Darby The Graph Graph Advocates Graph AdvocatesDAO

GRTiQ Podcast: 108 Darby

Today I am speaking with Darby, a Graph Advocate and member of Graph AdvocatesDAO. Darby is a well-known member of The Graph community – she’s very active on Discord and she’s supported The Graph at several notable events, including last year’s Graph Hack and, more recently, ETHDevner.

During this interview, Darby talks about going against her parent’s wishes and pursuing an education in philosophy, her initial trepidation about crypto and what eventually sparked her interest, and then we talk about her journey into Web3 and The Graph. We also talk about her experience contributing to Graph Advocates and AdvocatesDAO, along with what these experiences have taught her about The Graph community and the protocol.

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Darby (00:20):

When I see The Graph and the Advocates program, it reminds me of why I joined crypto to begin with, and it’s great to see people joining crypto and these protocols for more than just financial reasons.

Nick (01:00):

Welcome to the GRTiQ Podcast. Today I’m speaking with Darby, a Graph Advocate and member of Graph AdvocatesDAO. Darby’s a well-known and longtime member of The Graph Community. She’s been very active in Discord and she supports The Graph at several notable events including last year’s Graph Hack and more recently East Denver 2023. During this interview, Darby talks about going against her parents’ wishes and pursuing an education in philosophy, her initial trepidation about crypto and what eventually sparked her interest. And then we talk about her journey into web3 and The Graph. We also talk about her experience contributing to Graph Advocates and Graph AdvocatesDAO and what she’s learned about The Graph Community by virtue of being a member of The Graph Advocates Program and the AdvocatesDAO. As always, I started the discussion by asking Darby about her educational background.

Darby (02:00):

Thank you for having me. As far as my educational background goes, I studied cognitive science and philosophy at UCI, which is the University of California Irvine in Orange County. Yeah, I was very interested in those topics and I originally wanted to study philosophy, but of course my parents were like, “That’s not really good for a career. What are you going to do with philosophy?” Originally it was cognitive science, and then without telling them, I basically double-majored behind their backs, which they didn’t end up complaining about in the end. They got two invites for two separate graduations. By the time it was time for graduation, and they were just like, “What happened?” And I was like, “Yeah, I double majored.”

Nick (02:46):

Do you remember why you decided to stick to your guns and continue studying philosophy even against the will of your parents?

Darby (02:53):

Yeah. I had to take a philosophy course for my gen ed and I remember hearing lots about philosophy being a difficult course essentially, and I took it and I actually did really well and I really liked it and I just took more out of curiosity and then it got to a point where I had enough credits to basically double major, so I just went for it.

Nick (03:15):

So what did you do after graduating?

Darby (03:16):

Well, I was looking for jobs basically, and working minimum wage, wasn’t doing much. I was still contemplating grad school and I started tutoring on the side essentially just private tutoring. I did a lot of math-based tutoring, SAT tutoring, and it got to the point where it really took off and I ended up going full time and still do it to this day.

Nick (03:41):

I know we talked about this before we pushed record, you went away to Spain actually and did some tutoring over there. What’s it like living in Spain? What was the experience like tutoring over there?

Darby (03:51):

Oh man, it was very different out there. It’s great. On top of tutoring math here in the United States, I also did Spanish tutoring, and then when I went off to Spain I did English tutoring mostly. So that was really cool. A lot of people out there, they know how to understand and speak English, but it’s mostly the conversation parts that they like to practice because they really want to get the accent down. And so most of the English tutoring I did out there was mostly conversation practice, which was really cool. And it also gave me a chance to integrate myself further into their culture while we were discussing everything in English as well. So that was a really, really cool experience.

Nick (04:35):

So for any listeners that ever find themselves in Spain, I’d be curious to know what are the one or two things they’ve got to make sure they do while they’re there?

Darby (04:44):

Wow, that’s a great question. So I personally liked not sticking around touristy areas. Just basically, what’s that saying, when in Rome do as the Romans do. So just throw yourself into situations that maybe you wouldn’t originally throw yourself into. So for example, in Spain, people like to stay out all night during the weekends, which I don’t think is a huge thing here in the States. So yeah, just basically make a good friend or two, Spanish friend, try not to mingle too much with expats and then just do what the Spaniards do and just fully integrate yourself out there basically.

