Community Initiative Program (CIP)


That’s how I see this. If it’s not your preferred model, that’s fine - you don’t need to participate, but you have given valuable critique, which may come into play if results are worthless & the model can be tweaked. However, if results are not worthless, then it’ll play its function.

Remember that this is for tiny snippets of useful code that do a basic function for others to play with. It’s not for developing flagship Safe apps.

I agree the response you’ve received has been lacking grace, but I guess you returned the favour with:

While I see your critique as valuable, I can see why your tone would have provoked a defensive response.


I agree on not liking race to the bottom competitions where people work for far less than any person would find reasonable. I was talking with @whiteoutmashups over PM about his idea of a little fund as a community initiative. This is one idea that’s out there. Another one is the Community Engagement Program by MaidSafe in which both the community and the company paid a reasonable amount of coins for someone to work on a browser.

I don’t mind paying for a good idea, and I think a lot of others won’t either. As Alpha 2 is coming and external devs finally can build whatever they want using APIs and more we’ll probably see a whole bunch of initiatives popping up here on the forum.


Sorry to see two valued community members Will & Chris butting heads here. I think you both have valid points and let’s see how this goes and also take on board Chris’ critique - not necessarily for this Will, but as we build on it and branch out perhaps.

I admit I was a bit skeptical, but have stayed out of the discussion because I didn’t want to discourage what for all I know could work very well. It’s just different to how I act and think, and because I value what Will brings so much I thought he was likely to make a go of it.

I think it’s great to have so many people with diverse ideas and skills looking to help build things on SAFEnetwork. I’m right behind both of you! @whiteoutmashups @arsnebula


Seems silly to get too aggressive about a pov like this. I’m inclined to agree with both of you really. I’m not sure it will work and I think it does need to be kept to little snippets of code because the model itself isn’t great. But I also applaud all and any efforts to get stuff done. I think you’re both very energetic contributors so I’m surprised to see a couple of slightly blunt comments escalating into a row so quickly. You’re both very reasonable and well-intentioned people, we all have the same goal here, let’s just let it play out and see if it works. No need to start making too many judgements about each other over some minor difference in opinion about how we get where we all want to be. Either way, it’s always good to try things like this because there’s relatively little downside to it failing, but some value to the upside if works.


Yeah it’s just a small idea. I’ve had success outsourcing small projects and just thought I could help move things forward in small ways with that here.

The guys in Asia had a similar idea and I thought this could bring some structure. We’re trying it now anyway to see how it plays out and will post updates when it’s ready for use

I admit I’m not as old and mature as everyone else here and don’t handle such intense criticism as well as I should. I was really kind of putting myself out there with my idea and felt quite attacked reading his whole post. Should have handled it better. Apologies.

No harm in trying things though. Open to better ideas! From anyone. Please post!


Do not be downhearted or feel “corrected” in any way.
Your idea is fine for small immediate mini-projects.
Problem is that a project like MaidSafe attracts so many out and out libertarian nutters who rarely (if ever) seem to interface well with the rest of sensible society.
Their lunatic demands that we all act to satisfy their ridiculous, almost religious, ideas can put a real downer on things and greatly slow development.
I take great comfort in knowing that this project has an engineer at the helm, not some crazed right wing libertarian nutjobs

Always remember when a libertarian talks about freedom , it is HIS freedom (usually to strut about with a gun or avoid paying taxes) NOT yours that he is concerned about.


Thanks to everyone for their comments. Special thanks to @happybeing and @polpolrene who always inject a very moderating tone in their involvement in the forums and chat.

For the record @Southside, I am a Canadian and a progressive liberal, so my political and cultural values would align much more with Northern Europe than anything American, and libertarians tend to favor “winner take all” economic models with their definition of freedom being based on competition and individual meritocracy. Oh, and I don’t like guns, and I actually like the principle of taxation (if the government isn’t corrupt and is truly democratic). I guess if there is a shared value between progressives and libertarians it would be “equal access to opportunity”? At heart I am also a pragmatist, and tend to judge ideas with an eye towards sustainability and utilitarianism.

