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Member Spotlight: Felixander#4905

Member Spotlights lend voice to our amazing community members working behind the scenes to bring this project to life. Thank you all for donating your time and talents to the good fight! 🗽

Tell us about yourself

I actually started out doing research in psychopharmacology, particularly studying major depressive disorder, fear and anxiety. I was a laboratory researcher for two years before I felt like it was time for a change. I went into philosophy (total 180) where I specialized in Marx’s intersection with technology and phenomenology. From there, I ended up landing in education as a consultant on cognitive psych evaluations, particularly personality assessments and interventions, and I still work today part time as a consultant in the field. Through all this time I’d also done ghostwriting as a side profession and passion, and I still love writing (both creative and non-fiction) to this day.

I had some friends over the years in web3, and when I decided to really jump in they were able to make the onboarding process smooth. Because I saw good ventures in web3 addressing climate change and social issues, I felt inspired to join and contribute my skillset. In web3, a lot of my skillset seems to be valuable in marketing strategy and writing, so I’ve been most active in those areas.

What an awesome history of experiences. What would you say prompted you to move from one role to another?

It was a variety of reasons! Although it was exciting to study the links between anxiety and depression, the research required in psychopharmacology was emotionally draining. In education and consulting — it was great to make a big impact in small areas, but I didn’t feel like I was doing enough to better the world at large.

But with web3, the impact of my contributions felt expansive. You can make big moves that can have a domino effect that leads to greater impact than small localized stuff, and so I really see it as an awesome playground to affect positive change in the world.

Can you share how you incorporate philosophy into the marketing-related contributions you make in web3?

The truth of the matter is that marketing is all about manipulating people. So it’s important to use the power of marketing for good. I definitely have some lines I don’t like to cross, but there is an argument that marketing for a good cause is worth it. I suppose this is an ends-justify-the-means argument, and I don’t ascribe to it totally. I think my background in philosophy informs my marketing and keeps me from engaging in underhanded practices, but maybe I’m just telling myself that ; )

What is it like contributing in web3 and ChoiceDAO?

What’s cool about web3 is anyone can contribute and collaborate on projects that inspire them. I love seeing lots of young folks enter the space with open minds. And because web3 folks are welcoming and supportive, I have not seen heaps of systematic racism, or misogyny. This is very refreshing, especially from the perspective of someone who has worked for a while in more traditional work structures.

How did you find your way to ChoiceDAO?

I found ChoiceDAO while I was in New York — I was giving a talk on DAO governance during the NFT.NYC week. Someone added me to the Telegram group of ChoiceDAO very early on. My initial thought was, “How long will it take for ChoiceDAO to come to life?”

After a night of sleep, I woke up with a buzzing group of folks eager to contribute to ChoiceDAO, and over 400 Telegram messages. Because the people involved were interesting, and I appreciated the measured approach they were taking to accepting donations, I kept my eyes on the project.

Once ChoiceDAO launched the Discord group, I noticed a need to help bring the community to life and profile some of the hard work happening. And so I decided to help out with marketing and messaging. My goal is to help put enough structure in place for other folks to easily carry it on.

Because ChoiceDAO’s current mission is to fight for abortion rights, I’m being conscious of how much time and space I’m taking up. I’m a guy, and abortion rights isn’t my area of expertise at all. That said if I can help I’m happy to, but I love to see those who are affected and with direct experience leading the way. I’m serving as an ally to help them push the project forward.

What would you say is helpful to creating a structure in ChoiceDAO?

Structures are created to solve things. We need people to come in, look around, see what needs to be done, and try to help.

For me, I saw the need for us to connect with members of the community. This is why I started writing interviews. Because there’s not really a top-down decision in DAOs, all I needed to actualize this idea is other people’s interest. Now I’m curating a list of member stories to both help us connect with one another and also give new members a resource to learn about existing contributors.

Next steps would be to figure out how member interviews can take a life of its’ own. In a way, this is already happening. After our interview, you felt inspired to interview me. Hopefully this can become a natural part of the process!

What excites you most about ChoiceDAO?

I believe that ChoiceDAO can become the beacon on a hill for social-impact web3 projects. I’m also really excited about the amount of talent and young folks jumping into the project. Finally, it gives me hope to see a lot of people be conscious and action-oriented about social reform.

What kind of help do you need in Member Spotlights?

I think the interviews are going really well. Maybe we can create a ritual, where other members can step up and interview others. Right now I’m collecting a list of amazing members to interview. In the future, I’d love to keep all interviews in one spot, so that people have an easy way to learn about other members.

If this is something any reader wants to help out with, please feel free to reach out to me on Discord!

Let’s wrap this up with some trivia. What’s something people may be surprised to learn about you?

Hmm. I have a few exciting facts about me. First, I was bitten by a snake multiple times… it was my grumpy pet snake when I was a kid. It got me over half a dozen times. No fun.

I also got beat up once during a Zen Buddhist ritual. I was meditating at a temple I’d never visited in Asia, and all of a sudden someone started hitting me with a stick. I found out later that this was the hard mode of finding tranquility. After the ritual, I had tea with the Zen master who went to town on me with the stick and learned that participants were only beaten up if they had poor form. The kicker is that when I asked him what in my form deserved the beating, he said my form was okay, he just wanted me “to have the full experience.” I didn’t know going into it, but apparently that temple was whatever Zen rituals ancient warriors used to practice, so all the serenity and meditative exercises involved some kind of pain element.

To keep up with Felix, follow him on Twitter.

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