Nick (05:27):

Yeah, it’s great advice and it sounds like an incredible time in your life to go do some interesting things. So you study philosophy, cognitive science in college, you graduate, make your way into private tutoring, do a little bit of traveling. Eventually you become aware of crypto. Do you remember when that was and what the original impressions were of it?

Darby (05:46):

Yeah, so I’ve been aware of crypto since college. My college is very environmental and the people in my college try to be very up-to-date and ahead of their time with everything. So I remember lots of pro-crypto people at my college. So then when Bitcoin was catching on, digital currency, that’s how I remember hearing it. I was like, “Meh,” about it as well. But then things happened such as Occupy Wall Street and there was a use case for crypto in that and stuff like WikiLeaks too, I remember hearing about crypto a lot. And it wasn’t really until the pandemic that I decided to really pay attention. There was lots of talks of inflation coming and I was like, “Okay, where should I park my money? What’s a safe bet?” And I considered stocks. And then just one night I was scrolling through Twitter and there was a New York Times article, which was essentially Bitcoin Pizza, but it was with sushi.


Apparently someone had spent the equivalent of $200K in sushi several years prior. And at the time of this article being published, I think Bitcoin had hit $20K for the first time, so there was a lot of hype around it. And I came across this article and I was like, “Oh, cool, this is interesting. Maybe I’ll finally dive into crypto.” And I remember the date, it was December 16th, 2020 that this article was published. And if you’re a big user of The Graph and super into the ecosystem, you’re aware that a token launch actually happened December 17th. So the night that I read this article, I joined Coinbase and it was just hype around the GRT token launch the next day. And so I was like, “Okay, what’s The Graph?” And I remember a specific phrase that to this day still impresses me and caught my attention and was The Graph is the Google of blockchains.


And I remember at the time scoffing at that idea. I was like, “Google of blockchains, what do you mean? Is The Graph going to be a household name in five years or something? Who compares themself to Google?” And even if I scoffed at the idea, it did catch my attention and it made me go check out the website, the homepage of The Graph. And I was brand new to crypto, had no idea what subgraphs were, but I remember the homepage would show all the subgraphs and all the logos of the different subgraphs or the protocols that they belong to. So I saw the Uniswap subgraph and I was like, “What’s Uniswap? Oh, a DEX, what’s a DEX?”


And then I saw the USDC subgraph. Okay, a stablecoin, what’s that? And I remember seeing PoolTogether and learning about DeFi. So The Graph was basically a gateway to the rabbit hole that I eventually fell down. I’m very lucky to have stumbled upon The Graph because I know a lot of people, they don’t really have the luck of getting into crypto through a legitimate project. So very thankful that that was my experience.

Nick (09:02):

Well, Darby, you’re certainly not the first guest and I know there are a lot of people within the community who first became aware of The Graph through things like Coinbase and maybe some of the quote-unquote “hype” on Twitter, and then like you, they have a realization about the utility of the crypto space and how it all works. So are you saying that that was really first hook for you, this light bulb moment of the utility of the industry?

Darby (09:27):

Yeah, definitely. Because like I said, originally I went in for financial reasons and then I eventually came across all these use cases for crypto. And The Graph is an incredible use case. It enables so much as far as data ownership goes, and essentially I believe web3 enables owning your own data and all of that. So for those listening who may not be aware of the differences between web2 and web3, so just historically, for example, Web1, when I try to help people understand what web3 is, I start with describing Web1. So for example, Web 1.0 was read only. Basically for Web 1.0, there were a bunch of static websites online and they were pretty much only owned by companies and there was zero interaction between users. So the individuals themselves who were consuming all this data didn’t really produce content.


And so it was mostly a read-only web. And then from there we evolved into web2, which was then a read/write where people could actually create content, publish it, and that’s where social media was born essentially too. So instead of only companies providing content for users, it was like the users themselves were starting to use platforms where they could essentially share user generated content and interact with other users as well. But with that, we found a lot of companies started controlling a large amount of content generated, and they also started basically monetizing off of that as well. And that’s essentially where we’re at right now too. And so you’re starting to see a lot of people who aren’t happy with the fact that we’ve got monopolies and all of that when it comes to the internet.


And so from that we’re now seeing the birth of web3, which is read, write, and own, where people own their own content and own their own data, and essentially it, hopefully in the future, create this trustless and permissionless and decentralized internet, which is meant to basically eliminate all the downsides that are currently in today’s internet.

