Season 5 Feedback Thread

Creating a place for delegates and gov participants to provide feedback on Season 5.

Please leave constructive feedback so we keep the signal to noise ratio high in here! All forum engagement is subject to the Forum Rules of Engagement

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As we just discussed in the first token + citizen house call we should think a bit on the quorum needed for citizen vetoing and the rules around it.

Being a citizen (badgeholder) comes with a set of responsibilities such as participating in RPGF and participating in the very few votes needed for the citizens.

To that end I believe we should:

  1. Add a YES/NO to vetos. So that we can have an active voting citizenship set.
  2. Make it a requirement to have a minimum voting participation. Missing a number of votes all the time without any actual excuses should have penalties which could eventually lead to loss of citizenship. May sound harsh but the reality is that this the badge/citizenship is not a status symbol. It’s a responsibility. And if it’s not exercise the entire citizen house would be in danger due to inaction and inability to vote or reach quorum.
  3. If a citizen votes to veto something, they should absolutely accompany it with a post explaining why.
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I agree that citizenship should be seen as a responsibility.

For that reason, I think it would be good to actually ask badgeholders if they want to become citizens.

As far as I know, that has simply been assumed - I’m not sure why.

It might also be good to have an official, known way to resign as a citizen (if that already exists, I’m not aware of it - in that case, please do enlighten me! :slightly_smiling_face:)

Just to be clear: Personally, I would like to remain part of Optimism as a citizen. But I do think it would be fair to ask badgeholders before holding them accountable for a job they have not agreed to do.

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The below response reflects the views of L2BEAT’s governance team, composed of @kaereste and @Sinkas, and it’s based on the combined research, fact-checking and ideation of the two.

One learning that we acquired while reviewing Mission Requests is that the whole process didn’t adequately address how specific or vague Mission Requests had to be when it came to the approach through which each mission would be accomplished.

Our understanding is that, given their higher context, top 100 delegates would identify specific problems or areas in which the collective can improve, and then craft mission requests asking for proposals addressing those areas. A common theme we noticed while reviewing Mission Requests, was confusion in regards to how well-defined the deliverables and the approach should be.

For example, a Mission Request might be about researching alternative RPGF distribution methods. Should the Mission Request specify how that will be achieved (e.g. badgeholder interviews, academic research, creative thinking & design, experimental initiatives, etc), or should that be up to each applicant to propose?

Oftentimes, there’s more than 1 way to address a problem, and we should probably let the individuals or groups applying to Mission Requests propose the best way. That would also open up more opportunities for people to contribute in different ways while also helping get competitive proposals from people looking to fulfill different missions — as opposed to a simple “raise of hand” from people capable of delivering the exact thing outlined in the mission request.

Having said that, we do understand the need for some Mission Requests to be very specific in terms of what the deliverable should be and how it should be achieved. We’re just pointing out the obvious flaw in having that be a blanket approach for all Mission Requests.

At a later date, we’ll follow up with some additional feedback, as well as with some specific examples of the issue mentioned above, which we chose to not publish at this time to avoid influencing delegates’ decisions and the overall process, to illustrate our point.

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Hey @Sinkas thanks for your feedback! I just wanted to flag this for myself to come back to at the end of the process and make sure that I receive notification when you choose provide your additional feedback

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Hey everyone,

Was discussing with @lavande on discord and wondering why Request 2F: Hosting “Optimism Unleashed” event at EthCC 2024 isn’t being funded despite budget being left (see vote here: Agora - OP Proposal: Mission Requests: Intent #2, 4M OP)

It turns out it’s because of the way the approval-ranking system is designed. I would like to suggest to adapt it (and perhaps take example from the ENS DAO).

I’d like to address a potential inefficiency in our current approval-ranking voting system with a hypothetical scenario:

Imagine we have a budget of 1 million OP. The top-ranked proposal asks for 100,000 OP and gets funded. The next highest-ranked proposal requests 1,000,000 OP, which exceeds our remaining budget of 100,000 OP, so it’s not funded. Under the current system, we stop here, leaving 900,000 OP unallocated.

However, if we had a system that allowed us to fund lower-ranked proposals that fit into the remaining budget, we could potentially fund other valuable projects within that unused 900,000 OP.

Suggestion:

Consider revising the system to allow funding of smaller, lower-ranked proposals that can fit within the remainder of the budget. This approach would maximize our resource utilization and support a greater number of initiatives.

Let me know what you think!

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This was an issue with the previous round too, where it looked like barely any proposals would be funded, so I voted for everything. Voter participation is better, but still relatively low for the specified quorum. Two solutions could be to lower the quorum requirement, or have a minimum budget allocation requirement so proposals below the quorum can be funded till this minimum allocation is fulfilled.

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I know we tried last season to get mission requests done early, but that was also during our break period and december holidays.

I think this season would have been greatly improved with more collaboration and effort put into producing higher quality mission requests. I know that I personally thought of some better ideas after the mission request period ended.

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Now that we’re in the second half of Season 5, I have crafted some feedback to consider during the upcoming reflection period and the next season.

