Interview with MikeWeb

We are very pleased to have you as our guest at HolaEco! For the entire Ecommunity and for me personally, you are a real hero

Your performance as a speaker at AMA was very emotional and reflected the thoughts of everyone in our community. I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart.

This will probably be a legendary event in the history of Eco that made a strong impression on many.

I’m sure everyone would like to know a little more about you. Tell us about yourself, your work and hobbies.
Thanks for your nice words. I dived into the crypto world around 2018 and have been a big crypto maxi ever since. I managed some projects in international trade as my main job, but every year the balance is shifting towards Web3. Full-time crypto is very close, right now I spend most of my time doing crypto stuff. I don’t have very interesting hobbies, in my free time I code a little, play guitar and swim.
Eco is a unique project thanks to amazing people who never stop experimenting, realizing their ideas, creating and creating something incredible together.

What was your first encounter with Eco? Have you encountered a similar structure of community organization in other projects?
I joined ECO in March, 2021 when some of my friends pointed to this project after initial hype spread in Russian-speaking communities. At first it wasn’t very clear what exactly the team was trying to achieve, there were community-building activities with no concrete goal in sight, so it took a lot of time before I finally understood the project properly. Most of my questions were answered basically at the token launch events.

Speaking of similar structures in other projects, I can’t say that ECO was completely unique. There were other crypto projects with somewhat comparable activities. I was a member of some DAOs that had similar feelings of people doing a lot of stuff and engaging with each other. But ECO is completely unique in terms of focus on community building activities, 20 months were dedicated to creating a strong and coherent DAO by letting people choose and build the foundation of engagement on their own. Freedom to choose the best way to work with ECO is what makes it different from many others. And that is exactly why we can see so many successful initiatives from different members of Discord.
What do you like most about Eco and what would you like to change? What weaknesses and strengths do you see in the project?
I liked that freedom of choice the most. I think the idea that people are extremely important for long-term success is great and by giving them the ability to participate in community the way they want to without much oversight or strong boundaries – it was awesome.

The main strength of the project, in my opinion, is the core team. People with experience and a rich background, knowing exactly what they are doing and having trust from some very serious web3 players, that is the main strength of ECO. I would love to say “community is the main strength”, but this is exactly where we are moving to the main weakness of ECO. And that is the transition from activity driven community to project driven community. This step is very difficult, and the ability to focus community on DAO building would be crucial for ECO DAO to achieve its ambitious goal. We will see how well first governance proposals will be constructed and if engagement levels will stay high. I am cautiously optimistic, but only time will tell. Luckily for ECO there are many very strong members of the community with unique skills who will be able to bring a lot of value to DAO. They are one of the many reasons for my optimism.
Do you consider the crypto-industry as an investment in the future or as an opportunity to earn a basic steady income right now? Do you participate in many projects and what is the main criterion for you to participate in a project?
I am crypto-maxi and do believe in the success of the web3 industry. I can’t say that right now crypto is steady enough to replace normal income streams, but on the plus side there are great opportunities to achieve the success you will never have at your 9:5 job. It is perfect for people who love to be independent and aren’t afraid to take some risks. As for my personal experience, I did a lot of different crypto stuff, so to list everything would be just too much. My main criterion is only one, and it’s called people. I think that people are everything, and big names play the main role in the success of new projects. It doesn’t mean that no-name team of coders have no chance of success, but it does mean that great talent always attracts attention from some big guys in the industry, and real talent can become famous overnight.
You were an active participant in DAO Challenges and contributed a lot to the creation of the Solarpunk document. Why are you so passionate about DAO? What disadvantages and major advantages do you see in the DAO governance structure?
I love the idea of DAO. I think at some point in the distant future humanity will completely move to DAOs as a superior structure compared to the legacy organizations. But it will take a lot of time for the technology and human culture to move from rigid centralized architectures towards decentralized and autonomous. We will see heavy resistance from conservative people and organizations and will have to create better tech that will allow proper interactions between people, but I do believe that this future is achievable. As of now, DAOs have a lot of weaknesses that I saw with my own eyes. Sometimes they are decentralized on paper only, they have very weak governance with mindless voting, grants are signed without proper due diligence, DAOs are controlled by a small group of people who make decisions against interests of the community, etc.

There are many obvious advantages of DAOs. They can be very flexible and adaptive. They have great awareness and every voice can be heard, everyone has a stake and vested interest in the success, not just fixed salary with apathy and indifference. They have a higher collective IQ than a small board of directors living in their own world of polished reports. DAOs are just better.
For many, the idea of creating a DAO has been a dream come true. Do you think it is possible to create a DAO in Eco? Is the DAO governance model a fair and workable model?
It is hard to say how successful ECO DAO is going to be, there are too many unknown factors right now, so when the team says “it is an experiment” they are completely right. We already saw some road bumps with not all expectations of the community being met, and the next phase is going to be even harder. The proper governance is a very difficult task, slapping the forum and waiting for proposals from the team’s engineers just won’t cut it. We will see how active the community is going to be, how much autonomy they will have, how hard or easy it is going to be in terms of integrations and expanding the ecosystem, how many initiatives we will see, how good the response from DeFi partners etc. Time will tell if the experiment is successful or not. As I mentioned before, I am cautiously optimistic.
During the existence of Eco, many members of the community have found friends and people close in spirit. I’ve heard nice things from many people in the project about how Eco has given them so much more than any other project. Eco has given everyone the opportunity to work as a team with amazing smart and talented people, enjoying the process of creating together.

Do you think that day-to-day communication and working together can grow into a true friendship?
Years spent in crypto prove that it is a great place to make new friends and create new social connections. Crypto is extremely social by nature, and people are just naturally driven to join into communities and form social bonds with each other. I don’t think we’ve ever seen anything like that in human history when people all over the globe joined together to work toward a common goal. I think it is beautiful.
Within the crypto-enthusiast community, I often hear arguments about the importance of not being emotionally attached to one project and trying to participate in many projects at the same time without trying to go deeper into them. Others, on the contrary, think it’s important to choose one or two projects and try to realize your full potential and be as concentrated and useful as possible there.

What do you think is the right decision and the right strategy?
I think that everyone makes their own choice, there is no one correct successful strategy. I know people who are hopping between dozens of different projects and some who spent all their time on just one. Both strategies can lead to great success, so I can’t say that one is better than the other.
Many people start different projects in the crypto industry with the goal of making incredible wealth in a fairly short period of time. There are quite a few success stories, but everyone forgets to tell about how much intellectual work and time everyone spends, how many frustrations, trial and error will be on the way to success.

What advice would you give to those who are just starting their way in the crypto industry and who still have a lot of failures and victories ahead of them?
You can’t win if you don’t try. It is good to be early, and crypto almost always rewards hard work. We are lucky that we joined at early stages of Web3 and I think we still have a lot of time before it goes mainstream. So these golden years are the best for any activity, be it building stuff, investing or engaging projects to help them become big and successful.
I’m very glad that you are HolaEco’s guest. According to our good tradition every interviewee leaves some important words for our readers in the end. What would you like to say to each of us?
I would say – keep going, watch the market and don’t leave web3. Just because the charts are not always going up – doesn’t mean there won’t be multiple opportunities to make your life better and find your own game changing victories. People who are open to new things, who aren’t afraid to take some risks, and who are working hard will become successful in the end. No doubts here.
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