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Write Now - No. 3

Intro to AESOP

Since the last issue of Write Now, the newsletter has been ported over from PubDAO to AESOP, or the Autonomous Enterprise for the Stewardship of On-Chain Publishing. Because PubDAO was not created with nonprofit intentions, the goal of forming a chamber of commerce for web3 publishing was not a natural fit. Instead, PubDAO will remain a media collective and content-as-a-service experiment led by Decrypt, and AESOP will be an independent experiment exploring the formation of a chamber of commerce for the web3 publishing industry.

For more information about how AESOP (also stylized as aes0p) plans to operate as a chamber of commerce, including maintaining a resource hub and an industry calendar, please visit the AESOP website.

Platform Agnosticism: An Approach to Organizational Autonomy

By Clinamenic

One important technical distinction to bear in mind, as we construct these experimental new on-chain organizations, is that between a platform and a protocol. Where protocols consist of open-source algorithms deployed to shared virtual machines and data stored on distributed databases, platforms consist of applications built on a higher level and maintained in more centralized fashions. Operations dependent on platforms are more subject to censorship or loss of data than operations dependent on protocols.

What role, then, should platforms play in this environment? Well-designed platforms offer engaging and intuitive user experiences, streamlining how users interact with protocols and add content to the underlying distributed databases. In the absence of platforms, users would need a much greater technical literacy to interact with these protocols.

This technical complexity can be abstracted away from the user experience without forcing the user to become integrally dependent on the platform doing the abstracting. If organizational autonomy is as important a value in our industry as we say it is, we as the user base should be choosing platforms which take this approach. In other words, all else being equal, we as users should be opting for the platforms which support platform-agnostic operations, and which add value in terms of enhancing users' protocol-level activities, rather than those which add value in ways which are restricted to their own application layer.

A platform can be said to support platform-agnostic activity if, were that platform to go out of business, the users of that platform would still be able to interact with the underlying protocols and content, either by way of manually calling functions on block explorers, or by building their own user interfaces.

If an organization is able to design its architecture and conduct its operations in such a platform-agnostic manner, that organization could be considered significantly more censorship-resistant than those organizations which lean more heavily and fundamentally on platforms. If we are to design and operate on-chain institutions, and to gradually migrate more of our societal decision-making into these transparent and democratic frameworks, we should be cognizant of what technology we depend on, and orient our dependence in as platform-agnostic a manner as possible.

Featured Writings

AESOP Updates

Web3 Publishing Calendar - If you'd like to keep track of events in the world of web3 writing and publishing, check out this calendar! Feel free to reach out to if you'd like to add events to this calendar.