English Forward Whitepaper

by Karnika E. Yashwant (Mr. KEY) and Mitch Rankin

The Largest English Learning Community Online

English Forward will be the first platform to deploy Forward Protocol.


English Forward is a 19-year old platform with 310+ million unique visitors. It has a vibrant community of teachers and learners, all engaged in the one subject every person on earth needs to participate in the global economy, no matter their area of expertise: the English Language.

English is the language of global business.

Even though it is dubbed the “largest educational market on earth,” only 360 million people of the world’s 7.8 billion population speak English.

There is a market of 7.5 billion people who need the language to participate in the global economy, a number that grows by about 140 million people in new births alone (about 1.5 billion per decade).

Inability to speak, read, or write in the English Language places anyone at a significant disadvantage in the global economy.

The English Forward platform has been a form of DAO for nearly two decades. It is a community-based project with all the best attributes of a learning community at the heart of its operations. English Forward is currently in its public beta testing stage, and is perfectly positioned to integrate Forward Protocol’s blockchain technology on its new platform.

Forward Protocol’s deployment is scheduled for Q2 2022.

English Forward’s Deployment

English Forward will deploy three of Forward Protocol’s five primary smart contracts in the Q&A and upcoming marketplace:

  1. Proof of Value-Delivered (PoVD)

  2. Proof of Value (PoV)

  3. Distributed Reward and Revenue Sharing (DRRS)

Proof of Value-Delivered (PoVD)

Proof of Value-Delivered can be useful to -

  • Marketplaces

  • Freelancers

  • Hire Interns

  • Crowd-Freelancing

  • Tutors

Proof of Value-Delivered is a smart contract that deals with the actual movement of money. Suppose, an expert adds a new course to the marketplace, and a learner buys the course to gain access to valuable content. The expert can incentivize (add rewards to) the course to improve the completion rate, making the expert eligible for more rewards from the learner's success. English Forward can customize the criteria and settings of the escrow contract.

Proof of Value-Delivered is a smart contract that says, “you do this, and then you get the reward (e.g., money) for completing the task.” This smart contract works on the condition that a predefined value is delivered and proof is provided.

An example of PoVD is when someone posts a question with a dollar value incentive. For example, “I am happy to pay $20 to whoever answers this question because it is important to me.” This request applies a proof of value-delivered smart contract for the $20 reward. The person posting the question will select the most useful answer and award the prize to them. If they cannot choose the correct answer, they may let the moderators decide, and the moderators will receive a small share from the pool for validating the response.

The other contributors on the page will be rewarded by “proof of value” based on the advertising revenue on the page and their engagement.

An example from the English Forward marketplace: An expert adds a new training course to the marketplace and incentivizes (add rewards to) it to increase the completion rate. Students that buy the course and get access to its content have extra motivation to cover the curriculum. The expert also becomes eligible for further rewards from the learner's success. English Forward can customize the criteria and settings of the escrow contract to deliver the reward/incentive outcome needed.

If a learner pays $1,000 for a course, and we can validate that the expert covered the curriculum and the learner completed the course, then the expert receives the entire agreed fee of $1,000.

The expert can also recommend a value (say 20%) to go back to the learner from the original fee ($1000) if they complete the course.

This reward wallet is a public wallet that the user can share on social media or with friends and family upon enrolling to the course. Supporters can top-up the reward wallet with donations and incentives that will be shared with the learner upon preset milestone completion instead of giving the user the money directly, incentivizing them to complete the course.

Proof of Value

Proof of Value (PoV) is used to reward content creators and value producers as recognition for their time and effort.

This smart contract can be applied in various scenarios:

  • Someone publishes in the Q&A

  • An expert displays and propagates acts of leadership

Proof of Value aims to show that the contribution will solve the consumer’s use case (or problem). It connects the end points in the interaction, (revenue with users), allowing English Forward to determine the criteria to reward effort.

Once PoV criteria are established by English Forward, the person delivering the value gets the incentive or monetary reward paid from advertisements on the page and other revenue curated from donors, scholarships, incentive schemes, etc.

Deploying platforms can distribute the donations in the reward wallet in addition to the advertising revenue or other revenues their business model provides. The rewards are distributed based on the proof of value framework, which is the value placed on the creator’s output. This figure is based on the demand and interaction their content elicits from end-users. It is usually a measure of importance to the audience and can be quantified by the number of upvotes received, readership numbers, number of times shared, amount of times saved, etc.

For example, through the proof-of-value mechanism in Forward Protocol, a free reply post by an expert to a user's question can turn out to be an ongoing source of income for the expert.

An example from the English Forward Q&A: When a learner posts a question for free, experts and other users provide answers, while moderators play their roles. Everyone contributes value and this needs a Proof of Value (PoV) to verify and quantify contributions. This smart contract works on the actual value that a user contributes, based on various Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) capabilities. The revenue comes from advertising fees that accrue to a particular page. The advertising revenue is then distributed to all parties involved according to the value of their contribution, upvotes and viewership. English Forward determines the percentage of revenue to distribute back to users. The quality is judged based on their experience, validated credentials and community response.

