully under-asked in the SNAC. It was novel, we hadn’t seen an example of something like this and we wanted to make sure it went through, and give ourselves the time to set a precedent and streamline it with the room to grow. Paul and I were also new partners and didn’t know how well the partnership would work out. It was risky and we wanted to make it an easy gamble for the community/foundation.

Now we have a portfolio on which the community can judge our work and merit. We’ve always been worth much more than $4,000 for 3 months. I mean after paying our overheads we got closer to $1500 each, and I’ve personally put in over 250 hours into this project in the time since.

As for 60/80 hours per week, that number includes both of my projects, is not in addition to.

2 Likes

Right, so most of that has to do with us under-asking in the SNAC. My actual rate over the last 3 months has been about $6/hr.

As for our goal of being self-sustaining, this is still the case which is why we plan to have AMA’s to talk some of our ideas over.

  1. We can sell advertising space at auction
    a. One community member voiced that we should keep this to bootstrap
    b. My idea is to put half towards marketing/growth and put the other half back into the community pool
  2. We hoped to get a larger delegation to our node operation
    a. We had several marketing plans that have been delayed
  3. We don’t want to sell out and rob the community of access to people who won’t pay to play
    a. This is the current strategy of many, if not most media channels in the industry
    b. It’s dishonest. I don’t like it. We’ve taken absolutely $0 behind the scenes and WILL keep it that way. We’re a community guided initiative, and the moment we start lying to the community in order to capture the value we create, we’ve lost it.

If the largest concern is the percentage jump, then it’s due to the under-valued ask, as well as our over-delivering and growing vision.

If the largest concern is the overall price ask, I believe it is more than fair, but we will absolutely field these questions live in two different sessions on discord on Saturday, and will field any alternative ideas as well.

5 Likes

Do people think it would be logical for this to be for a shorter period, maybe one month? As mentioned in the Governance Committee call, the community could approach Enigma to see if we can get a better distribution of delegation to both support smaller and active validators (as opposed to the amount of unutilised SCRT with validators who are not up).

This could see a contribution made to the Secret Code validator which will help make this more sustainable, and could potentially be material enough to change the shape of your proposal.

I don’t know if I missed it but could you clarify how many hours per week / per month you’re expecting?

1 Like

A barebones minimum of 15 per week for Paul and 20 per week for me. And that’s not a bad idea. Also like I mentioned in one of my comments, we think it would be cool to pay the community pool back for other value we’re able to capture, so if it did stand like this, and we got a sizeable delegation, we would be willing to pay back the community pool with some of those funds.

3 Likes

What is the plan if you dont achieve self sustainability during this time period?

I also dont think the tutorials are a value added since there is already an education committee that is funded for reasons like that.

Paying back the community pool is tough, Ian would have to weigh in on this for the details.

The pool isn’t really like an address, it is more like an on-chain jar.

Getting paid from the pool doesn’t register as a transaction, thus ‘paying back’ the pool isn’t as simple as a transaction afaik.

2 Likes

We specifically aim to provide video tutorials which it doesn’t seem the education committee is providing at the moment. @Stefan-001 Please correct me if I am wrong.

Many people go to youtube for quick 2-5 min tutorials so the value is very much there, at least in my opinion. Young people especially gravitate towards youtube for tutorials. Anyone else can chime in on this.

One key thing to mention is that our sole focus would be on growing the youtube channel, both with content and subscribers. We believe the podcast brand is a great stepping stone for becoming a more generalized contributor of the ecosystem. We feel tutorials would be a nice complement to our podcasts. There isn’t a noticeable effort on anyone’s end to grow our youtube presence with consistent content. We believe we have started this effort with the podcast but we would like all the firepower we could get, new content every week aimed at both beginners and involved community members.

From what I understand, there are only a handful of video tutorials, most of which are staking tutorials. Brendan does seem to cover the bridges of the network and secretswap in terms of videos but as more gets built, we wanted to be a channel dedicated to churning video tutorials out like clockwork.

@Brendan Please chime in on your plans for tutorial videos in the future. If the roadmap is true, you have a lot of work cut out for you as would we with 20+ projects allegedly set to come out over the next 3 months. We could maybe collaborate in some way. We want to be open about this and nothing is final so let’s definitely talk next steps.

