Compensation Structure for DAO Contributors

Some thoughts:

allocating more/larger work than that for which the bounty program is geared makes sense. There is not much in the bounty area that is a meaningful fit for what I contribute. I look forward to seeing more of the “socket” concept.

Despite living in one of those expensive markets year round (Los Angeles) I tend to agree with both @Cryptocorn and @RawthiL points about the global new economy not being tethered to a location and the value added not being location specific. I am fine in general with not having a COLA

I tend to agree with @h5law sentiment and @RawthiL followon statements regarding staying away from making grants to those already fully employed or otherwise compensated within the ecosystem and rather utilizing task-specific reimbursements for defined contributions that are clearly outside the scope of such a person’s “day job”. But for contributors such as myself with no attachments or compensation within the POKT ecosystem outside of DAO reimbursements or funding, a grant process would go a long way to stabilize involvement and keeping effort focused within the ecosystem instead of elsewhere. Constant wondering if the DAO will come through with reimbursive funding at the end of months of putting in time and effort does not make for the most optimal flow of creative and technical energies. I believe a grant model for such cases would greatly increase efficiency and productivity .

Where there are such grants, making it a “seed” grant with met milestones etc in order to qualify for renewal or continued funding is fine, so long as the process is streamlined and not as onerous as the DAO PEP model often is.

Re @shane 's model, it is a good starting point though I agree with what someone else mentioned about needing a much larger range than the narrow 120-150 currently used for other types of activity. That being said, I’m not sure how practical it is at the end of the day. I incorporated it into my PEP-44 reimbursement request, though somewhat artificially. Meaning that I capped my hours for which I requested reimbursement to 160 hours whereas I probably actually put in 3x the hours over that period. So actual hourly compensation was much less than what shane’s model would suggest, which is fine, because asking 3x would have been a nonstarter. Several already thought the capped ask was too high. Bottom line. Hours put in and skill and expertise represented by those hours are only two pieces of the puzzle . Other pieces of the puzzle are impact of the contribution - as several have mentioned - as well as the uniqueness of the contribution/likelihood that the contribution would have been made by others had the contributor not stepped up. I am sure there are several other such intangibles.

Last, in an ideal world, there is no politics, no personality-driven decision making. Rather, funding - whether reimbursive, imbursive, one-time or recurring - would be based solely on the merits of the contribution (in the case of backward-looking funding requests) and merits of the proposal + past performance in the case of forward-looking funding requests). We as a DAO are not completely there yet. Therefore I welcome process improvements such as “socket” etc that help streamline and remove friction that can and does currently arise within the Pocket DAO.


Maybe not a hiring committee as such, but a ‘soft guidance’ committee (potentially part of GRIP’s remit?) to give a suggestion when there are cases of ambiguity on asking for compensation.

Proposers wouldn’t have to ask for the recommended number, they could still ask for more/less, but it would give some gravitas: ‘GRIP Funding Committee recommended I receive 200k POKT and that is the amount I’m asking for’ as an example.


should’ve asked for more. :stuck_out_tongue:


I’ve suggested oversight committee type structure in the past, and the challenges of evaluating engineering contributions are a driving reason for that. I don’t think that’s GRIP necessarily, but perhaps a similar structure.


Let me rephrase: non-binding committee suggesting an evaluated amount. People can value themselves more or less, but a neutral, repeatable formula or set of standards that can be applied by a third party to offer a ballpark figure.

Although I appreciate we may get into new issues of who’s on the committee and potential for politics etc there.


Love this thread!

Tempted to share more, will double down on a few raised by the community-

  1. Excited to get a glimpse of socket and the RFP process. If bounty is working, why break something that is working!

  2. COLA will be tough to implement for individuals. Should be explored for domiciled companies in the RFP process.

  3. Feel appointed individual (from the PNF) or a committee is the way to go, similar to a “representative democracy” instead of “direct democracy” for each and every decision. The latter may not be scalable.

  4. Budgeting the DAO treasury could be explored; budget allocated to compensation broken down into subcategories such as R&D, RFPs, bounties, abstract projects/innovations, etc. Helps build structure and do better treasury management.

Didn’t see it in the PNF Roadmap. Maybe @Dermot can guide.

  1. Hiring full time employees for the DAO appears debatable but what about proactive annual/quarterly planning of where DAO needs to spend, budget and then seek out resources (from the community or outside). Take a proactive approach instead of reactive and passive.

#4 and #5 are related.

  1. POKT Samaritans can be rewarded quarterly for great community service- chosen by the “representative individual or body”.

  2. As a newcomer/quasi outsider, I see subjectivity, non-standardisation, emotions, politics (possibly) in the funding related posts (not all). While those may not be totally avoidable, how can we move the needle towards structure, standardisation and objectivity.

