___ _   _ ___ _____   ____   ___  ____ _____  __        _______ ____  
    |_ _| \ | |_ _|_   _| |  _ \ / _ \/ ___|_   _| \ \      / / ____| __ ) 
     | ||  \| || |  | |   | |_) | | | \___ \ | |____\ \ /\ / /|  _| |  _ \ 
     | || |\  || |  | |   |  __/| |_| |___) || |_____\ V  V / | |___| |_) |
    |___|_| \_|___| |_|   |_|    \___/|____/ |_|      \_/\_/  |_____|____/ 

(Note: This proposal is still a work in progress and is being further refined. We will have a final version by the first week of June.)

Post-Web is an emerging research-oriented movement that prioritizes local-first, peer-to-peer, private, resilient, and interoperable networks for the future of internet connectivity. This ecosystem-agnostic endeavor will take the form of a decentralized systems engineering experiment, drawing upon open knowledge and community-driven research as the core of its sensemaking process. The Six Principles of the Post-Web have been identified to guide this research and provide a framework for analyzing projects and protocols. Read more in our article.

In 2023, we organized three events related to the Post-Web in collaboration with many partners and allies, including Anoma, Namada, Knowable, Internet Alliance, Laconic, Radicle, Ocelot, Metacartel, EF's Privacy & Scaling, Public Works, and more. These events were Autonomous Ecologies #1 (AE1) in Denver in March, AE2 in Paris in July, and Ephemeral#1 in Istanbul in November. Assuming the Post-Web initiative receives support in 2024, we hope to commence planning for AE3 as a side event to Devcon in November 2024 (although that event will have a separate fundraising campaign to bring it to life in full).

First, Black Sky Society is seeking partners and allies to join a Post-Web alliance that can provide grants to help formally activate the creation of the research & knowledge commons for the Post-Web initiative. We plan to have one-on-one meetings with key stakeholders to ensure alignment of mission and values before receiving any grants, and to negotiate synergetic relationships that allow us to maintain the integrity of our research and event curation efforts.

Our partnership model is inspired by how theatre troupes work, seeking funding partners each year for their creative productions. For Black Sky Society, our creative productions include events, zines, research portals, community discussions, residencies, technological working groups, and more. We aspire to meet the Primary Goals outlined below by March 2025, assuming we can raise a total of $175-220K in the next few months.

For samples of our past writing & research work check out our Penumbra and Anoma reports. We believe these can be better though, and hope to update them to fit a refined analysis framework that will fit within a research index specific for Post-Web. Additionally, check out Black Sky Nexus Issue 1.

Primary Goals
General Questions

This is not comprehensive. Expect an update by early June.

Local-First P2P Questions

This is not comprehensive. Expect an update by early June.

Privacy Protocol Questions

This is not comprehensive. Expect an update by early June.

Stretch Goals
Budget & Timeline

This section is a work in progress and may have errors. Expect an update by early June.

We aim to complete the primary goals in about 9 months from when we conclude our grants search. Our total fundraising target is $220,000, so we can have some more buffer/wiggle room to move on to our stretch goals. Throughout these milestones we plan on organizing regular community discussions and calls.

Milestone 1: (3 months) Formalize dimensions of analysi for both privacy protocols and local-first p2p projects, 2-3 research reports, finish post-web vol 1.1.

Milestone 2: (3 months) Formalize how the Post-Web alliance works, Start Post-web vol 2. print. Create Post-web research portal (prototype), 2-3 research reports.

Milestone 3: (3 months) Finalize Post-Web zine vol 2. Fianlize Post-web research portal, with 4+ more research reports -- time/budget permitting.

