- Participating in the BancorDAO governance system is expensive - voting in recent proposals has averaged around $50 in gas.
- The Snapshot system is an off-chain solution that can achieve effectively gas-free voting.
- This proposal asks that the DAO consider moving its decision making process to Snapshot to alleviate the financial burden of voting, and support a more inclusive governance environment.
Vote FOR to adopt Snapshot for BancorDAO governance, and allow gas-free participation.
Vote AGAINST to keep the voting system unchanged.
Gasless voting and governance participation incentives may be necessary for maintaining the health of the BancorDAO. Community participation in governance decisions has been a little discouraging, as small bag holders are effectively priced out of exercising their agency through exorbitant gas fees on Ethereum. This is a serious security issue; frequent voting and high participation rates is critical to protecting the protocol against nefarious influences. Moreover, the current setup inadvertently creates an oligarchy of elites that are effectively over-represented in DAO decisions. It is clear from recent discussions in our channels that community members are mindful of the developing power imbalance and want a more fruitful and supportive method for their voice to be rightfully heard.
Increased voter participation is inherently beneficial. Important proposals are less likely to fail due to lack of quorum. We are not the first DAO to have struggled with voting problems on Ethereum, and Snapshot is quickly becoming an industry standard. Therefore, the existing precedent helps to alleviate doubts about the system performance, and substantiates its utility in serving token communities and their DAOs.
Increased voter participation is equivalent to decentralized decision making. Low participation rates expose the protocol to potential nefarious influences. There is no evidence that any abuse has occured to date; however, the threat is there, and it is worth addressing. Most importantly, improving accessibility to voting is crucial to ensure everyone’s right to a voice in government is observed.
This proposal specifically seeks to implement snapshot (or ‘signature-only’) voting, which is not settled on-chain (Soft-voting). Messages are signed using ‘eth_sign’ and stored on IPFS, then made available for users through an application interface. Servers can be created to upload user signed messages to IPFS, as well as store an index of IPFS hashes for all the proposals per token and voters per proposal on a database. It would be unprecedented to decentralise these servers so that anybody could run them. Therefore, to begin, it may be necessary for Bancor or a trusted third party to operate them. The advantages of Snapshot voting are:
- Cost efficiency.
- Increased voter participation.
- Increased security from oligarchic DAO elitism.
- Improved government legitimacy and trust.
The team and I have spoken to Fabien from Snapshot and have agreed on a process for implementation. We have also noted the issue of centralisation and the team is considering a layered governance process whereby the on-chain system takes precedence over snapshot. This would avoid issues if any servers were ever compromised, and the on-chain network can over-ride any decisions.