What do we call things to avoid confusion?

There has been a fair bit of back and forth on the subject of what and how we call the network, the broader community, etc. This can seem picky, but it has a lot of ramifications which we should be aware of as we go forward, trying to form a cohesive community. This conversation has happened on a number of channels here and elsewhere, over an extended period of time, so I want to re-up the conversation here with my input.

@frabrunelle made the following input on a separate conversation:

basically the way I see it is that Project SAFE means the community (e.g. meetups, podcasts, blogs, app developers, etc.) and also the fact that it’s a big project and we are all working towards the goal of privacy, security and freedom for everyone in our own ways. I think it’s valuable to have term that can gather people from many projects (e.g. SAFE Network, SAFE OS, SAFEpress, SAFE Laptop, SAFE Phone, SAFE mesh, etc.) instead of having everything under the term SAFE Network. for me the distinction is very clear. this is why my newsletter is called Project SAFE News, because it posts updates from not only SAFE Network but also other projects that are related. while in the case of a forum (for example), it makes sense to have one forum per project.

but I can understand that people have a different definition or find it confusing. I think for consumers we will only talk about SAFE Network. Project SAFE is more for advanced users and curious people. the site that consumers would go to would be something like safenetwork.org or safenetwork.io (I think .org is more user-friendly though, I imagine .io would be to target geeks or devs).

as for SAFE Network vs safenet, I think I prefer SAFE Network because it makes it clear that it’s an acronym. SAFE (Secure Access For Everyone) Network. and I imagine the shorthand would probably simply be SAFE. safenet is fine but I am not convinced it’s necessarily better just because it’s shorter.

there is also the question of SAFE Network vs Safe Network. I think the latter one looks cleaner but again it’s nice to have the emphasis on the acronym from the former. it also makes it even more unambiguous what we are referring to.

On these points, as @frabrunelle laid out above, I agree completely. There is one point I’d like to clarify, though. There needs to be consistency on a publications, “authoritative” level as to style points. That’s why I consistently use SAFE Network in my conversations, because I’m geeky when it comes to editorial style. However, what these things are called in the wild, and how they’re written is not something we can prescribe, only guide by example. But there is not necessarily a homogenous “we”.

I’ve claimed the loose position of senior editor for style, etc., for the project and so far nobody has objected. All input from Nick Lambert and others has been positive. So FYI, here are the Project SAFE Editorial Style Sheet and Project SAFE Glossary project links:

Editorial Stylesheet

As laid out in these docs, these are community projects. Input is welcome and encouraged. How we talk to each other or others is whatever we chose to do. That will evolve with time. But for consistency, I’ve laid out guidelines that we can use to not confuse people on a publications/outward-facing level. Where the lines surrounding “publications/outward-facing level” would fall is also not definite, so I tend default by sticking to a consistent style which already has been debated with some measure of consensus reached. Some of the style decisions are arbitrary, just because it helps to decide. Everything is open to debate, but hopefully not too much.

There isn’t necessarily a “right” way to do it, but some consistency will help the community get on the same page, especially as it grows.

That’s my input. What do y’all think? (check out the docs, if you haven’t.)


I agree with everything you quoted from @frabrunelle and support your efforts to maintain consistency @fergish.

1 Like

The original conversation was on the #lounge channel on Slack. It was @Melvin who originally brought up the point of “projectsafe.news, projectsafe.community, safenetforum.org, SAFE Network, Safenet” His comment is in past history and no longer available so it would be good if @Melvin could make his point again.

I am going to post the other parts of the conversation that imo hold value

@fergish said:

I agree that people will call it whatever they want, the rationale are sound:

MaidSafe = the company
SAFE Network = what it’s trying to create
Project SAFE = everyone working on and interested in contributing to the SAFE Network

I think all three are important distinctions.

“Project SAFE” will continue to be in use, I think, even after launch.

So it’s a good thing to use to refer to “the community”, because that IS actually what we’re talking about when we say “Project SAFE”. The SAFE Network wil come into being and be called whatever people want, but if we establish “Project SAFE” as the community, it will be an ongoing symbol, as separate from the network itself.

