Factom, Inc.

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#1
Legal Entity Name: Factom, Inc.
Natural Person: Brian Deery

Factom, Inc. was formed in April 2015 to continue the project that began early 2014 which brought the Factom protocol to the world.

Brian joined the Factom project (called Notary Chains at the time) in July 2014.

I view the Factom project multi-decade effort which will result in a global utility. It is the cryptoeconomics and the communities around them that brings value to the world. This is the magic that systems being created by IBM and other large companies lack.

I currently serve as the Chief Scientist at Factom, Inc.

I will continue to serve the community with an emphasis on technical expertise.

As an example of dedication to the protocol, I have attended every guide meeting since inception.

I certainly will not work alone in this capacity. Paul Snow, CEO of Factom, Inc. and creator of the protocol will continue to play a large role in governance of the protocol as well.

Sam Barnes, also a Factom, Inc employee has been helping with the on-chain voting protocols, and will continue to do so as Factom Inc's subject matter expert on that.

Matt Whittington, another Factom, Inc employee, has begun helping with some of the standing party expansion work. Matt has been bringing crypto to reality since 2013, when he started an exchange, which was the first exchange to list FCT.




I look forward to continuing to help guide the Factom Protocol into the future and to continue helping it be successful.
 
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#2
Thank you for volunteering for this challenging and valuable role.

At this stage I have one question for all of the prospective guides:

If you were able to change only one thing during your tenure what would that be, why would you choose it and what would you specifically bring that would make a difference to the outcome?

(I recognise that certain guides have already made some of these things explicit in their statement and do not expect them to have to repeat that, in which case a partial answer or simple reference to their statement will suffice.)
 
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#3
First, thank you for stepping up as a Candidate. Putting yourself out there like this is not easy and I appreciate your willingness and desire to work for the Protocol.

1. Do you have a LinkedIn? If so, what is it? If not, why not?

2. Certain processes such as Document Ratification require a 4/5 vote from Guides prior to the process moving on to additional Standing Parties for a vote. Do you feel this is a centralization of power in the ecosystem? Why or why not? And under what circumstances would you vote "no" and gatekeep that process from progressing?

3. Do you feel Guides should always be a Standing Party? If so, why? If not, when would you like to see the role removed?

Thank you.
 
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#4
Hi Brian,

Historically, as a Guide, you've focused more on the technical aspects of the protocol rather than the governance side. To me the lines get a bit blurry regarding what work you are doing for Factom Inc in your role as Chief Scientist, and what you are doing specifically as a Guide. I am acutely aware of how much time you have put into the protocol and the sacrifices you make for it regularly and I truly appreciate your dedication. Your in-depth and specialized knowledge of the codebase and protocol is invaluable to the community. Will you break down what category of tasks you will be performing specifically in your Guide role should you be re-elected and provide an estimate of the minimum amount of time you'll be able to dedicate each week to the position? Thanks!
 
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#5
Firstly, thank you for putting yourself up for election for this important and challenging position! These are general questions that I am asking to all applicants. If you feel the questions are redundant to your previous replies. Feel free to cite that and move forward.

Having recently ratified changes to Doc 001 I would appreciate it if you could take a moment to explain how you will intend to carry out the following as a guide.

1. Under Guide eligibility standards.
(a) demonstrate independence in thought, leadership, and business
(b) be of good moral character with a demonstrated interest in the long term best interests of the protocol, willingness to serve the community of users, and history as a leader in the community.

2. Under Guide responsibilities
(a) make themselves available to the community
(b) Maintain orderly operation of the protocol network and facilitate the relationships between standing parties and the community. Further, by ensuring an adequate number of applicants to run a large enough pool of servers to ensure 65 servers are always available for the Authority Set.
(c) Be responsible for overseeing the application of the protocol governance to the operation of the the protocol.

Finally I see the responsibility of “Maintain orderly operation of the protocol” to extend beyond simply the technical and governance parts of the protocol and extending towards the wider community. Do you agree with this interpretation? If so how do you intend to achieve this?

As a guide up for reelection could you also please touch on how you have accomplished any of the elements listed above and how you intend too moving forward.

