Writer’s Room Roadmap 2.0 — What it is, When to Expect it, and What the Future Holds

Where we’ve been

We opened up licensing for Writer’s Room Book 1 on November 27th. It was a massive moment for our whole community. It represented the first attempt at mass IP licensing in the NFT space. Just over a month later, we had 4,075 unique avatars (Bored Apes and Mutant Apes) licensed to our book. It was a phenomenal success.

All the while, we were sourcing creative direction from the Writer’s Room community for the setting and the plot of Book 1. Together, we’ve completed nearly 30 creative proposals as a group, and now we all know that Jenkins the Valet is seeking out a reporter to tell his story to because he believes the fate of the Yacht Club is in his hands. Telling outsiders what happens at the Club is a serious offense, so there is tremendous risk associated with this endeavor.

Is Jenkins doing the right thing? We’ll find out. The Writer’s Room community will determine this with the guidance that they set for Neil Strauss. We all have ambitions to make this Jenkins tell-all Neil’s 11th NYT bestseller.

But you know all of this, and the point of this article is to share what you don’t know; what’s coming next. This post will take you through our Roadmap 2.0 and the future beyond it.

Before doing so, we wanted to reflect on our journey with you all so far. Below are some (not all) of our favorite moments we’ve experienced while building this.

  • May 22, 2021: We purchased Ape #1798 for .46 ETH ($1,068)
  • May 23, 2021: @JenkinsTheValet Twitter is created and we post his origin story
  • June 14, 2021: We win a Bored Ape Yacht Club Community Grant
  • June 16, 2021: The Writer’s Room Roadmap 1 is announced
  • June 2021: We assembled an amazing list of advisors such as Andy8052, GMoney, Adam Brotman, Jacob Martin (TheNFTAttorney), Drew Austin, and Josh Ong.
  • August 4, 2021: The Writer’s Room launches, selling out of all 6,942 NFTs in 6 minutes
  • August 29, 2021: We announced that Mutants would be included in Book 1, along with Apes
  • August 31, 2021: Jenkins the Mutant is born (huge mistake)
  • September 22, 2021: We partnered with CAA to sign Jenkins the Valet — the first individual NFT with representation by a major talent agency. Cathy Hackl from Forbes wrote this piece
  • October 5, 2021: The Writer’s Community comes together on Discord to collaboratively create our HQ in Sandbox
  • October 26, 2021: We began working with a new UI designer, giving the Jenkins website a much needed makeover
  • November 2, 2021: 150+ Writer’s Room Members gathered in New York City and finally met one another in person. We also announced our author, 10x NYT Bestseller Neil Strauss
  • November 6, 2021: Jenkins teased a mysterious jungle city on his Twitter…
  • November 14, 2021: We announced that 50% of all Net Profits from Book 1 will flow back to licensors, marking another “first” in the web3 space.
  • November 28, 2021: We officially launched the Writer’s Room member portal, where voting on all plot decisions and licensing your own IP to the book occurs.
  • December 8, 2021: We launched our ‘We Are Book People’ merch collection!
  • December 21, 2021: Our Discord was hacked. We believe this made us stronger as a business and brought our community closer together. Everyone was refunded.
  • December 29, 2021: GoodBoy is introduced to the world. He is going to be very important moving forward.
  • January 1, 2022: We released the artwork for our collab with Jake The Degen.
  • January 3, 2022: Licensing closed, with 4,075 Apes/Mutants licensed to Book 1, all receiving royalties for leveraging their IP.
  • January 4, 2022: Book 1 writing begins with this summary of what had been voted on so far

Seeing all of these milestones next to one another is so surreal. We wouldn’t be here without the support of our community and we can’t wait to carry it into the next era together.

Today, January 31, 2022, we announce our Roadmap 2.0 and provide you with a first glimpse at what lies even further beyond…

Now, without further ado, let’s get into the fun stuff.

Roadmap 2.0

It starts with Book NFTs

Our Roadmap 2.0 will be kicked off with NFT, special edition versions of our community-generative book. 6,942 book NFTs can be claimed by holders of Writer’s Room NFTs for free. The Book NFTs will correspond to the serial number of your Writer’s Room NFTs. The rest of the book NFTs will be available through a public mint — both releases will be from the same collection of NFTs. Anyone who holds a book NFT at the time of the snapshot will also receive a physical copy of the book from us.

In a few weeks, we will release the quantity and mint price.

We believe that this will be a grail NFT for a number of reasons:

  1. It is the first instance of community-generative content and mass IP licensing in the NFT space. 2,800 individuals and 4,100 characters came together to contribute either their brain power or their IP to this collective work.
  2. The cover art by [REDACTED] will be iconic in its own right.
  3. Plus, it’s going to be a damn good book that we think will smash some records.