Procedures

  • On Protocol upgrades:
  1. In line with the suggestions made by Polynya here, in the future, any protocol upgrade proposals should be voted on at a more measured pace, for instance, a maximum of one per voting cycle. Unless they are deemed critical upgrades or subjected to a one-package release, users should not be subjected to multiple changes to their systems, regardless of the nature of those changes. It can be argued that from the perspective of a developer or operator, implementing multiple changes simultaneously is more convenient. However, from a security and monitoring standpoint, addressing changes one at a time is more prudent. Nonetheless, it’s worth noting that our pace of implementation remains significantly faster than Ethereum already.
  • On Mission Requests and grants:
  1. Now that we all have passed the first crafting mission requests experience, there’s significant room for improvement in the scope, quality, and breadth of future proposed mission requests, moving beyond those tailored to very specific tasks. The Grants Council has performed excellently during cycle 19, ensuring the approval of suitable proposals, and we’re doing our best for cycle 20 and so on. As delegates, our focus now shifts towards devising more impactful mission requests, as well as more professional description structures.

  2. I’ve received feedback indicating confusion regarding the continuation of the Builder and Growth & Experiments as mission requests. Some individuals were under the impression that these programs had concluded. Specifically, the Builder and Growth & Experiments grants programs should be categorized/communicated better, either under the existing mission requests program or another designed in the future. Therefore, I recommend clarifying the distinction between “tailored/tematic” mission requests and these are more like “freestyle” programs.

  3. Considering that badgeholders/citizens become involved towards the end of the process, where they assess the impact of the missions conducted, it seems prudent to encourage their participation or discussion during the preparation of mission requests. However, I am unsure of the best method to facilitate this, beyond acknowledging them as recognized community members.

  4. The term ‘baseline grant amount’ was not always well understood among MR proposers and applicants. It is clearer to discuss in terms of ‘maximum budget available’ and ‘maximum team applicants’ only.

Strategy

  1. Competence among Layer 2’s chains is getting bigger, my feeling is that the pace of the current Grants conducted by the Governance is too slow for protocols to move properly, especially when it comes to user incentives, such as in DeFi. Thorough reviews are necessary, but opportunities for applications like these only arise a few times during the year (currently 4 periods, extrapolating Season 5 timeline into Season 6).This is not good. Surely, more continuous application periods would be beneficial. I hope to expand more on this case in the coming weeks.

  2. Aligned marketing services are crucial here, in many cases we need to get the most competent teams for mission requests. Retro Funding alone does not appear to be a sufficient incentive to undertake such dedicated activities. One alternative approach to alignment is to grant greater ownership to proposers and encourage them—through attestations, rewards, points, whatever—to disseminate information themselves.

I hope the Collective Feedback Commission takes these thoughts into consideration. I’m open to discussing them further below. I will add any additional points to the thread later on.

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Wanted to float an idea:

Require that the grants council has at least 1 new member every season.

Pros: prevents capture & entrenchment, encourages new participation
Cons: adds complexity to governance, may end up with a less qualified candidate

With ~10 reviewers, I think it’s a fairly low bar to hit and is likely to happen naturally. But if it’s something that isn’t happening on it’s own, I think adding a little entropy to the system would make it more robust.

Curious to hear other peoples thoughts!

Also for context; I’ve served on the grants council since it’s inception. I think the current council is doing an amazing job, but I also see that getting elected may seem like an impossible task for a newcomer who might otherwise apply.

edit: Adding that two advantages this has over term limits is that 1) the best members will theoretically stay on the council and 2) lower risk of the majority of the council churning at the same time (which would lose a lot of process/knowledge in the transition).

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Think this is good idea, and I support it wholeheartedly.
I also don’t agree with term limits.
But council renewal, gradually over time, is always considered an indicator of good corporate governance in the broader commercial world, and thus I believe Michael’s idea should be formalised across all Councils and elected bodies within the Collective.

Agree that turnover, or the ability for new entrance, is very important! There are a few initiatives we’re currently working on to promote the possibility of turnover:

  • This Season there will be a full week for delegates to review candidates and the Foundation will host a Town Hall for candidates to answer questions from delegates

  • We are thinking through the concept of delegate profiles, which would include attestations, that can help voters make more informed decisions about candidates’ skill sets and experience. First, we have to build up the base of attestations though :slight_smile:

  • We’re working on building a pipeline of qualified candidates by sharing proactive information about the ability to nominate with our partners, comms team, etc. but open to more suggested here! Get in touch with @maxwell if you have ideas

  • We’ll be comparing the lead of incumbents vs. new entrants in this set of elections relative to the previous two seasons to track and measure the possibility of new entrance. If it remains limited, we’ll consider policy options (like term limits, requiring new entrance, etc.) among other options to support competitive elections in the Collective as this is very important

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Thanks for the response Justine!

It seems like a good set of plans, I’m excited to see the town hall which will hopefully let people get to know the nominees a little better.

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We did this document compiling forum data to have a big overview of the Grants Council Big Picture: The Grants Council any feedback is much appreciated.

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