In any regard, if you look at my original critique, it was not meant to be quite so focused on the theme of developers are not being paid enough money. I did actually reference the benefits of the gift economy present in open source, and that the presence of financial incentives (particularly when they are very small and arbitrary ones) can actually be counter-productive, reducing a potential strong intrinsic incentive, with a poor externalized one.

So, at least in the spirit of being clear on my critique, I will attempt to re-summarize. I strongly distrust systems where access to capital (and/or other rewards) is tightly controlled by small central group of people who then make others viciously compete for an arbitrary reward that is not tied to the specific value they create, and to which they have little influence. The basic function of this model is to impose scarcity on opportunity in order to centralize control, artificially encourage desperation in people to make them easier to exploit, and enable wealth extraction. Yup, this is pretty much the modern handbook for American-style business management for the last 30 years (maximize shareholder value). My personal belief is this model is destructive and unsustainable. No, this not because I am anti-capitalist, but because this is what I believe the true virtue of free markets should deliver to people, and to which human greed and the desire to acquire control, and extract wealth from others, has corrupted it to be.

The size of the opportunity or the specific monetary rewards involved is not the point - the point is the values and principles this management strategy is based on.

To me, the kind of freedom that the SAFE network and blockchain tout, is the ability to circumvent the control and wealth extraction models imposed by middlemen that manipulate too many of our institutions and economic markets. In short, the goal (and this is something that progressives and libertarians would probably agree on), is creating more equality in the access to opportunity, and more open and equal competition that returns value determined by the market (what I would describe as the core virtue of what real capitalism is supposed to deliver). I certainly didn’t invent that; I am coming late to a party where I sort of expected this music to already be playing.

Yes, I agree that this perspective can be accused of being overly optimistic to the point of being naive. The SAFE network will attract every type of human behavior found everywhere else, and there is not going to be anyway to stop that. At least in this case, the technology may help mitigate the ability of middlemen to so easily control the flow of value and rewards - so, like many, I do have hope that the SAFE Network will be an overly positive thing).

Phew - I hate posts this long, but this is what you get when you can only communicate with words. So, to trace back to the very first line of my original post, I am not enthusiastic about this proposal because it is based on a template management model that is in somewhat direct contradiction to some of the very values that I personally favor, but that I sort of expected would be prevalent in a community like this as well; values I would hope to support and encourage. I in no way am projecting that this means I speak for other people. My opinions and feedback are mine and mine alone.

I will close with one last point. If this post had been @whiteoutmashups proposing that he was interested in starting a Silicon Valley-esque venture capital fund he wanted to manage to invest in SAFE network projects (tiny apps or otherwise), then I would not be here, and I would not have commented at all. Free universe - I am not here to try and censure other people’s individual initiative. This is being promoted as a community initiative. If there is a small sore spot here for me, it is that what is proposed doesn’t seem to align well with how I view the community or how I personally hope community collaborations might function.

P.S. - Ok - one more thing. I referenced the open collective model (among others) because I believe it has a lot of virtue. There are open collectives that involve tiny budgets for things like just covering the costs of holding a monthly meetup ($60 for pizza and venue). Sponsors are not compensated for their contributions, they make them to help sustain an activity they think has value. Transparency is just a way of ensuring a governance model so they know the money they are providing is being spent appropriately. Not everything in our economy has to be gamified - where one group of people compete to provide reward for others. Collaboration and goodwill have a place too.


Well you got one bit right . eh?


I can see how you would interpret those responses. But maybe if you took a bit more time to understand @whiteoutmashups you may see it more as harmless exuberance gone wild.

And you were just referencing juvenile?