Nick (11:54):

When you look forward into the future, do you see web3 and web2 coexisting? This is a fairly common question I ask on the podcast, but there’s so many different perspectives and opinions on this. What’s your vision for that?

Darby (12:06):

That is a great question. I think about this all the time, to be honest. I think it will start off as coexisting for a while. I think it’s going to take some time for mass adoption to happen, not because I don’t think people will understand much or anything. It’s more like the technology just hasn’t much matured to a point where it’s, for example, scalable. And so for that reason, I don’t think it can replace it at the moment or in the near future, but I would love to see web3 replace web2. This technology is so new and novel, and I think we still have many, many things to basically fix. So until web3 becomes a little more scalable and as far as accessibility and user experience goes, there’s still a lot that has to be improved there in that sense. So once we can have users comprehend security concerns and complex documentation and more intuitive user interfaces, I think potentially web3 can replace web2 then.

Nick (14:24):

So after you became aware of The Graph, you mentioned you went to The Graph website and scrolled through that and had some early impressions about the utility of The Graph. What did you do next in terms of educating yourself? As you’ve said, and as a lot of listeners know, The Graph can be a little complicated, especially if you want to get technical about it. So how did you educate yourself and become more informed about The Graph and what the vision of the ecosystem was?

Darby (14:49):

Well, I started off googling around and I stumbled eventually across the Discord server, and I joined the Discord servers for The Graph, and I was welcomed by the community, and I think that’s where my true education of The Graph took off because that’s when I started learning about, for example, indexing and curating and delegating, and the fact that I could ask the users themselves directly and they could help me rather than relying on, I don’t know, a website that wasn’t as in depth. Coinbase, when they have their explanation of what The Graph does, it’s not as helpful as asking the community itself, I found personally. And so entering the server, there were lots of people who had the same questions I did. I believe when the token launched, that’s also when delegation started taking off as well. So there were lots of questions about delegating and I was very interested in that.


So watching people ask these questions and then seeing the community help them out, I learned a lot through there. And then eventually, I don’t know how or why, but I also got this urge of helping people as well. It came natural to me, so if someone asked a question and I was like, “Oh, I could answer that,” and it didn’t seem like anyone else had the time, then I would also answer the question myself. And before I knew it, I became part of the community and then I basically learned more about the utility of The Graph through there and everything just started making more and more sense, not just with The Graph, but just crypto in general.

Nick (16:26):

What do you think it says about The Graph ecosystem? And I know this applies to a lot of protocols within web3, that someone like yourself who’s new to the space, joins the community, starts reading answers to questions and then answering questions, and then is embraced within the community, becomes somebody on the Discord server in this case, who’s helping and leading. That’s interesting, right?

Darby (16:50):

Oh, it’s amazing. I haven’t really come across communities like this before where you integrate yourself and then everything just becomes full circle. Everyone is so welcomed and just being a part of a community and engaging and interacting in crypto is so crucial, I think, to the identity of what a protocol is as well. It’s very hard to imagine any crypto protocol without a community. It’s just integral at this point, I think, to the entire space.

Nick (17:23):

I’d be curious to know if you jumped into any of those roles. As you mentioned there, and as listeners may or may not know, there are three core roles within The Graph ecosystem. The role of Indexer, the role of Curator, and the role of Delegator. At the time that you became aware of The Graph, you said that delegation was warming up. What did you do? Did you join and start participating in the protocol in any specific role?

Darby (17:46):

Yeah, so I started off as a Delegator, and I remember being terrified of that because at the time I didn’t know anything about wallets or Ethereum gas or anything. And that’s another thing that I often think about, is how are people introduced to crypto? Because some people, I feel they personally know somebody who walks them through everything and explains everything to them. And then there were people like me, for example, who they weren’t introduced by anybody. It was just they just jumped into it and had to Google around and research everything. So I wanted to delegate for a very long time and was just too scared of messing up. So I think it took me a month to finally gather all the knowledge and understand how custodial wallets work and all of that, self custodial.


And then from there, learn how gas works and then okay, I need to make sure I have enough E for the delegation to go through and I have to approve the delegation first before actually delegating. And so it took some time, but I eventually got there and finally delegated and was super proud and realized how fun it is to actually interact like this with the technology. So after delegating, I started researching more on curating, and I believe it was the summer of 2021 when curation went live. And that was a fun time. It was a bit of a wild west, but it was really cool to also add curation to my Graph user experience. And yeah, it’s been great, honestly.

