Proposal “SF-Hacks-18-sponsorship“ (Completed)Back

Title:Dash Hackathon Sponsorship at SF Hacks ‘18
One-time payment: 27 DASH (802 USD)
Completed payments: 1 totaling in 27 DASH (0 month remaining)
Payment start/end: 2018-01-17 / 2018-02-16 (added on 2018-01-14)
Final voting deadline: in passed
Votes: 0 Yes / 0 No / 0 Abstain

Proposal description

Dash Hackathon Sponsorship at SF Hacks ‘18

tl;dr My proposal is to have Dash sponsor a hackathon (an event where hundreds college students get together and create innovative products to compete for prizes). We will hold a Dash giveaway to get more students into the Dash ecosystem and we will offer a prize for the project that adds the most value to the Dash network. Sponsoring a hackathon event will spark interest in Dash as a payments-centric currency and yield a slew of projects that integrate with Dash.

Here are links to a shareable Google doc of this proposal description, and a link to the proposal discussion and pre-proposal discussion on the Dash forums:

In more detail, I am proposing to have Dash sponsor a collegiate hackathon in my area (SF Bay area). For those of you unfamiliar, a hackathon is an event, usually organized by a student group, where a group of individuals (usually other students) gather at an event venue and form teams to build projects from start to finish in 24-48 hours to be submitted for judging for prizes. Hackathon events are typically free to attend, with all necessary transportation, venues, chairs, tables, food, internet, etc. funded by sponsors. Typically sponsors are tech companies (also frequently, financial services/FinTech companies) that use the opportunity to circulate their brand with students, to seek out hiring candidates, and to encourage innovation. Frequently, sponsors also offer prizes for the best use of their API/technology/platform (eg. IBM might offer a prize for the best use of their cloud services) and give out T-shirts and other promotional items with their logo to gain cheap advertising.

In particular, I would like Dash to sponsor SF Hacks on March 17-18, 2018 at San Francisco State University. SF Hacks is a good candidate for sponsorship because they are going into their 2nd annual event, and are established with strong attendance (350+ students last year). As a hackathon aimed at computer science and engineering college students, this event provides an excellent opportunity to encourage development of products and applications with the Dash payment system.

To become a sponsor, I will reach out to the SF Hacks team and arrange logistical details. For $1000 USD (1.05 Dash), SF Hacks offers sponsors a table at the event, to allow us sponsors to interact with students (giveaway swag and Dash), the placement of the Dash logo on the official SF Hacks T-shirt (given free to every attendee), and the opportunity to run our own prize contest. I have already contacted the organizers and am fully ready to organize the sponsorship.

I propose to sponsor a 2.5 Dash prize for the team that creates the best Dash-involved product, judged by the value added to the Dash ecosystem. This will encourage attendees to create products for Dash, resulting in a slew of submissions for the prize. Even though we will only be giving out a prize to one team, many of the submissions will likely be valuable to the Dash network.

Next, I propose to give away 0.01 Dash to each an every attendee that installs the Dash wallet to promote the use of Dash among the college student audience. This will likely net several hundred installations among a fairly closely knit group of attendees (they work in teams for the hackathon). This is an excellent opportunity to encourage use of Dash as a peer-to-peer micropayments platform, since after the event many attendees will have several friends who have Dash installed.

I also propose to purchase T-shirts with the Dash logo (from Custom Ink, due to great value and volume discounts) to give away as further advertising of the Dash brand. T-shirts are among the most common and most desired form of swag given away at hackathons, and tend to be widely visible on college campuses in the weeks and months following a hackathon in the area (speaking from personal experience). A table with no T-shirts tends to be a table that few students will come talk to the sponsors at, so we will come prepared. As part of my job as sponsorship organizer I will design and purchase the T-shirts. I will probably just stick to something simple with the Dash logo on it to keep costs down.