On top of the reasons that we are so excited about for the book to come out, there’s also a bit of utility that we’ve teased. Now we’d like to share more. You’ll be able to burn your book NFT and receive one set of perks and benefits or you can stake it for another.

Burning a Book NFT

We can’t tell you why, and we can’t tell you how, but Jenkins will be leaving his post as Head Valet of the Bored Ape Yacht Club. Family is everything, and sometimes you have to put everything on the line for the ones you love, even if that means traveling to the other side of the Metaverse. And in typical Jenkins fashion, he’s bringing the whole community with him, to a new world. Inhabited by characters you own.

We have been working with a phenomenally talented screenwriter (and CAA client) named Emma Needell to build this universe. Emma is a world-builder in the truest sense of the word. She is most recently known for writing The Water Man on Netflix — which she Executive Produced alongside Oprah Winfrey. She has also worked with Oscar-winning directors and producers including Steven Spielberg and Ava Duvernay. Emma has understood our vision for this world from the beginning and has taken it to new heights. She also possesses a deep understanding of Web3 principles, and we’ve been working together to build something truly new to the space. No stone in this world has been left unturned.

Azurbala (Pictured: The Monastery)

Everyone has at least heard rumors of Azurbala, the Jungle capital all the way on the other side of the Metaverse. Situated just below the snow capped mountains of Giant’s Peak and just above Mercy’s Edge, a great rift valley whose depths are truly unknown, Azurbala has often been a destination that many adventurers have tried to reach.

The Bice, Jaspar, and Azur monks of the Jungle City teach the polytheistic religion known as Sa’Bala, which, translated from ancient Azurian, means “The Many.” Each studies a different holy scripture, but all agree that Azurbala is a gift from the Gods. Of course, that’s just one perspective.

For as much holiness and tranquility that exists in Azurbala, there is equally as much danger. Five factions battle for power and control over the city’s resources. Deep in the Sprawls, a massive underworld slum, the crime lords operate. They may not have the wealth but they have the manpower. They are at odds with the elites of House Calypso, the wealthy Azurians led by the matriarch Lady Vo. House Calypso believes they are a class between the Gods and the Mortals, and the leaders of The Sprawls are ready for their run to end.

Of course, we’re telling you things that you already know. You’ve surely heard of Marrow, the scarce, bioluminescent Azurian resource that every inhabitant harvests from the Azur root. You know that it can be processed and used to power the glowing electricity in Azurbala, and it is at the very core of the conflict that plagues the city. You also know that it may even be possible to trade for $MARROW which can be spent on land, tools, medicine, transportation, and more to enhance your position in society and benefit your faction. Azurbala is a self-sustaining economy.

Surely you’ve seen the handiwork of The Artisans who live and work in the center of Azurbala. And we’re sure you’ve heard horror stories of inhabitants being sent to the Edokan prison camps.

While Azurbala has been a mysterious staple of the Metaverse for so long, no one has dared venture there. It is too far and too dangerous. It is known that there is one rule in Azurbala: Make them think you’re more valuable free and alive than imprisoned or dead. Follow that rule, and you just might survive.

In Roadmap 2.0, we will go there. Take your Book NFT to the Sprawls where it’s illegal to read and you’ll be able to burn it. Burn your Book NFT and you’ll be able to acquire a mintpass. That mintpass can be redeemed for a unique Azurian avatar NFT, generated in real time, on-chain. What traits will the Azurian Gods bless you with?

These avatar NFTs will be different from what you’ve seen before. These avatars will be characters from the very minute they land in your wallet, and they will react on-chain to the happenings in Azurbala. We won’t spoil everything about them, but if every inhabitant of Azurbala harvests Marrow, then we suppose that means you’ll have the opportunity to do that too. Maybe by staking your character in the Marrow Glades 😉! Just be careful, harvesting raw Marrow comes with risks — it is highly toxic and causes Myrrosis, a form of poisoning with effects that can only be reversed with a mineral known as Diopcide.

Look no further than Azurian proverbs to see the city’s obsession with Marrow:

You can burn your Book 1 NFT for a citizen of Azurbala NFT, born common like everyone else. In true Jenkins fashion, holders will be granted full commercial rights to their character with no monetization cap. Creating and growing characters has been the greatest decision we’ve ever made — we encourage you to do the same.

Which faction will you join? With whom will you trade Marrow? Each decision will come with its own set of risks, and we hope you will choose wisely.