Nick (19:21):

What’s your advice to listeners who are probably like you before you fully embrace one of the stakeholder roles within the ecosystem? They’re contemplating maybe an Indexer, that would be a huge leap for a lot of listeners, but there are some for sure that could probably do it. Then there’s those that are thinking about delegating and curating. You’ve done two of the three. What’s your advice to listeners who are thinking about these things?

Darby (19:45):

Yeah, so the great thing actually right now about indexing is we’ve got the MIPS program going. It’s meant to help bootstrap Indexers into the ecosystem. If someone’s interested in indexing, it’s a really great time. There’s lots of resources out there to help out with that. And then as far as curating and delegation goes, there’s The Graph Academy, which is actually great for all three roles. It’s a really great site that explains everything from the benefits and the risks of each of these roles. So that’s also very helpful. And again, just going onto the Discord server and asking questions is a really great way as well.

Nick (20:26):

Darby, with respects to listeners who want to try delegation, how would you advise them about choosing an Indexer? What’s the best process or what’s the process you used or would recommend?

Darby (20:39):

That’s a good question. This is actually a very common question that you see even in the Discord. A lot of people think that the best route would be to look for the highest a APY, but personally I think the best advice would be to go on the Discord, go to the delegations channel or even the indexing channel and just see which Indexers are the most active. When you come across an active Indexer, you know that they have their best interests in the protocol and they are more trustworthy. And a lot of these Indexers have their own Telegram channels. And so it’s really easy to just go on the Discord server and just reply to an Indexer and say, “Hey, do you have a Telegram channel that I can join as a Delegator?” And in these Telegram channels, these Indexers will tell people when they are allocating their GRT rewards from their query fees. Personally, that’s how I would recommend choosing Indexers as opposed to just chasing the highest APYs.

Nick (21:41):

So Darby, you and I are talking today because eventually you made your way to Graph Advocates and becoming a member of The Graph AdvocatesDAO. Can you talk a little bit about the journey that you took once you became aware of The Graph? You’ve already stated that you became a member of the community, started participating as a Delegator and then shortly after that, as a Curator. When did you become a Graph Advocate member? What was the journey to that?

Darby (22:06):

Yeah, so I remember hearing about an ambassador program being in the works I think as early as 2021. And then in 2022 when it was announced that an Advocates program was going to be launched, I remember just basically preparing myself for when the applications came out. When they came out, I remember applying for the Advocates program and for the Advocates program there is a two-interview pulse check process. And I remember doing those interviews and feeling good about them. And then I got basically called back for a third interview and I was like, “Oh no.” But then it turned out that third interview was to see if I would be interested in being a part of the DAO of Graph AdvocatesDAO, which oversees the Advocates program. And I was very happy that my presence in the community had been recognized. I couldn’t have been happier to say yes to that.

Nick (23:06):

Darby, this question of who should become an Advocate is super easy in my mind after speaking with someone like yourself of who should do it, because you had the passion, you got involved in the community, but there’s a lot of different paths that people can take into web3 and becoming familiar with The Graphs. So I want to ask you this question of who should become an Advocate and based on your experience and things that you’ve done over the last year or so in the AdvocatesDAO, what’s your advice to listeners of trying to determine if they should be an Advocate?

Darby (23:36):

That’s a great question. So I do see a lot of applicants from all sorts of different backgrounds and levels of knowledge. So I see people who are already participants in the ecosystem who want to further Advocate for The Graph, and there are also people who want to join who it’s their first foray into the ecosystem through applying for this. So if anyone is willing to learn more about The Graph and they’re super interested and just curious about the protocol and don’t really know exactly where to start, the program is also a really great way to go into that.


Within the Advocates program, we also have a course known as the Learning Series, which seeks to essentially help Advocates who may not be too well versed in the protocol basically gain the knowledge necessary in order to Advocate for The Graph to the best of their abilities. So even if you are not too familiar with the protocol, you can come into the program with a willingness to learn and the community within the program will also help you gain the knowledge necessary to achieve the goal of advocating for The Graph to the rest of the world.

Nick (24:46):

Darby, for listeners that are new to the podcaster may not know much about the Advocates program, it’s helpful to let them know that there are different roles that an Advocate can have and the different ways they can contribute. Can you just provide a quick overview of that for any listeners that this is new information for?

