007: Decentralized vs Centralized
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1. Decentralized everything? Or is some Centralization a good thing?
BitClout is intended to be decentralized but it has been a journey going from centralized to more decentralized and even in the end it is not an all or nothing situation There can be centralized components that operate on the decentralized network. Why does it matter? It matters because the structure impacts things like user experience, development speed, and freedom.
2. The Deflation Bomb has gone off
The maximum supply of $Clout is and will always be about 10.8 million coins. Limited the supply of $Clout is such a valuable thing for BitClout. Even though not all Clouters are economist - think about other limited resources and how you value them – friends, family, and time come to mind. Now that the highly anticipated bomb has gone off – we have what appears to be an exchange listing countdown that expires on Tuesday June 15th. Also, people are already starting to refer to things on the time scale of BB(Before Bomb) or AB(After Bomb).
Let's Go Deeper
There are many ways in which a network, market, org, etc. can be centralized or decentralized. Or here is a fun example for illustrative purposes - a pack of dogs with an alpha has centralized governance, while a clowder of cats is decentralized and they each just do whatever they want. But decentralized does not always mean disorganized – albeit disperse.
Let’s give some BitClout examples. The decisions on how BitClout should work and what the initial features would be were made centrally by @diamondhands and team. In the future these decisions will likely occur in smaller increments or as “micro – decisions”. These micro-decisions will happen across a vast group of developers through the open source code and this is an example of decentralization. As you can imagine with the later, it is sometimes difficult to move in a unified direction.
Another example is the nodes/applications/interfaces that allow someone to use the BitClout network. This is a decentralized approach – where many applications and access points exist and users are free to choose. However, each project will likely have a centralized governance structure. There is even a project called CloutApps that calls itself the App Store of clout projects. This could be a very useful project but if it gains dominance and becomes the sole gatekeeper, like the Apple App Store, that could be very problematic and the opposite of decentralized.
Another interesting thread is that depending on how the applications present themselves – some users might not even be aware that they are using BitClout. Let that sink in.
Is this a problem or a good thing?
That is for you to decide but I spoke with @GoatTrade on the topic and here are some highlights from the conversation:
Think about when a conglomerate owns many brands – does the end consumer need to know or care about who the parent company is when interacting with a particular brand.
When you buy a bag of chips do you know or care that they are probably owned and produced by Pepsi?
@GoatTrade also explained where certain centralization might be helpful – one example being syndication of investments. This helps solve problems like avoiding scams and easing the decision burden of choosing investments.
Lastly, remember it is not all or nothing. There is a full spectrum from centralized to decentralized and many things in-between exist. We all have to decide if and when certain guardrails could help solve and issue and this may lead to a sub-organization within the broader BitClout ecosystem.
The Deflation Bomb
First, make sure you read the TL;DR section on the deflation bomb well. Because the below is not comprehensive or insight packed – just some interested observations.
That’s it folks
Quick Anouncement: We have a new affiliated project, @Investly, that invests in many different undervalued creators so you don’t have to spend the time doing research. There will also be some gamification as many BitClout users have expressed interest in more opportunities to participate in gamified experiences. Check out the bio for details and get some $Investly if you want to come on the journey.
Potential topics for next week:
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