Thanks Again
 
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#6
If you were able to change only one thing during your tenure what would that be, why would you choose it and what would you specifically bring that would make a difference to the outcome?
I would like to get all the things done, but I am a realist about how long these things take. Factom is evolving and maturing as time goes on. I have been impressed by the high quality of participants that this project has attracted.

I see a point where the precedents we are setting here will govern the interactions of large multinational companies. This is why it is so important that we are setting the right course for how the Standing parties interact. We can experiment and forge new horizons, and eventually it will be how the world interacts with itself. The governance needs to be sustainable and effective to support the giant burden of responsibility that will be placed on the network.

One good example I like to use is of the Disimpassioned 3rd party. There is a very large company in the mortgage industry appropriately named Black Knight. They have a reputation in the industry of inappropriately using their market dominance. The factom network would operate as a disimpassioned manner from the mortgage industry. I extrapolate the example to absurdity by saying that if the President of Black Knight were to call up the Air Traffic Controller from Norway or the retired Mosquito Control comissioner and ask them to do something that bends their morals, the first question would be "Who are you and why should I care?".

Part of this spreading of control is to bring on more standing parties. FCT voting is on there and seems doable in the next year. Even if it is not super easy from a user interface perspective, it still would be a good step in the right direction.
 
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#7
I would like to get all the things done, but I am a realist about how long these things take. Factom is evolving and maturing as time goes on. I have been impressed by the high quality of participants that this project has attracted.

I see a point where the precedents we are setting here will govern the interactions of large multinational companies. This is why it is so important that we are setting the right course for how the Standing parties interact. We can experiment and forge new horizons, and eventually it will be how the world interacts with itself. The governance needs to be sustainable and effective to support the giant burden of responsibility that will be placed on the network.

One good example I like to use is of the Disimpassioned 3rd party. There is a very large company in the mortgage industry appropriately named Black Knight. They have a reputation in the industry of inappropriately using their market dominance. The factom network would operate as a disimpassioned manner from the mortgage industry. I extrapolate the example to absurdity by saying that if the President of Black Knight were to call up the Air Traffic Controller from Norway or the retired Mosquito Control comissioner and ask them to do something that bends their morals, the first question would be "Who are you and why should I care?".

Part of this spreading of control is to bring on more standing parties. FCT voting is on there and seems doable in the next year. Even if it is not super easy from a user interface perspective, it still would be a good step in the right direction.

Hi Brian, Thank you a considered and inspirational reply. I can see what you want to focus and on and why, I surmise that you will bring your technical expertise to bear on this and that this is the way you will make a difference to any outcomes.
 
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#8
As a former Guide, I can speak from experience that being a Guide is time consuming and can be stressful. It can take critical time away from one's duties to their ANO yet the health of your ANO is paramount to the network. Is your ANO in good health where you can work less on it and does your business partner(s) or employer support your running for Guide?
 
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#9
Hi Brian,
To begin, thanks for all the long nights and weekends you have dedicated to this project. You're technical contributions are invaluable and I'd like to think we all realize how fortunate we are to have you as one of the leaders of the project.

Regarding the position as Guide: I was very pleased to see Sam and Matt begin to make community contributions. Paul obviously makes a lot of contributions as well. As we all know, the position of Guide entails doing a lot of non-glamorous work though. I think we can all agree your time is better spent elsewhere. Here's the rub: The burden of not having a fifth Guide to help with the non-glamorous work is pretty large. It obviously falls on the shoulders if the other four Guides. There were definitely periods over the summer when only a single Guide or two were moving the project forward. By no means can that happen again. It's bad for the project and it burns-out the Guides that end-up having to carry the extra load. If elected again as Guide (which I sincerely hope Factom inc will be), can you guarantee the community that you/Matt/Sam/Factom Inc will make meaningful contributions in regards to the non-glamorous Guide work?

Thank you for all your hard work!
 
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#10
1. Do you have a LinkedIn? If so, what is it? If not, why not?
I have chosen not to participate in the social media dragnet that linked in has become. Similarly, I do not use facebook for equivalent reasons. My professional information is public though. It is published on a different site:
https://angel.co/brian-deery


2. Certain processes such as Document Ratification require a 4/5 vote from Guides prior to the process moving on to additional Standing Parties for a vote. Do you feel this is a centralization of power in the ecosystem? Why or why not? And under what circumstances would you vote "no" and gatekeep that process from progressing?
The ecosystem is in a bootstrapping phase right now. The ultimate goals are for governance to be done on chain and for the influence of the guides to diminish greatly.

