Crypto Commons Gathering 2023 is over, while waiting for the full summary, you can still see what the event was about in this page! You can see a collection of materials and links to the live streams from CCG23 on this Miro board.
Building on the success of the last two years, the Crypto Commons Association calls on commoners of all trades to flock to the Austrian Alps, one hour south of Vienna, to spend one week at the Commons Hub and debate the role of the Commons in Blockchain and beyond.
Despite this long bear market, the crypto space is evolving at the usual outstanding speed and demands us to take a breath and make sense of what’s going on: what are the lessons we can learn from the last year of experimentations in funding public goods through Gitcoin, Giveth, Future Quest, Breadchain, DaoDrops, Metacrisis? What about the burgeoning ReFi ecosystem and all those projects quietly buidling behind the scene? What about Data Unions, DeSci, UBI, post-blockchain, economic media, liberating structures and the social challenge of promoting plurality and diversity in the space?
Most importantly of all, are we doing our best to empower commoners and communities on the ground?
Join us and a curated group of professionals and projects that are spearheading the discussion on Commons on the blokchain, bring your unique perspective and experience, become part of our growing Commoners movement!
The gathering was structured as follows
THEME AND ACTIVITIES
Arrivals and Contextualization
Coordi-Nations! Is it all about Coordi-Nation(s)? Balaji Srinivasan’s “Network State” proposal earlier this year saw widespread rejection based on its roots in the far-right Dark Enlightenment movement, but also its uncritical liaison with the nation state. Commons-oriented crypto philosophers instead champion ‘Coordi-Nations’ as “voluntary interwoven networks of communities, with aligned values and a shared identity[…, that] mutualise resources to redistribute them within the network and to engage in collective action, through participatory governance and interdepenedency between nodes”. Is this framework fit to catalyse the rise of the global commons? How can we embed it effectively in our narratives and strategies?
Collaborative Finance #CoFi After years of growth below the surface, the CoFi movement has finally come to the fore! The CCA’s CoFi Gathering in May 2023 has revealed and connected a rich ecosystem of projects and professionals committed to change the paradigm and practices of money through the powers of distributed credit issuance and clearing protocols. What are the challenges and priorities we need to focus on in the coming months to realize zero, the future of money?
Public Goods Funding The use of cryptoeconomic mechanisms to fund public goods and the Commons has gained significant momentum, with projects like Gitcoin, Giveth, Future Quest, Breadchain, DAO Drops, Metacrisis, Optimism, EnDAOment, and others leading the way. By analyzing these experiments, we seek to uncover valuable insights and leverage them to compound future progress.
On-Chain Governance Blockchain infrastructures have opened a new frontier of and design space for network politics. The ‘End of Politics’ has given way to the reality of complicated governance structures that increasingly reproduce the institutions they were designed to overcome, albeit in different form. Nevertheless, these systems come with distinctly new political economies that shape novel power structures. Their analysis and evaluation is thus of utmost importance for their conscious (re)design.
Regenerative Finance #ReFi The recent bear market’s impact on the evolution of the ReFi movement gives us the opportunity to assess the true value of innovations beyond climate financial hype. How do we ensure the regenerative protocols we are building and populating are both democratic and economically sound, serving the interests of the Commons Stewards while also rewarding impact investors?
Wrap up and Departures
The third edition of the annual Crypto Commons Gathering – CCG23 – took place again in the last week of August at the Crypto Commons Hub in Reichenau an der Rax, Austria. The intention was to create a space where participants, coming from various corners of the blockchain ecosystem but all interested in the Commons, could foster collaboration, exchange knowledge, explore new ideas, and practice what it means to co-create.
In short: the CCG23 offered a place to discuss, learn, and shape the future of decentralised technologies with a focus on the Commons. The CCG23 was initiated by the Crypto Commons Association and brought together thinkers, developers, enthusiasts, hackers, visionaries and many more. Attendees represented various projects, such as Holochain, The Blockchain Socialist, ECSA, Ethic Hub, ReFi DAO, and others.
