Mikhail Shapkin is one of the initiators of creating a wiki – Free TON knowledge base. He told us a little bit about himself, about how he got into Free TON and how the work goes in Wiki Subgovernance.
Tell me a little about yourselves.
I’m 40 years old. I was born in Latvia, I’ve lived here for most of my life. After that, I was travelling, moving from one country to another, for about 2 years. I had changed about 20 jobs by 2006. In 2000, I started opening my businesses. And in one of them, my partner and I increased our staff to 100 employees. Once our business entered the top 30 of the fastest-growing companies in Latvia.
I started to work on the Internet in 2009, opened the second online store in Latvia.
How did your journey in the cryptocurrency world begin? What did you do before Free TON?
At the end of 2018, I took a course in Python programming. And I thought ” How can I use these skills? And in April 2019, I was trying to choose one blockchain project from the list of 60 more or less interesting, considering the following factors:
- in what way the product is developed
- how many users of this product
- how easy is it to use
- what does the support service do
- how well does the team communicate with users
- how is the marketing carried out
In May 2019, I chose Minter from the list of 60.
Why did you end up at Free TON? How did it all begin?
I read on Minter’s website that they want to work with TON. Then I followed the events in the community. TON release was postponed several times, in the end, it did not take place at all. I had a vision that I would move smoothly from Minter to TON. As time went on, I noticed that not everything in Minter is as rosy as it looked at the beginning. and soon I knew about the launch of Free TON and came to this project.
What is Free TON for you? What ideas do you find particularly exciting and motivating here?
When I watched the live broadcast of the blockchain launch in May and other weekly meetings with the TON Labs team, I was very attracted to its openness. It’s cool that you can communicate with the team freely and directly!
Then I studied the community, active people, read all the chats from the very beginning, watched all the interviews, read all the posts on the forum. I was analysing it for two months. I saw a few more positive aspects in the community, that I liked: making decisions through jury voting; the fact that 85% of the coins will be distributed to users who contribute to the project, and etc. I also waited for the first winners to receive their rewards to see there were actions behind the words. As soon as it happened, I immediately invited Dima, my partner, and Dasha (now she is in Ambassadors SG) here.
Dima is a full-stack developer (a specialist who runs the full cycle of website development from creating a design project to launching and deploying a ready-made website with a content management system on a real server). We have been working together for a year as partners.
What are you doing now at Free TON?
Dima and I have launched Free TON Wiki and now we are leading the work on this resource.
What do you see in the future of Free TON Wiki platform?
It will be a multinational platform with a huge number of authors, editors and moderators. It will be a kind of anthill with constant movement: something is edited or added, old materials are deleted.
You are one of the initial members of Wiki Subgovernance. What kind of work do you perform? Are there any difficulties? Tell about your main role in the Subgovernance?
My main role is to think through and implement a mechanism for little by little transferring Free TON Wiki to the community management. We have planned how to take secondary members. The difficulty is that you need to communicate with each author individually: to interest people in taking part as a secondary member. Then you should prepare the documentation and ensure the transition technically. At the same time, a jury competition is held, we recruit new translators and provide support for them.
What improvements have occurred in both the Subgovernance itself and the Wiki knowledge base from the beginning? What are you going to in the long-term plans? What’s coming soon?
The biggest improvement is that new people started to participate in the project because, in the beginning, we attracted people only from the community. We are going to recruit editors who will regularly correct articles.
Some potential authors ask questions: is there anything else to work on? What is the capacity in work and new employees? How would you answer these questions?
There is a lot of work for authors. For example, new partners are actively added and you need to write articles about them, then you need to edit and translate it into other languages. There are vacancies for administrators of Russian and English chats. We also need editors, translators into other languages, those who can technically maintain the Wiki, and administrative staff — those who will be directly involved in the development of the Wiki.
How many authors are currently working on articles? What’s about translations and other things that can be not so visible?
There is no need to count the number of participants at the moment because the main goal is to attract as many people as possible to the project.
Tell us about the total reward you have already paid to the community?
We have two wallets: the first one is for donations, the second – for the budget. 22 thousand TON was paid from two wallets.
What should be improved in Subgovernance itself?
The main improvement is that the Wiki should be fully managed by the community, so that those people who participate in its creation are responsible for decision-making, for the budget and for the development of the project. It is also necessary to attract more editors who will monitor the relevance of information and support authors. I would like to see that all the community engaged in the work on the project, not just the authors.
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