[Hiring] Product Manager

Indeed @paulaberman, if you can drive good applications for the developer position that would be a strong argument for choosing you for the PM role.
And perhaps @HBesso31 could get in that game as well…

@clesaege : I don’t know where have agreed that we have reached an absolute decision to use only 150K USD in the first year. Currently, our funds are 150K USD and 3.5M $UBI. Although I don’t advocate blowing the whole thing in one year I do think we should use of the $UBI as both @paulaberman and @HBesso31 suggest. Both teams are telling us what they need to do a proper job (including that they can’t do it alone).


Since more people are in the discussion now I feel I can add my preliminary recommendation as well:

For me, the @HBesso31 team is the best application so far - @HBesso31

  • Covers quite a few bases of lead, technical, outreach, and design.
  • Have a strong crypto (tech and community) understanding.
  • Have a strong coherent vision for how to bring value to the token.
  • Are a globally diverse team with many fresh perspectives to bring into the DAO.

Like @paulaberman

  • They have a strong drive, energy, and a desire to do good in the world.
  • Their financing proposal makes sense within the constraints of the DAO.
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My interactions with @paulaberman (public and private) have demonstrated she is a cultural fit for a project like PoH. Reading interview feedback, as well as @SofiaCossar and her blog only reassures it.

I do see the concern for limited experience in software development. I would be happy to mitigate that concern by committing to biweekly calls for help/consulting/guidance. My LinkedIn


Thank you for your support and for this very kind offer @Justin. We gladly accept it and are excited at the prospect of working together! :slight_smile:

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Split the profit and hire both of the teams, this is growing fast and 1 team won’t we able to cover all, we can pay in UBI.

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Hi everyone! First of all I’d like to say I won’t endorse any candidates since I’m aware I hold an influential voice in the community. That said, I’d like share what I’m knowledgeable about so you can make an informed decision.

As someone who has actively worked with @paulaberman and @SofiaCossar over the last ~4 years, I think they have extraordinary capacity to deliver and contribute to Proof of Humanity and are very passionate about this project.

Paula is one of the most prominent researchers in the decentralized identity space, co-authoring the “Who Watches The Watchmen?” paper with colleagues from Perm University, RadicalxChange and myself — https://arxiv.org/pdf/2008.05300.pdf. Also back in the day, Paula and Sofia wrote an excellent report about the different pilots held by Democracy Earth during the last 6 years… many of these implementation they were actively involved themselves: http://report.democracy.earth/

Finally, I do think it’s important to create a community that embraces diversity and in this regard I think it’s a very positive aspect of their candidacy to have a team of women. This is also the case with @HBesso31 proposal, which I find it very solid as well and, although I don’t have 4 years of experience working with them, I had very good interactions with this team so far in these past weeks. The idea they presented 3 weeks ago about making a Humanitarian Vault leveraging on Yearn Finance’s technology —an idea that has now come to reality— definitely shows a lot of potential from this team.

The issues raised regarding technical capacity by @clesaege are very important and we must be sure we feel confident we will have what’s necessary to make this project grow as it should. Thanks @Justin for being willing to help out with this… You are definitely becoming a key member of our nascent community. I’m actively talking to devs as we speak, some of them already contributing significantly to PoH.

@Mads thanks for taking the time to interview the teams and provide us with feedback. Very valuable insights!


Since the $UBI is very new we should not require that employees take 100 % compensation in $UBI. A big part of the project manager’s job, though, would be to find more funds based on our metrics to hire more people.

That said, if we had enough money right now I would get the @HBesso31 team to manage the UBI DAO and let @paulaberman handle the core PoH with @pmerugu as CTO.


I’m not saying that paying 100% in UBI to be a must, but if we split the usd/cripto(not ubi) in half and pay the other half in UBI, we can afford both teams.

From the total compensation allocated for 1 product manager team:
Split 50 to Paula and 50 to hbesso

Paula team compensation of the 100% required, split 50% in usd/crypto(not ubi) and 50% UBI

Same with beso team.

And assign to each team what you said for them to do.


You may be right that this is a good idea - but I think we need someone in charge to manage it. It is a bit of a chicken-and-egg problem.

At this point, our musings are completely breaking the boundaries of our mandate from the previous HIPs.
Perhaps a simpler way could be this - we hire only Humberto or Paula (if they agree) now. Then once this decision is made, they will present their proposed “incoming” hires, budget, and financing to be approved separately. This person will of course run a bit of a risk of becoming a “lame duck”, but I think that is a relatively small risk - since they are chosen in part for their coherent budget ideas.

Once someone is chosen they are free to propose members of the other team (and @pmerugu).