Therefore, I really like the Idea of establishing the url projectsafe.community as the center of the orbit, from here on out.


@happybeing said:

Getting pragmatic, and trying to see this from the outside… most people will talk about SAFE Network (or Safenet), so most people will look for SAFE Network, and I think there’s a dissonance when you see Project SAFE in a search result, or all over a landing page, and have to look around to find if this is anything to do with SAFENetwork/Safenet. I think it’s a better discovery process (and will rank more highly in search engines) if searching turns up a URL, title, heading, graphics etc, that match the search term, and a landing page that is clearly about that search term. From there, you can discover the different resources, including the ProjectSAFE community. But if we believe SAFENetwork (or something else) is going to be the main focus term for Joe public, that seems to make sense at the centre, even if ProjectSAFE alludes to something bigger.

1 Like

@Melvin said:

I wanted to discuss the use of the .community and .news websites because it might cause confusion when we’re using this many urls etc

Now that more people are seeing and understanding the importance of the Glossary, as well as the Stylesheet, I really want to emphasize that I can’t do it all, especially the glossary.

I can oversee, edit, coordinate, and rewrite for clarity as needed–and delighted to do so–but I haven’t the time or talent to do it all. We’ve got a start and so you can see how it’s shaping and what the use might be, so please feel free to comment, write, suggest, etc. Anyone with the link can comment.

1 Like

I agree this seems logical, but I think it ignores the importance of mass experience - users are going to be looking I think for SAFE Network, and arriving at the community URL which is not obviously about this (until one looks in detail). This creates a barrier and dissonance in the searcher.

I think therefore we should share and aim for most people to be directed to something that is SAFE Network (URL, title, branding, in your face graphic). So we share this URL, we talk about SAFE Network, we use hashtag #SAFEnetwork etc, and people arrive on the whole at a website that says “SAFE Network” all over it, but refers to “Project SAFE”, and can take people to the Project SAFE community page that shows how SAFE Network is also part of something bigger.

If we were promoting, and expecting journalists, news sites, blogs etc to talk about Project SAFE I would agree that should be the landing point and centre of everything, but I don’t think anyone expects that now. If we do want that, we need to make changes to the branding and marketing effort that reflects it, and fast! I believe we’ve settled on “SAFE Network” as the focus, because that makes it easier for new people to understand what this is, and so I think we should make that the focus in terms of where we expect people to land and where we direct people, rather than to a meta website that SAFE Network is just a part of.

1 Like

@jm5: @happybeing: I agree that new people will at first be finding out about and looking for SAFE Network. It can be compared to the web. When someone first gets online, they typically will look for the browser and start surfing the web, rather than learning more about how the internet works and joining communities. I think they will be more excited about and want to test the waters of SAFE Network first. Some will go on to Project SAFE for sure, and if SAFE Network was the center, the project would be very prominent on the site I would imagine.

So in a loose sense, the web is to SAFE Network as the internet is to Project SAFE. I doubt this is a new idea but it should help here.

Btw, just typing those a couple times I feel like shortening them, but I also want to respect the acronym. Unfortunately, many people won’t, and will call it safe or safenet (or maybe even safeweb). I think SAFEnet looks nice. As for Project SAFE, I’m not sure yet.

1 Like

I think that until there actually IS a SAFE Network, focusing on the project and the community is great.

When there is a network approaching function and stability enough for people to start grabbing and using, then SAFE Network will be the focus for that arc.

Project SAFE and its community is actually much more far-reaching that the SAFE Network itself, I think. The open source tech MaidSafe is initiating has much broader implications than just the SAFE Network we’re envisioning. Crust, Routing, Self-Auth and Self-encryption have huge tangential possibilities.

So, yes, we should be getting ready to shepherd new SAFE Network users, but for now, I’m pushing community of more than Users. That’s why I push Project SAFE.


