It’s been a while.
I’m sorry I haven’t formally updated you here, I recognize it was inconsiderate of me to leave without giving you all the explanation you deserve after supporting this project for so long. If I can make any excuse, life has become quite busy in recent weeks, what with me moving to a new state and a few important family events, such that I didn’t have the physical or mental bandwidth to write to you well.
Anyway, without further ado, here’s what’s up:
As you may have heard, everyone that is not a developer was let go from the Incognito Project to align with the current refocus on development and preparing the network for release.
I joined Incognito because of my belief in the mission of privacy and I stayed out of immense love for the project and the people I worked with. I don’t need the job, and no part of me is concerned for my future, in fact I’m relieved to not have to work so I can focus on pursuing other interests. So, I feel I can write without bias on this situation and hopefully clarify some mixed feelings floating around.
First, I just want to note how incredible the growth team is. @ducky, @ning, @andrey, @chucky, @elena, @peter, and others especially made my time with Incognito the greatest work environment I’ve ever been a part of. I’m grateful to them beyond my ability to communicate it.
While I can understand the rationale for the firing, I disagree with this decision for multiple reasons. Every team needs specialists. Devs can not and should not be expected to do everything, especially communication and community engagement. I personally feel this is not only a betrayal of you, the community, but of the devs themselves, as they are now expected to fill roles they are not prepared for and should not fill. Additionally, I was told that the growth team did “far too good a job” and grew a product that wasn’t ready for such growth, allowing the devs to slack off and coast on our success. Not only is that a slap in the face to the growth team, it’s a slap in the face to the devs and the work they were doing, as well as to their ability to improve.
I still firmly believe in the imminent success of this project. Privacy is necessary, and the devs are capable of building it. So please, support them in that if you still believe in the mission. Communication is already suffering, because they can’t handle it. But they can handle project development, and I have no doubts about the success of the platform itself. This lack of effective communication will be quite a speed bump, but it’s not the end of the road. I will continue following this project. I no longer have a direct line of communication with the devs, or I would be updating you all voluntarily, but I still have full confidence in their abilities.
For your part, if you feel inclined to stick with this project, have grace for the poor communication, and know that it’s not dead in the water. Privacy is still being built. But, let’s push for better comms, maybe even hiring a new growth team (as I stated earlier, I am not interested in working for Incognito again, because of my new focus on creative pursuits, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t hire more people).
To be clear, this is not @duc’s fault, or any of the devs. This recent decision rests with the founding team, and Duc is doing a great job of staying afloat and pushing forward.
A few people in this community are pushing for a fork of Incognito.
I respect them, and their desire to look out for themselves and to further privacy, but I personally don’t believe in their ability to succeed. I don’t want to accuse it of being a cash grab, so I won’t, but based on what I’ve seen of the Incognito project, they are unprepared to handle a fork as it stands now. Make your own judgements, and know that as long as privacy succeeds, no matter who is behind it, we all win. I wish them success.
Honestly, as much as this isn’t goodbye, it’s goodbye. I’ll be around, and you can reach out to me here or on Twitter if you want to talk, I’m always happy to.
But, I’ll be taking some time to write a book, learn piano, take some full-stack dev courses, etc. I’m going to be busy enjoying myself, so I won’t be as vocal as I used to be. Thank you for your warm engagement with me and this project over the last year and a half. You’ve been wonderful.
Have a love-what-you-do kind of life,