@paulaberman @HBesso31, would you be ok being hired alone and then presenting your incoming hires for approval by the DAO?

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Wow. My team and I are humbled by such comments and reactions. Thank you very much for your valuable support and feedback.
Since we knew about Paula and Sofia’s proposal, we thought the best approach would be to work together rather than compete against each other. As the profiles complement each other weaknesses, we think that together we are able to cover both the business and governance sides that PoH needs.
For this reason, we prepared the following proposal considering both teams: How to achieve shared prosperity worldwide? | by Humberto Besso-Oberto | May, 2021 | Medium
We will gladly deliberate until we reach a common agreement that works best for the Proof of Humanity DAO.


Dear @HBesso31 & team.

It has been inspiring to see your ideas and engagement with Proof of Humanity and $UBI. Your business related proposals are powerful and important, and clearly you are all extremely talented, committed and motivated. However, as we consider your proposal we also have to keep our feet on the ground. This project is the culmination of many years of work, and we can’t afford to make mistakes with such a precious opportunity.

Right now, Proof of Humanity is heavily subsidized by Kleros. They are generously investing $150,000 usd in order to help the DAO hire a competent team, who has the mandate of taking over the attributions currently being held under the purview of Kleros. This includes hiring a developer, which is an element that we take extremely seriously, as prospective PMs. The complexity entailed in keeping this entire system afloat is enormous. However, your proposal exacerbates the original budget, while allocating only one-sixth of it for a part-time “Technical Strategy Manager”, @baconfuel , and no full-time developer. This is made all the more problematic because not only does @baconfuel lack any experience in solidity (which might or might not be acceptable) but he is also not making a full-time commitment, so could not possibly go through the necessary learning curve in a timely fashion, as this project requires. This arrangement you are proposing will certainly not be enough even for the primary tasks of continuously upgrading the PoH platform, fixing bugs and facilitating integrations. And it will certainly not be enough for additionally implementing the ambitious plans you have outlined.

We certainly celebrate and admire the incredible work you have been doing. Perhaps some of it could be a better fit for the community-governed treasury of the DAO, and we think it’s worthwhile to explore other ways to reward highly engaged community members through incentive systems, as we mention in our proposal. Additionally we want to implement an Ambassadors program which was conceived precisely with people like you in mind, and we highly welcome your contributions to shaping it.

Responding to @Mads and @Nachobr 's suggestion: The two of us are applying as a team. This is not a last minute coalition, put together for the purpose of this application. We have collaborated for 4 years and are deeply aligned in our vision and strategy for the year ahead. This vision was built over those 4 years, it was carefully developed and clearly laid out.

Currently our number 1 priority is to search for a dev, and we are being helped by many members of the community as well as Kevin Owocki, who is in one of the best positions within the Ethereum ecosystem to help us find the right person. We already drove one application in and have a few others lined up — all coming from professionals that are aligned with our salary philosophy, committing to the 50k usd / year budget. We have explained in our original post in this thread why we think equal salaries would ultimately be better for the Proof of Humanity DAO, as they represent a values system that we consider important to imbue this project with. That said, we will gladly re-adjust our budget if we fail to find someone competent for the position. Our emphasis on competence is why we are asking prospective candidates to apply separately under the developer opening, so they can be evaluated individually by the Kleros team. We take Kleros’ input very seriously, as anyone applying to this position should.

Your suggestions come out of a sense of urgency that we can empathize with. We haven’t been officially interviewed yet, and would also appreciate it if the process was moving forward a bit faster because there’s certainly lots of work to be done. Yet, we agree with @clesaege that those who take these first job openings at the DAO are in a position analogous to being a founder. It’s an enormous responsibility and therefore it’s not something that should be decided in a rush or through haphazard arrangements.

Concerning our strategy and what is being claimed to be a “weakness”—our supposed lack of business skills—we consider this critique to be a profoundly misguided, if not naive, assessment. This reminds us of this great interview with Vitalik Buterin by Laura Shin, which we recommend watching. The point of it is, crypto networks are different from traditional tech start-ups and require fundamentally different strategies. Unlike a corporation, which can’t be copy-pasted, anyone can fork a blockchain protocol. This means that legitimacy is crucial, so focusing on building a thriving community with participatory and vibrant governance is a foundational element of a “business strategy” for a protocol. Our community is already creating incredible initiatives at a fast rate and a key component of our plans is to support these individuals in continuing to do so with a variety of tools and comprehensive information. We also understand that sustaining the value of $UBI is critical to the project achieving its ambitious goals, and will actively work to support initiatives in this direction, such as the yearn vault that was recently created. Yet, we understand that trying to centrally develop every single idea, even if allowing for community input as was laid out in @HBesso31 and his team’s strategy, is not only unrealistic but also incompatible with the open source ethos that this project is built upon. Instead, our focus is to work on the fundamentals, while enabling and strengthening the community so we can facilitate the emergence of a thriving and entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Furthermore, as one of us has done extensive research in the field of Proof of Personhood protocols, we are keenly aware of the challenges ahead, particularly with regards to the security of the registry. It would be unfortunate for this DAO to hire leadership which does not fully grasp the importance of this element. This is why we have proposed to build an open channel and research seminar to connect all the existing initiatives working on Sybil-resistant identity—which is another community-building effort that will allow us to be stronger and more resilient to attacks when they come (they will come).

