[RFC-25] POPstar Program Evolution

1. Summary

This proposal aims to evolve the POPstar program to better serve the Popcorn community, create a more engaging experience for POPstars, and increase participation.

This will be accomplished by opening up the program to a wider audience and shifting the contribution & compensation system from retrospective and ambiguous (here’s what I did, what will my POP reward be?) to proactive and specific (here’s what I’d like to do, and this is what I’d like to get paid for doing it). To support this shift, Dework will be utilized instead of Coordinape as a tool to propose contribution ideas, receive feedback and approval or denial, and submit completed work for payment.

2. Background

The POPstar program was Popcorn’s first DAO contributor experiment. The ways in which POPstars could contribute was purposefully kept very broad to attract people with a variety of interests and skill sets. This open-endedness created a lot of freedom, which attracted many talented POPstars and led to many valuable contributions.

This open-endedness also created significant ambiguity. What constitutes valuable contributions within the POPstar program hasn’t always been clear, and there has never been a formal structure for POPstars to get input on contribution ideas before executing them. Engagement has fallen over time, and contribution has become uneven across the POPstar group. While some POPstar activities remain highly valuable and well-aligned with PopcornDAO’s goals, other activities are being performed by many other engaged community members without expectation of payment, such as attending community calls and using Popcorn products.

The current POPstar compensation system is exacerbating these challenges. Coordinape has not proven effective as a true peer-review process for evaluating contributions and determining compensation. This has led to a perceived lack of fairness related to pay received for work done. At the same time, budget constraints due to Popcorn’s investments in development have increased focus on working more efficiently on KPI-driven objectives. There is now an organizational imperative for tangible results.

The Working Groups pilot was designed to solve some of these issues with a more defined structure for sharing information, ideas and work between the current core team and community contributors. However, the WGs are by no means comprehensive when it comes to Popcorn’s need for community contributions. PopcornDAO would still benefit greatly from having a clear and compelling system for fostering work beyond the WGs.

3. Main Objective

Given the current strengths and challenges of the POPstar program, this proposal aims to achieve the following goals:

  • Maintain the freedom of the program so participants can find ways to contribute to Popcorn that suit their skills and interests
  • Better ensure the value of POPstar contributions to PopcornDAO by establishing a feedback mechanism for contribution ideas
  • Revise the system we use for contribution and compensation to better align incentives and remove ambiguity
  • Open the program up to a wider community of individuals interested in contributing to PopcornDAO

To support these goals, a Dework space will be created for POPstar contributions. This space will be open to all verified members of our Discord server. Using Dework’s Community Suggestions feature, members can submit “mini-proposals” for what they want to contribute each month. Mini-proposals will answer 4 simple questions:

  1. What work would you like to do this month?
  2. How will this work benefit Popcorn?
  3. What KPIs (key performance indicators) will you meet by the end of the month?
  4. What is the POP bounty you propose for this work?

Core team members will review mini-proposals and make suggestions for clarification and improvement if needed (Dework’s integration with Discord enables discussion threads on submissions). Mini-proposals will be approved or rejected in two batches per month — once at the beginning of the month, and once mid-month. Approved mini-proposals will be added as task cards to the “in progress” column of the Dework POPstar board. Core team members can also submit tasks they’d like worked on by adding them to the “to do” column of the board. Depending on the skill level required, POPstars will either be able to apply for or directly claim these on Dework.

Before the last day of the month, completed work on mini-proposals must be submitted that demonstrates KPIs have been met. After review, successfully completed work will be paid during the first week of the next month.

This proposal seeks a budget of 2000 POP per month for mini-proposals (replacing the current POPstar budget that varies based on the number of monthly contributors). Once this cap is reached each month, no additional mini-proposals will be approved until the following month. Any budget unused at the end of the month will remain in the treasury.

Tasks that will be encouraged for all community members but no longer eligible for compensation through the POPstar program: Attending community calls, using Popcorn products, retweeting Popcorn tweets (with possible exception for members with a large and active Twitter following).

4. Organizational Requirements

This system will require bimonthly reviews of POPstar mini-proposals, which will be coordinated by Community Lead @JoeyN with support from the DAO Organization WG and input from other core team members as needed.

5. Next Steps

  • Set up a Dework space for POPstar mini-proposals
  • Host and record a Discord call to review the new system and how to use it
  • Announce and promote the launch of the new system
3 Likes

Love to see the continued evolution of Popcorn. Great idea, happy to support it and contribute

1 Like

This proposal will work perfectly okay.
Using Dework as a core tool to asses and review task is a better way to avoid manually inputed efforts which will result in errors and issues of payment to Contributors.

However, I would comment that the review of each task be done by a sub head of that section (say moderation, by the operation lead and so on).

2 Likes

@Eminence I agree — any proposed tasks related to the work of a core team member or WG Lead should be reviewed by that person to ensure alignment.

Can you take budget out of current POPstar program? We can’t continue creating more potential sell pressure for POP until VaultCraft (Pop Vaults) and POP tokenomics are further optimized.

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@krychek to clarify, the current POPstar budget is 300 POP x the number of contributing members each month. Over the past few months this has ranged from 2100-3600 POP per month. This proposal would replace that variable budget with a 2000 POP per month cap.

Are you suggesting the cap be lower than 2000 POP / month? If so, what do you propose?

1 Like

Nice one!

Meaning that if a mini-proposal is accepted in mid-month contributors will only have 2 weeks to work?

I guess that the roadmap that is going to be developed (any planned timeline for this?) can inform these mini-proposals. As a potential contributor I think that knowing what is needed or what POPcornDAO´s “direction” is, can help us craft better mini-proposals. Else, I see the risk of core team members using too much time discussing proposals.
Another option I can think of is to define a set of criteria that are used to evaluate mini-proposals.

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Ok so you’re proposing to use the existing POPstar budget and capping at 2K for distributions per month?

2 Likes

@krychek exactly right

Meaning that if a mini-proposal is accepted in mid-month contributors will only have 2 weeks to work?

Yes — the rationale here is to address needs and ideas that arise after a month’s initial batch of mini-proposals is processed.

I guess that the roadmap that is going to be developed (any planned timeline for this?) can inform these mini-proposals. As a potential contributor I think that knowing what is needed or what POPcornDAO´s “direction” is, can help us craft better mini-proposals. Else, I see the risk of core team members using too much time discussing proposals.
Another option I can think of is to define a set of criteria that are used to evaluate mini-proposals.

This is a great point. The roadmap is a priority for me in the next month. Communicating current high-level Popcorn goals and criteria for evaluating alignment is definitely something we can do in the meantime as well.

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To clarify, does this mean that all approved work has to be completed before the end of the month?
If yes, does that also mean that contributors that have their mini-proposals approved mid-month have just two weeks to deliver? What about scenarios where mini-proposals actually need more time to be executed?

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If yes, does that also mean that contributors that have their mini-proposals approved mid-month have just two weeks to deliver?

@hamzat_iii Yes, work would need to be completed by end-of-month in order to get compensated the following month as outlined. Anyone submitting mini-proposals for the second half of the month would just need to take that into account when scoping their work.

What about scenarios where mini-proposals actually need more time to be executed?

Good question. One way to handle this would be phased mini-proposals. For example, if a contributor had a two-month project in mind, they could define KPIs for both the end of the first month and the end of the second month.

But the emphasis here is on “mini” — longer-term projects and any work requiring significant budget, time or effort by core team members should go though our standard governance process.

Okay. This clarifies another question I might have had in mind.