@fergish I don’t disagree with what you say here, but there may be a subtle point about what we’re both saying. This should clarify…

If you (or anyone) are promoting Project SAFE, people hearing this and following up will search for Project SAFE, find projectsafe.community and not be at all confused. Good :smile:

Anyone hearing about SAFE Network will search for SAFE Network, find safenetwork.org and not be at all confused. Good too! :smile:

My point is that we make this distinction, and that if we are promoting SAFE Network we should send people to safenetwork.org and not to Project SAFE, and that this will be the majority once it is usable by the public because its the easiest thing to explain (rather than the bigger “project”).

If we plan to promote Project SAFE rather than SAFE Network, and aim to get others to be talking about the Project SAFE we need to be clear about this. I don’t think its a good idea, but this would be a separate question. For this thread I’m assuming we’re focussing on getting SAFE Network adopted by the masses, and that we’ll do this by promoting SAFE Network rather than Project SAFE, simply because its easier to call it that, and just explain this aspect, rather than start from the bigger project.

You may disagree with this approach, I’m not sure. Anyway, that’s my reasoning. I think the community may need to discuss the marketing direction more, and to co-ordinate with MaidSafe on this. Perhaps they should be in the lead here because they will be in the limelight, and have the loudest voices, the greatest reach etc once this goes live.

So what is MaidSafe’s plan regarding promotion @nicklambert? Will you be touting Project SAFE and SAFE Network? Or focusing on one?


sorry, maybe it wasn’t clear what I did in the previous posts. I cut and pasted from Slack the conversation that was had. I am going to edit the posts to make that more clear. Thus, @happybeing’s reply is actually directed @fergish :smile: sorry for the confusion

This is all cool, Mark. We need to have both paths open and fairly clear.

The thing is, I always promote Project SAFE as the community building the SAFE Network. So I don’t pick one or the other.

I agree that we need to have SAFEnetwork.org there and ready for those searching for the SAFENetwork, or SAFEnet or whatever. But we need projectsafe.community just as much. They’re separate SEO and marketing tracks. Currently we hammer them simultaneously, and probably will continue to for some time.

I think we need to proceed with both tracks, rather than picking one.

But I do agree that I’ll follow the lead of MaidSafe. I’d love Nick’s input. I’m sure they have plans and actions going that we should work with.

I think there is certainly some overlap and I don’t think you can promote one without promoting the other. The focus would probably be on the SAFE Network though. I think users will discover the community via the network. I hope this helps.


It may end up the"killer apps" that Project SAFE developes are what the average Joe searches for. It’s hard to say what the hook will be.

I should also add that I’m happy to tie in and offer my 2 cents on messaging. Personally I prefer The SAFE Network as it is more descriptive than Project SAFE. I also agree that it is important to pick and use one consistently moving forward.


Sounds like @fergish @nicklambert and I are all in agreement here. Phew! :slight_smile:


Yeah, and I’m even starting to soften on the whole thing. I’ll look at readjusting my talking points. From the interview that had on another show this week (podcast out shortly) I can see that there is room to simplify the naming thing. MaidSafe and the SAFE Network is probably enough to punch up. “the SAFE Network community” covers it pretty well, as opposed to Project SAFE. Not sure if I’m going to change my logo, though. “Crossroads of Project SAFE” seems more apt than “Crossroads of the SAFE Network” . Oh, well, it will all work out. :sunglasses:


Let’s add all of the important information we are each trying to communicate to one place so that it is easy for everyone to find. The most popular places established today for that is maidsafe.org and safenetwork.io and apparently someone has recently acquired the safenetwork.org domain name, and could be willing to donate it to the community to use (dont have many details on that)

It seems pragmatic to include safenetwork.wiki safenetwork.news etc as links in the tab form on the main page where we arrive, included is a link to the forum where we frequently discuss things.

In this world we go to safenetwork.org, then we have a few tabs where we can select to read curated news (and watch videos), where we can go to the forum to discuss with others, and also where we can find the relevant software to download

By the way. We’re supposed to also be all about the safe network. And let’s just efficiently communicate to others about it. Versus trying to cover many landscapes let’s focus our attention and fire to get the main things going, i.e. downloadables, relevant news that gets sent to people who want it, and a discussion board for peole who arent on the safe network.

