PEP-16: Universal Contributor Income


  • Author(s): @JackALaing
  • Recipient(s): Contributors
  • Category: Allocation of Future DAO Revenue
  • Related Installments: PIP-8
  • Asking Amount: 20% of Future DAO Revenue


At the moment, the only way that Contributors can get paid by the DAO is by submitting grant proposals to fund their work retroactively. This means that contributing to the DAO requires taking on a fair amount of risk and opportunity cost. I believe that distributing a fixed % of future DAO revenue on a monthly basis would provide Contributors with more stability and ultimately engage more Contributors overall. To start with, the distribution of this revenue would be determined by Coordinape.


Provide Contributors with more stability so that more of our community can engage at that deeper level.


  • 20% of future DAO revenue would be paid monthly to Contributors. If my math is correct, last month this would have been a total of 221k POKT being distributed.
  • The distribution of this monthly payment will be determined by the distribution that Coordinape’s P2P tipping system generates.
  • Payments would be made via wPOKT to integrate more seamlessly with Coordinape and minimize transaction bloat on the native Pocket blockchain. This would mean we can’t make payouts until wPOKT live but we will be able to keep a record of how much is due to be paid out and to who.


  • Incentive Alignment: by giving Contributors a fixed % of future DAO revenue, we tie Contributor payouts to the number of relays in the network, which alignes everyones incentives around the core objective of growing the network.
  • Frictionless Allocation: Coordinape determines payment allocations continuously based on P2P tipping decisions by members of a Coordinape Gift Circle, which will be far more dynamic and frictionless than discrete grant proposals.

Dissenting Opinions

  • 20% may be considered too much. If people feel this way, we could start with a smaller % and increase it as the number of Contributors increases and the system is tested out.


  • Coordinape is easy to use and works out of the box.
  • wPOKT is not live yet, so we would need to keep track of monthly distributions until wPOKT is live.


  • Start using Coordinape per PIP-8.
  • Implement monthly payments when wPOKT is live, with the specific tooling (e.g. Gnosis Safe) depending on whichever is most easy to use in combination with Coordinape.


Copyright and related rights waived via CC0.


I support this PEP. I think that the guarantied payment to Contributors will attract lots of more developers which will help develop the ecosystem and set a precedent for funding good work. It also increases decentralization of the network because there will be more contributors outside of PNF/PNI.

1 Like

I support this proposal.

A couple of caveats:

  • Obviously, the Coordinapes proposal would need to be passed. In researching that system, there were concerns voiced that the reward mechanism favors people who have been rewarded in previous cycles, and that it could lead to gaming of the system by insider cliques who pass rewards back and forth to each other. I’d like to see how this will be mitigated, but will comment more on PIP-8.

  • I would like to see some sort of taxonomization of contributions with potential multipliers. For instance, “funny Pocket memes” might generate a number of Coordinapes tips due to comedic effect and general goodwill, but is not as valuable to the mission of Pocket as a core update PR which addresses a serious security issue. A tier system which uses a multiplier based on DAO priorities may address this, and I’m open to other suggestions.

I have a lot of :heart: for this proposal

Coordinape is a fantastic tool for both DAO administrators and contributors. It’s fun to use and have a say about what your fellow contributors should receive for their impact in the previous period.

My only initial hesitation is around the quantum per month.

20% of DAO revenue per month seems like the right sum intuitively in the medium term when there are 20-30+ (or hopefully many more) active contributors. It seems to be too high initially though.

For example, how many outside contributors would we expect to include in the first epoch? And what kind of work do we want to reward/incentivise?

Could we agree this proposal, but on the basis that the monthly (or whatever length of time we choose) pot that this will be reviewed based on the number of contributors and the overall impact that they’re providing?

This could be delegated to a new remuneration committee / multisig to review and report back to the community on using some of the “constrained delegation” ideas on Yearn’s Gov v2 framework.


Reposting according to @Jinx 's reccomendations

1 Like

I was wondering if awards could be

  1. Based on the difference in reputation through a period - mitigating this reward the rewarded.
  2. Vested or delayed. Creates long term incentive alignment as well as allows for a negative reputation to remove rewards that would have otherwise been distributed.

For this see my comments on “Value the demonstration of the Values”

1 Like

I don’t expect to see this proposal updated with a specific taxonomic system, but I would love it if @JackALaing was able to update it to include a reference regarding tiered rewards if it’s both feasible with Coordinape, and a generally agreed upon requirement. I share @Patrick727 and @Dermot 's desire to make sure that rewards flow to where they are most valuable, and a flat economic system doesn’t allow for internal weighting of the value contributed.

I would like to specifically exclude public short form content like memes and tweets, as we can reward useful/successful content of that nature directly via PR initiatives like some of the proposed content reward models.