We also feel we are in a unique situation where we usually are talking to projects close to their launch and are in direct communication with the main devs. They’ve expressed that tutorials would be great to have and they would like to outsource. We’ve talked to Max Koda for the XMR bridge to replace the one on his site, Oskar for an Altermail tutorial, Ian for Secret Wallet, and Ben for Fardels so the interest from our guests is there. We of course as mentioned earlier would do tutorials for virtually everything. Even something that seems trivial to a crypto native such as secret nodes explorer confuses many beginners from what I’ve seen. A quick walkthrough is harmless, good for beginners, and populates a youtube page. I think it looks great when a channel can fill up their content page and have videos published as recently as a week ago consistently.

Final Note:
If this is something not wanted for the network, we can remove it from the proposal and adjust our ask. We’ve streamlined the podcast production and have played with making tutorials behind the scenes and will hopefully have one in your hands soon after bridges are back up. This just seemed like the next best step for growing but again, we are here to serve the community so we will listen.

4 Likes

One final thing I forgot to mention is that many people do exploring on youtube directly. This is the benefit of having tons of content. There have been countless times where I watch one video and right next to it is another related one. I didn’t plan on watching it but end up watching because it’s short enough and why not. Almost like impulse buying while shopping.

Right now, most people will learn about a dapp/bridge or whatever from twitter, blog post, reddit, etc but what if people learn about what they can do on secret network through youtube. They watch a video on making a fardel and right next to that is a video on secret wallet so they might give that a look too and so on.

The very last thing I will say is that dapps, tools, etc will be updated with new features/versions quite often so there needs to be commitment to keep up with the times in terms of these video tutorials and stay updated.

3 Likes

Thank you for the note, this is good to know!

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The education committee is doing an incredible job on their content rollout! Their written tutorials have been thorough and wonderful. They’re also contracted for 12-15 hours per week each, at a higher ask. I do not have an issue with their ask. They’re worth it and needed! But keep in mind that much of the content created currently is contracted out by the foundation outside of the Education Committee budget.

If it were a popular decision by the community that we reach back out to the foundation to try to get funding we’d look into it, but think that as a community led initiative, this is the correct place to go.

3 Likes

Thanks! We’ll reach out to Ian. If it proved too difficult we could always set up a community multi-sig wallet of some sorts that would be tapped first next time a spend proposal goes through. Or really we could do whatever the community decides with the money, whether it be a charity, burn, etc.

2 Likes

To achieve self sustainability over the next 3 months can be broken down by 3 plans (Most favorable being towards the top) :

  1. Have sufficient delegations to our node. This was our plan for the SNAC and we were honestly hoping to get delegation from Enigma to help out a lot but that has not been the case. We barely have any outside delegation. This is still our favorite option but it’s a bit out of our hands.

  2. Keep Ad revenue. As mentioned earlier, a piece of advice we got was to auction off ad space at the beginning of each podcast episode on Secret Auctions. The Ad revenue could be kept and serve as the base for our funding. This is a bit riskier. We are unsure of how consistent this approach would be and how much people are willing to pay. We could do a test run soon.

Eric and I are split on this. Eric wants to pay back dividends to the community in some shape or form if we choose this approach. He doesn’t like the idea of taking ad money for ourselves. I personally think this can get a bit messy with giving back and if keeping it means we are self sustainable, I am 100% ok with that.

  1. SNAC/Community Funding. If the first 2 options fail, this seems to be only viable option left. We really would like to avoid this.

We really do want to hear input, feedback, etc on this. Please continue to comment with suggestions or join us on discord for an AMA tomorrow, Saturday Sep 18th, 12 pm est and 8 pm est to discuss in person. Bigger picture points to discuss would be funding right now (Community or SNAC), funding in the future, advertising in general, and the tutorials (should we or should we not and in what scope if we do). We plan to be super flexible with people’s requests and nothing mentioned above is set in stone. Thanks

2 Likes

Hi! I have a couple thoughts.

  1. Paul & Eric: I think it’s awesome what you guys are doing. I’m a few episodes behind, but I have been listening to the entirety of every episode. I’m very thankful for the information. I think it’s a great way to not only be learning about Scrt, but also, I’m enjoying getting to know members of the ecosystem through your podcast. It’s so important to have content with spoken word. Everyone is different, therefore educational content needs to be being put on each medium, so it can be consumed for all learning types.

