It’s only 2 years ago that I got interested in Blockchain Technology.
I first learned about Ethereum and even started mining ETH.
I do remember that one of my first cryptocurrency purchases was XRP.
When reading more about this amazing technology called blockchain, I also learned about the meaning of true decentralization, and the meaning of a community. That’s when I found DigiByte and I was impressed about its growth and development since 2014. No company, no ICO, all volunteers, trustworthy and honest people behind the project, pioneers like Jared Tate, that are not in this for the money, unlike so many others. Also very impressive I found the features of the DigiByte technology like speed, low fees, multi-algo mining, multi-shield, the number of active nodes. Truly globally decentralized and forward thinking. There is no way back for DigiByte because it’s not a company and nothing and no one can take DigiByte down, moreover it’s a grassroots movement with a community that’s still growing and can never be stopped. It’s because of all this that I decided to put all the eggs in one basket and exchange all my other crypto’s into DGB.
I do remember very well that evening back in May 2018 where a number of community members got together in a private chat on Twitter. It was an initiative from Dereck de Mézquita, who unfortunately had to leave the team early because of the need to focus on his study to become a biologist, chemist and scientist. We were talking about DigiByte and the fact that it’s rather undervalued and why too many people still didn’t know about DigiByte.
We agreed that DigiByte needed more awareness. DigiByte is not a company and there is no maketing department or funds to pay for marketing. It has to come from us, the community. We decided to start a marketing team, called DigiByte Awareness Team (DGBAT). We all have different skills, so we were convinced that together we could be a great team and do a lot for DigiByte.
Soon after, we started taking more people into DGBAT with specific skills, like designers, developers, writers, speakers, organizers, entrepeneurs, etc. We created one nice happy family and we were speaking on a daily basis. We were able to organize different marketing activities, create awareness and we all helped each other with our different skills. Over time we gained the support from Jared Tate and other core members after a period of some reservation, which of course is understandable because of previous experiences with other marketing efforts.
Because of my profession and position as a director in an IT company, I have the experience to connect with businesses, and to build and maintain relationships. I’m also an entrepreneur, always looking for challenges and opportunities to turn ideas into actions. So outreach is one of my skills I used in DGBAT. But when I started contacting companies on behalf of DGBAT, I found it very hard to be taken serious. Companies are used to deal with employees with a specific role in a company. They don’t understand decentralization, and don’t want to talk with just a DigiByte community member. They want “to speak with the CEO of DigiByte” or at least someone with a senior position in DigiByte. But we’re not a company and there is no CEO, CMO, CFO, COO, CTO. For this reason it was very difficult and sometimes impossible to start speaking with businesses. That’s when I decided to entitle myself as CMO of DGBAT. I changed my LinkedIn profile, and that worked. I finally managed to start speaking to the right people and moreover people started to reach out to me as well.
DGBAT is now 18 months old, and when looking at the roadmap and milestones, we all can see that the team did an amazing job. A lot has been accomplished and it put DigiByte in a great position to continue to move forward. Not only tomorrow, next week, next month or next year, but forever.
Was it all just fun? No. There were also drama’s from time to time. But we all learned a lot from that and it even made DGBAT stronger. New people came on board and others left. Some because they could not agree with things happening in DGBAT, and others because of personal reasons.
New people joining is strengthening the team. They might have new or better ideas, or bring new skills into DGBAT. I think it’s in favour of DGBAT that the group is dynamic and with a regular changing composition of community members. Therefore I would like to invite the DigiByte community members that can offer something to DigiByte, time or skills, to reach out to one of the DGBAT members.
For me it’s very difficult at the moment. I have a day-time job that I need to support my family. It’s my only source of income. My activities in DGBAT are taking quite a lot of my time. The setup of the DigiByte Foundation for sure will also need time in the coming year. I think real world use-cases are very important for any blockchain project, so I decided to focus more on building real world use-cases for DigiByte together with some other companies. For this I need to join meetings, make presentations, work out details and write plans. There is not enough time left for sleep, family and friends. So now the time is right for me to leave DGBAT. Moreover, to protect the true principles of decentralization, flexibility and adaptation is needed. I need to reduce my activities to make room for others. There are so many great people in this DigiByte Community.
I would like to say a big thank you to all the DGBAT team members for their support, and the lessons I have learned. Im very proud to see that I can leave DGBAT, knowing there is a professional team with the right people involved to move forward. DGBAT didn’t and doesn’t need me to keep doing what they are doing, so nothing will change.
But for me things will change. I will find more time to setup the DigiByte Foundation together with Hans and Rutger. I will find more time to futher build and support use-cases using DigiByte Technology, and on my own accord I will keep building and maintaining relationships with businesses like I was doing in the past. With great confindence in the future development of DigiByte and its community, I’m looking forward to the new challenges I will be facing. And remember: Together we keep DigiByte great!