Now that I've laid out the basic plan, I would like to take a minute to introduce myself. My name is Arjun Govindjee, and I am a third year computer science and computer engineering student (double major) at the University of California, Santa Cruz. I have been loosely involved in the cryptocurrency scene since around 2012, when I was primarily interested in the technology behind Bitcoin and the political implications of decentralized governance (first of monetary policy, now of anything via DAOs). I became involved via GPU mining, and later, ASIC mining (hobbyist stuff, not sitting on millions in Bitcoin profits :P), and I have followed the technology ever since. My academic interests in mathematics, cryptography, and computer science have led me to my continued interest in cryptocurrencies and the political changes that they can bring to the world. I’ve only become involved with Dash recently (late-2017), but I believe strongly in Dash’s form of government. I want to contribute to Dash’s success, so I am organizing this proposal. With my 5+ years involvement in the cryptocurrency world, I am well qualified to market Dash’s benefits over other cryptocurrencies to interested hackathon attendees, even on a technical level.

As for my involvement in the hackathon scene, I have mentored at four hackathons: HackingEdu, CalHacks 3, CalHacks 4, and HackUCSC (renamed CruzHacks). These experiences have brought me in contact with organizers for all of these events. I know the ins-and-outs of the hackathon world, and will be more than capable of organizing a Dash sponsorship for a hackathon in the area.

To orchestrate the giveaway of T-shirts and Dash, I will need some assistants to handle the high volume of students that typically occurs as everyone scrambles to pick up as much free swag from as many companies as they can. I propose to hire 3 engineering students with cryptocurrency backgrounds from UC Santa Cruz for 0.2 Dash each. These students will assist throughout the hackathon with logistical matters, such as transporting T-shirts and distributing Dash and T-shirts to attendees. This will occur over the 24 hour hackathon (minus time for scheduled breaks, workshops, speeches, etc.).

Itemized Budget for 400 anticipated attendees:
Budgeted DASH/USD price of $952.78 (30 day moving average at last superblock).

Item   Fiat Cost (USD)   
Estimated Dash Cost
Event Sponsorship$10001.05
Dash Giveaway
Best Project Prize
Printing for banners, signs, etc.
Rental Van
Sponsorship Organizer Salary
Assistants' Compensation
Proposal and Escrow Fees

Total Budget = 27 Dash (rounded from 26.28)

Budget Justification
For event sponsorship, we have selected the silver tier, which gets us a table at the event, our logo on the event T-shirt, lets us distribute T-shirts and Dash, and lets us run our best Dash project prize. The cost of this tier is $1000 (USD).

We will give away 0.01 Dash to each of the 400 expected attendees. This amount is small enough not to break the bank (or treasury), but enough to spark interest in Dash. Who would turn down a free $10 after all?

We will offer a 2.5 Dash prize to the team that creates the project most valuable to the Dash network. This prize amount (around $2400) is consistent with other prizes typically offered at hackathons. Usually entry level prizes are around $500-$1000 and high-end prizes are around $5000, so we expect to gain substantial interest in our medium-sized prize.

To make our sponsor table not look boring and uninteresting, we would like to print a banner with the Dash logo and a poster with some high-level marketing points of what makes Dash great (InstantSend, PrivateSend, decentralized governance and self-funding, etc.). The combined printing cost of these items including tax is $345.51 at my local FedEx Office store.

For T-shirts we will have 60 smalls, 120 mediums, 120 larges, 60 extra larges, and 40 2X-larges (#america) printed from CustomInk for $10.74 each. This is a very competitive price (compared to TeeSpring and others), especially for the quality of the shirts selected. I selected the Next-Level Tri-Blend T-shirt (in Vintage Navy, which is really a dark grey color), because, in my personal experience, of the many hackathon T-shirts in my possession, it is among the best value for comfort and quality. This will add to the likelihood that our T-shirts are worn repeatedly, since they will last longer and be more comfortable than options that are only slightly cheaper. Total cost with free 2-week delivery is $4,296.

To transport the massive number of T-shirts as well as the poster+banner and my staff, we will need a vehicle slightly larger than my Honda Civic. We will rent a van from a local Enterprise Rent-A-Car for 2 days. Total cost after all fees and taxes is $251.22.