Finally, we want to clarify that the decision to not join an external team is by no means a question of competition over collaboration. We simply must think of what is feasible and realistic for Proof of Humanity right now. Our collaborative ethos is clear to everyone who has known and worked with us throughout the years, and is apparent when even a supposedly competing project supports our candidacy. They do this because they know our deep commitment to the success of Proof of Humanity is not rooted in a zero-sum mentality. We are open to discussing ideas for collaboration that reflect an awareness and careful analysis of the current needs and constraints of Proof of Humanity. We care about this project and are here because we want to be of service to this community. If a more compelling application comes up, we will gladly support it.

Our very best,

Paula & @SofiaCossar


@paulaberman and @HBesso31 would you agree to be hired “unbundled” from your team and then propose your incoming hires and budget to the DAO for approval?

(I just feel this thread, me included, has gotten a little out-of-hand with proposals that go beyond our immediate mandate to hire a PM).


Hi @Mads . I addressed this question in my reply above, when I said we are applying as a team. Both me and @SofiaCossar will be PMs and the team structure and budget we outlined is what we consider necessary in order to be able to execute on the plan we presented.

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Sorry, yes you did answer that, my mistake.
I understand your position that you don’t want to run the risk of getting a PM position without the resources to do the job.


Ok, an alternative suggestion to avoid the “lame duck” problem without exceeding the mandate:

We first elect a proposer out of the three candidates. The proposer with the most votes will then have the chance to present a budget and financing plan for a second vote accept/reject (in a separate thread). If the plan is rejected then the right to propose a budget goes to the proposer with the second-highest vote count.

For this process, there is no chance of a PM without resources, the proposer can possibly include members of the competing team and we are not suddenly allocating all of this year’s budget in this thread (where the discussion of the budget is muddled with the other aspects of choosing the PM).

What do you think, @pmerugu, @HBesso31 and @paulaberman, would this be a process you would agree to?

@paulaberman, sorry to see you go. Let me know if you want back in at any time (before the 19th).

@iafhurtado, you pulled out in support of Paula/Sofia - are you back in?

I feel pretty weird that I seem to be the only person in the DAO interacting with the candidates and I am someone who just walked in from the street, figuratively speaking. But since it is so, I guess I have to make some decisions to move this along.

I have created a poll if we should close for new submissions on the 19th. If it is an affirmative and no new submissions come in, we will move on to vote for the PM.


If no one objects, we will use the method I outlined, first a vote to see who gets the right to propose hires+budget, then a separate vote (and thread) on the adoption/rejection of the proposal.


@paulaberman and @SofiaCossar Thanks for putting a big effort into your candidacy. Healthy competition is motivational and makes us exit from our comfort zone. Thanks for the spirit of collaboration too. We would be honored to count on your advice.

@Mads, we are delighted with your engagement. Thanks for taking the responsibility and commitment for advancing this through.

We are preparing a proposal with the insights learned to this moment.

Well there isn’t any application which satisfies the offer, for now all applications were either not fulltime, asking some extra stuff (like having more people and limiting the dev salary) or both. So I think we are still quite far from getting a PM.

Hi Clement,

I noticed the same disparity between the offer and the applications, but I came to the opposite conclusion - that the offer is not right :slight_smile:

In order to find a good PM, willing to work full time, I think that person needs reassurance that they will have the necessary resources to do the job well. I believe this is why @iafhurtado and @pmerugu are hedging their bets by not being willing to come on full time (correct me if I am wrong). And why @paulaberman and @HBesso31 told us what they needed - which I think they are better at judging. Both @HBesso31 and @paulaberman, for instance, remark the need for a dedicated budget for design work (@HBesso31 through a hire, @paulaberman through a freelance budget).

But I also don’t want to exceed the mandate of finding the PM - this is why I propose we pick that person and then move the discussion of a specific budget (and budget constraint) to a separate HIP with an accept/reject vote at the end (replacing HIP-3).

If we wait longer do you have a plan to spread the word and get more applications? What is the maximum we should wait for?

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