Darby (25:02):

Yeah, so we do have several roles that anybody can take on. For example, we’ve got event evangelists, which can essentially attend or host their own events where they can talk about The Graphs. We also have content creators which create content about The Graph, and this can be in the form of podcasts, articles, blogs, YouTube videos. We’ve got technical teachers who can go into more technical things such as subgraph development, they can help get more word out there on subgraphs and subgraph development, and the other roles as well, like curating and indexing. We’ve got text translators which help translate texts about The Graph. It helps spread the word to other communities that otherwise wouldn’t hear about The Graph. And we’ve also got Community Care, which is a role that I started off with prior to the Advocates program, but that’s where you go to communities on Discord or even on Twitter or Telegram and you answer questions and just help people understand The Graph better.

Nick (26:09):

I think it’d be fun to hear about the Advocates. So you’ve been in the program since pretty much inception. It’s a year and a month old. What can you tell us about Graph Advocates? How many are there? Where are they located? What type of work are they doing?

Darby (26:23):

Yeah, I believe we’ve hit over 300 Advocates after this month’s onboarding call, so that’s really cool. And we’ve got Advocates from all over the world, to be honest. It’s pretty decentralized, which is essentially what The Graph is about. It’s decentralizing everything. So to hear that the program itself is also decentralized with people all over the world is a great accomplishment in my opinion.

Nick (26:49):

One of the first places you and I met Darby was that Graph Hack and Graph Day in 2022 in San Francisco. And something that listeners may not know is that Graph Advocates led the three-day hackathon and you were instrumental there with several members of The Graph Advocates team. What was that experience like for you? You were newer to the Advocates program, you were probably meeting a lot of these people for the first time and there you were running a three-day hackathon. Talk to me about that.

Darby (27:18):

Yeah, I remember that very, very clearly because The Graph Hack was also my first crypto event. So it was really, really cool and super exciting to first of all, not only meet other Advocates, but just other people in the ecosystem as well. And I remember helping out, I believe I was wrangling speakers and helping them prepare to get on stage on time. And so that was really, really cool. And just meeting everyone and also just discussing The Graph and interacting with people who are also missional-aligned with just myself and the way I see The Graph was really, really great.

Nick (27:59):

As you look forward into 2023 Darby and the future of Advocates, what’s got you excited? What are some of the things that the Advocates are working on?

Darby (28:07):

So there are several campaigns going on right now, actually. For example, we’ve got technical teacher Advocates doing subgraph docs for other protocols, which is great to see. There’s also language support that is kicking off in order to translate, for example, The Graph website into other languages to let other communities know about the protocol. And we actually just launched DWork for the Advocates program where Advocates can take on tasks and get compensated for them. So that’s a really great initiative also that is being undertaken right now and it’s generating a lot of activity. So I hope to see plenty more content from the Advocates program out there advocating The Graph.

Nick (28:53):

I’ve had other members of Graph Advocates and Graph AdvocatesDAO on the podcast before. So some of this is information that listeners have heard before, but for the sake of any new listeners, can you describe the relationship between Graph Advocates and Graph AdvocatesDAO?

Darby (29:10):

Yeah, so Graph Advocates, they are essentially taking on those roles that we discussed, and then the AdvocatesDAO, members from there are essentially overseeing the program. So we act as mentors to help these Advocates achieve what they’re trying to achieve within the program. So yeah, that’s essentially the relationship and as well, Graph AdvocatesDAO members are also Advocates themselves.

Nick (29:40):

How does the DAO work? You said you’ve been working on some initiatives within the DAO. What can you tell us about the work being done inside the DAO, how it’s organized?

Darby (29:50):

Yeah, so currently we’ve got three committees. We have the Advocates Committee, which is Advocates focused on the program. We’ve got the Grants Committee, which is focused on community grants. And then we have the Operations Committee, which is where a lot of administration and for example, social media management takes place.

Nick (30:08):

What committees are you on and what type of work are you doing personally?

Darby (30:12):

So I’m an all three at the moment, but I’ve been focusing a lot on the Advocates Committee, mostly because of the DWork launch that happened earlier this month. So it’s been mentoring Advocates and helping them with tasks and essentially motivating the Advocates, because it can be tough to contribute to The Graph when you don’t know where to start, especially if you’re new to the ecosystem. And so mentoring these Advocates and motivating them into creating content that they’ve been wanting to create but didn’t know where to start has been great to see. And I think we’re seeing the results now, which is a great thing also.