Staking a Book NFT

If you don’t want to travel to Azurbala and mint an Avatar, then maybe you want to join a dynamic community that will come together to govern and own the next generation of household IP. This group will create incredible franchises starting with the world of Azurbala. Holders of the Book NFT will be able to stake their NFT in order to receive governance tokens that will allow the holder to participate in the future of decentralized, crowdsourced content creation, an entity tentatively called “Media DAO” for the purpose of this article.

When we launched the Writer’s Room, we envisioned a future of true community-generative and community-owned content. We believe that Book 1 demonstrated the power of this in the form of a minimum viable product. The Media DAO, owned and governed by the community, is this thesis in its final form.

The Media DAO will be a passionate and engaged community of members who, working collectively, will drive the future of decentralized content creation. Together, Media DAO members will brainstorm, define, pitch, and ultimately produce the crypto-native IP that will help to define the Metaverse. Members of Media DAO seek to lead the wider DAO movement by demonstrating that a community of creatives can collectively develop highly sought-after content. We believe that this community can become a decentralized media empire.

As DAOs shift from simply collecting content created by others to actively creating content, members of the Media DAO community will be able to blaze a trail for the future of Web3. They will have the opportunity to collaborate with Tally Labs, major Hollywood entities, and other community members to develop stories, books, audio experiences, films, TV shows, and more. Media DAO members will collectively govern the future direction of all content they incubate. While we recognize the ambition behind this statement, we often think about how impactful it would have been if we’d been able to all come together to drive the future of today’s most successful franchises. Members of the Media DAO will have that privilege to own and govern the next decade’s defining franchises. This starts with a collaboration on Azurbala.

We have spent months working with a team of elite lawyers across Blockchain, Tax, IP, and more. Whenever we launch something (a new character, a new tech platform, a new world, a new corporate structure), innovation and compliance are at the top of the list for us. If we’re not pushing the space forward and blazing new trails for others to operate within the confines of the current legal framework, then we don’t want to do it.

Media DAO has the potential to become a thriving hub for collectively creating content, with numerous community-owned franchises developed across many different types of media and a growing collection of mainstream content awards under its belt. Becoming part of Media DAO means joining forces with other members of the community to collectively produce, package, and pitch projects that may fully transcend the NFT space and arrive on the radar of the general population. As projects produced by Media DAO succeed, the value of assets in its treasury will grow, giving the members of Media DAO the opportunity to develop and market more high-profile content, including perhaps working in conjunction with corporate-owned IP, like traditional film or other franchises, as well.

If you believe that Web3 has the potential to disrupt media forever, then this is the place for you.

We, Tally Labs, will be contributing significant ownership interest in the Azurbala IP to Media DAO, putting the world into the hands of the Media DAO community. We believe this world can be massive and are excited to grow it together. We also have a number of other projects in the works that can follow the same path.

Community-owned and generated IP is inevitable. Undoubtedly, a group of people will accomplish this at scale in the near future. Why not Media DAO?

The Jenkins Audio Experience

Before Jenkins and our entire community reaches Azurbala, we have a few stops to make. The Jenkins Audio Experience is the next project under the Writer’s Room, and we’re so excited to share more. From the beginning, it’s been important for us to convey that this project isn’t just for Ape/Mutant holders.

This is the first step in expanding the Writer’s Room to other Avatar communities. We have a badass partnership to bring this to market and will be releasing more information when we can. The concept is fully baked out and we are finalizing logistics as we speak.

The same licensing principles will apply for this piece of IP. Writer’s Room NFT holders will be able to license many different types of avatars to this piece of content as Jenkins visits some of the NFT communities you know and love. We’ll be launching a revamped Writer’s Room members portal to support licensing and voting across multiple pieces of content at once.

But wait, there’s more: Special benefits accrue to genesis Writer’s Room holders

Accruing value back to our Writer’s Room NFT holders is of major importance to us at Tally Labs, and of course there is no content without characters. Our genesis Writer’s Room NFT holders believe deeply that the next generation of household characters will originate on the blockchain — they saw that vision in Jenkins the Valet before anyone else. There is no Jenkins without this group of people. Even though it hasn’t been official, Jenkins has felt community-owned from the beginning.

For that reason, we are also contributing significant ownership interest in Jenkins the Valet, Jenkins the Mutant, and GoodBoy to a separate “Character DAO” that will own them and will govern their future. The only way to receive Character DAO governance tokens outside of the secondary market is to stake genesis Writer’s Room NFTs for them. Stakers of genesis Writer’s Room NFTs will receive Character DAO governance tokens based on the tier of the Writers Room NFT they hold. The higher the tier, the more governance tokens will flow to you. We can easily envision this group coming together to turn Jenkins, the Mutant, GoodBoy, and future assets into household names.

