Game of Trust - A Web of Trust between Iranian Protesters - Report

Dear IranUnchained community,

I wanted to post a report here after we got a noticeable result or a final and complete product, and that’s the reason you didn’t hear from us in the previous months. But now I have decided to write a post about what we learned from researching and working on the project in these months.

We finished the development of the MVP version of the Game of Trust Telegram bot. We asked our protester friends to join the bot and test it, and many of them did. The bot worked properly, and they could join the community. But then, our friends couldn’t bring many people to the platform. Some of them just didn’t care, and some wanted to bring others to the platform but could not convince them or market the tool well.

So I started thinking about what the problem is and how we can create and scale a community built on mutual trust. I started researching this and found the amazing book, “Blueprint for Revolution” by Srđa Popović, which changed the way I thought about revolution, and I highly encourage you to read it too.

After reading this book and researching the topic and thinking a lot, I concluded these findings:

Most people don’t care about the revolution spontaneously. They’re busy with their own problems, paying their bills, and doing their assignments. In the few months after the death of Mahsa Amini, most people were talking about the revolution. But that way of protesting was not sustainable, and people eventually got tired, and the momentum stopped. So I realized we first need ways to make people care. There should be an appealing movement that can keep momentum and keep people involved with the revolution.

And the tech problem that we were trying to solve was “scaling the trust.” But then we realized that first we need to build a community and then use the tech to scale it. Trust on a small scale is not a technical problem, and sometimes the tech can even make things worse. Most people feel safer when talking to ten of their friends whom they know intimately, than talking to ten people who have technical proof that they are trustworthy. We realized that we should build a community of protesters who know each other intimately and define some simple collective actions that one can do to be a part of this community. Then we should try to bring more trusted people to the group who also get involved and intimate with other members, and do so until it cannot be scaled anymore. Only then, do we need the tech to scale it.

This video is also worth watching:

This is just a report about what we’ve done until now. Our efforts against Islamic Republic regime persists.

Best Regards