Respecting the Builders - The Daily Gwei #353

Fostering an inclusive Ethereum community for everyone.

I think that builders in the crypto ecosystem are absolute superstars and deserve so much more respect and recognition than they currently get. Think about it - builders are the ones who actually create and nurture the products we all know and love (and make money off of) and they usually make lots of sacrifices in order to ensure that their product or service grows and succeeds. They need to be celebrated and rewarded for their work - not ridiculed and forced to deal with entitled people.

I think the clearest example of what I’m talking about here are the Ethereum core developers and researchers. These people quite literally are the backbone of the entire Ethereum ecosystem and have a host of very important responsibilities. Much of the time, this work is totally thankless and people seem to only notice these builders when something goes wrong. I’m not sure if the core developers/researchers are “underpaid” relative to their peers but whatever they are paid is probably not enough as a lot of the developers/researchers joined long after ETH had already gone up a lot in value. So really, many of them are building within Ethereum because they’re bought into the mission, values and ethos - these are the builders that I respect the most.

There are also many builders at the application layer that toil away for years trying to build a great product only to be berated by short-term thinkers. This is especially true if the project has a token - there is always someone in the community channel (usually Discord) asking questions about exchange listings or when the developers are going to drive more value to the token. The worst part is that these questions are asked with such a stench of entitlement that you can smell it a mile away. Could you imagine VCs from the web2 world asking their portfolio companies every month to provide them a dividend or to pump their companies valuation? I’m sure it’s happened before but it is not the trend - after all, the average time from seed to IPO is 7 years compared to the average time of seed to token which is usually <12 months.

I think it’s crucial for the crypto ecosystem to start taking sustainable development more seriously because if we don’t, we risk burning out good builders and possibly losing them completely. Unfortunately, this has already happened to an extent among some builders that I know, but it doesn’t have to become a trend. Some easy things we can all do is check in on our builder friends and make sure they’re doing okay (plus offer them a lending hand with anything they need) and also call out any toxicity you see being thrown at them on public spaces like Twitter. The Ethereum ecosystem has always been about fostering an inclusive community that welcomes anyone and everyone while also condemning those who spread toxicity - let’s make sure we keep it this way!

I know this post may seem like a bit of a rant, and maybe it is, but it’s just frustrating at times to see this same stuff play out over and over. We need to be celebrating and rewarding these long-term minded builders much more than we already are though the good news is that it is getting better over time. Initiatives like Gitcoin Grants matching rounds and experiments like selling NFTs and donating the proceeds to Ethereum core developers are a good start. I hope that we see more of these initiatives spin up over time and I hope that we all keep celebrating our amazing builders sfor years to come.

Have a great day everyone,
Anthony Sassano

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All information presented above is for educational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice.