Today, Decrypt did something we’ve never done before: published an original news story that also ran simultaneously on multiple other sites.
The story, which hits on multiple hot-button issues in the crypto world—NFTs, DAOs, and crypto lobbying efforts in D.C.—marks the launch of PubDAO, a new media DAO we’ve been building out behind the scenes on Discord. DAOs are decentralized autonomous organizations, and we see huge potential for their role in journalism.
PubDAO is separate from Decrypt editorial and is far more than a Decrypt effort; we merely helped hatch it. Early PubDAO contributors from other DAOs like Friends with Benefits, Gitcoin, Collab.Land, Digitalax, API3, and more, plus some of our journalist peers from The Defiant and ACJR, helped build the framework.
Think of PubDAO as akin to a decentralized Associated Press.
PubDAO story ideas get brainstormed openly in the PubDAO Discord channel, a truly collaborative process that favors coordination over competition.
The decentralized wire service is merely the first part of a broader plan for PubDAO that will ultimately produce guilds made up of writers, editors, photographers, illustrators, advertisers, and marketers. If all goes according to plan, those guilds—and an evolving set of protocols—will reduce the cost and friction in publishing. We hope that results in new, far better ways of monetizing, and a healthier ecosystem.
The economic tool powering all of this will be a token, which is coming soon. Eventually, PubDAO members can contribute to the story pipeline by staking and earning governance tokens. Stay tuned for an in-depth announcement to follow with full token details. For now, at the outset, PubDAO is an open experiment in rethinking broken digital media models.
Since its inception, Decrypt has aimed not just to cover news about Web 3, but also to use Web 3 tech to find a better path for online content.
Last March, we launched our reader token, which allowed readers to earn tokens for reading stories on our mobile app: simple and fun. Then we commissioned unique NFT artworks that token-holders could buy with their tokens. Next, we started doing Snapshot polls that allow Decrypt NFT-holders to vote on what Learn content we publish next.
The experimentation has led us to PubDAO, and now we want to invite more contributors in. As we build, we hope to show that decentralized working groups and token incentives can create a better way for projects to get their stories told, and for the value of content creation to go to the storytellers—rather than the platforms. In other words, maybe media DAOs will prove to be the long-awaited “killer app.”
For now, PubDAO is an open community experiment in rethinking broken digital media models. If you share our vision for a more equitable and collaborative future where creators and their audience own the value they create, consider joining us as an early contributor.