Anyway, onward/upward, i bet you have some talent and experience to offer and I also bet the Safenet community will benefit from having you collaborate with all the team - including @whiteoutmashups

You may or may not know this safenet project has been front burner stuff for many people going back to the start of 2014 and for others long before that. That was before the word bootstrap was invented.


For the record, I agree with you on that :stuck_out_tongue: and again, I apologize.


@whiteoutmashups Don’t worry about it. I am sorry you didn’t find my feedback constructive. I will take the advice of people in this thread to be more conscientious with regard to my tone when providing feedback in the future. Good luck with your initiatives.


Disagreements, even when they get uncomfortable are a good thing in that we get to know each other better and express/hear things we might not otherwise. So long as we can show enough respect and humility in the end and not take it personally.

Awesome examples of this from both Will and Chris here! Awesome community :slight_smile: I wish I was this capable - great example to me both of you. Thank you.


I have to say (as someone who would love to be able to support themselves doing OSS/SAFE stuffs) that I really agree with a lot of the points @arsnebula is putting forward here.

This entirely puts to me off (not to mention the sums being talked about being tiny for good dev work)[I get that we’re just throwing around numbers here, but just to note].

This is quite pertinent…

Is this a community initiative program? Or something to help with cheap outsourcing code? Those are very different (sounding) things to me. One of which I’d want to be involved in, the other… not.

As @polpolrene notes, the Community Engagement Program exists, (albeit a bit dormant), and having gone through that process (writing proposals, talking with maidsafe and the community, designing, coding etc), I felt it was a good system, set up on all levels to ensure good quality results were delivered for everyone. I also never for a moment felt like I’d being doing work and would not get paid for it if I delivered what was agreed.

That idea quoted (that you could work and not get paid) would put off a lot of devs and waste a lot of time if pursued IMO.

All of which makes me wonder what is wanted to be achieved here?

It seems to me (and correct me if I’m wrong) to be trying to be something akin to the CEP…

And if that’s the case, maybe we need to look at what we can do to aid and abet the CEP? (Which as I understand it is languishing as @maidsafe have other things in focus at the moment).

If there is need for an alternative way of encouraging / supporting dev contributions (there may well be), I’d be interested in hearing more ideas about what that could be. As well as what we may need to do to get such things off the ground.

(I’m reading up on open collective now!, sounds interesting @arsnebula!)

It’ll be interesting to see how this changes once we have the network. Ideally working on a small lib could be self supporting with the PtP GET reward system.

Until then I do really like the idea of working towards a way of supporting development of useful tools. (Not everything being ICO-able)

So :thumbsup: to that.


Ok cool but did you have any ideas?

Plz share!


Thanks @joshuef :slight_smile: I like in your comment that you have drawn some attention back to the issue of what are we really trying to achieve with this proposal. I would like to highlight 3 points it raised in my mind:

  • How does this initiative complement the official MaidSafe CIP? Is this going to simply complement that as a seperate community-driven initiative, or is MaidSafe interested, under the right governance model and their oversight, of migrating the official CIP program to a community-led program?

  • What is the scope of the kinds of projects this encompasses? If you follow the thread, it started as apps, then it morphed into small apps, then it became snippets. Are we talking about tiny demo programs (like the MaidSafe example apps) that are skeleton applications meant to demonstrate how to use the SAFE API for specific goals. Are these targeted at being a learning resource for developers - or are they supposed to be more? Is this meant to be a potential community funding source to help seed the SAFE network with apps that are potentially usable by users to help encourage adoption with increased utility?

  • What role does compensation play in any of this? A lot of people will be attracted to the SAFE network looking for financial opportunity (I know I am). Tied back to the prior item, is a compensation model with regard to the scope and purpose of what is trying to be accomplished a benefit, or liability? Is this a community sharing initiative with a very limited scope of creating reference learning materials that will help everyone benefit by increasing adoption, or is this an investment vehicle to help fund the creation of digital assets that include revenue generation or other reward potential?

