What are some alernative business models for software development? Are there any new ones made possible by the decentralized web?

The business models here are for information or software businesses, mainly delivering bits to their users or customers over the wire.

Classic models

Alternative models

  • Make a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) to run as the central organisation. Users fund the foundation that produces the software, not the software itself. See tweet by @ade_oshineye. But how do you get paid from this? In crypto?
  • Make a legal entity membership organisation that runs to produce software. Every member has a vote. Similar to a DAO but restricted to a local government’s rules and regulations. A DAO exists in a gray area of legal status.
  • Make a non-profit organisation which i set up to receive donations. People are paid to work in the organisation, but no bonuses are paid out. All extra profit goes back into the organisation.
    • You could choose to run this organisation transparently. See

Thread on Twitter started by Chris Granger (@ibdknox) discussing exactly this: https://twitter.com/ibdknox/status/1458099415462318080

How do you let others add value and have them be rewarded in turn? https://twitter.com/bmann/status/1458126360174497795

I would raise money from impact investors to pay promising young people to collaborate on solving wicked global problems, using the tool. https://twitter.com/levity/status/1458269099687964673

Marketplace for plugins/reprogramming tasks. Take a fee or be a provider. Value-add services like dashboards, alternative views on the existing contents (network analysis, clustering,…) Open for integration by plugins too (if user has acceas to it, the plugin can use it) https://twitter.com/squiddle/status/1458110987375161346

The current in-vogue web3 answer is to distribute governance tokens which users can use to vote on the future direction of the platform; 50% of tokens are kept in a treasury used to pay for future development. https://twitter.com/bmc_/status/1458189981223202828

Create a foundation (or other corporate entity e.g. a DAO if you want to be cool) that puts the IP in escrow then users periodically fund the institution with a minimum patronage fee (not a subscription) and occasionally run Kickstarters for big projects. https://twitter.com/ade_oshineye/status/1458158752457232387 The trick is that people fund the institution not the product so that you don’t have to hold on so tightly to a particular approach or implementation.

See also SaaS is renting your data back to you