Frankly I hope to only be here to encourage others to transition to the safe network as a means of communication.

I want to add that I think that the time put into these things deserve a prominent place so that others can consume readily such as the wiki

dallyshalla [12:48 PM]
those links are in a post on the forum

dallyshalla [12:48 PM]
though it requires going to the post

dallyshalla [12:48 PM]
so getting to the forum and there is a mountain of words,

dallyshalla [12:48 PM]
if only there were direct links to go to


Let’s focus 100% on SAFE Network

As much as I appreciate “Project SAFE”, I totally agree that we should focus our efforts on promoting “SAFE Network”, at least in the short term, for the sake of simplicity and to avoid confusion.

We could always use “Project SAFE” later if we feel it’s necessary, but for the next few months we should try to be as consistent as possible and focus 100% on “SAFE Network”.

As @fergish mentioned, we can simply refer to ourselves as the “SAFE Network community”.

SAFE Network vs Project SAFE

Even though I recently announced projectsafe.community, projectsafe.chat and projectsafe.news, I’ve been thinking for a while that it would make sense to focus 100% on promoting “SAFE Network” and that “Project SAFE” was adding unnecessary complexity at this point. I could have started a topic about SAFE Network vs Project SAFE earlier, but I wanted to build and launch these websites first. I am glad that this discussion is now happening :smile:

If we, as a community, agree to focus our efforts on promoting “SAFE Network” as opposed to “Project SAFE”, here is what I think it would imply:

I would move projectsafe.community to safenetwork.org and redesign it to put the emphasis on SAFE Network

Yes, my friend Mathieu (co-founder of the Bitcoin Embassy) has recently acquired safenetwork.org (I initially helped him contact the owners of the domain) and he trusts me to administer it. I think it’s too early to consider donating it to the community, so for now I would be the one in control of the domain.

Yes, safenetwork.org would contains links to all the important information. It would look similar to https://projectsafe.community at first but I would improve it every day based on the feedback of the community.

And it will be easy for developers and designers to make contributions since the source code will be hosted on GitHub.

Yes, there would definitely be prominent links to those sites.

Note: I think it would be better to discuss the design of safenetwork.org once I have set up an initial version of the site. For now we should focus on the question of whether or not we want to commit to using “SAFE Network” instead of “Project SAFE”.

The SAFE Network Forum would stay where it is (safenetforum.org)

I could potentially move it to forum.safenetwork.org, but I don’t think there would be much benefit. In any case, it would be something to decide later, once we are confident that we like the safenetwork.org site.

I could add a header menu at the top of the forum that would look something like try.discourse.org or also like talk.commonmark.org.

The SAFE Network Wiki would stay where it is (safenetwork.wiki)

Again, there is not much benefit to moving it. It could potentially be moved to wiki.safenetwork.org but this would something to discuss later.

I would rename Project SAFE News to SAFE Network News

I would move projectsafe.news to news.safenetwork.org.

I would rename Project SAFE Slack to SAFE Network Slack

I would also move projectsafe.chat (which people can use to receive an invitation to Project SAFE Slack) to chat.safenetwork.org.

The Project SAFE meetup groups would have to be renamed

Option 1: SAFE Network Montreal, SAFE Network San Francisco, SAFE Network London, etc.
Option 2: SAFE Pod Montreal, SAFE Pod San Francisco, SAFE Pod London, etc.

I think option 2 would be good because many people already call a SAFE Pod and a meetup group the same way. On the other hand, if we decide that it’s worth making that distinction, we can go with option 1.

Other minor changes:

  • @fergish should rename his website to something other than “The Crossroad of Project SAFE”
  • The next batch of T-shirts should emphasize SAFE Network instead of Project SAFE
  • We should use the #SAFEnetwork hashtag instead #ProjectSAFE

Let me know if you have any concerns or suggestions. Once there is a strong consensus (if necessary I can do a poll) then we can go forward with the various changes. A good way to show your agreement would be to like this post :smile: