What grant is being renewed?
Rocket Fuel - Waq
What work from the previous proposal was completed?
Since applying for my first grant, I have produced 105 episodes of Rocket Fuel.
What work from the previous proposal is ongoing or pending?
Work continues for Rocket Fuel on a daily basis. This is an open-ended ongoing project.
What work was not originally planned, but completed, if any?
Additional work completed includes seven episodes of Launch Pad, two Take Off Into DeFi episodes, two episodes of ETHDenver coverage, two weekly recap episodes, and one Atlas bullcast episode.
What work is newly slated since the previous proposal?
There is currently no planned new work outside of the daily Rocket Fuel episodes. Launch Pad and Take Off Into DeFi episodes will continue as and when the situation arises along with any other special episodes.
Are the results of this project entirely open source (MIT, GPL, Apache, CC BY license or similar)? If not, which parts are not, and why not?
N/A.However, I am willing to share content with the community in a no-questions-asked way.
Benefits - enter N/A where appropriate
What metrics can you share on the success of the project?
The Rocket Fuel channel has amassed 776 subscribers on YouTube, 1189 followers on Twitter, and 95 followers on Spotify alone (other podcast platform information is not available).
(screenshot of YouTube subscribers)
(this number is artificially low due to me taking time off for paternity leave)
(The number of unique viewers is on par with channels much bigger than Rocket Fuel - Compare to Defi Dad who has 32,000 subscribers on YouTube (DeFi Dad - YouTube) and 152,000 Twitter followers (https://twitter.com/DeFi_Dad) but recently averages 350-500 views per video on YouTube. This suggests high subscriber engagement and loyal, consistent viewership.)
(screenshot of Twitter info)
(screenshot of Spotify dashboard)
This makes Rocket Fuel the largest Rocket Pool-specific YouTube channel, the largest Rocket Pool Podcast, and one of the largest Rocket Pool dedicated Twitter accounts that does not belong to the team or team members.
Rocket Fuel is the most widely consumed regular Rocket Pool-related media. The average Rocket Fuel episode has 200 views on Youtube and 60 listens on Spotify alone. As a comparison, the average Rocket Pool Twitter space/community call has 100 listeners on Twitter and 50 views of the recordings on YouTube.
During periods of strong price action, Rocket Fuel’s viewership frequently doubles or more in size. For example, episode 127 for Feb 10th had 354 views on YouTube (Rocket Fuel - February 10th - Episode 127) and 80 listens on Spotify. On April 17th, Episode 164 has 379 views on YouTube (Rocket Fuel - April 17th - Episode 164) and 106 listens on Spotify. Special episodes frequently have many multiples in terms of views. The Atlas Bullcast episode has 814 views on YouTube (Rocket Fuel - Atlas Bullcast) and 173 listens on Spotify. During an upcoming bull run, I expect Rocket Fuel to grow astronomically and awareness of Rocket Pool with it. The foundations laid now will pay tremendous dividends later in addition to all of the benefits Rocket Fuel currently provides to the community.
In less specific terms, how has this project improved the Rocket Pool ecosystem or benefited the Ethereum ecosystem?
Rocket Fuel has become an invaluable tool for the Rocket Pool protocol and community. There is a thriving Rocket Fuel community with fifty people a month contributing content to the show. On top of that, other protocols have noticed my passion and high-quality content for Rocket Pool and have reached out for their content in partnership to be covered on the show. All such content happens without any payment and the strictest selection criteria is used.
Rocket Fuel is often the first media newcomers to Rocket Pool come across. Rocket Fuel’s lack of advertisements and focus on the news in a matter-of-fact manner without hype, embellishment, or clickbait tactics is a welcoming and informative introduction to Rocket Pool. In this way, Rocket Fuel significantly contributes to Rocket Pool’s credibility. No comparable DeFI project, or even many alt layer-1s, have a similar dedicated media outlet, nor do they have media and community-building programs that are this cost-effective to produce for the pDAO.
Rocket Fuel’s value is recognised by many prominent members of the Rocket Pool community. Some have provided testimonials for Rocket Fuel’s worth for them. Below is a sample of some of these testimonials:
Rocket Fuel has positioned itself as a critical information distribution tool in the super fast paced Rocket Pool community. We all acknowledge that there’s simply too much information for anyone to keep up with and Rocket Fuel is the glue that lets our community sync up and push forward. The information provided by Rocket Fuel translates into added value for new users and old trolls by giving high quality free access to the cutting edge of information without having to wade through thousands of comments.
