🎨 Seeking advice: New Dreams & Big Art System Proposal
TL:DR - Dreams can be simpler, which comes at the cost of precision, but saves everyone a lot of time.
I would like to pre-propose some changes to the Dreams platform to address a few issues of the past:
It's hard for us to fund big art
Uncertainty for Dreamers in how much funding they're getting
Overload of work for Dream Guides
Lack of engagement from ticket holders
Overwhelming and confusing voting process
Note: Constructive advice on how to improve this process is warmly welcome.
Who am I?
I was finance lead for the last 2 Kiez Burns. I have been intimately involved in the Dreams process since its inception. I am also a freelance artist and a co-founder of the Dream World immersive art project.
The New Dreams and Big Art Process
Firstly, let's assume that the Art Grants budget for KB22 will be in the region of 25k€. This is realistic with a ticket price of 95€ and 1100 participants.
We will also continue to use the Dreams Platform as before.
There will be 2 categories, and 2 budgets. Dreams and Big Art.
Dreams takes i.e. 40% - 10,000€
Dreams can be made by anyone at any value and go anywhere towards anything.
They must make a planned budget of expenses for transparency
Alcohol & other substances are excluded - they are impossible to refund
Max funding of 700€
Otherwise anything goes.(?) But it must be stated clearly and transparently.
Big Art takes i.e. 60% - 15,000€
Big Art has a minimum value of 500€
It must go on the Plateau, or somewhere specifically not within the bounds of a camp area (which is most of the gelände)
The Temple and the Effigy can go in this category. There could be multiple Temples and Effigies, but only 1 Effigy will have the chance to be burned (the one with the most votes)
Dreamers make and upload their Dream. There is 2-4 weeks time period to do so
We scrap the stretch goal element of the Dreams platform
Dreamers input the figure that they need in order to bring the project they want to bring. They plan for that figure and that project, simple clarity.
Whilst the stretch goal is a fun feature, it adds an incredible layer of complexity and stress to the entire process. I would love to see us experiment a year without it.
The voting period is 2-4 weeks and is simply a Yes/No feature (think Tinder, swipe left/right. Idea courtesy of @Caro T )
Ticket holders are simply asked to question "Do I want my ticket money to go towards this project? Does it align with my values and what I want to see at KB? Do I believe it adheres to the Dream Guidelines?" for each Dream. That way they don't have to remember any of the previous Dreams, and go back and forth allocating their votes. They simply Yes/No (Swipe left-right) for each Dream independently of the others.
They do this for each category, Dreams and then Big Art. This doesn't necessarily have to be separated at this stage, but it needs to be clear which category the project belongs to as they're voting.
At the end of the voting period, we remove the projects with the highest ratio of "No-Yes" votes until the applied Dreams budgets matches the available Dreams budget. The remaining dreams are considered funded.
This is an anti-plurality voting mechanism more in line with decentralized consensual do-ocracy. Remove that which has the least collective consent.
Dream 1 has: 18 yes and 2 no = 1 in 9 said no (1/5)
Dream 2 has: 15 yes and 5 no = 1 in 3 said no (1/3)
Dream 2 would be removed before Dream 1.
Solutions and Problems
Consent vs Controversy - This system could prove problematic for controversial projects. The 'no' votes will likely be much stronger than the yes votes. This system does however comply with our principle of consent, which in it's nature challenges controversy .
Simplicity vs Precision - It is a much simpler process for the Dreamer, and the voter, but it misses the nuance of grant allocation. I would much prefer to introduce a quadratic voting system, as that is most fair, but it places a huge burden on the voter to attain that precision.
Big Art vs Dreams - Big art could not really compete with the traditional dreams process. By separating it out we hope to entice artist and groups to bring their big projects and fill out plateau with even more impressive pieces.
Big Dreams vs Little Dreams - It could be the case that one large Dream (i.e a 700€ camp-based Dream) could get confirmed which would make 5-20 smaller dreams unrealizable. It would be nice to minimize the workload on Dream Guides to regulate these projects, so communicating the expected criteria of dreams to the voter beforehand and asking the community to downvote projects that are out of line with those guidelines could leave the responsibility with the community as a whole.
One solution is to give a Dream-Guide-Art-Budget, i..e 500-1000€. After the voting is finalized and the projects selected, the Dream Guides can allocate this smaller amount to the Dreams they believe should have made the cut (or choose to forward it to the onus Re-Fund pool, see below). This gives the smaller dreams with poor proposal skills the opportunity to bring their idea to the burn, if they get cut out by a larger-cost Dream.
Dream Guides - This system should lower the burden on Dream Guides to make projects fit the Dreams criteria (they only need to focus on the Big Art projects, which should be much more fun and rewarding).
Not enough Dreams - It is entirely possible that with the new ticket price we could have less request for funding than we have funding available. In this case, at the time of voting starts, we may be able to skip the voting process and simply fund everything. Wouldn't that be nice.....
Refunds and Bonus Re-Funds Process
This year we will not require physical hand-in of receipts (FUCK YES!!!). A properly made digital equivalent will suffice. This should simplify things for everyone.
After the hand-in of digital receipts (which should be completed by the end of August or September), there is often some funds left from unclaimed dreams. It would be possible to organize a second round of refunding to projects that went over budget.
Dreams & Big Art projects can apply, with a detailed breakdown of how they went over budget, and copies of the receipts. This can be done in parallel to their confirmed refund hand-in (but separated in documentation)
If the remaining unused Arts Grant budget is large enough, we simply refund all who apply that fulfill the criteria (detailed breakdown of expenses and providing the valid receipts)
If the budget doesn't stretch to all the projects, then the Dream Guides decide which projects don't get the money by internal vote after a review meeting.
By September the community is doing other things, and there is no point to try and drag everyone back to make a communal vote. Plus the DG have had the most exposure to the outcome of the projects and likely the best insight to the requests.
Who will implement this proposal?
I can happily assist in setting it up, and creating the structure for it. I can coordinate with the finance lead on the refund execution and support the Dreams Platform ministry specialist to realize the technical side of things. I can also advise the Dreams team at all stages of the process.
I would love some input and advice from:
Last Years Dreams Team & Advisors: @Diarmaid @Saskia @Cairn (Clément) @Professor Kaos
The finance lead and their guide: @kathleen & @Professor Kaos
@Caro T who actually came up with the idea. And any boardies interested in chiming in their wise two cents: @Mareike @Cris @Jan-Christian Kaspareit @Veroca R. Sala
I will also need some specific advice from @Diarmaid concerning the technical implementation on the Dreams Platform:
Will it be possible to assign all ticket holders with unlimited Yes Tokens AND unlimited No tokens. But only allow them to vote once per Dream? (That's the simplest solution I can think of right now)
Anyone who wants to improve the idea or guide this discussion to a healthier outcome. If you are bitchy and self-righteous I will totally ignore your comments, my apologies in advance.