Nick (30:53):

What have you learned about The Graph community? You mentioned that there’s Advocates located all over the world, you’ve done interviews, you’ve met lots of Advocates, and you’ve got a really interesting perspective because you’re also working in AdvocatesDAO. What have you learned about the community?

Darby (31:07):

Oh, man. Everyone’s just so motivated and mission aligned, and I think that’s really, really great to see. And it’s incredibly reassuring because it makes me feel like I’m in the right place, but also that everyone else is in the right place. And it’s incredibly enlightening, I think, because when I see The Graph and the Advocates program, it reminds me of why I joined crypto to begin with. And it’s great to see people joining crypto and these protocols for more than just financial reasons and actually wanting to better the world together.

Nick (31:39):

And then this follow-up question about DAOs. DAOs are a little bit in vogue right now, and I’d be curious what you’ve learned about the nature of DAOs, the type of work or the types of opportunities or obstacles that exist within the DAO by virtue of what you’ve learned thus far in AdvocatesDAO?

Darby (31:55):

Yeah, so DAOs are so novel and I’ve often heard from other DAOs their difficulties. And so I would say that the way DAOs enable people to coordinate is really, really great. I think the coordination that goes on in DAOs, you don’t really see that often in traditional jobs, I think. And the way I think that communities are defined in web3, you know that there’s different levels of decentralization and automation by code, which I think is really cool. The way that DAOs use blockchain technology to get things done, and for example, voting on proposals and all of that, the way it’s decentralized, we don’t have to rely on a CEO to decide things. And that’s a great thing to see and it makes me happy to be a part of a DAO for that reason as well.

Nick (32:49):

Darby, for listeners that are interested in learning more about Advocates or possibly even applying to become a Graph Advocate, what’s the best way for them to learn more?

Darby (32:58):

I would say the best way is to join The Graph AdvocatesDAO Discord server where you can come with any questions you have and people from Graph AdvocatesDAO will be happy to answer them. And there’s also The Graph Advocates Twitter, the handle is @GraphAdvocates, and you can follow that for updates regarding the program and also any events revolving around the program as well. So yeah, that would be the best way.

Nick (33:57):

And I’ll leave links for any listeners that want easy access to this information in the show notes, so just visit the show notes. Just have a couple final questions for you before I ask you the GRTiQ 10. The first question is about what do you wish you would’ve known before you got started that you know now?

Darby (34:14):

So I would say don’t be as afraid to ask questions. I think when I joined communities and especially The Graph community, I was just like a fly on the wall to begin with and I was just watching people ask questions because I was a little too afraid and I feel like if I hadn’t been as afraid, maybe I would’ve learned a bit more. But yeah, don’t be afraid to ask questions. The Graph is a very technical protocol, so you might be afraid of maybe asking a dumb question. A lot of people are worried about that, but there are no dumb questions in my opinion. But yeah, basically just anything you want to do, just jump right into it, try not to hesitate even though it’s scary to begin with.

Nick (34:59):

What makes you excited about the future of The Graph?

Darby (35:02):

Oh man, everything. There’s so much going on in the ecosystem right now. I’m laughing because I don’t know if I can translate my excitement over the mic, but there’s so much going on in terms of subgraph migration and different chain integrations, and there’s just so much to look forward to in terms of that and just seeing the protocol grow. I think that’s what we’re mostly here for is to help The Graph achieve its full potential and to be a part of it is, well, I’m honored to be a part of it. And to see the results of that as a coordination effort is very humbling and exciting.

Nick (35:45):

I want to double click on that, Darby, because I think that for listeners, they may not fully appreciate what you’re saying there because it’s hard to wrap their minds around being part of some vision and contributing to something. And at its core, it’s decentralized, it’s just a bunch of community members coalescing around a vision, but there’s no CEO, there’s no company driving all this. And yet you say you have a bunch of pride in being involved in this. I’m sure this topic comes up when you’re speaking with family or friends or even interviewing Advocates, but how do you explain that on the one hand, being proud to be part of something, and on the other hand, it’s fully decentralized?

Darby (36:24):

Yeah, that’s a really great question because oftentimes when I try to explain The Graph to people, it can be hard to grasp this entire idea of decentralization. But I think with decentralization, the core idea is that everyone has some sort of value that they can bring to the community or the ecosystem. And so with that idea, it allows for decentralization, and with that comes the permissionless idea as well. Anybody could come in and participate and be a part of this community because they have something to bring into the community. And the fact that you don’t have to ask for permission, you can just jump in, start contributing, and helping the ecosystem grow is something that you don’t really see in the traditional world. You have to work your way up to things. And so I think having a decentralized community and ecosystem enables anybody to participate and see what they can do for the ecosystem. And I think that’s where the pride comes from.

