The Declaration of an ICP Hodler

    1. ICP, as private property, should be an inviolable and sacred right in the IC community. The voting rewards should be an inalienable part of staking ICP. Don’t try to manipulate the governance system to take away any voting rewards from anyone, and this should be programmed into the design of NNS.
    1. Anyone staking ICP, especially the 8-year gang, already contributed to the IC community, and we should be nice and kind to each other. We should stand together and fight those prevailing scams that already hurt ICP’s price badly. We should welcome more and more people into ICP, instead of making it a zero-sum game.
    1. NNS should be designed by Minimalism. It should be as simple as possible to use by a newcomer. The voting rewards of governance proposals should not be different from other types of proposals. Indeed, we should add an Abstain button to the current Adopt-Reject system, and any neuron not voting should be considered as abstaining automatically without any loss of voting rewards. A right without the right of abstention is not a real right. Imagine that Dfinity and ICA don’t vote anymore one day for whatever reason, the ICP hodlers should be still getting rewards normally for their staking. “Set and forget” should be an acceptable norm; it is obviously a minimalist investment strategy.
    1. ICP Maximalism = Freedom Maximalism. Don’t forget that we come into the blockchain world for freedom, not for something else. Don’t be too “paternalist”, and don’t force people to do things they don’t like. Any “minimum standard for active participation” is meaningless. Let people vote freely, and, of course, abstain freely. Let people submit proposals freely; that is really a wonderful form of free speech.
    1. Focus on Proposals, not on Voting. Smart creative proposals can improve the Internet Computer, but voting itself cannot do much. We should encourage people to submit proposals, instead of forcing people to vote. We should encourage everyone to share their smart creative ideas, which may change the world in some unexpected way. But encouraging people to vote by punishing them for not voting is meaningless, and even is evil in some sense.
    1. Reward Good Proposals and Punish Bad Proposals. Nobody can precisely define what is a good proposal and what is a bad proposal. Only the community can: If a proposal is adopted, then it is good and should be rewarded with some ICP; if it is rejected, then it is bad and should be punished with some ICP. If your proposal is rejected, then you should be forbidden from submitting a new proposal for a week; if two proposals are rejected continuously, then you should be forbidden from submitting a new proposal for a month; if too many proposals are rejected continuously, then you should be forbidden from submitting any new proposals for a year (or even forever). Perhaps only people staking at least 100 ICP for 8 years without dissolving should be allowed to submit a proposal.
    1. NNS is not perfect, but, in my opinion, it is already the best DAO all over the world and even throughout the human history. I do hope that smart creative good proposals will make NNS perfect eventually. Let’s make it simple, clever, and beautiful.

I disagree with point 1, rewards aren’t a right for every staker, they exist to incentivize participation in governance, you deserve rewards if you keep up to some degree with with the ecosystem, which takes little to no effort at all if you just follow a neuron. If for you checking in once in a while to be up to date is too much and just want passive income then the NNS is not for you and I don’t say this to paternalize or gate keep, I say it cause its in both ICP’s and the community’s best interest if voting power is exercised by informed stakers instead of mindless participants who just want to earn some interest.

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In my opinion, the voting system should consist of Adopt, Reject, and Abstain. You have already participated in governance to some degree as long as you staked some ICP, even if you vote Abstain all the time. I don’t think simply following some neurons means you are a more informed staker. You should not assume someone staking ICP to be a mindless participant.

I agree with most of what you are saying here. Thank you for taking the time to express these thoughts. The parts I would disagree with are point 1, the last sentence in point 3. In principle, I agree with point 6, but I also think there are some nuances that make it impossible today.

On point 1, I agree that your ICP is your property, but voting rewards are not an entitlement unless you vote. Staking entitles you to vote and voting entitles you to voting rewards. Voting rewards are incentives to participate in governance and need to be treated as such.

My response to last sentence in point 3 is similar in nature. I think if “set and forget” is an accepted norm for ICP staking and tokenomics, then ICP becomes a security. That would be bad for everyone in my opinion. I also don’t think that’s really the intent of the tokenomics. I subscribe to the idea that ICP tokenomics are intended to incentivize participation in governance and that intentional tweaks are necessary to achieve that goal. All tweaks in my opinion should attempt to lead us toward a greater degree of decentralization through higher voter participation.