I do see the guides as a form of centralization and would like to help steer the ecosystem away from this. The methodology I was operating under during the Syncroblock incident my thought process was that the Guides were acting as a sort of spam filter for the ANO removal process.

3. Do you feel Guides should always be a Standing Party? If so, why? If not, when would you like to see the role removed?
Always is a pretty long time. The network is progressing as we journey into the future. I don't know what will transpire over the next 40 - 50 years in Factom. There will be things that can't be done using on-chain governence. Guides might be the best solution to those problems. I would like to miminize those going forward though. I do know the precedents that we set in the first few years will be important though.
 
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#11
Regarding the position as Guide: I was very pleased to see Sam and Matt begin to make community contributions. Paul obviously makes a lot of contributions as well. As we all know, the position of Guide entails doing a lot of non-glamorous work though. I think we can all agree your time is better spent elsewhere. Here's the rub: The burden of not having a fifth Guide to help with the non-glamorous work is pretty large. It obviously falls on the shoulders if the other four Guides. There were definitely periods over the summer when only a single Guide or two were moving the project forward. By no means can that happen again. It's bad for the project and it burns-out the Guides that end-up having to carry the extra load. If elected again as Guide (which I sincerely hope Factom inc will be), can you guarantee the community that you/Matt/Sam/Factom Inc will make meaningful contributions in regards to the non-glamorous Guide work?
Thank you for the question. As I see it, the candidacy is for the organization, rather than the person. I have listed Paul, Sam, and Matt because I expect them to continue helping with governance related projects. I had recognized that I couldn't personally provide enough input and attention to all the various parallel efforts. Over the past few months, Matt and Sam have stepped up to handle different governance efforts on behalf of Factom, Inc.

Sam is the main person representing Factom, Inc with respect to on-chain voting. I trust his judgment related to that aspect of governance. He has been coordinating with that working group even to the extent where when there weren't enough discord chat slots, he was the one representing Factom, Inc and Paul left the chat.

Matt has recently been the Factom, Inc representative related to the Grant Success metric efforts. Again, I trusted his judgment on that. I hope his efforts there are seen as beneficial.

Paul also shares his vision enthusiastically, as I am sure that you have found. I don't see that waning soon.

I anticipate that they will all continue to help out with governance efforts over the next year, as they have been recently.
 
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#12
As a former Guide, I can speak from experience that being a Guide is time consuming and can be stressful. It can take critical time away from one's duties to their ANO yet the health of your ANO is paramount to the network. Is your ANO in good health where you can work less on it and does your business partner(s) or employer support your running for Guide?
Indeed, the stress is often palpable. The explanation I give to my family is that "This is the life I chose". Factom is my full time job (more than full time actually) and continuing the effort is a high priority in my life. The world needs the network to exist, and it will require lots of sweat and tears as it progresses forward. The way I see it, if the world starts relying on the network the same way it relies on the internet, then all the stress will have been worth it.

The Factom, Inc organization is indeed in good health. My business partners do support me running as a Guide.
 
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#13
I want to say that I yell at Brian nearly daily, and his ability to stay cool, calm, and collected under stress is quite inspiring. Of course it is a bit self serving to say so in support of a representative of Factom Inc. as a guide, but I hope everyone understands that we talked long and hard about who would do the best job as a guide here at Factom Inc. And every time, the conclusion is Brian.

He can be quiet, and he can be (almost unbearably) meticulous, but I think these are all great things in a guide.
 
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#14
Hi Brian,

It looks like you may have missed my question. I realize you still have 24 hours to respond and you're likely very busy but I won't be able to comment after another 10minutes so just wanted to bump my question in case you missed it. Thanks!

Hi Brian,

Historically, as a Guide, you've focused more on the technical aspects of the protocol rather than the governance side. To me the lines get a bit blurry regarding what work you are doing for Factom Inc in your role as Chief Scientist, and what you are doing specifically as a Guide. I am acutely aware of how much time you have put into the protocol and the sacrifices you make for it regularly and I truly appreciate your dedication. Your in-depth and specialized knowledge of the codebase and protocol is invaluable to the community. Will you break down what category of tasks you will be performing specifically in your Guide role should you be re-elected and provide an estimate of the minimum amount of time you'll be able to dedicate each week to the position? Thanks!
 