It might help everyone if we can put a little more definition around this. Thoughts?


You explain yourself a lot better above, @arsnebula
@whiteoutmashups offer of $50 in BTC seems derisory and quite rightly “pro” devs are appalled at their work being undervalued in this way.
A bit of context however - the $50 mentioned was for a quick hack to get a single function on a single page working.
The offer was directed at me. I am not a pro developer, I know enough python and JS to get me into trouble and occasionally solve small problems - I was in no way insulted by the $50. As it happens RealLife again intervened and it is really only today -when the network is down and I need to properly learn about mock-routing - that I can come back and look at it again. Seems like @joshuef and @hunterlester have stepped in and provided hints, solutions. I will enjoy playing with that code and learning from it.
Dunno if they have claimed the $50. IMHO they would have a good case to do so.
A small amount got offered for a quick, dare I say, dirty job.
This is entirely on a different scale from the projects that the CEP (or is it CIP?) is intended to solve. At least that is my understanding.
Of course we need a bigger better “structure” for bigger projects. But if @whiteoutmashups wants to put together a scheme to incentivise small quick hacks then cool and best of luck to him. Never for a moment do I think that any of the resulting code will make it into production, but it might work well enough to let others get on their own bit of work in the meantime.
Obviously there comes a point at which you need to draw a line as to which piece of work belongs to which scheme, but that cannot be beyond the capabilities of this community as you point out in a more structured manner above.
And thanks for sticking around :slight_smile:


I didn’t provide code, just pointers. Which I’m more than happy to do. (I’ve use stackoverflow enough in my time!)

If there’s a need for quick snippets of code to be supplied, that is one thing (and not what I’d understood from the start of this thread). Perhaps it should be organised over on (or did we get a stack overflow going? @happybeing?).

If you have a problem and are willing to offer a bounty I think the dev forum could field a topic for such a thing. Anything else is (probably) getting over complex.

I’m not sure it makes sense for a central fund to aid development facilitate bug bounties? Especially for app code that has been funded in some other fashion…

I think there probably is a need for some fund for OSS built for the network. MAID have an avenue of funding the core network, and the foundation have a remit to support OSS / SAFE PODs. But it’s not so clear how that works.

And perhaps there’s a bootstrapping element outside of the CEP missing currently?

All kind of depends on what you thinking is missing right now?

In general though if we were to able to raise enough and can expand on the CEP to get more code/apps/resources written. To provide a route for some libs that may not reap huge rewards, that may not have a paradigm suited to an ICO (the traditional route into funding in the cryptosphere), or charging for them directly. That seems like a legit aim to me. At least until the network (hopefully) validates this sort of creation through PtP etc.


What would anyone actually want to fund? What sort of things…

There’s that most wanted app list (linked above), but what is missing (beyond mutable data etc… ).


Here are my objections:

  1. There is one single community pool for all of the apps. This means there will have to be a manager who we all have to trust. This manager will be a middleman. The manager will have to be adding value in some way.
  2. What if after I donate money to the pool, I do not approve of the apps that are being made? Can I get my money back? Or maybe I approve of the apps but I don’t like the quality. My experience with these kinds of investments is, putting your money in is easy, getting it out is always really hard.
  3. I didn’t know programming was such a capital intensive activity. Isn’t it possible to create the app in your spare time, and then sell it after the fact? Then everyone will know what they are buying.
  4. People who are really good at programming will want to have the freedom to do the app the way they want. Once they start taking money from people, they will lose some independence and some idiot investor like me will have a big say in what apps I want to see. The programmer is then selling some of his creative independence for up-front cash.

Maybe I misunderstood the OP. I think selling apps before they are created is putting the cart before the horse.


OK thanks everyone for the input!

The community has spoken, this idea is officially cancelled. I won’t do this outsource project.

Feel free to start new threads with your guy’s new ideas! :slight_smile: