What A Newbie Thinks About The Dash Community So Far
‘Smart coin’ communities can be treacherous for newbies who are unfamiliar with digital currency technologies.
Its culture can be extremely intimidating and I believe that aspect could be one of the biggest reasons people don’t feel comfortable learning about smart coins.
In my previous smart coin community, some of the most active chat rooms had devolved into a kind of toxic cesspool of pathetic manboys who ranted about everything from the size of their bananas to the sad state of their vacuous souls. After being called a c*nt for no apparent reason by one of the whales (a whale is someone with an enormous account) in that chat room, I decided I’d had enough and that day I went searching for a new smart coin community that wasn’t hostile towards decent people.
I was talking about Bitcoin and Dash in a Facebook group last week and one of my friends remarked,
“I agree that the current marketing of cryptocurrency is a kind of exclusive, inaccessible club. For me and others I suspect it is also emotionally associated with a sort of nefarious, criminal need to hide, which has always put me off from finding out more.”
After I explained to my friend that I am neither a criminal nor one who needs to hide my financial activities, I offered to send her some Dash as a gift. Her response was,
“Oh, I am way too cautious to jump right in and start using it! I’ll need to do some serious research first.”
So, there you have it. That’s probably what more than 95% of the population honestly feels about smart coins. They think cryptocurrency is exclusive, inaccessible and full of scary criminals who are all trying to hide their activities on the dark web. That’s not exactly an accurate description, but I’m very well acquainted with that kind of uncertainty and fear.
I’ll be honest, though, it has not been all roses and puppy dogs.
It’s been a mix of good and bad, but mostly good things have come out of it. Knowledge is the best thing to come out of it for me personally.
I’ve been earning smart money for almost a year now. I haven’t gotten sucked into some nefarious criminal gang and I only associate with other people whom I trust. I’ve met some really amazing people, too. I will say, however, that I am more cautious than the average person and I’m able to detect dishonest people pretty easily.
Now, I’ll take you on a tour into a smart coin community that I just discovered last week. I’ll tell you where I went, what problems I encountered and how each problem got solved. The smart coin community I entered a week ago is the Dash community.
The first thing I did was go to the dash.org forum where I began researching which Dash wallet to get. After reading about the Dash Core wallet, I decided I wanted to start off with a wallet that was the easiest to use. An acquaintance from Steemit recommended the Exodus wallet and after researching it on a website called Crypto Compare , I decided to try out Exodus.
There were five reasons I chose the Exodus wallet:
- It’s super easy to use.
- It received 4.7 stars from users.
- The customer support for this wallet is outstanding.
- The wallet doesn’t hold your private keys in a server.
- It’s beautifully designed.
It’s not a good idea to hold too much money in the Exodus wallet because it’s not an offline wallet. But it’s a good wallet to keep a little money in and experiment with.
The Exodus wallet is visually stunning and contains many different colored skins for different tastes. It uses more graphics than text and is therefore much easier to use and way more aesthetically pleasing.
So far, so good. As I wandered around the Dash Forum I began to notice that it’s very well-organized and contains many moderators.
I was amused to discover that you can give people’s comments other things besides a thumbs up. You can give people a rainbow, a check mark and you can even give them a troll head if they’re nasty or being a jerk.
There’s a thumbs down icon you can use if you disagree with someone’s comment. A lot of forums I’ve been in aren’t this friendly and more still seem to be full of disgruntled young men who enjoy belittling people who are different from them. As someone who has been viciously stalked online several times and publicly doxxed twice by a deranged man, I’m happy that the forums in Dash are very well moderated. I felt extremely safe and respected in there. I really wasn’t expecting the Dash community to be so nice and welcoming. It was shocking.
Next, I ventured into the Dash slack channel.
In the Dash slack chat, I was very amused because the people in there seemed pretty nice.
Keep in mind, this was when the value of Dash had just skyrocketed up so people were celebrating big time. Lots of people made it rain Dash, which means that they tipped Dash to all the people in the slack chat room. It was kind of like being in a virtual bar, where everyone in it was bought a free drink.
I noticed that whenever a guy became an a**hole in slack, someone would step in and basically give him a hint about how to treat people. I have never witnessed this before in any online community. There’s a level of respect that I can honestly say is unique to the Dash community.