Nick (37:26):

When you look ahead to important milestones, and this could be for web3 broadly, or maybe just specifically for The Graph, but what are you watching most closely?

Darby (37:37):

That’s a good question. I think what I’m watching most closely is I would really like to see, for example, a greater initiative towards educating people on not just The Graph itself, but in web3 in general. I feel like the education component isn’t fully out there. People hear about crypto and web3 and possibly DAOs and NFTs. So I would love to see more initiatives going towards education. And then as far as The Graph goes, yeah, I would love to see more education, for example, behind subgraph development. Because I can tell that there’s going to be a high demand for subgraph developers in the future. So I think anything related to educating people on subgraphs would be really, really great to see.

Nick (38:28):

Well, Darby, now we’ve reached a point where I’m going to ask you the GRTiQ 10. I’m sure you’ve heard these 10 questions before and it’s become something that listeners really enjoy. These are 10 questions I ask every week to help listeners learn something new, try something different, or to achieve more. So are you ready for the GRTiQ 10?

Darby (38:44):

Yeah, let’s do it.

Nick (38:56):

What book or articles had the most impact on your life?

Darby (38:59):

I would say The Little Prince, which is a very famous French book. It’s a children’s book, but it’s incredibly philosophical and it touches on how to basically stay in touch with your childhood, even as an adult, to keep you seeing things in a childlike wonder and enables you to live life to the fullest. So I often use the philosophy behind that book to live life to the fullest.

Nick (39:28):

Is there a movie or a TV show that you would recommend everybody should watch?

Darby (39:33):

Oh my goodness. I’m a big fan of Federico Fellini, and I think he’s got a movie called La Strada, which I think also touches a lot on the human condition, and I think it helps me understand people better. So I would highly recommend that movie.

Nick (39:54):

If you could only listen to one music album for the rest of your life, which one would you choose?

Darby (39:58):

Oh man, that’s easy. Siamese Dream by the Smashing Pumpkins.

Nick (40:01):

What’s the best life hack you’ve discovered for yourself?

Darby (40:05):

Unplugging yourself, just disconnecting from screens for a while to reset yourself. So for example, now that I’m in web3, I work more online than usual, and I’ve learned that sometimes just being in front of screens too much, whether it’s my iPad or laptop or my phone, it can stunt my productivity. So it’s good to just unplug, take a break, reset, and then go back into it.

Nick (40:35):

Based on your own life experience and observations, what do you think is the one habit or characteristic that best explains how people find success in life?

Darby (40:46):

Being a nepo baby. I know it’s been a bit of a hot topic lately, but I can’t find any arguments against that. Yeah.

Nick (40:57):

And then lastly, Darby, the final three questions are complete-the-sentence type questions. The first one is, the thing that most excites me about web3 is …

Darby (41:06):

Its potential to change the world and make it a better place.

Nick (41:09):

And how about this one? If you’re on Twitter, then you should be following …

Darby (41:13):


Nick (41:15):

Thank you so much, Darby. And the last one is, I’m happiest when …

Darby (41:20):

I’m sleeping.

Nick (41:29):

Darby, thank you so much for your time. You’ve been generous in sharing your story and all the contributions you’re making within the community. I think your story is really an incredible example of what somebody who wants to go to work in web3 and decides just to get started and start contributing can do. For listeners that want to learn more about you, follow some of the things you’re working on, what’s the best way for them to stay in touch?

Darby (41:54):

I think the easiest way would be to follow me on Twitter. It would be twitter.com/poptones, and then underscore, and they can just keep up with what I do within the crypto and web3 ecosystem. I also have a link to my Mirror blog on there as well where I’ve got some work related to crypto published. So that’d be the best way.


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DISCLOSURE: GRTIQ is not affiliated, associated, authorized, endorsed by, or in any other way connected with The Graph, or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates.  This material has been prepared for information purposes only, and it is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, tax, legal, financial, or investment advice. The content for this material is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The Graph token holders should do their own research regarding individual Indexers and the risks, including objectives, charges, and expenses, associated with the purchase of GRT or the delegation of GRT.