Roles Estimated Hours Hourly Rate Total
General - Project admin & ops 260 $60-80/hr $20,800
General - Design, creative, community 260-300 $40-60/hr $18,000
8-12 research reports 100 each $60-$100/hr $60,000-$100,000
Post-Web vol 1.1 digital release 40 $80 $3,200
Post-Web vol 1.1 & vol 2. writing stipends $1000 each $3,000
Post-Web vol 2. lead editor 80 $80 $6,400
Post-Web vol 2. design, media, copy editing, social 100 $60 $6,000
Post-Web vol 2. print (1000 copies) $2,000
Research portal (dev) 100 $80 $8,000
Research portal (design) 40 $60 $3,200
Post-Web governance development 80 $80 $6,400
Post-Web non-profit legal & accounting (TBD) $14,000
Buffer for unforeseen costs & creativity $30,000
Total $172,000-$220,000

Within the research report budget, we will have funding allocated for third-party peer review, to ensure that the reports are not biased, especially in the cases of writing reports on a protocol who may also be a funding partner.

Core Post-Web Contributors

Stella R. Magnet is an instigator of Autonomous Ecologies and founder of Black Sky Society. Her self-guided and experiential research over the last seven years has centered on cryptoeconomic network design related to large-scale cooperation networks. In this time, she has creatively contributed insights related to governance, mechanism design, product, and community to over eight different Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) or open-source projects. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley (2008) and an Astronautical Engineering Certificate from UCLA Extension (2016).

TG x Thoth has been working on distributed systems and P2P protocol design for the last decade, with a focus on privacy, security, scalability, resiliency and sovereignty. Recently he has been working on the LoFiRe protocol suite, which enables privacy-preserving, end-to-end encrypted local-first collaboration, and currently working on P2P protocol research for Anoma. Previously he has worked on P2P protocols for GNUnet. TG has been contributing to various open source software projects, such as the Nix package manager, and holds a Master’s degree in Systems and Network Engineering.

Sarah Grant is an American media artist, software engineer, and educator based in Berlin. Her practice engages with the electromagnetic spectrum and telecommunication networks as artistic material, social habitat, and political landscape. With a focus on radioart and computer networking, she researches and develops artworks as educational tools and workshops that demystify computer networking and radio technology. She also organizes Radical Networks, a conference that promotes artistic, grassroots activist, and experimental work in telecommunications. She holds a Bachelors of Arts in Fine Art from UC Davis and a Masters of Professional Studies in Media Arts from New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.

Giulio Prisco worked as a scientist in European research centers including CERN, then as a space system analyst at the European Space Agency. In 2005, Giulio left the public sector and founded a virtual reality development and consulting company, which he ran until 2011. More recently, he has been covering developments and trends in science and technology for the specialized press such as Vice and Bitcoin Magazine.

Monikka has spent the last 10 years in the tech industry specializing in architecture and back-end development of control systems, primarily in the energy industry. As a Principal Engineer at Stem, she wrote real-time optimization logic for smart batteries to accurately predict and respond to energy usage. She was VP of Software at UniGen Resources, programmed AV control systems at Apple for every retail store in the world, then co-founded several tech companies. Monikka is currently on the board of Techtonica, a non-profit that teaches tech skills to women and non-binary adults seeking economic empowerment. In 2020 she began applying her deep software engineering background toward crypto systems, contributing to projects and events with Black Sky.

Wadada is a graphic designer and digital artist with a degree in economics. For many years he has been closely associated with the blockchain culture and the digital economy. In his works, he tries to draw attention to transformations in society and the world economy, mixing philosophical postulates there. From an early age he studied Chinese and Japanese culture, which is reflected in his works. Wadada develops and establishes a direction in digital art - crypto-dadaism. He tries to create art that has not only aesthetic properties, but also draws attention to the problems of society’s subconscious.

Loie is head of the ragequit prevention department, aka people ops in crypto orgs. With a history in activist movements & restorative justice, she has a knack for workplaces that are non-legal entities, steeped in open source culture, staffed by pseudonymous workers, and free of hierarchy. These human patterns help us usher in the next generations of the web. So Loie helps to gather, develop, and facilitate the teams carrying this movement. She is also an herbalist, TJ (tea jockey at Black Sky parties) and an offline comms fan.

Shane McCauley has been involved in art and publishing for over 30 years. The architect and author of three published books, he has also been a frequent contributor to dozens of magazines around the world. Shane is a multi disciplinary artist whose mediums include photography, film, writing, music and interactive exhibits.