For people who are into being crude, they can go into the “off-topic” channel, so it’s not like there’s censorship or a lack of free expression. Creating an environment that is open but respectful towards others is a really difficult thing to achieve. It appears that a community manager created this uniquely positive social environment.
Many people might think that I am interested in the Dash community only because its value has shot up recently. That is perhaps why everyone else is interested in it but it’s only part of the reason for me.
I would say that it’s 40% of the reason why I came into Dash initially. The other 60% is because of my positive experiences within the Dash community and its amazing organization. I am tired of the fighting and discord in other smart coin communities. Achieving balance inside of a decentralized community is extremely difficult. Dash seems to have done this from what I can tell so far.
At the beginning of March when I first entered the Dash community, the price of Dash was around $38.
Some of my trader friends were selling their Dash, thinking that the price would immediately go down from there. As many of you know, it didn’t go down. At that same time many people were selling their Dash, I was buying it. But the reason I decided to buy it wasn’t based only on the market or expert opinions.
The reasons I decided to go all in with Dash was because I saw a number of things it has that is completely lacking in other smart coin communities: a very visible and trusted female leader, a newbie-friendly community, a well-organized and unified governance structure and a Treasury that is able to fund marketing and outreach efforts.
And the reason I kept converting my Bitcoin to Dash even when the price of Dash went up to $93 is because my own personal experiences within the Dash community were probably the best I’ve ever had in any online community. The amount of help I received when I had technical problems was the final thing that sent me over the Dash edge and made me a believer.
Let’s examine what happened to me when I had technical problems:
First Issue: Computer Froze Up
When I downloaded the Dash Core wallet, my computer froze up and became unresponsive. It did this while it was encrypting my wallet, so instead of just sitting there watching the beach ball go around, I decided to force quit and try the process all over again. I forced quit, downloaded the wallet again and then noticed that the wallet encryption had already finished from the earlier time. I posted my concerns in the Dash forum and very shortly thereafter, several people gave me very detailed instructions how to proceed.
Second Issue: Proposal Headaches
When I was going through the process of creating my Dash Budget Proposal, I ran into some issues that I could not resolve by myself. I asked a member for help and he provided me with step-by-step instructions in real-time that helped me navigate the super technical process of sending my proposal to through the Dash blockchain.
Third Issue: Writing Editor Woes
When I wrote my proposal on Dash Central, the fonts didn’t display properly. I highlighted them and changed the setting to ‘normal’ several times, but I wasn’t able to fix the size. I must have tried 6 more times, but still the letters were huge. I nearly lost my mind!
Also, weird code snippets were appearing in my text! I deleted the lines of code, but then the code would reappear again! It was like cutting off the head of a snake in a dream, only to have the snake regrow several more heads afterwards!
I almost lost my mind as I am a perfectionist and having my proposal display in such an ugly manner was super disturbing to me. I wrote for help in the forum and also sent an email to email@example.com asking for help to fix the size of the fonts. To be honest, I wasn’t really expecting to get a reply to my email. I figured my email would just sit there without getting any answer. To my surprise, not only did I get an answer, but a person named @rango fixed the size of my fonts in my proposal, and completely solved my problem. I really couldn’t believe it. It was shocking.
Well, there you have it. Now you understand why I’m happy to be involved with the Dash community. People are still at the heart of every successful new technological breakthrough. Without a supportive and encouraging community to help newbies jump through the technological hoops of smart money, Bitcoin and other alt coins will remain just a pipe dream.
I think Dash has the best chance of being embraced by the mainstream especially when Evolution comes out.
Full disclosure: I am lightly invested in Dash starting from March 3, 2017. I also recently created a proposal for the Dash Treasury. You can view my proposal here.
ps-I know this article is too long. The next one will be shorter.
About the author:
Leah Stephens is the editor of Dash For Newbies, writer and full stack artist. She has written one book, Un-Crap Your Life which is now available on Amazon. She wrote for Interesting Engineering before discovering the blockchain. She runs a zany YouTube channel and she’s now working within the Dash decentralized autonomous organization. Most days she can be found lurking on Twitter and in the Women of Dash Slack channel. She’s also a top writer in Steemit. Her favorite quote is by Rimbaud:
“I have researched the magic shapes of the happiness no one escapes.”
by the author.