This document describes the initiative regarding what we term as “Web4”. Web4 is Web3 envolved. In Web3, we build decentralized blockchains. Web4 is where we further decentralize user powers and controls. The initiative aims at trackling problems in blockchain’s further decentralization efforts – decentralizing the infrastructure and software, and decentralizing the governance.
At this moment, we focus our efforts on governance decentralization.
- Matrix: #web4:matrix.org
Not just on-chain
We should not limit ourselves to only one form of governance structure. Well-researched existing solutions, especially those that have proven to be extremely resilient (think segwit2x) should also be discussed and considered. We think on-chain governance is a great innovation. However, we do not hang ourselves in a single tree.
In addition to appreciating the benefits of on-chain governance, we also discuss the fundamental problems with on-chain goverance – game theoritic attacks, participation and the vote-by-feet problem, non-representativeness, etc. We do not shy away from those problems, and we’ll eagerly discuss other solutions, be it L2 or off-chain, used alongside of on-chain goverance to fix those issues.
Plutocracy is not optimal
We don’t consider the current system of plutocracy, like it’s currently been the case on Polkadot, to be anything close to optimal solutions for blockchain governance. We would be considering improvements or alternatives where, not just whales, but voters with ordinary amount of coins and with high devotion to a project, can also have reasonable amount of voices.
We don’t want a governance system where everything is decided by only just a few whales, either due to plutocracy itself or due to low voter participation.
System matters, impact matters
We would consider systems that will actually encourage holders, developers and builders alike to participate, develop and build. We don’t consider things to be “working as expected” if it clearly has impact problems, if it clearly discourages participation or brings hostility into the ecosystem.
If certain decisions are made which later turned out to be objectively bad, we don’t blame the voters or say “this was just what the voters wanted”, but we look into the governance system design to see if our incentive mechanism design is wrong. We believe it’s never the voters’ fault, but always the governance system’s fault.
We do not limit ourselves in just Polkadot. We do not constrain our study on what is possible in Polkadot. We look into a range of blockchains, especially those with a different and potentially better governance system, for example, Cardano CIP-1964, Decred, etc. We design the initiative so that it can benefit the entire blockchain ecosystem.