Provide a counterweight to the endless hype on the IOTA Official discord, and to the crypto pumpers in general.
This is an unpopular opinion within the crypto community, but apart from a few isolated clever ideas, and apart from some legal grey-area usecases, Blockchain technology is virtually useless. People are talking about blockchain, DLT and NFT only because hodlers have a direct financial incentive to talk about it. If it wasn’t for the hype-supported speculation, nobody would care. This is bad for technical progress.
Furthermore, as there are virtually no legal usecases for crypto, by necessity crypto-holders have to construct, adopt and/or push a world-view in which cryptocurrency is legal and necessary. These are practically always conspiracy-theory heavy, right-wing, hardcore libertarian ideas1, pushed into throughout the cryptoverse and into the mainstream - again, not through a consistent ideology, but through financial incentives.
Because IOTA is the crypto I know best. Whereas most projects at least hide their poor tech, lack of real-world useccases and poor economic understanding somewhat, all of this is painfully obvious in IOTA. In addition, IOTA has poor management and a proud tradition of being extremely overambitious combined with a complete lack of understanding of the environment they’re in.
Make no mistake, all crypto is bad, IOTA is just an easy target.
TL;DR: Criticism is not welcome on official. It is welcome, and fun, on the specs.
I’ve genuinely tried. As in, seriously. Believe it or not, I have some people that I’d consider friends in the IF, and I have some background experience in distributed systems, and I don’t want people to lose their money; i’d love to help out. And of course, i’m curious about the tech & solving problems.
But I’m not (seriously) financially invested, I’m not getting payed for this, ‘fun’ is a driving factor for this too.
And official is not fun for me. The place is filled with so much hostility against anyone who dares to bring up the slightest amount of criticism. For every technical argument I post, I get 5 people questioning my motivations and 10 more people doing personal attacks, and another 5 trying to derail the discussion.
This is not just a problem of the community, certain IF leadership personnel actively engage in the same behavior. Moderators turn a completely blind eye to personal attacks - as long as they target critics. On the other hand, as a critic, even the slightest misstep - which, after a 1000 cuts, will eventually happen - will earn you a warning or a ban.
On the specs, people seem genuinely interested in the state of IOTA, it’s future prospects, and having a counterweight to the always-positive representation & hype in Official.
Discussions in spec are genuinely fun & interesting. In official, they are frustrating.
I’d probably do it, if the community was more open to accepting that there are problems.
But it’s hard enough to convince people that there is even a problem (Upton Sinclair Syndrome). Why invest time in finding & debating solutions (which tends to take more time than just pointing out the problems), if people don’t accept that there’s a problem in the first place?
Additionally, from a project management perspective, I think that any solution that will actually work long-term will have to do one of the two things:
Neither of the two will be something that the community is likely to accept.
More importantly though, the former approach is the more technically interesting one (as in, the one I’d actually want to spend time working on, volunteer or payed), but I suspect the community would want the latter if they had to choose.