Since I do not have the Dash (nor fiat) on hand to sponsor my own proposal fee (a whopping $5000 USD these days…), I asked for generous offers of assistance during the pre-proposal period. I offered a +100% reward in the event that the proposal passes for those who were kind enough to lend me their Dash to risk on a proposal that could fail. The total cost of the proposal fee plus risk reward is 10 Dash.

Escrow and Accountability
To convince you all that I’m not here just to run away with a bunch of money from the treasury, I have arranged escrow with my proposal fee sponsor and trusted community member, Miner237 (CryptoTeller on Discord). Here is how the project is planned to go. Each step will must be strictly complete with a project update posted on the Dash forum before the next step (and any funding release) is proceeds.

Phase I: Proposal Submission
I will submit the proposal with a payout address belonging to Miner237. Since he is financing the proposal fee for me, when the proposal passes, he will immediately be able to withdraw his 10 Dash.

Phase II: Materials Preparation
Miner237 will release 6 (rounded from 5.92) Dash to me to pay the SF Hacks sponsorship cost, and the FedEx and CustomInk printing costs. I will order the materials, and upload a proposal update with photos of the received items. This should be complete by mid-to-late February.

Phase III: The Big Event
Miner237 will release 8 (rounded from 7.36) Dash to me. This will cover the Dash giveaway, the project prize, compensation for my staff, and transportation costs. I will upload a proposal update after the event in mid-March with photos of our presence at the hackathon and details on the project awarded the prize.

Phase IV: Denouement
Miner237 will release my 3 Dash compensation for organizing the hackathon sponsorship by Dash.

Project Failure Contingency Plan
In the event of some catastrophic proposal failure, that makes any sponsorship of the hackathon unviable (such as my untimely death or kidnapping or theft of funds or materials), Miner237 will retain funds in escrow and use them as he currently does with the funds he is lending me for the proposal fee; that is, he will use them to the benefit of the Dash community by supporting projects in need of assistance.

Future Work
If this first hackathon sponsorship is a success, I would like to run another proposal to sponsor a handful of larger hackathons next Fall, or even create an ongoing hackathon sponsorship proposal. CalHacks and LA Hacks are both ideal candidates for sponsorship, as they draw thousands of attendees, and will result in incredible exposure for Dash, as well as likely some extremely high value student projects in return. In the event that there is leftover funding or materials (such as T-shirts), for any reason, I will use them for a future hackathon sponsorship proposal, or if this is not a possibility, I will attempt to donate them to any other proposals that could use some Dash promotional materials.

Thank you for reading all the way to the end. I hope that you are as excited as I am to have Dash get its name out there at a hackathon.

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Discussion: Should we fund this proposal?

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0 points,6 years ago
MNO, Sydney, Australia
Yes vote given.
2 points,6 years ago
Best of luck! Voting Yes..
-1 point,6 years ago
Feels too expensive. I don't agree that this target demographic is good. SF engineers are already harassed by VCs and fintech, adtech industry. They are probably the most expensive audience, and the ones to quickly dismiss DASH because they are already spammed with 'great ideas' all the time. Voting NO.
-1 point,6 years ago
Do we not have room in the budget? What's the problem paying 27 Dash for some exposure we wouldn't otherwise get?
2 points,6 years ago
I’m sorry that you think it’s too expensive. If you look at the budget justification I think you will find that the individual components are quite reasonable. Also considering how empty the budgets are at the end of the month, I don’t think this is too expensive for the network too afford by any means. A good portion of the cost is purely proposal+escrow fees. We are marketing to college students here, at a relatively smaller school, and I think they will definitely be open to Dash, and it is a great opportunity to get them onboard with the technology with a small financial incentive. I hope this addresses some of your concerns.
- Arjun
0 points,6 years ago
Seems like a slightly excessive amount of t-shirts given estimated attendance, but I still like the target demographic and the goals. You've got my support.
0 points,6 years ago
Thank you for your support, though!
0 points,6 years ago
Remember that last year's hackathon was their first year. Typically there is quite an amount of growth between a first and second year event, as sponsors may be skiddish to sign on with a first time event. In any case, we will be sure to try to use all of the T-shirts in one way or another (future events).