Hello everyone! After a little promotional break and some new delegators, were back on with the SPOt-light series, this time featuring [WISH] pool. As usual, a member of the F2LB Alliance that prides himself on his longterm vision, operating skills and a passion for sharing wealth with those less fortunate! please give him a warm welcome!
- First and foremost, what is your background in terms of education, interest, line of work, be as vague or specific as you like.
First of all, thanks for having me. It is an honour to be interviewed by a fellow SPO I admire. My background I is a bit of a mix. My technical background is in server administration from Unix (AIX, HP-UX, Solaris), Linux (Redhat, Ubuntu, etc), Windows and even mid-range servers and networking. I now work for a financial institution in a non-technical capacity. I am also a self-taught photographer and film maker and have done a number of projects for friends and clients including volunteer work for charities. I invested in Cardano back in 2017 after watching Charles Hoskinson’s talk and have held it ever since.
2. How did you find out about F2LB and what was your first reaction to it?
I was setting up my stake pool on the Testnet back in Feb 2021 but I had serious doubts if I could make it a sustainable business. I don’t have anywhere near the 1 million ADA which is needed to ensure consistent minting of blocks each epoch so I was considering backing out. Then while researching a technical issue, I saw the post in the Cardano forum suggesting that we pool our resources together and delegate to support members in a queue. I was the 4th person at that time to join the queue and was accepted even though my mainnet pool was not yet up at the time. If I had not seen F2LB, I am not sure if I would have proceeded to create WISH Pool.
3. What made you decide to join? As it can be perceived by some that you’re joining the underdog, is that how you see it too? Or do you have a different take on it?
Yes, by definition the members of F2LB are underdogs because we all have 0 or very low number of blocks produced. But if I want to survive to help in the decentralisation of Cardano and also eventually assist my adopted educational charities financially, I need to work with people who are in the same situation as i am. I actually applied to other established groups with different ideals but I felt that these groups were either too busy or are not interested in bringing members into their exclusive group. At F2LB, each new member is embraced with open arms and they can be added to the queue within minutes of them reaching out to us. Now that is efficient.
4. Can you explain a bit more about your role in this ecosystem, what do you do? Think of investing, operating, delegation etc, do you see a purpose for yourself?
Due to my technical technical background, I felt the need to create scripts to assist me in doing repetitive, complex tasks that are needed to maintain a stake pool. These are currently customised to my environment but I eventually plan to make them more portable and share them in my GitHub. I also create educational material to help new investors learn about Cardano and how to buy and stake it. These are currently posted in our website but once we finish the videos we are creating, that will be on our YouTube channel.
From a social perspective, our mission is to eliminate poverty by supporting educational charities. We believe that if a child is able to access quality education, he/she can help take his/her family out of poverty. Thus, we pledge 10% of our profits to helping these educational charities.
5. What would you say to potential delegators that have a lot of ADA, and might be reluctant to join a smaller pool?
To the people holding large wallets of ADA (also called whales), I urge them to look at the big picture and not just look for short term gains. In order for decentralisation to work, we need people like them to support small stake pools. If all ADA holders only go to the big pools, these smaller pools will eventually die off and we will be left with a highly centralised network controlled by only a handful of participants. In fact, even the initiative by F2LB is not enough without the support of people with big ADA wallets and even bigger hearts. This is because I may have the full F2LB delegation this epoch, but once that moves on to the next SPO (Stake Pool Operator), I may be back where I started. We need whales to stay with each of our members to give them a chance to grow and thrive. From an earnings perspective, if one or more whales park their wallets in a small pool, they can actual earn equal or even better returns than if they put it in a pool near saturation.
6. What is your recommendation to delegators when selecting a stake pool?
There is little to no difference in returns if you select a stake pool that earns for itself and a stake pool that helps the ecosystem. Therefore, your first criteria should be looking for pools that gives back. They can be creating educational and marketing content, or are supporting charities like WISH Pool. A lot of these pools may not have any statistics because they have not yet created a block but that should not stop you from delegating. What you should try to look for is past evidence. For example, did the pool owners just think about supporting charities as an afterthought for marketing purposes? Or have the owners been supporting charities even before the pool was setup? At WISH Pool, we post the short films of the relevant past charities we helped at our website.
7. We’ve discussed your recommendation towards supporting smaller pools, and that you see no direct downsides to it, how do you view the larger clusters of pools and the exchange-related pools?
Once pool operators become successful and are near saturation, it is a normal tendency to create another one to repeat the success. However, I believe there should be a maximum number to give smaller operators the opportunity to produce blocks. Tweaking with network parameters for pool saturation levels will have no effect if pools are allowed to just build more nodes where they can split their delegations. For this to happen though, a mechanism need to be added to pool registration to properly identify pool owners. This can temporarily be handled by a central authority but should ideally be built into the protocol in some way so it is self-governing and not managed by a central body.
8. Lastly, if people want to follow your work, where can they go?
Please visit our website at http://blockchainlens.org. We update our blog fairly regularly. Our Twitter and Instagram is @blockchainlens. Links to our Facebook page and other social media can also be found at our website.
Thanks again for having me today and I look forward to the coming success of each of the F2LB members and the Cardano community!