Rocket Pool is lucky to have such a vibrant and active community, to the point that staying on top of all the discussion is onerous. Waq and Rocket Fuel provide a huge amount of value by aggregating the key points into a video format with timestamps. Thanks!
To me, Rocket Fuel is vital because it disseminates information and news regarding the protocol and happenings within the community; many of us aren’t on discord all the time, so it is difficult to keep up with on our own. Rocket Fuel keeps me more connected and up-to-date to the protocol and the community, and I’m sure many others feel the same.
I have been an avid viewer of Rocket Fuel since its inception, and I must say that it has become an indispensable resource for staying up to date with the ever-evolving Rocket Pool ecosystem. Our protocol needs a reliable source of information on a daily basis.
Beyond being an outstanding source of information, Rocket Fuel serves to legitimize our protocol to potential new node operators. I would imagine there are a ton of potential node operators that would not stop to give the product a chance if it were not for the information Rocket Fuel provides.
Beyond bringing legitimacy, Rocket Fuel has personally played a pivotal role in my journey. It served as the bridge that connected me to the community and fueled my motivation to contribute more. Unlike aimlessly reading random conversations in a Discord server, Rocket Fuel provided me with a tangible connection to others who share my passion.
In essence, Rocket Fuel not only delivers invaluable news and updates but also lends credibility to the Rocket Pool product. Furthermore, it fosters a sense of engagement and connection within the community, enhancing the overall experience for all participants. It is a beacon of inspiration, propelling individuals like me to actively participate and contribute towards the shared vision.
Waq is well informed and passionate about varying projects in the crypto space. He is a mentor for the community while providing unbiased information through Rocket Fuel.
As a node operator, Rocket Fuel helps me stay updated on current events I would otherwise have missed.
This has helped me become more involved in the community through events that affect the rocket pool and ethereum ecosystem in a positive and organic way.
With all the constant madness in the Rocket Pool discord, Rocket Fuel is sort of a home base that brings everything together in an easy to watch show. It embodies a community that I have grown to love and brings about a natural camaraderie amongst Rocket Poolers! This is what I love and appreciate about Rocket Fuel…that it brings us all a bit closer.
Rocket Fuel is an incredibly important resource to me as a node operator. Even though I run an Avado (which should auto-update regularly) I’ve come to rely on Waq’s daily report to notify me about all the recent and upcoming upgrades to the smart node stack and the protocol in general. To take a small example, post-Atlas, Avado’s RP package did not automatically update the minipool delegate to allow for distributions from the minipool contract to the withdrawal address. I was aware of the “delegate update” issue from Rocket Fuel and, as a result, didn’t freak out when the Avado package didn’t automatically send withdrawals post-Atlas.
I also find it incredible that Waq regularly packs in 30 minutes of daily coverage, equivalent to the amount of daily content that Anthony Sassano produces on the entire Ethereum ecosystem. Rocket Fuel’s coverage of RP is extensive and I feel like I don’t need to go to any other resources to keep up with both the technical and the social sides of RP. I’m not aware of any other project that has such a dedicated and consistent content producer - it’s a testament to Waq and the Rocket Pool community itself.
In order for DAOs to thrive, its participants have to stay in the loop and be well-informed. Within the vibrant Rocket Pool community, there are many simultaneous conversations, decision-making processes, and initiatives happening. To ensure everyone can easily access and digest important information, we’ve got Rocket Fuel—an awesome resource that delivers timely updates in a friendly and approachable manner. And let’s not forget about Waq, who brings a touch of personality and warmth to our inclusive community culture.
Rocket Fuel provides an invaluable service to those of us who work to build for the Rocket Pool ecosystem. In the fast paced Ethereum world, it is impossible to stay up to date on everything transpiring on twitter and discord and be a productive builder at the same time- that is, without the help of Rocket Fuel. Waq’s YouTube videos, and especially their content timestamping, drastically improve the signal-to-noise ratio from social media, and help me stay focused, productive, and engaged with the community.
The ‘Rocket Fuel’ YouTube channel has been an invaluable resource for me as a new member of the Rocket Pool community. The videos provide comprehensive, up-to-date information on all events related to Rocket Pool, making it an exceptional tool for staying abreast of developments. The ‘Launch Pad’ episodes are an insightful look into the community, offering a unique learning experience about the workings and interactions within Rocket Pool. Furthermore, I truly appreciate how the channel encourages community engagement - allowing content submissions means that pertinent and interesting subjects are brought to the forefront by members themselves. This inclusive approach enhances my participation in the community and makes ‘Rocket Fuel’ all the more important to my experience with Rocket Pool.