  3. They key word is “meritocracy;” I suggest it be embraced as one of the core values.

Wondering what the next steps are @Jinx (since you created this post) & @b3n . Or maybe @shane.

Wait for socket, RFP process, DNA results to unfold?

I think there is soft consensus around changes (wherever needed) and putting harder structures in place.


I have one major issue with this:

That Caeser is describing himself as a ‘newcomer’ :-). He is now one of the most active members of our community, and we should recognise him as such.

Otherwise, I largely agree with all that he said: Point 3: I’d suggest a 3 person committee instead of a single individual.


I’d love to work with you and various other DAO members to hash out a fair compensation system.


Did someone say GRIP? :slight_smile:


I thought I just love to rant but thank you sir :wink:

A committee or a body sounds fine as long as its representative and upholds meritocracy by adhering to the rulebook that gets created prior.

However, I would be cautious centralising decision-making in one body just because it exists. There can be multiple bodies empowered by the community for different tasks/agendas. That also gives opportunities to new community members with diverse backgrounds to participate in such committees.

We have a long way to go :slight_smile:


Maybe a member of GRIP, a member of PNF and a member of PNI (or DAO appointed representative?) Funding + stewardship could come under GRIP. A 3 person team re-elected each year?

These would be non-binding recommendations for compensation.


Here is a useful article by Token Terminal (big fan!!) that breaks down the DAO budgets at Maker, Lido & SushiSwap.

Maybe Pocket DAO should aspire to produce budget dashboards at some point. :thinking: Still a rarity in the space.

They hire FTEs (Full Time Equivalents) btw.

Always good to know what the big boys are doing, thought of sharing.


Yeah, one of the people needs to be an engineer for sure. Measuring things like complexity, quality, impact with code contributions is one of the more difficult aspects of valuing those proposals.


Agreed. See below.

I would oppose scope creep for GRIP. It was put together and budgeted for a specific mission. Keep it to that mission and populate any new functionality needed separate from and without reference to GRIP.

IF we end up going that direction I would nominate @poktblade to such a role



Interesting. What type of community service? And is the “representative individual or body” the same one that would help determine appropriate budgets?


Bringing @shane 's comment here since it’s relevant:


Yeah, wasn’t sure where to post it :sweat_smile: It’s very relevant to here as well.

A code review crew would be great with just ensuring reimbursements are fair. The IMPACT a contribution had in driving ecosystem value can be measured separately with different metrics all-together.

Love to hear more thoughts.


Given @deblasis 's comment on the other post, I found this notable as well:

I think the EVA idea is interesting, and would think everyone who shows up on these lists could potentially be eligible.


Complex Budget Calculations

We don’t want GRIP creep. At the same time, however, part of GRIP’s mandate as per PEP-45 is to use its expertise to help technical proposal drafters determine appropriate compensation:

Accordingly, it makes total sense for GRIP to play a role in budget assessment. I like Cryptocorn’s idea of a three-person committee: GRIP member, PNF member and a DAO-appointed representative. For small asks, I don’t see anything untoward or controversial about GRIP providing a budget assessment on its own. After all, that 's part of GRIP’s mandate. But I do agree that for large funding requests (and at the contributor’s request, for smaller ones too), the assessment should be done by a committee (including the GRIP member).

Centralisation and issues of “who’s on the committee” are valid concerns in regards to decision making, but much less so if the committee merely suggests a budget and lets the proposal author decide. However, to allay what concerns may exist, the DAO member could rotate among a roster of qualified individuals who get compensated for their participation. Also, the GRIP technical specialist could change from time to time.


Before Pocket, I had never come across this word.

The proposal template is being revised: here’s the related Google Doc (feel free to add comments). “Imbursements,” for clarity, may be replaced by “Advance Pay.” While surprisingly “imbursement” is an actual word, as Jinx notes, it does not mean “advance payment.” See the Wikipedia entry.

DAO Treasurer?

I strongly agree. A Treasurer? Convert some POKT to stables, perhaps U.S. dollars and invest. What are other DAOs doing?

Fiscal Prudence

Interesting idea. We definitely need to factor diminishing DAO reserves due to inflation cuts into our spending decisions.


Please read the excerpt from @RawthiL 's post

There was something very similar from @Cryptocorn in some other post of his about educating the community, answering their questions on a consistent basis.

I agree that we should generously reward good actors from the community volunteering their personal time towards the project, as long as there is no other way he/she is getting compensated for the same work.

It’s an incentive to drive good and responsible behaviour, and also increase community time of many qualified actors.

So the suggestion is to put this under “Rewards Program” that we don’t have yet.

  • Fix a budget
  • Fix a number (3-5 POKT Samaritans per quarter)
  • Put a criteria in place
  • Announce/Advertise to the community

The above is just an outline, the mechanics such as who selects the samaritans and others can be worked out once we decide to go ahead with the plan.