I want to be excited, I really do.
20% niche renewal fee
That means if your niche makes more than 375 USD in the year, your fee will become 20% of your yearly income for the niche.
Lets call this something more descriptive than a "renewal fee". It is a tax, and a very significant one at that. Remember we'll have to pay taxes to our governments on our income for our niches too, AFTER the Narrative has taxed us 20%. Some folks are in countries with tax brackets that go above 50%! Those folks would be left with a third of their niche income after both the government tax man, and the network have plundered them. Even if you're in a more reasonable 30% tax bracket, you'll still be losing very nearly half your revenue.
This seems truly excessive... If it has always been in the white paper, then my bad for missing it, but it does not change the excessive nature of it.
I know of no business in which you're told you own something, but the same person telling you you own it takes 20% of your income issuing from that possession every year, AND forbids you to sell what you 'own'. If you owe a debt to the mob, perhaps you'd feel in a similar position. You'd be an owner on paper, but you'd have to pay periodically when the enforcer comes by, or else lose it all... I don't like making this comparison.
A niche bringing in 20,000 USD per year would have a whopping 4000 USD renewal fee. Refuse to pay? You lose your niche. Can't pay because you've had a momentary reversal of fortunes? You lose your niche. The one you 'bought' at auction.
Can we open some dialogue about this?
Words matter. We should stop calling "niche ownership" this way, and start calling it "niche leasing". We should stop calling "$75 minimum niche renewal fees" this way, and start calling it a 20% network tax with a $75 minimum. To do otherwise is deceptive. I see no upside to calling important aspects of this venture names that misrepresent what they actually are. The only thing it can achieve is to deceive, and I'm starting to want to be given some demonstration that deception is not the intention. If it isn't, lets call things by their name.
Once we're willing to talk more plainly, then perhaps we can deal now, well before general launch, with the real nature of what is being proposed for the Content Economy. I intend to put a lot of effort into my niches, if I lease any, but an economy in which an "owner" cannot sell their "possession", and pays cumulative network taxes and government income taxes of up to more than 65
%, is not a great target. We need to be real about this now while things are still relatively conceptual.
Niche deactivation via nebulous appeals process
"While niches are subject to Community approval prior to the start of the auction process for a new niche, approved niches may also be revoked at any time via the appeal process in Narrative. Community members may appeal to the Tribunal (the governing body of the Narrative Network) to deactivate an existing niche. Such reason may include duplication (a similar niche exists), violation of the AUP, or any other reason. The Tribunal will consider all such appeals and may take action that leads to either another Community review or unilateral action to deactivate the niche. "
The appeals process is not described anywhere. People looking for reassurance that their (potentially very expensive niche) won't get deactivated unfairly, have nowhere to find such reassurance. Should we fear deactivation because of something someone posts to the niche violates a third party's copyright, for instance? When approving content, are niche owners going to be responsible for insuring against copyright infringement?
Seriously, we need some clarity here. You want folks to bid against each other to buy a space on an as-of-yet non-existent platform, and you don't think it necessary to determine the circumstances under which said niche could be unilaterally taken offline? Really?
Would anyone lease a car for thousands of dollars up front, if the contract says the leasing company can ground the car unilaterally for any reason?
It is good to believe in the goodness of people, but people are also capable of corruption, and giving a Tribunal made up of human beings unilateral power, without explicit safeguards, will backfire.
Liability limited to 1 month
"COMPANY’S LIABILITY TO YOU FOR ANY CAUSE WHATSOEVER, AND REGARDLESS OF THE FORM OF THE ACTION, WILL AT ALL TIMES BE LIMITED TO THE AMOUNT PAID, IF ANY, BY USER TO COMPANY UNDER THIS AGREEMENT DURING THE ONE (1) MONTH IMMEDIATELY PRECEDING THE DATE ON WHICH SUCH CLAIM AROSE."
I've never seen anyone attempt to impose a one month statute of limitations on a significant capital expense claim. It probably isn't legal in some countries, to do so.
So imagine you pay $20,000 USD in NRVE for a shiny niche. By the time the platform launches 6 months from now, if the company destroys your ability to earn from that niche, there will be no legal recourse, because your 1 month will have expired long ago.
Imagine the platform grows in popularity, and 5 years from now, you buy a niche for 100,000 USD. Same deal - no liability after the first month of owning the niche? The company decides to shut down the service arbitrarily, or commits gross negligence in its operation, resulting in its demise and you're left holding the bag? This appears abusive to me and further cements that niche ownership is anything but. The fact is, what we pay for a niche cannot be refunded under any realistic scenario, no matter who slips up nor how badly, and it only rents the niche for a year, and can be subject to deactivation for any reason. Help?
I am still holding out the hope that the Team's intentions are honest, but that still leaves the huge concern about what I'm seeing here?
Please Narrative, or other members - can you elucidate some of the thinking behind this?
Its a long road to release. Lets use it to take a hard look at what is shaping up, if we want it to shape up better than what is already out there.
If I have misread things, or if some sort of genuine explanation is given that rectifies the trend I'm seeing, I would invite the team to subsequently remove this thread. We're still in an intimate setting here, and if there is a Narrative worth participating in, I don't want it to be hurt by an early instance of miscommunication.
Regretfully, and looking forward to happier Narrative days,