The first day of the CCG focused on the theme of Coordi-Nations. The topic was chosen after a strong critique of Balaji Srinivasan's Network State proposal from earlier this year. Coordi-Nations, as understood in the commons-oriented crypto space, are networks of different communities with shared values and individual identity.
A central question for discussion was whether such a framework, based on the redistribution of resources within the network and a participatory governance model, is suitable for catalysing the rise of the global Commons and how to effectively integrate it into its narratives and strategies.
The morning started with a few introductory talks, followed by a presentation by Pablo on the community building platform Neighbourhoods. The Blockchain Socialist’s Josh and Sofia lead a workshop on (new) network sovereignties, followed by a practically oriented presentation from Primavera de Filippi.
The central theme of the second day revolved around Collaborative Finance. After this year's CoFi Gathering organised by the CCA in May, the CoFi day marked a continuation of the movement that is committed to reshaping the conventional paradigms and practices associated with money. The primary focus was on identifying and understanding the challenges and priorities on the horizon for the evolution of the future of money.
The day's agenda began with an introduction to the topic by Matthew Slaters, setting the stage for the discussions that followed. Jesse and Aleksa presented their CoFi Chatbot, Theo held a presentation on NetFi Research, Paolo talked about Informal Systems, and to conclude the morning, Lisa Tan gave a session on Economic Risk and Evaluating Economies. The more informal afternoon sessions were held around topics such as grassroots economics, collaborative publishing, currency design, or CoFi & the state.
The third day at CCG centered on the topic of Public Goods Funding. A noticeable increase in the utilisation of cryptoeconomic mechanisms for supporting public goods and the Commons has taken place with projects such as Gitcoin, Giveth, Breadchain, DAO Drops, Optimism, and others. The aim of this day was to present, analyse and discuss some of these projects to uncover insights and utilise them for future developments and progress.
The morning featured several contributions, including an introduction to Breadchain & Crowdstaking Application Demo by TBS Josh, a Tokenomics Evaluation Framework shared by Vasily, Insights into the Commons Economy Roadmap presented by Giulio and a fishbowl on Gitcoin & Shell. The afternoon workshops covered topics such as currency life cycle & dimensions of incentives, poetics of play, Open Collective and crypto/web3, web3 work & social security, and more.
Day four was dedicated to the theme of On-Chain Governance. Blockchain infrastructures have ushered in a fresh frontier of design possibilities for network politics. The idea of alternative forms of politics has evolved into the reality of intricate governance structures. Such systems introduce entirely new political economies that give rise to unique power dynamics which not only become tangible in DAO environments and their manifestos. Such governance models and their varying designs were the focus of the day's discussions.
The day's morning presentations included insights into Powerpool presented by Vasily, a presentation on Pairwise by Zeptimus, a session on Q led by Dino, Assumptions about Governance & DAO Tools by Art, and an overview of the Commons Hub Validator Nodes provided by Emil. Some of the topics addressed in the afternoon sessions were: visions of a world without capital, anticipatory politics, ReFi DAO tokenomics, or composing organisations (case: ECSA).
The focus of the last day was on the topic Regenerative Finance. The previous months have provided an opportunity to evaluate the genuine worth of innovations that extend beyond the financial hype surrounding initiatives with a focus on climate change. The essential question that was addressed was whether the regenerative protocols that are being designed and adopted are both inclusive and financially robust, while being capable of serving the interests of the Commons.
The day featured several presentations, including Solarpunk Futures by Solarpunk DAO, an overview of ReFi DAO presented by Monty, a session on Holochain by Art, and a presentation of EthicHub by Gabriela and Jori. The last sessions were moved to the river where a game called Ninja opened the stage. Afterwards, ECSA gave a presentation, also Mathew, and other smaller workshops were held.
The CCG23 was by far not limited to its formal program. Participants engaged in a wide range of activities organised by themselves, in the spirit of community and collaboration. Some of these activities included mushroom picking, movie streamings (Cybersocialism: Project Cybersyn & The CIA Coup in Chile by Plastic Pills, or The Upward Spiral by Paul Krafel), a club night, morning yoga & meditation, sharing circles, and a round of Rok's Game-Changers: The Game besides other micro games. People came together to sing around the bonfire, organised hacking sessions, shared meals and pursued conversations over beers which provided a backdrop for many other profoundly serious, as well as hilariously absurd mental acrobatics. In addition, there were new areas of the Commons Hub to explore, such as the vegetable garden, promoting a hands-on approach to the event.
