Why Governance Matters!

For practical reasons, the acronym Distributed Immutable Data Object (DIDO) represents a set of distributed computing technologies that focus on distributed data (i.e., blockchains, distributed ledgers, distributed file systems or distributed data). A major problem confronting the adoption of DIDO technologies is that it requires shifting away from corporate models of governance to an open community model of development, especially for industry or public ecosystems (e.g., financial, supply chains, public records) and domains (e.g., interest swaps, produce supply chain, cryptocurrencies, carbon credits, air pollution, traffic conditions). In the corporate model of governance, a single entity is responsible for the costs and the entire lifecycle of a product or project. Governance is accomplished through a formal chain of command, usually with a single individual responsible for the success or failure of the product or project.

However, in distributed computing, not all the resources are owned, paid for, or controlled by a single entity. In fact, the more entities involved in the distributed computing solution, the better. These differences in governance models make the adoption of distributed computing difficult by corporate entities since they have to rely on a larger, more inclusive community, which may include competitors, to measure the success of the solution. Ultimately, the success of the project or product comes down to controlling and minimizing risks. Being part of a larger, more diverse community increases some kinds of risks but may decrease others.

For example, the risks associated with specifying, architecting, designing, implementing, testing, maintaining, and sunsetting code are shared over the entire community, thus practically lowering the risks to any individual. The risks associated with setting requirements, priorities, and so on may be increased since these are now set externally to any single entity.

Currently, with the rise of open source solutions versus proprietary solutions, many efforts have moved from the centralized governing corporate model towards the decentralized, distributed community governing model with a great deal of success and broad adoption. Some examples of open source solutions are Operating System (OS), DataBase Management System (DBMS), application servers, web servers, file repositories, bug tracking tools, virtualization tools, and ]]dido:public:ra:xapend.glossary:d:dlt]]. Most corporations would now rarely choose to build any of these products on their own, but have readily adapted to the adoption of these open source community products and solutions.

This section defines and recommends community of interest (CoI) governance structures needed for successful, robust, inclusive, and broadly adopted solutions. Some CoIs require a formal legal entity recognized by a government authority such as a state government. Other CoIs can operate within the confines of another legal CoI. For example, World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and Object Management Group (OMG) are legal entities. Special interest groups (SIGs) or working groups can operate within the W3C or OMG.

Manage an Open Source Program

There have been many books written on this subject:1)