Working for (and getting paid) by the Blockchain
Without bosses and a CEO, there are only shareholders to make decisions. We have covered how the traditional ‘Board of Directors’ is replaced by committee in part 1, and how witnesses earn for locking the network down in part 2. In this final part we look into Workers, the closest equivalent in BitShares to actual employees.
What is a Worker in BitShares?
A 'Worker’ is a special kind of smart contract created on the blockchain and voted into action by shareholders. Thanks to the funds that BitShares keeps in its reserve pool, not only can the network afford upkeep and maintenance, it encourages an eco-system whereby others can come to improve and upgrade BitShares. The DAC still very much needs people to run it. The main worker proposals currently tend to focus on development and infrastructure, however they can also be for anything considered to improve the general ecosystem, or to bring value to BitShares. As we shall see in the remainder of this article, workers are individuals or companies working on BitShares who in essence fill the role of employees, and are free to run their own businesses (central office) on top or as part of the BitShares eco-system. Some proposals are made directly to cover expenses, others are a contribution, perhaps split between worker pay and a sponsoring company or BitShares partner.
The Worker Budget
The BitShares blockchain reserve pool has parameters set by the committee and voted upon by shareholders. The budget is set at a daily rate and will either fund worker proposals until exhausted, or burn the excess. These funds secure the future of BitShares, and no one has control over them except the BitShares protocol itself.
worker budget: daily budget available for worker items (e.g. development)
How do I go about submitting a Worker Proposal?
First you will have prepared your proposal writeup and shared it on public URL such as the BitShares talk forum or Steem post. Then you must write the record on the blockchain. Below is a screenshot with markup on how this is done in the official BitShares user interface:
As seen above, the following must be published on the blockchain for approval by shareholders:
(a) the date of work begin
(b) the date of work end
(c) a daily pay (denoted in BTS)
(d) the worker’s name,
(e) public URL where public can view the detailed write-up.
To win approval, you must convince the shareholders your proposal is worthwhile. For homework, please take a look at some examples:
2 – Core Developer
Timing your worker proposal
Or the 'chicken and egg' scenario. How to convince shareholders to vote, before the work is done? How will people know you are able to deliver?
It comes down to track record in the community. Did you complete all or some of the work before submitting the proposal, or just arrive at the scene? (if the latter, you may still be able to seek bouties - read on). Proposals often come with evidence of expenses incurred, or proof of work in some form. You can also 'propose a proposal' via a post here on Steem or in the forums, and gather community reaction on Telegram before publishing on the blockchain.
Of course, common sense comes into play here – Shareholders will only vote proposals that improve BitShares, you can't request funding for your start up. It’s worth getting to know the community first, testing the water, you may even find synergy and partner with somone there. One of the best places to ’soapbox’ your ideas is the BitShares_DEX Telegram channel.
There is one more way to get paid by the blockchain, and claim a share of the worker budget. A ‘bounty’ is a means to source work from outside professionals. This could range anything from ‘bug hunter’ bounties during a new release, to professional translation, marketing, legal and more. Any professional that can fill the requirement can come to complete units of the work under the proposal and if successful, raise an invoice. This adds a lot more flexibility for getting things done when the community is stretched or lacking in specific resources.
How can I take part? Please do this!
Recommended for every shareholder, is to check out all the worker proposals and add your suport. Log in to the BitShares UI, and follow the arrows below..
Sorry, I don't understand, can you just vote for me?
Yes! And it is a very good idea and contribution still, if all you do is pick a good proxy. We won't list recommendations but let's say many of the top witness accounts make great proxies. Check out thier profiles and blogs, and pick who you feel best represents. If you wanted to choose us for example, enter as proxy apasia-tech.
Worker proposals and bounties serve a level of competitiveness for improvements, upgrades and new features all of which the shareholders get to vote and have a say. The DAC will always move in a direction that pleases most shareholders with less possibility of centralization or forks that could divide the community. With the voting proxies, and worker proposal system in place, BitShares continual development and improvement is assured.
words and images: @britcoins