I think I would propose the following categories and multipliers:

  • Documentation - This would include updates to Pocket technical documentation, long form tutorial blog posts or videos, and other similar content: 1x multiplier.

  • Population - Broad scale PR/Partnership efforts which result in a notable increase in Pocket Wallets, Nodes, and Relays: 3x multiplier.

  • Innovation - A significant improvement to the Pocket ecosystem via a direct contribution to Pocket Core, or supporting Pocket tooling (projects like Poktscan, Poktwatch, Sandcrawler, etc.): 5x multiplier.

Obviously, this structure reflects my own perspective and priorities for Pocket, so I offer it only as a starting point for further conversation on relative weighted values.

1 Like

@Jinx @Patrick727 the good thing about having the voting coming from other contributors is contributors are by nature much more level headed than the majority of the community. I’ve worked in a DAO where my paycheck was indeed paid by the DAO each month via a vote… and when you are in that kind of environment, no-one likes to give flashy contributors free rides. You undermine your own value if you allow others to get paid for less substantial value add. By nature contributors are the least likely to be easily swayed.

The contributors are the closest ones to the productivity of the project, and with that comes a perspective and they will require a lot more convincing to just give resources to those who do not produce value.

While theoretically it sounds like it’s gameable in this manner, it wouldn’t play out like that. Contributors in a DAO are the least likely to be fooled out of the entire system. Because contributors are the voters here, that is why I actually agree with this. If it was down to solely community voting on each contributor, I would not want to go down that road again. It is terrible :joy:


I think Shane nailed it here. The power of Coordinape is that it empowers those closest to the decisions to decide on the impact they view as the most valuable to the community. They don’t vote on everyone, just those they viewed as contributing, or worth enough of their limited number of “Give” tokens for that period.

You only get into a system like coordinape once you are “vouched” for, ie you align with the values and we expect you to be additive to the culture, so I see Coordinape more as a reflection of our culture, not necessarily the way to embody it.

Community members directly recognising each other’s contributions should lead to a more cohesive and productive community. The anecdotal evidence from the Yearn, Gitcoin and Bankless DAO communities would suggest that this is true.

Boots on the ground will always be much better at calibrating in real-time the activities that are most valuable to the community. I’m really excited by more localised decision making in Pocket. The alternative is a static system of categories and multipliers that may have to be updated and voted on every month or two to stay relevant. It’s scary to give up control, but we can only see the true power of the DAO once we do so.

The Coordinape system will need to be calibrated to best reflect the shape and culture of Pocket’s community. This relates to questions around the size of the pot, the length of each epoch, the dispute system in the event that anyone feels undervalued, and so on.

To respond to one point - I don’t expect insiders to just vote each other up as that will all be very transparent and will lead to a discussion if community members believe someone - or some class - is getting rewarded unfairly. Behaviour like this would justify getting kicked out of the contributor circle IMO, particularly as trust is at the heart of this mechanism. And without it, the vouching system and everything connected to it won’t work.

I see the ideas around Universal Contributor Income as an open experiment that we all have the opportunity to contribute to and help make it a success. Although, I really like Coordinape. I’m not wedded to it as the platform of choice. I most care about the change in direction towards a more empowered community with decisions made by those closest to the matters at hand.

To go back to the points from @Patrick727 - our values are signals that guide the way. They help us in our decision making processes - what to prioritise, who to hire, what trade-offs to weight- and ultimately attract and retain our community. They are essential to the intrinsic motivations that power the Pocket community. They also influence the how, what we all do in practice - our culture. I really like the incredible work done by the core Pocket team to define and embed the current values. And I’m also looking forward to see how the growing community of (Poktopusses??) help shape and evolve these values over time.

As a starting point on Pocket’s journey to true decentralisation, I believe that empowering Pocket’s contributors to decide what impact they value most is incredibly in line with many of Pocket’s currently stated values:

Be undeniable - it doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from as long as you (love me - sorry those lyrics just came to my head :grimacing::joy:) do the work. Make an impact, however big or small, and get rewarded. If your fellow contributors don’t value your work then that can be pushed up the chain to see if the kind of work in question actually lends itself more to a formal contract with a fixed role and set of responsibilities, instead of the looser role of a DAO contributor.

Celebrate open source - open source works so well because it’s bottoms up - why not the same for a rewards structure?


Great comments by everyone have resolved any concerns I have.


@JackALaing @Jinx I had brought it up before in the Treasury diversification proposal. One way of doing this will be to use KPI options. They can’t be gamed and could be rewarded to active community members through a tier-based system based on the contribution. These can be redeemable based on the extent of the underlying metrics having been achieved.
Rather than paying DAO revenue to the contributors, KPI options could be paid which would have a certain value based on the redemption metrics. The risk and the opportunity cost can be pre-defined with a base value for the redemption of the options. It can lead to contribution and drive the entire community together.

1 Like