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#15
I want to say that I yell at Brian nearly daily, and his ability to stay cool, calm, and collected under stress is quite inspiring.
There was a point during the great stall that someone asked me why Brian seemed to not care very much. I had to explain that it was simply brian focusing on the next thing, and then the next thing, that needed to be done, without spending time being frustrated, stressed, or overwhelmed by the urgency of the situation. I greatly admire that in Brian, and feel comforted having him at the helm during such situations.
 
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#17
Historically, as a Guide, you've focused more on the technical aspects of the protocol rather than the governance side. To me the lines get a bit blurry regarding what work you are doing for Factom Inc in your role as Chief Scientist, and what you are doing specifically as a Guide. I am acutely aware of how much time you have put into the protocol and the sacrifices you make for it regularly and I truly appreciate your dedication. Your in-depth and specialized knowledge of the codebase and protocol is invaluable to the community. Will you break down what category of tasks you will be performing specifically in your Guide role should you be re-elected and provide an estimate of the minimum amount of time you'll be able to dedicate each week to the position? Thanks!

Thank you for your question. You are correct that the lines between my role as Chief Scientist and as a Guide can become blurred. By being in the unique position of having intimate knowledge of the protocol I am best suited to allow this blurred line to help me act as a liaison between the community and the company. I have dedicated several hours per week in my schedule towards my duties as a Guide. My colleagues have been incredibly supportive of my need to preserve time for the community. I view my duties as a Guide as including the following: providing a channel of two-way communication so that community feedback reaches the right ears within the company, providing on call support for scheduled updates and emergencies, and perhaps most importantly supporting other Guides with their efforts to evolve the Factom network in a positive direction. As the demand load continues to increase I know that with the support of Matt and Sam we can continue moving the network governance forward.
 
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#18
(a) demonstrate independence in thought, leadership, and business
To start this network and see it as something that was necessary in the world years before the concept of applying blockchain to business was common required independence in thought, leadership, and business.

(b) be of good moral character with a demonstrated interest in the long term best interests of the protocol, willingness to serve the community of users, and history as a leader in the community.
I have served as a Guide since the inception of the position because I am dedicated to the long term success and health of the network.

(a) make themselves available to the community
I dedicate time weekly to be available to the community on Discord.

(b) Maintain orderly operation of the protocol network and facilitate the relationships between standing parties and the community. Further, by ensuring an adequate number of applicants to run a large enough pool of servers to ensure 65 servers are always available for the Authority Set.

Finally I see the responsibility of “Maintain orderly operation of the protocol” to extend beyond simply the technical and governance parts of the protocol and extending towards the wider community. Do you agree with this interpretation? If so how do you intend to achieve this?
We as a community are growing into the 65 number from a social as well as a technological capacity. I think you are asking if Guides should serve also in the capacity of a Discord moderator or something along those lines. While moderation is valueable and needed in the community, that seems beyond the scope of the guide position. The guide position should eventually have a minimal role in governance and standing parties should eventually operate more independently as the guide role diminishes.

(c) Be responsible for overseeing the application of the protocol governance to the operation of the the protocol.
I hope that my actions over the past year as a guide have demonstrated responsibility in this capacity.

As a guide up for reelection could you also please touch on how you have accomplished any of the elements listed above and how you intend too moving forward.
Over the past year, the Factom network has grown from just Factom, Inc running the Federated servers to include 24 additional parties. The next year is scheduled to expand that set even more. As the number of people running and participating in the network increases it will increase the value of the network. As a Guide, I will continue to support the network as it grows and becomes a system that multiple industries will rely on.
 
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#19
There was a point during the great stall that someone asked me why Brian seemed to not care very much. I had to explain that it was simply brian focusing on the next thing, and then the next thing, that needed to be done, without spending time being frustrated, stressed, or overwhelmed by the urgency of the situation. I greatly admire that in Brian, and feel comforted having him at the helm during such situations.
Thank you for your kind words. I am glad that you are continuing to move the protocol forward with the Foundation efforts.