[Formal Review][RGP - 14] - Start the Radicle Org

This is the official draft and Snapshot poll for RGP-14. Please formally review the proposal and vote in the Snapshot poll by :rotating_light:17:00 CET - Monday, April 24th :rotating_light:

Thanks for everyone’s comments on the informal discussion thread, I’ve added some of the missing information in this edition of the document, and revised the budget slightly.

[RGP-14] Start the Radicle Org

Author(s): cloudhead, zlatan
Type: executeable - org
Created: 2023-03-22
Status: active


The Radicle Org aims to develop a fully-sovereign code collaboration stack called “Radicle”.

Radicle is designed to be a secure, decentralized and powerful alternative to
code forges such as GitHub and GitLab while preserving user sovereignty and freedom.

Specifically, Radicle attempts to address the following problems:

  • Platform risk
    • GitHub and others have been known to censor projects as well as shutdown developer accounts (eg. youtube-dl)
    • GitHub is closed source and its ToS allows them to change and remove functionality at will.
    • GitHub and others create lock-in via their non-git features, eg. issues, pull requests etc.
    • GitHub trains Copilot on user data without consent.
    • GitHub and others can choose to monetize any feature at any time, requiring users to pay for something they weren’t paying for before.
    • GitHub and others are built as monolithic platforms that are not adaptable and changeable by users.
  • Open access
    • GitHub and others are not available in all countries due to trade embargos and require an account
      for interacting with the platform.
  • Privacy
    • GitHub and others have access to all private user repositories.
  • Data ownership
    • GitHub and others own their user’s data and this data is not part of the git repository, hence it cannot be migrated.
  • Security
    • By not using cryptography, GitHub’s security model allows hackers and/or employees to forge user data
      without evidence to the user.
  • Availability
    • When GitHub or GitLab are down, there is no possible access to the service. Only the source code remains accessible.

By providing the following solutions:

  • Users are able to run their own nodes without reliance on any third parties. They cannot be de-platformed.
  • All social artifacts (eg. comments, issues etc.) are stored in git, and thus easy to migrate, backup and
    access both online and offline. Users own their data.
  • Radicle is always available, since it is local-first. Users don’t need internet access to carry out a majority of tasks.
  • Radicle uses public-key cryptography throughout the product and protocol, removing the need for trust in third-parties.
    Every social artifact or piece of code can be verified by anyone.
  • Radicle plans to add end-to-end encryption to git repositories, protecting all user data from third-parties.
  • Radicle is open source and permissibly licensed.
  • Radicle is censorship resistant: any node on the network can choose to host a radicle repository and make it
    available to others.
  • Radicle is an open protocol that can change and adapt to user needs and a changing world.

Annual Strategy & Quarterly Objectives


  • Get closer to GitHub core feature parity.
    • This is the primary goal, and is elaborated on in the Roadmap section.
    • GitHub’s core features are considered to be:
      • Repository hosting
      • Issues
      • Pull Requests
      • Actions (CI/CD)
      • User profiles
      • Orgs
      • Search
      • Notifications
    • We will focus on the first four to five
  • Stabilize the technology stack
    • Stabilize the protocol specification via Radicle Improvement Proposals (RIPs).
    • Stabilize reference implementation (heartwood).
    • Add any required supporting features to the web.
  • Relaunch (social-)media presence
    • Launch a technical blog
      • Promote to the FOSS/Linux communities.
    • Re-launch website (https://radicle.xyz)
    • Re-launch Twitter account (@radicle)
    • Build a presence on decentralized media (eg. mastodon, nostr)


  • Q2 2023: External/public release to “community”
    • Focused on FOSS communities, P2P, Bitcoin
    • Code Review functionality
      • This includes inline comments and discussions around code.
    • Overhaul of app.radicle.xyz application using new brand
      • New landing page.
      • Patches & Issues.
      • Basic repository discovery.
    • Community seed node
      • Users can specify whether or not they want to be “tracked”
  • Q3 2023: Identities
    • Initial R&D on Radicle Identities
      • The goal is for users to have an easy way to associate metadata
        to their DID, eg. avatar, name, links etc. in a peer-to-peer way.
  • Q4 2023: CI/CD
    • Launch of CI/CD functionality in Radicle
      • We intend to launch our own take on CI/CD that runs peer-to-peer.

If time permits, we will also work on:

  • Launch of Secure artifacts
    • We intend to launch our own take of GitHub “Releases”. This can be
      described as a way of doing cryptographically-secure binary releases
      using Radicle’s trust model.

Organizational Structure

Legal structure

Corporate entity (Sárl) based in Switzerland, with @cloudhead as managing director.


  • @cloudhead – project lead – full-time
  • @zlatan – project & community management – part-time
  • @rudolfs – software engineering on web – full-time
  • @sebastinez – software engineering on web – full-time
  • @dave – software engineer on heartwood – full-time
  • @slackcoder – software engineering on heartwood – part-time
  • @erikli – software engineering on heartwood – part-time
  • @fintohaps – software engineering on heartwood – full-time
  • @adaszko – systems operations on heartwood – full-time


Reporting & Success Criteria

The primary objective for this year is to stabilize the stack and get closer to feature parity
with other forges. However, some metrics will be used internally to track growth:

  • Number of repositories published on the network
  • Number of nodes online
  • Commit activity on published repositories
  • Social activity (patches, discussions, issues, etc.)
  • “Key” projects using Radicle
  • Number of members on Zulip
  • Number of contributors to core stack

Timeline & Budget

The total budget requested for 2023 is $1,784,378.

Cost May 2023 Jun 2023 Jul 2023 Aug 2023 Sep 2023 Oct 2023 Nov 2023 Dec 2023 Totals
Development costs $190,918 $190,918 $190,918 $190,918 $190,918 $190,918 $190,918 $190,918 $1,527,343
Buffer $19,091 $19,091 $19,091 $19,091 $19,091 $19,091 $19,091 $19,091 $152,734
Offsites $24,000 $24,000 $48,000
Set up costs $3,100 $23,100
Operational fees $6,650 $6,650 $6,650 $6,650 $6,650 $6,650 $6,650 $6,650 $53,200
Total $219,759 $240,659 $216,659 $216,659 $216,659 $216,659 $240,659 $216,659 $1,784,378
  • Development costs: contributor pay for a team of ~12, R&D costs
  • Buffer: 10% of the development costs as buffer, covers hosting & services
  • Offsites: we plan on having two offsites this year
  • Set up costs: initial costs of setting up legal structure
  • Operational fees: payment processing for fiat payment

This includes room to hire two more engineers and one designer. Unused budget will be carried over to the next year.

Fund management

  • DAO funds will be received on a 3:2 multisig (Safe)
    • @cloudhead as signer, plus one or two foundation council members as backups.
  • Funds to be paid in fiat will be paid out by Skyline Digital.
  • Payouts will be done by the company accountant on a monthly basis

:sparkles:Snapshot Poll Results :sparkles:

[Formal Review][RGP - 14] - Start the Radicle Org: This proposal has PASSED:ballot_box_with_check: with 7.1M $RAD in support of the proposal. It will be submitted to an on-chain vote this week.

See final results here: Snapshot