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Community Communications Guide

1. General information


In this document, you will find information related to the communication and organization of the Trustlines Network. The purpose of this document is to provide clarity around the different entities and concepts that make up the Trustlines Network and to be a tool that you can use for arranging meetups or otherwise expanding the Trustlines Network ecosystem.

If you are interested in starting a community currency, arranging meetups, or using Trustlines for local economic empowerment, this document is for you!

The Trustlines Network

The Trustlines Network describes the ecosystem of individuals, projects, and entities aligned toward the idea of mapping trust-based relationships onto trustless infrastructure. No single entity owns, is, or can be, in charge of this construct.

The Trustlines Protocol

The Trustlines Protocol represents a set of rules, processes, and definitions forged into deployable code, which aims to enable the mapping of trust-based relationships onto trustless infrastructure.

More specifically, the Trustlines Protocol stack includes:

  • The Trustlines Blockchain, which is a mPoS (minimal viable Proof of Stake) sidechain to Ethereum and stores transactions 

  • The relay servers, which calculate the optimal paths and relay the transactions sent by applications they are connected to

  • The client library, a high-level API, which enables applications to interact with the smart contract system on the Trustlines Blockchain via the relay servers

  • The smart contract system which includes the currency networks and other smart contacts supporting currency network related transactions, e.g., identity contract(s)


Trustlines Foundation

The mission of the Trustlines Foundation is to pursue the charitable goal of promoting the financial and economic inclusion of all people through decentralized peer-to-peer network protocols that serve common accounting.

The Trustlines Foundation is supporting research, development, deployment, governance, and adoption of the Trustlines Protocol, with a focus on acting in a supporting role within the Trustlines Network, enabling different decentralized p2p use cases.

The Foundation is

  • Supporting research, development, and governance of the Trustlines Protocol while being unbiased about specific use cases

  • Support the adoption of the Trustlines Protocol even in specific use cases to the extent that these do not conflict with its charitable purpose

    • To that end, it's specifically organizing and promoting open-source development around the Trustlines Protocol and maintaining respective Github repositories
  • Incentivising and supporting developers or other entities that want to build on top of the Trustlines Protocol

    • For example, for the use case, people powered money: community currency projects

    • The Foundation does this in a purely educational, non-profit way

  • Owning and managing the "Trustlines" and "Trustlines Network" names/trademarks and related domains

  • Creating the needed core components, e.g., smart contracts, which support making the Trustlines Protocol available to the ecosystem

The Foundation doesn't

  • Own the Trustlines Network ecosystem; it only owns the trademarks!

  • Own the Trustlines Protocol related code; everything is open-source and permissively licensed by the various owners

  • Target or provide access to end-users

2. Resources

These resources should help you dive deeper into the world of Trustlines. There are also items to help you with presenting Trustlines to an audience and images to use concerning Trustlines.

The official brand names in the Trustlines ecosystem follow a specified pattern of capitalization. These would be the trademarked names as well as other related brand names. The brand names are capitalized when used in a context in relation to the brand being used. When referring to the general technology or other aspects that aren't in a direct connection being used regarding the brand, the words aren't capitalized.

Examples of capitalizing brand names would be Trustlines Network, Trustlines Protocol, and Trustlines Blockchain. So if you are generally referring to the blockchain or the associated technology, capitalization isn't used.

Links to resources

Brand Guidelines Presentation Slides
Brand Resources Trademark Guidelines

3. Arranging an event

Anyone is free to arrange an event or a meetup related to the Trustlines Network. If you are interested in organizing a Trustlines Meetup, here's a list of resources that may be of use to you.


Topic ideas

Trustlines cover broad areas, both technically and sociologically speaking. Listed below are a few topic ideas that may be of interest.

  • Trustlines Protocol and People Powered Money 

    • An overview of the essential components of the Trustlines Protocol and an in-depth look at blockchain-based credit issued mutually amongst trusting friends oftentimes referred to as Trustlines People Powered Money.
  • Using Trustlines for B2B Mutual Credit / Barter Network

  • Using Trustlines for your Timebanking Community

  • Using Trustlines for Gift Cards / "Dining Bonds"

4. Use cases of the Trustlines Protocol

As a fully open-source protocol, any individual or organization is free to develop use cases for the Trustlines Protocol.

Currently, one of the more established and well-developed use cases is people-powered money.

People Powered Money (PPM)

The term "People Powered Money" is based on the EU Funded Community Currencies in Action (CCIA) research paper "People Powered Money." The term is colloquially used to categorize various complementary currency initiatives throughout Europe and is therefore an umbrella term for multiple use cases. Though they vary in design, the currencies are all local, grassroots economic initiatives. Such initiatives belong to a distributed, world-wide group of projects and are also documented by economists such as Bernard Lietaer in the book "People Money." Complementary/community/alternative currencies are "people money." They are not necessarily a replacement for commercial bank money or government money. Instead, they are an entirely different type of money that can act in parallel to commercial and government money and may provide economic resilience when these systems fail.

Mutual credit is a type of People Powered Money. It is a money creation method and is used in some of the most successful complementary currency designs. For example, Wir Bank, at its peak, had 62,000 businesses operating in its network.

Mutual credit requires only a creditor and a debtor to exist. The creditor agrees to lend the debtor a number of resources, and at a future point in time, the debtor repays the amount owed. The denomination of the credited amount can be whatever the parties decide upon. Mutual credit is found throughout the ages and can even be traced back to the origins of civilizations (page 22). While mutual credit is easy to issue, it does not scale beyond small communities since creditors and debtors need to trust each other. It is, therefore, not conceivable to make a global mutual credit network since no one trusts everyone.

Ripple Pay is a money system based on 'friendly obligations' intended to make mutual credit work as a payment system. Users specify how much they can lend and borrow from their friends, and the protocol lets strangers (untrusting parties) pay each other through a path of (trusted) connected friends. RipplePay later became Ripple Labs and abandoned the idea. In 2016, Trustlines took the same idea and implemented it on the Ethereum blockchain.

The thought process was that the Ripple idea could benefit from using a blockchain since that would remove the single point of failure that RipplePay had, which used a centralized server. In other words, a successful RipplePay would also fail to scale beyond a certain point where people would ask if the company was acting in everyone's interest, or if a government decided that Ripple was illegal. Using a blockchain solves these issues by introducing tamper-proof and unstoppable accounting.

The Trustlines Network ecosystem sees the original Ripple idea as a type of People Powered Money. It uses the term " Trustlines People Powered Money" to describe any form of peer-to-peer mutual credit use case built on the Trustlines Protocol.

You can read more about this in the People Powered Money on the Trustlines Protocol blog post.

5. Trademarks and licensing

"Trustlines" and "Trustlines Network" are registered trademarks that are owned by the Trustlines Foundation. The purpose of the registration is to protect the usage of the terms "Trustlines" and "Trustlines Network" from inappropriate or malicious use. Trustlines Trademark Guidelines are publically available on how a party may use the "Trustlines" and "Trustlines Network" trademarks.

6. Communication and Trustlines Network Channels

Trustlines Foundation at Twitter

Trustlines Blog

Trustlines Forum

Trustlines Foundation YouTube channel

Trustlines App at Twitter

Trustlines Network Community Telegram group

Trustlines Technical Chat at Gitter

Trustlines Validator Twitter account

Trustlines Subreddit

Trustlines Network Website

Trustlines Foundation Website

Trustlines App Website

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