Status Values and Organizational Principles

Status is an organization unlike any other. We are decentralized community from all around the world and various walks of life. We have come together to build products and services to help make the world a more open and equitable place.

There are shared values and principles amongst anyone involved in Status; from core contributors to passionate community members. However, these values and principles are not documented in any formal way (they are only shared via spoken word and general understanding amongst the members of the growing community).

A survey was sent to all core contributors to identify the values and principles of Status. We now have a list of values ranging from project principles to organizational values. We now need to collate the values into a open and public form to ensure the values are known to anyone.

Material on topic:

Status Values Swarm
Marketing Team Project Principles
Survey Results
#status-values on Slack

So far two team hangouts took place - everyone is free to participate in the next calls (which will be set biweekly). Notes and suggested steps/readings will be posted as reply to this thread, so that more people can follow along and contribute asynchronously.


Notes from Hangout on May 30th:

- Please share any suggested reading in this channel - Lets look to government and religious docs as inspiration and reference for constitutional type law
  • We discussed differentiating between Values (such as decentralization, privacy, freedom of speech) and organizational values and how we organize and act towards each other (communicate clearly, have no ego, default to transparency)

  • Collective agreement that we should approach the values like the constitution. A set of rules that can speak to everything we do (not just values, organization principles, product principles, design, etc)

  • The “rule” should articulated in a way that it is clear when someone is breaching the rule.

  • Should articulate what we are vs what we are not

  • These values and principles should articulate what make us different as an organization. Many of the results in the survey responses and marketing doc are not unique to Status

Next Steps;

  • Share suggested reading in this channel
  • Share ideas as to what makes Status unique in this channel (I.e. permission less, decentralized)
  • Jonny to connect with Stef to align on expected output and share with team
  • Set up weekly sync with this group to push work further

Notes from June 13th call:

We had a quick recap form last week to reiterate that we are trying to define a set of constitutional laws that we can adhere to as a project, community, and organization. They should be written in a way that is clear when these rules are being breached.


  • Libertarianism idea of Non-aggression
  • Aggression is inherently illegitimate
  • This is obvious but restated by interesting thinkers in history. Proven that it has survivability.
  • Open Source - -software produced by organization will be made available

*** Freedom of speech.**

  • The software we produce will protect freedom of speech.
  • How does this apply in the org and how does it apply to app store
  • We can model it off universal declaration of human rights

- right to public assembly

- right to transparency:

  • implications to privacy need to be made public. User of Status have the right to privacy. When are tradeoffs deemed appropriate to ship a product.
  • Everyone has the right to nationality - this can’t be deprived. Can apply this to permissionless ness. Everyone has access to tools and access to join the organization.


  • Freedom of expression / freedom of speech


  • One way of conceptualizing privacy is freedom from invasion


  • Status is here to solve real problem and not only tech


  • we may want to have some specific rules we don’t do (not everything should be a positive)
  • For example, if a user does not want to give away user data, then we should not do it
  • What are the check and balances? How to we uphold these rules - is it the repo maintainers job?

There is a problem with definition and language here:

  • Tradeoffs - we are not doing decentralized things, if we have decentralization in our values, what happens if our code or org is not completely decentralized? How often are these tradeoffs that need to be made?
  • We can decide that we do not make more tradeoffs. And then make a plan to remove the ones that are in place.


  • Share with team and ask for opinions and feedback.
  • Open this convo up to full team to ensure everyone is heard
  • Regroup in 2 weeks time to define more final set
  • Open up to community for voting

Suggested readings and all-round inspiration shared in the slack channel so far (note, I just anonymized the transcript, so it might still read a bit weird as part of the accompanying comments are visible)

light intro to constitution/federalist papers/bill of rights etc

Taleb’s Antifragile and especially Skin in the Game might also be sources of inspiration.

On freedom of speech I can recommend: On Liberty by John Stuart Mill | Goodreads

7 page summary:

Vitalik on decentralization and what it means:

article also mentions Bastiat, who has written some easy to read books in the same general traditional as where a lot of cypherpunk work comes from (don’t have summary at hand)

Eip0 shared value survey results EIP0 Shared Values.csv - Google Spreadsheets

Not the original, which can be found here,