Proposal for template "Network Upgrade Notice" to increase network reputation and reduce fallout of misunderstandings

Motivation

When communicating about upgrades of the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network, it is important to remember that BCH intends to serve everyone in the world. The quality of communication should align with that high bar, especially on upgrades that get more attention such as network rules or consensus rules. Without a central authority, achieving that high quality communication requires some care.

The main benefits are increased reputation as a reliable network, and on the flipside, reduction of fallout from miscommunication and misunderstandings, especially on dangerous topics such as the difference between an upgrade and a split, which has affected users in the past. It should also reduce the overall coordination cost which has been significant in the past.

Desirable Properties of the Template

  • Widely discussed to remove rough edges and discover common language
  • Easy for a publisher to include complete, accurate and appropriate information
  • Easy for a publisher to adapt to their audience
  • Unencumbered by restrictive copyright, open source, and therefore available to all for usage, improvement and adaptation
  • All language should be neutral-to-positive, business-like and fact based. Individual announcements using the template can adjust the level of excitement, promotion, story-telling, etc. as they see fit.

Key Outcomes of Template Usage in Publications

  • BCH reputation for stability increases as the world sees similar high quality information from multiple sources, across multiple upgrades
  • Stakeholders such as merchants, holders, traders, exchanges, pools, etc. are confident about what they need to do, if anything
  • Overall effort for communication can be expected to be lower when there is at least one high quality, low contention template.

Next steps

  1. I will propose an outline for a template below and improve it based on discussion in this thread.
  2. Creation of actual content templates for various cases past and future can come next. BCR may be an appropriate starting place for those though eventually I think they need to end up in a repository (not necessarily the same one every time) or perhaps a separate article.
8 Likes

Template Outline

Common overview and reference

Start with simple, straightforward, easy to digest reference material for everyone, especially media.

  • title including some shared name that can be repeated in various media
  • non-technical description of the upgrade and key benefits to various audiences
  • what to expect on upgrade day (especially re: not a split)
  • simple schedule leading up to the upgrade

Actions

Actions or links to them for various stakeholders.

  • users/holders/traders - basically just look forward to enjoying the benefits and not having problems
  • technical users such as operations, developers - upgrade considerations, timing

Technical

Technical details or links to them. Keep this at the end so it doesn’t cause non-technical audience to stop reading.

  • link to spec
  • description of type of upgrade (maybe with a link to relationship between hard fork, soft fork, split, …)
4 Likes

So we get better PR, finally?

I am all in for this initiative.

Right now the world does not know what is happening in BCH, regarding software and our PR/comunication is terrible.

I will support any effort that can make this better.

3 Likes

Maybe take the format of a press release and add an “About Bitcoin Cash” section along with about sections for key organizations mentioned in the release? This way, we give press background info and people to get quotes from.

@emergent_reasons
It is a bit unclear how you see this being used.

A single announcement that is shared/posted on different medias in which the different implementations make some statement and share versions that are upgrade compatible and sign the information?
An announcement that every implementation makes separately with their own information about their clients?
Something else?

This is probably a good call. It may need to diverge from typical press release format due to our particular situation with a mix a network announcement (where the announcer does not unilaterally represent the network), and an app/service announcement (where the announcer does unilaterally represent the app/service).

I’ll collect some feedback and try a v2.

Sorry about that. There are a number of individuals and organizations who would have reason to publish something about the network upgrade. In some cases, it may just be about the upgrade itself (e.g. a full node project or maybe a news site). In other cases, it would be about the upgrade in the context of the benefits it brings to the announcer’s users (e.g. a wallet or app).

This template should provide a solid reference for the network upgrade part of any announcement. It can be used verbatim or modified to fit needs. I will collect feedback for a while and then make sure to clarify this in the description and in the template itself.

It is not intended to be a central public statement for everyone to point to. That’s a road we have worked hard to avoid and I’d prefer we not go there now.

I did not intend it to be a signed message, but it could be used that way.