However, the CCG23 also had to face challenges of different kinds. Questions of how people wish to organise themselves and especially how to create respectful interactions among each other needed to be addressed. On an organisatorial level, one notable point of discussion was the setup of the event itself. Unlike during the first two editions of the CCG, this year, each day was dedicated to a specific topic and the mornings followed a predefined program that included presentations from people who were not necessarily physically present at the gathering. Even though the afternoons still followed the style of an un-conference, the question was brought up of how much freedom/structure will be desired for the future.
After all, the CCG has become for many participants one of the most important and intense events during the year that reaches far beyond the topics of crypto & the Commons but that invites collaboration, exchange and even friendship. This is the spirit we actively wish to cultivate and carry forward to our upcoming events!
Thanks to Eva, one of CCG23’s participants, for writing this recap!
CCG23 was held at the Commons Hub. Use the toggle below to see how to reach the Commons Hub and read about external accommodation options.
How to reach the Commons Hub
The Commons Hub is located in Richard von Schoeller-Straße 9, 2651, Reichenau an der Rax, Austria.
You can use this Google Maps link to search for the fastest route from your starting point.
To plan your trip by train, we suggest using Trainline.
The nearest train station to the Hub is Payerbach-Reichenau Bahnof (”station” in German).
Keep in mind that Payerbach-Reichenau is a smaller station, and it might be more convenient, or faster, to search for trains heading to Vienna or Wiener Neustadt, and then getting a different train to reach Reichenau an der Rax.
If you are arriving in Vienna by plane, you can simply take the train route suggested by Maps. Try to avoid the CAT (City Airport Train), unless necessary — it’s a more expensive option that saves you only 10 minutes compared to the standard train.
Once you are at Payerbach-Reichenau train station, getting to the Hub is pretty simple:
- By Bus: you can buy a bus ticket from the station at this link. The Bus line is 341, and it should take fifteen minutes at most.
- By Taxi: if you are planning to arrive later than the last bus, or don’t want to take it, you can call a taxi. The price should be around €15. You can simply ask to be taken “to the church in Hirschwang”, since it’s very close to the Hub and a good reference point.
- Flackl-Wirt Taxi: +43 26665 2291
- Funk-Taxi Fritz Scharfegger: +43 2665 2200
- Walking: of course, nothing is stopping you from having a healthy walk up to the Hub! It’s only around 5km, an hour of walking more or less, and most of the route goes through nature.
If you think you are going to be too late for any service, make sure to contact us so we’ll be able to organize a car to come and get you!
Nearby external accommodation
You might want to book an external accommodation to which you can withdraw when our collective energy overwhelms you a bit, or if there are no more places to sleep in the Hub itself:
Offers affordable rooms and is about 10 minutes by foot.
About 4km from the Hub, so you'll need someone with a car, but the place might still be worth it - Princess Sisi used to stay there!
Within 5 minutes by foot, a little pricy but quite fancy.
An impact investing platform and a global community: lend dollars to unbanked farmers (8%APR) or stake at the Crowd Collateral System and earn Ethix!
Circles is an alternative currency, where communities can give each other a basic income — without waiting for the state.
Decentralized network for guaranteed automatic, gasless, transaction execution and off-chain computations for Defi/Web3 apps and individuals.
Breadchain is a cooperative of blockchain projects working to advance a progressive vision for the technology and its effect on society.
Holochain gives digital agency to organizations, markets, and people. By combining cryptography, distributed databases, and consensus-free validation — new social magic is possible.
Q is for decentralized organizations that want to build in a secure and trusted environment that can operate beyond the code.
For any additional question you may have, you can contact us by mail, on twitter, or by writing to us directly!
- Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Twitter: @crypto4commons
©2023, all rights reserved to Crypto Commons Association