On point 6, the issue with forbidding bad actors from making proposals is that they can just create a new neuron and start all over. I don’t really like the idea of increasing proposal rejection cost and making it burdensome for people to make proposals, but it is necessary, within reason, until we get a better option to disincentivize spam.

On point 1: As I just replied to @Zane, abstention should be a form of voting. You are right in the sense that in principle everyone should fully participate in governance. But that is only an ideal case and never will happen. Punishing someone voting Abstain can hurt some real ICP believers who don’t think they have a definite answer to some proposal. I think anyone staking ICP for 8 years must be a true believer of ICP, whether he votes or not.

On the last sentence in Point 3: “Set and forget” being good or bad should be determined by the investors themselves. I can give you an extreme example: If someone staking ICP lives in a terrible country and one day his government shuts the internet down, or he is put in prison for some absurd political reasons, then ICP could be all his hope. This is not a pure imagination, since it is already happening. I hope ICP will be the true version of WEB3.0 and a real utopia of freedom for everyone, not just for people living in developed countries. I am not saying that your concerns are not important, but the ICP tokenomics is not an end, but a means to an end, and the end is freedom for everyone.

One Point 6: I agree with you that increasing proposal rejection cost too much is not a good idea. But I feel very strange that the adopted proposals are not rewarded. This seems very unfair to those people like you who submitted so many good proposals. I think it is obviously a good way of incentivizing people to submit good proposals to improve ICP’s governance.

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I should have commented earlier that I agree an Abstain button has a lot of merit. I don’t think it solves an issue with spam, but I do think it gives people a valid voice in governance because there will be many proposals in which people decide they don’t know the right answer and want to leave it to others to decide. A choice to Abstain should be counted as participation.

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I also think an Abstain option has its merits but I’d never use it as long as simple majority is a thing.

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I’m many corners of philosophy, abstention is a moral demand. My vote on “the proper procedure for replacing a kidney” is not only questionable, but also potentially lethal. I abstain. I don’t even know how to properly vette the person who should vote.

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I think it does help solve the spam issue, if my declaration is fully understood. In my opinion, those recent spam proposals are not really pure spams; they are strategic proposals, i.e., they try to manipulate the governance system to take away voting rewards from those neurons not voting or not following correctly.

If you have 10000 ICP and the usual maturity is 0.06%, then you can submit a spam proposal and increase the maturity to, say, 0.08%, and you will get 10000*(0.08%-0.06%) = 2 ICP. That is definitely something for you. But if everyone manually votes or follows other neurons correctly, then the increase in maturity must be strictly less than 0.02% ( = 0.08% - 0.06%). That is, those spam proposals are just trying to take away voting rewards from those neurons abstaining or not following correctly, which is also partly caused by the difference in voting rewards between governance proposals and other types of proposals.

If voting rewards of governance proposals are not different from that of other types of proposals, then the manipulation of spam proposers could be alleviated. Furthermore, if everyone staking ICP not voting is considered as automatically abstaining without any loss of voting rewards, then those spam proposals will completely fail. You might say those spam proposers are just for fun. Then let them be. They help burn ICP by submitting spam proposals, and this is good for ICP: A rejected spam proposal is equivalent to the total fees of 10000 ICP transactions. I would be happy to see that, as long as it does not affect the voting rewards.

(To be honest, I don’t fully understand the the inflation mechanism of ICP, but I do think the total voting rewards must be “constant” in some sense, and the daily changes in voting rewards is in essence a form of redistribution between ICP stakers. This redistribution is unnecessary, which makes ICP seemingly a zero-sum game (but it is definitely not), and, in my view, the main purpose of redistribution of voting rewards should be encouraging people to stake ICP longer.)

If abstaining is a legal form of voting and every neuron not voting is considered automatically abstaining, then everyone staking for 8 years with enough age bonus and without dissolving will always have the highest voting rewards, no matter what the NNS will become in the future. That is a marvelous merit: it makes ICP potentially “sound money”. I truly believe that every 8-year staker is a true believer of ICP, whether he votes or not. Therefore, we should let the 8-year gang have the right of “set and forget” (indeed, they will not forget, but they should have the right to forget), which will make the ICP investment much more attractive.

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