I.e. I’ll read some articles, but I’ll listen to podcasts while I’m doing other things. I won’t watch videos, but if it’s a tutorial, I’ll listen to the tutorial, and go down below to follow the written steps.

I think you guys have been over-delivering every step of the way, and following through with such good carry out. (Being in social media & marketing & acting/filmmaking fields I know how difficult it ends up being to meet deadlines. Especially ones you’ve made for yourself. I just wanted to acknowledge that publicly, because that deserves to be celebrated.)

  1. I’m, personally thankful that you’re putting out such great content. None of us knew how it would be, at first, but you guys have made it a reality, and it’s exceptional. I am thankful for that, because I don’t want to share stuff that is poorly made. I won’t share stuff like that, so thank you for putting out good content that I am comfortable sharing with my friends and pointing people towards Secret with.

  2. I see tremendous value in tutorials. End of story. Not everybody knows how to do these things. Eric spent an hour with me, over the phone, when I downloaded Keplr and got my first Scrt tokens. (I literally don’t even know if I worded that right.) But I needed that step by step. The people I’m talking to…they’re entering this ecosystem knowing nothing about cryptocurrency. We need to be able to take people by the hand for some of this.

  3. (RE: our ecosystem, not the podcast) I agree the education committee is doing an excellent job with everything they’re rolling out. And so is the rest of our ecosystem. You guys are such hard workers. I hope you feel from us (and the whole community) how much we appreciate that. It can be disconnecting to sit behind a screen, but your efforts are felt and seen.

2 Likes

We do try to get people to do the video tutorials, but it is hard to find contributors to make them. The written tutorials also seem to do considerably better.

We currently got a bounty up for a video tutorial, but no biters.

1 Like

@Ewais001

I’ll start by saying you guys have done a great job putting together the framework for which this podcast can be evaluated and critiqued.

I’m personally not a huge fan of podcasts unless they’re 30 mins or less. One that I’ve been listening to for a few years now has been https://100mba.net/ by Omar Zenhom.
-Short and sweet
-Intent driven with value for listeners.
-A No Gimmick type business

Tutorials should come from the community willingly. This need is not new, it’s happening with other Cosmos chains that interact with Keplr: (OSMO, ATOM, DVPN) - given the rise of ATOM lately, I imagine someone is working on tutorials as we speak. Even Josh Lee mentioned it on the Osmosis AMA two days ago. Keplr mobile app is coming soon or so they have been saying.

In my opinion, I think your skills could be more directional/hyper-focused so that you’re an expert in what you do, that’s what you’re being paid for.

Personally, giveaways are petty. It’s more illustrious when community funds are more intentional. Terra Daily has done an incredible job with this and should certainly be used as a guide.

One last thing, Celsius Network has a decent spread of ideas that you could extract for your Youtube strategy.

-If I were you, just keep creating.
-Add more value to your podcast, keep it short and sweet.
-Create a website that’s clean and minimal.
-Organize your episodes similar to $100MBA.

You’ll attract more delegators with time, practice, sweat equity, persistence, etc. etc.

Fin
Junior

1 Like

Thank you for the reply.

I just found the bounty list and some of the videos you mention are things we plan to create i.e. SEFI Gov video. The discretionary budget seems a bit limited though in terms of what you can offer. 575 scrt a month total at current prices, I’m not sure how much you would be willing to delegate to video tutorials, it’s a good amount of work and we won’t do it for $10/hr.

Eric and I wanted to make them a weekly deliverable, roughly 10 min worth of edited, high quality video tutorials for anything Secret related. If it’s a bounty system, would we really apply for every bounty and how many bounties could you offer with fair compensation? For these one-off bounties, where would the videos live, on our YouTube channel? Secret’s main one? I think it makes sense for video content to exist in the same place rather than across many different channels. Consistency is key so it may be best to find a single dedicated contributor rather than paying for individual video projects from possibly different contributors. We of course could take some direction from the education committee on which tutorials they personally would like produced to complement the written tutorials.

Also could you expand on why the written tutorials seem to do considerably better? Is that anecdotal? Do you have KPIs to support this? Brendan’s tutorials seem to have plenty of views. Sadly, we live in a world where many people are turned off by any sort of reading. There are also many visual learners out there, myself included.

We should have a tutorial ready to go next week. Take a look once it’s up and let us know what you think. What you’ll see next week will be the kind of tutorial work we plan to do weekly if this passes as is.

1 Like