Rhett (founder of Gravita)
Waq’s coverage of Gravita on Rocket Fuel as well as the launchpad has been extremely helpful for us in connecting with the rocketpool community and the ethereum community as a whole. He’s also been a pleasure to work with and a great interviewer. He’s the kind of content creator we need more of.
Who has done the work, and have there been any changes to the team?
The content production work is all done by me, Waq. However, Rocket Fuel would not be possible without the content contributors who assist me with research for each episode. I pay a monthly amount of $1,000 for this help that is provided to me in the form of a raffle.
This amount was not covered in my previous grant. The amount of the previous grant was too low for me to dedicate the number of hours required to make a single episode - it frequently took me over 8 hours of work to produce a single episode. That amount of work was unsustainable, so the idea to pay for community support was born.
Without the contributors, and the $1,000 I pay them, Rocket Fuel would not be possible.
How have the individual constituents of the team been compensated?
The payment has gone to me. I also use money that comes to me for Rocket Fuel to pay contributors $1,000 every month.
How has maintenance been performed since the delivery of the project?
Maintenance is done by YouTube and podcast content hosting services and has required minimal effort from me.
Payment and Verification
Have the acceptance criteria been met?
The acceptance criteria have been met and significantly exceeded. I have produced more than the number of episodes indicated in the original grant. On top of that, the reach of Rocket Fuel has grown massively in the previous six months in terms of viewers, followers, and subscribers.
What is the proposed payment schedule for the grant? How much RPL and over what period of time is the applicant requesting? Does this differ from the original approved amount?
This grant is requesting a significant pay reevaluation informed by multiple considerations.
The first consideration is that this work should be compensated in line with other similar work accomplished by other grantees. The payment received by Jasper and Ken for the Rocket Pool Twitter Spaces and Community Calls offers some data to support this commensuration. Jasper calculated that they each received $270 dollars for each unit of media output on average (9 RPL at an average of $30) (See Jasper’s grant application above).
For comparison, Rocket Fuel currently receives 96.5 RPL per month (this equals $3400 per month or $154 per unit of media output). Furthermore, this amount was vastly lower than the originally requested amount in the January grant. I would struggle to continue Rocket Fuel if it was rewarded at the same rate going forward. Members of the Rocket Pool community frequently comment on the underpayment of Rocket Fuel.
Another consideration is Rocket Fuel’s consistency, growth, and increasing production value. Rocket Fuel’s value to the protocol and community has grown significantly in the last six months, and the compensation should reflect the excellent standard of work done for the project as well as the considerable time commitment required to attain this standard while maintaining the depth and breadth of coverage.
For these reasons, I am requesting $6,000 (170 RPL/$35.50 - at $270 per episode for 22 episodes) a month for Rocket Fuel. As this is a full-time commitment, I would like to request allowances for time off for sickness and vacation. I have produced the show continuously over the last 11 months and have taken very limited personal time despite the birth of a child and other extenuating circumstances. I am very committed to my community and will continue to be, and I want to be sure that I have adequate time off to ensure I can do my best work. I request that the GMC considers this request and does not decrease my grant for days missed. I can discuss this further with the GMC if required.
Is there a measurable Return on Investment for the project?
As with all media and community engagement endeavors, Rocket Fuel return on investment is not easily quantified. Despite this, the return can be assessed qualitatively by observing the significant positive impact that Rocket Fuel has had on the community and newcomers to the community.
What is the breakdown of spending on development for the original grant vs. maintenance?
This is not applicable to Rocket Fuel.
Conflict of Interest
Does the person or persons proposing the grant have any conflicts of interest to disclose? (Please disclose here if you are a member of the GMC or if any member of the GMC would benefit directly financially from the grant).
I am a member of the GMC. I also receive donations in the form of RPL from anonymous and non-anonymous members of the community. I was also given a small gift from the Ethereum Foundation recently. The gifts and donations have no impact on the content of Rocket Fuel as I have sole editorial control.
Will the recipient of the grant, or any protocol or project in which the recipient has a vested interest (other than Rocket Pool), benefit financially if the grant is successful?
No. I am not involved in any other protocols, so they would not directly benefit. However, I do cover news of other staking services such as Lido, Stader, Diva, Stakwise, and more when it is relevant. I recently was given a large “OG” airdrop (likely for my work on Rocket Fuel) of Diva tokens (100,000 tokens with other tokens airdropped similarly to other Rocket Pool node operators for a total of 130,000 tokens), but I have repeatedly iterated that Rocket Pool, Rocket Fuel, and Ethereum will come first for me. These tokens will almost definitely be sold.