I wonder how you will make the decision once Shelly is out where, at which staking pool to stake your ADA?
Will you decide based on the design of the website dedicated to the staking pool? Based on the profile and reputation of the people who are operating it? Or you will take Community feedback and recommendation from Community leaders? Perhaps you will look at some listing and ranking website? Or the Staking Pool will provide it´s “users” any kind of unique experience or content (bathroom webcam to the Kardashians )?
It´s good and healthy for the Ecosystem to have for-profit staking pools, which deliver superior quality, security and maintenance services and hopefully also have in better cases on-premise operations and not only AWS Cloud one. It´s another topic in case staking pool operators purely look for profit maximalization, how this will impact the non-directly observable or not immediately-effective quality of services they provide on the long term and how to verify and audit these services (such as security).
Along the for-profit staking pools there might be room for non-profit staking pools, ran by registered, legally sound and solid, audited non-profit public sector organizations, who may dedicate the income of the pool to some greater cause, continuously delivering value either within or outside of the Cardano Ecosystem.
For instance, we may have a staking pool, which will commit that all revenue, which remains above its operations overhead will be dedicated to sponsoring street artists to paint the world full of beautiful and creative Cardano related art. Another one may simply commit to spend it´s income on supporting an endangered animal species. Or one which will sponsor Community Meetups with merchandise, catering or other products & services. How about one that will continuously educate the Cardano Community regarding the responsibilities of the sustainability era and operating a delegates campaign platform. The opportunities here are endless … I would personally stake at a non-profit pool dedicated for sponsoring / supporting the world food program.
So, the idea here is that we have certain goals, initiatives and missions which require continuous income (OPEX) to efficiently tackle a problem as they are never really achieved to be considered closed or obsolete (never ending stories) opposite to other projects, which may be delivered with a onetime funding (CAPEX).
It feels like the Treasury approach will fit very well the CAPEX projects, while the staking pools might fit well with the OPEX initiatives. Of course you could have the combination, by first having a CAPEX investment (applying for Treasury support) setting up the capability / value stream and then maintining it with OPEX funds (operating a staking pool or having another revenue stream for your venture).
What do you think about this? Would you consider staking at such non-profit pools would they have their operations fully audited and transparent?