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Is your favorite DAO really a DAO?
The Tally Newsletter, Issue 90
Welcome back to the Tally Newsletter, a weekly publication focused on DeFi and DAO governance. We’ll keep you updated on key proposals, procedural changes, newly launched voting systems, and shifting power dynamics in the Tally ecosystem. We’ll also recommend the most important reads and listens of the week to ensure you’re an informed citizen of web3.
I’m coolhorsegirl, a DeFi native excited to bring you the latest, weekly. With prior experience at Index Coop and across the DeFi ecosystem, I’m interested in DAO governance and general DeFi innovation aimed at maximizing decentralization.
This week, we’re looking into one of the hottest public goods in web3 of 2023: DAOmeter. DAOmeter puts the “D” in DAO to the test, giving onlookers insight into which DAOs to support and DAOs insight into what to improve. Exciting, potentially drama-starting, stuff. We’ll also run through a few proposals, this week all from Nouns and its offshoots (incl. but not limited to sponsoring a doco for a wheelchair stuntman). Here we go…
🤿 Deep Dive: Is your favorite DAO really a DAO?
The reality is this: The “D” in DAO is often (how do I put this..?) a HUGE lie. Or at the very least, a massive exaggeration of the truth. But in the absence of well-defined principles and guidelines for developing and managing DAOs, it’s hard to tell which DAOs are truly decentralized. The days of subtweeting fake DAOs are over - we now have a public good-y, open-source way of determining which DAOs are really DAOs.
StableLab has dropped DAOmeter: “an industry-first rating system offering deep insights and transparency into the rapidly growing world of DAOs.” Prefer the TL;DR? Check out this thread. If you want the full rundown, let’s dive in.
Essentially, DAOmeter is an evaluation framework for DAOs regarding their DAOness. They call this “maturity”—“a DAO's ability to operate effectively and sustainably over the long term,” a crucial metric of which is “the application of decentralized governance mechanisms.” DAOmeter measures 30 sub-categories across six foundational categories —community, treasury, voting, proposals, security, and documentation.
Founded on the fact that “while transparency is a fundamental principle of Web3, it's not always upheld in practice,” DAOmeter will objectively, and quantitatively identify strengths and shortcomings of DAOs. Benefactors are two-sided: DAOmeter aims to help users make informed decisions about which DAOs to support while helping DAOs see what areas they need to improve in order to become more mature.
Diving into the scoring is pretty interesting, too. I spent a few hours in there. An interesting takeaway: With delegation on the rise (see: Aribtrum), DAOs are still skirting around compensating them, among contributors on the whole. Maker’s famous “We pay delegates” is just one of the reasons they’re the most DAOy DAO on the list, thus far.
As of now, 11 DAOs have been reviewed, with MakerDAO leading the way at 97% followed by ShapeShift at 82% and Aave at 77%. Lower down the list is Uniswap at 69% and SushiSwap at 63%. Anyone can request a DAO be reviewed, free of charge. So get after it with requests!—It’s about time we have a way to objectively score DAOs.
⌛️ On-chain Proposals
On-chain DAOs are decentralized autonomous organizations that operate entirely on the blockchain, using smart contracts and other blockchain-based technologies for its operations and decision-making processes. Tally believes that true DAOs operate on-chain.
Summary: Use the new Autobidder to bid on Nouns auctions. Here’s how it works: Instead of submitting bids manually, the AutoBidder provides incentives for anyone to submit a bid on behalf of the DAO. When submitting a bid, the contract will refund the caller's gas and pay them a tip in ETH. Once auction is won, the Noun can be withdrawn and sent to the treasury. Cool, right?
Voting ends: March 31st
Summary: A classic Nounish proposal. ~$156k to fund a 5-7 minute documentary that follows Wheelz's journey to do the world’s first triple back flip in a wheelchair, sponsored by Nouns. Doco will be minted as an NFT with profits split between Nouns and the Life Rolls On charity.
Voting ends: March 31st
Summary: $226,425 in USDC to bring the Nouns Fair and Nouns Prize to six ETHGlobal IRL hackathons. Already successful at Mexico City, Bogota, and San Francisco—next up, Lisbon?!
Voting ends: March 27th
Summary: 10 ETH to make Nouns DAO a Title Partner of W3BSTOCK NYC. With it, all the sponsorship necessities: parties, merch, member passes, and even a specialty cocktail on the menu.
Voting ends: April 2nd
📝 10 Things To Read or Listen To
Article: “The Age of AI has begun” by Bill Gates
Article: “Gitcoin DAO to add post-vote “reconsider” option to governance process” by Saudu Clement
Article: “Introducing DAOmeter: Maturity Standards for DAOs” by Victoria Berger
Article: “Due to SEC Inaction, Registration is Not a Viable Path for Crypto Projects” by Rodrigo Seira, Justin Slaughter, Katie Biber
Article: “Public Goods and New Ownership Models Will Shape the Internet’s Future” by Azeem Khan
Article: “Thinking about Rage Quit” by Deepfried Horse
Thread: “A Tale of Two Layer-2s” by Ryan Holloway
Podcast: “How Gnosis Has Endured” from gm by Decrypt
Podcast: “0 to 1 Coordination Games w. Ameen Soleimani” from GreenPill
💫 DAO Talk: Arbitrum DAO Launch || DT Interviews #35
🤭 Meme of the Week
On Tally, Arbitrum delegates are looking freeeeesh. Since token launch less than a week ago, 211.79M ARB tokens have been delegated thus far. Heard of delegation but not quite sure how it works or why you’d do it? Check out this thread. Anyway, onward forward—increasing decentralization, one L2 at a time!
p.s.- This week, I’m proudly presenting a passion project of mine: an evaluation of every bubble tea place I’ve ever been to. Tea, boba, receptacle, and even ambiance—all factor into the total score. The screenshot below is just a taste — check out the whole thing, and let me know what you think.