A highly valuable question will attract good answers, lots of engagement, shared posts, likes, upvotes and comments. All these engagements contribute to the value of a page. The more valuable a page becomes, the higher the advertising revenue that flows to it.

Pages with low engagement will generate little or no advertising revenue.

English Forward will distribute the advertising revenue with the contributors on the page. The ad revenue split ratio will be determined algorithmically, based on expert/teacher status, quality of answer, shares and upvotes, likes, etc. Pages with very high value can remain active for years and create passive income for contributors.

This is very true in the case of English Forward, which has pages with thousands of user engagements that have been active for decades.

Payouts will be daily initially and can be modified to hourly in the future, depending on the community’s decision.

Users can also earn rewards for amplifying the contribution of other users on the platform. For example, if user A shares an answer posted by user B, the author of the original post (user A) can assign a reward to user B for promoting their post.

Forward Protocol’s model enables English Forward to incentivize actions that generate actual value.

Distributed Reward and Revenue Sharing (DRRS)

This smart contract creates a layer of incentivization across all modules of a platform that creates a revenue stream for all long-term active contributors beyond the limited scope of individual smart contracts.

The person receiving the $20 reward for answering the question in the PoVD example above can also benefit from the distributed reward and revenue sharing. They qualify for this reward if the person whose question they answered goes on to make any revenue from future jobs on the platform. This smart contract also applies to students who complete a course, receive the reward, and go on to make more revenue in any of the Forward-integrated ecosystems.

An example from the Distributed Reward and Revenue Sharing: If a student completes their training and gets a job via the job board, it is a result of many factors. These factors include lessons by world-class tutors, help from community members, interactions and community forums, etc. The smart contract takes a small percentage of the fee charged to recruiters and distributes it algorithmically among everybody that actively participated in the recruit’s learning process. Hence, it rewards their contribution to the learning that resulted in the job. This makes the experts lifelong "knowledge partners'' of their former students.

For example, for a $1,000 job where English Forward takes a 10% commission, half of the commission goes to the people that helped the student get the job. It may be only a few cents per student, but it can easily add up to a substantial income for an active teacher or trainer with thousands of students or trainees.

The algorithm takes into account the relevance of the course or training to the job, community-driven voted value for eligible courses and the expert, expert’s relevance and activity on the platform (if they are active or inactive for years), recency of the course or contribution and other quality parameters.



English Forums Founded

March 2003

EnglishForums.com created

September 2004

First 10K Users

April 2004

First 100K Threads (Q&A) Reached

October 2006

First 500K Threads (Q&A) Reached

April 2007

First 50K Users

February 2008

First 500K Users

May 2009

Facebook Page Created

December 2009

First 100K Facebook Followers

April 2010

First 1000K Threads (Q&A) Reached

September 2010

2 Million Monthly Traffic

March 2015

3.59 Million Monthly Traffic

July 2018

Rebrand from English Forums to English Forward

August 2018

Google News Approved

Google Grant Approval


Launch of English Forward New Platform

Forward Protocol Integration for Q&A Section

Courses Marketplace with Blockchain Integration

Historic Technical Timeline

Jan 1, 2010

v6 Launch

Feb 24, 2010

Friends invite page added

Dec 30, 2011

v7 Launch

Apr 8, 2012

Spider fixes

Apr 19, 2012

Ask a question menu Item added

Jun 21, 2012

v7.2 + mobile updates

Jun 29, 2012

de/ru multi-domains launch

Jul 4, 2012

Update to anonymous post layout - walls embedded in posts for anon, sidebar in posts for anon, ads moved

Jul 6, 2012

Ads moved

Jul 7, 2012

Anony layout moved back (temporary) + mobile updates

Aug 28, 2012


Aug 31, 2012

v7.3.1 (Speed updates)

Sep 1, 2012

Anony page layout v2

Sep 2, 2012

Cloudflare CDN

Sep 9, 2012


Sep 10, 2012

Adzerk moved to async (thread hack) Primary images cache enabled

Sep 14, 2012

More email interactions added

Aug 13, 2014


Aug 14, 2014


Nov 14, 2014

SSL Update (AES 2)

Jan 17, 2015

Change of server architecture

Mar 15, 2015

Change of server architecture

May 6, 2015

Responsive Update

Jun 7, 2015


Jul 23, 2015

UI Changes

Oct 27, 2016

AMP added

Jan 13, 2017

Update (2017 Visual)

Jan 19, 2017

Removed meta-description

Jan 20, 2017

Minor fixes

Jan 21, 2017

Added related threads filler to topics with no replies and post length>350.

Added anony-ish post creator at bottom of thread.

Jan 24, 2017

Responsive ads, minor fixes, reduced to 1 ad.

Feb 1, 2017

Minor fixes

Feb 3, 2017

Manual Cleanup

Feb 4, 2017

Verified Answer BOT started.

Sep 27, 2017

Bottom Ad enabled

Oct 15, 2017

Rich Snippets setup

Nov 8, 2017

Bottom ads switched off

Last updated