Garrett Jin - Grant Reviewer Application

Garret Grant Review

The EasyA proposal requested an allocation of 55k USD.

The Shimmer Network community treasure has a total amount of 181.362.051 SMR and 15% will be allocated by a committee of 5 members. A 55k USD counts for about 3.3% of the committee allocation. An amount like this fall into the Tier 3 level of SMR grant and we should carefully evaluate if it is worth it.

What is EasyA?

EasyA is a Hackathon event organizing company. Polkadot, Polygon and Tezos have all used their service once to hold a Hackathon in London.

What does the 55k USD grant do?

25k USD will be used as prize for Hackathon winners. The rest will be used to cover the rest of cost. By the way, I don’t think I would call it grant. It is more like a sponsor. EasyA doesn’t build on Shimmer. Shimmer is more of its client.

Is EasyA a good service provider for Hackathon anyway?

Let’s start with some basic research. Polkadot just used the EasyA service and held a Hackathon this July. Maybe we should check how good it is. However it is hard to find any information when we input Polkadot, Hackathon or Polkadot Hackathon. There are other Polkadot Hackathons pumped up including their official ones and the ones with “Encode”. What is Encode? It seems to be a competitor of EasyA. Let’s just compare some of the Oct traffic stats from similarweb,

Visit: 5.6k

Average visit time: 31s

Bounce rate: 72.2%

Visit: 32.2k

Average visit time: 3m59s

Bounce rate: 47%

Encode date is not ideal while easyA is really suspicious. The easyA traffic data shows me that either they bought some traffic or just drive some traffic that is not really relevant to land on their website. Also we can further compare some other similar Hackathon holders like Dorahacks, then we will have to doubt if EasyA is a good Hackathon service provider.

Shall we give grant to hold Hackathons?

Firstly, EasyA is not a a project that will focus on building Shimmer. It is a Hackathons holder.
It might sounds like a good idea to give money to a team and they promise us to get 25 projects built on Shimmer. These Hackathons holders are not loyal to any ecosystem or chain. We are just another client they have, and for them, they might tend to go for the quantity instead of quality. It is really hard for a project to be successful in crypto space even for selective teams.

The main benefit of this Hackathons might be branding. Also since EasyA is not a really top service provider comparing with its competitors. The branding will hardly get out of the IOTA ecosystem. Highly likely the money is spent so that IOTA community knows we are trying in a lively and happy atmosphere but it is not the goal. We need real effect.

At the end of the day, we will need to incubate about 50-100 projects, among which 10-20 projects are priority projects with the hope that we will eventually have 2-5 star projects. If we have lots of SMR with a hug marketcap, perhaps we could try to spend money with different Hackathons service providers just to try our luck to count on them. Otherwise, we need to incubate solid open source projects slowly but more effectively.

Now we can move into the Grant Evaluation Score System,

Relevance to the Shimmer/IOTA Ecosystem: 1

Plan and Funding Model: 3

Execution: 3

Verifiability and Quality of the Team: 3

Overall Quality & Originality of the Idea: 1

Total: 11/20

Tier 3 (Funding budget 50.000 - 200.000 USD) - required score minimum 15 of 20

Result: No

Reasons: Please check the information above.