Good Boy, Jenkins the Valet, Jenkins the Mutant

The Character DAO gives its members collective ownership, governance, and creative decision making over its assets. The Character DAO begins life with significant ownership interests in three valuable NFT-based characters: Jenkins the Valet, Jenkins the Mutant, and Goodboy, which will be contributed to Character DAO by Tally Labs. As these characters appear in works, funds that flow back to the Character DAO from the licensing of these assets to projects can be used to acquire additional blue-chip avatars or to develop the Character DAO’s existing characters/IP further. The Character DAO will get first look at content created or produced by Media DAO which will allow for incredible collaborative opportunities. Housing a number of well-known characters under one roof comes with other advantages such as brand partnership opportunities (that flow back to the Character DAO). There is even potential for these characters to be licensed to appear in entirely separate content from the Writer’s Room.

Of course, the Character DAO will do more than just hold the Jenkins characters. As the jungle world unfolds, it will also have significant ownership interest and govern seven Azurian Legends who are critical to telling the story of Azurbala. It will also continue to acquire and develop others. But most importantly, the Character DAO will continue to license avatars from genesis Writer’s Room NFT holders.

Whether your genesis Writer’s Room NFT is staked or not, you can continue to use it to license characters to the Character DAO to appear in content, and they will continue to be featured based on their Writer’s Room tier. For example, WAGMI Yacht characters will continue to be featured as main characters in works. All characters licensed to the Character DAO by Writer’s Room members will continue to exist in a licensing pool that splits a percentage of income earned by the Character DAO in works produced by the Media DAO or others. Nothing will change there and no more Writer’s Room NFTs will be created.

So what does the future of collective content creation look like?

Those who join Media DAO as members will be able to collectively ideate on stories and define IP to bring to market. This can be in many forms: NFT collections, movies, books, and more… The Character DAO will have a right of first refusal to license its characters to Media DAO projects. When a project succeeds commercially and IP owned by the Character DAO is involved, the Media DAO will pay agreed licensing fees to the Character DAO treasury. When the Character DAO licenses avatars from others — such as Writer’s Room holders and their partners — it will pay licensing fees to those licensors.

We have been hard at work behind the scenes setting up future IP projects across media like audio and animation. We will share more on this when it is ready, but we plan on contributing that work to the Media DAO and collaborating with it and the Character DAO to bring them to market. In other words, they will be the first projects to originate within the Media DAO and use characters owned and licensed by the Character DAO.

Our top priority has always been to decentralize ownership and governance over content and IP creation. Book 1 was the first iteration of that, with voting power for creative direction and licensing avatar IP. We believe that these two DAOs take the whole community to the next level where the IP that we all create across worlds and characters are owned and governed by the community at large. The DAO constitutions will include terms to continue the non-exclusive licensing of avatars from genesis Writer’s Room holders forever to keep helping you build out your own IP. Beyond that, DAO governance and incentives will be top notch as an advisor will be joining the DAOs to help the community set them up with proper decentralization measures. This advisor, who we will announce soon, has done this at the highest level with some of the world’s biggest and most respected DAOs.

If you know us, you know we left a few surprises up our sleeves as well. We hope that what we shared gets you excited about how impactful decentralized, collaborative content creation can be. This is uncharted territory and together we are pioneering new corporate structuring strategies. We will be following up with a separate Medium post dedicated to DAO structuring, tokenomics, and more. This information will be readily available to our community long before any decisions need to be made.

We also understand that the world of DAOs and digital assets is always changing. We will continue to maintain flexibility so that we can react to macroeconomic conditions and regulatory measures within the space.

Wen?

We will take the next 8–10 weeks to finish the final touches on everything we’ve been working on. We have a book to finish, illustrations to complete, software to build and further work across legal and tax to finalize these DAOs that we hope will serve as a case study for future builders.

By the end of March we will be in the full swing of rolling more information out about each element of what we discussed here. Shortly after that, you will have the ability to mint or claim books and put your game theory hats on with respect to burning or staking.

I’m a Valet from the other side of the swamp and I’ve never traveled more than a few miles from home. I’ve encountered plenty of danger and drama at the Yacht Club as you’ll read about in Book 1, but I never could have imagined working with other communities to tell their stories or traveling all the way to Azurbala.

As I embark on doing both of those things in the near future, I admit that it’s daunting. I sure am glad that I’ll be with all of you as formal DAO decision makers in everything that I do going forward.

-Jenkins

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