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Ritual of Acumen

Living Governance Document

The DAO Masons rulebook is a living document that may change significantly in response to internal governance.

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This is a system for testing the acumen of potential core members. It is a test of their ability to think critically and communicate effectively. It is also a test of their ability to work with others. This will be a verbal test where Core Members verify the candidate has studied the required content (DAO rules/processes, mission/values, meeting etiquette, and basic critical thinking skills).

Current Implementation

Prospective members must appear before a panel of at least 2 DAO Mason Core Members. There they will be challenged to think critically, communicate effectively and display their understanding of DAO Masons processes. The panel will review the prospective member's Core Member Agreement and may ask questions or challenge the prospective member to clarify aspects of the agreement.

Each member of the panel provides an assessment to the DAO preceding a DAO vote.


The Ritual of Acumen serves to safeguard the Core DAO decision making process by ensuring that Core Members are knowledgeable about the DAO and its systems, able to think critically and communicate effectively. Putting critical attention and challenging a prospective member ensures that each Core Member has been screened properly and can expect their colleagues to have met the same high standards they did.

What problems are we solving

  • Having to re-explain the structure of the DAO in meetings when we should be making decisions.
  • Having to rehash old debates when we have a regimented process for making decisions and changing rules.
  • Logical fallacies and poor reasoning affecting our decisions
  • Poor communication causing confusion and wasted time.

Why is this a good solution

  • We create a common 'bedrock of understanding' among all members who hold governance positions. This leads to several benefits:
    • We can focus on the task at hand during discussions.
    • We save time not having to re-explain or rehash old debates.
    • If we want to change rules, each member is familiar with the formalized process for doing so.
    • We can make decisions faster and more effectively.
    • We can make better decisions by exposing ourselves to less risk of logical fallacies and poor reasoning.
  • Prospective members knowing they will be screened will lead to them developing a deeper understanding of the governance structure.
  • We get to practice a common language and using set of tools for making decisions.
  • It's a low maintenance tool that can be used to quickly screen new members.


  • Overhead/friction to onboarding new members.
  • Overhead/friction for those who have to test new members.
  • Thought might become too homogenous if we take critical thinking too far. We do need some diversity of thought to allow for creativity.
  • Pointing out logical fallacies can be used as a way to discount reasonable arguments.


To a certain degree, friction on the part of the member is a feature not a bug, so long as the rules are transparent, all the necessary support is provided, and the process is not too onerous.

For friction on the part of the members, we can mitigate through automation over time. However, seeing as this DAO is designed to have a relatively small amount of Core Members, this issue does not need to scale perfectly.

As for homogenous thought, we need to emphasize that critical thinking is a toolbox, not a religion. We also need to stress that part of critical thinking is a willingness to change and challenge your mind, which includes breaking away from groupthink.


Next Step


Create the starting docs for this test. We need to document the tactical meeting format, make sure our docs are consistent, and have some very concise documents about the basics of critical thinking.


Then we can feed these documents into ChatGPT and have it generate a log list of questions. We store those questions privately and then provide a randomized list of questions to the new member.

We will test this system on ourselves first.


Hard to tell what items we can fully automate. This is a system that definitely requires feedback from the Core Members.

Automation is risky because we don't want to create a system that is too easy to game. We should have humans present to verify that the new member is actually studying the material.


(none yet. Add resources for testing here.)

Current Stage of Development
  • Unimplemented
  • Manual
  • Systemetized
  • Partially Automated
  • Fully Automated/Passive

Current State of This Page

  • Empty
  • Rough Draft
  • Editing passes: 0
  • Final Draft
  • Ratified