One goal that has been discussed by members in discourse is how might we improve the system so that our collection is diverse and inclusive.
Some of the ideas brought up in the meeting today were:
1.Thematic Curation seasons,
2.Incentive structure to promote a diverse approach to nomination
3. Bring in curators or collectives that are in the lookout for underrepresented groups
One idea I had for ensuring better diversity within the collection is a requirement for at least 1 (this could be increased if we want) collection from women, non-binary, bipoc and disabled identifying artists. if we go through the regular curation cycle and one is not selected through the regular process then we hold voting for only the collections that fit this criteria and increase the monthly budget as required (edited)
I would love to hear the opinions of other members though as my perspective on this issue is limited
Tackling diversity is a very sensitive and complicated issue. I admire how carefully we are taking steps to approach this through community discussions.
As we go through our ideas, I would like us to be considerate of turning our diversity initiative into tokenizing marginalized artists (such as having dedicated time periods to collecting from Black artists for example). In our efforts, I would like us to seek diversity in collecting through an organic way, rather than just fulfilling a quota or checking off boxes for that month of collecting.
Again - I realize this is difficult to do properly and there really isn’t a clear answer for this. With that in mind, I’m proposing this idea and I’m happy to hear what others think:
We publish a call-for-curators with the intention of diversifying our collection. The job of the curator would be to collect from an artist (from either our nominated artists or through their own research) that identifies as belonging to an underrepresented / marginalized group. We would select a different curator each month. The call-for-curators form would ask each curator what their vision is for diversifying RAW DAO’s collection. The curator would be selected through a community vote.
Through this approach, RAW would be putting our trust into the hands of a curator who would ideally be:
- well-educated in approaching matters of art and diversity
- a member of a specific community or marginalized group
- providing specific direction for the month that matters to them, rather than RAW dictating from the beginning
I think a call for curators is a really good idea, not only for making sure our acquisitions are more diverse, but also beneficial in branching the decentralized curation model to members outside the DAO.
We can make content out of it, writing about what and why the chose x piece
We will be building a better relationship with curators in the space, which is something the DAO should be building long term
And it has the potential to give power to curators, especially those underrepresented, while uplifting NFT photographers in this space from marginalized groups.
After all, these are the people that have more experience in selecting artworks, contextualizing them, and being conscious about diversity.
Love the idea of bringing outside curators with better knowledge and perspective. I am curious how this would work with our community curation model? Is it similar to the scout role where the community votes for them, or how are they selected?
I think this is a great idea and with such an approach can remain decentralized. This could also be an opportunity to start differentiating even more from other collections.
By this, I mean that we could make an open call for curators to propose a set or groups of works and artists (like a group show) or even an online residency with the guest curator to then mint these bodies of work and bring/onboard a diversity of photographers doing work that perhaps is not even on blockchain yet.
I think it’s an interesting idea to bring curators in and do an open call for this purpose. But we must not forget we just recently disbanded the curation committee in favor of full community curation because it is so hard to be really independent in the photo NFT space since the space is still so small and everyone is quite involved in all the projects launching.
So maybe we really want to look for a curator (or probably better two or three from different diverse communities) from outside the photo NFT space, might be other NFT space or from IRL photography world.
I think @Claudia’s suggestion makes a lot of sense, despite the potential difficulty of implementing this within the CC model. Since we are already complaining about too many polls, this presents an additional vote to decide on a curator each month. Nonetheless, I think it’s a good opportunity to build connections in the NFT photo space and fits nicely into our content creation strategy as @brileigh pointed out.
In terms of potential invitees, I could see someone like Roula Seikaly or Kris Graves being good candidates. And as mentioned upthread, this will bring a new perspective to our collection without resorting to a quota system which feels like tokenization. Thematic curation months seem especially problematic for this since it reflects an attitude of “look we’re diverse this month” rather than building this into our core values and operations which should be our goal imo.
This also points to more potential for the new Ops area suggested by @lucaspon. Adding monthly curators to the mix adds a layer of complexity to the CC process so developing a custom solution for the nominating and voting process is critical. And this frontend can easily be developed to accomodate guest curators so that this process has less friction, whether for our usual CC nominations or guest nominations.
I wanted to add that if this is a concern that resonates with the spirit of the Dao then perhaps we should work on expanding our horizons and nominating works that consider this as a necessary trait to be voted. I think that maybe the idea of having a theme was missinterpreted. I didn’t mean it in the light of “month of inclusion, etc.” but rather in more conceptual terms like themes of global concern or a specific aspect of life and how it’s being addressed by photographers all around the world. We might end up with a non-diverse outcome but it might be worth a try in the light of encouraging members to think beyond their personal taste or preferences.