Introducing Boost: governance rewards made easy

Did you know that the average voter turnout in DAOs is alarmingly low, often dipping below 20%? This lack of engagement, known as voter apathy, threatens the very essence of decentralized governance. Introducing Boost: a direct response to this challenge. It incentivizes members to vote on proposals by offering rewards, making participation not only a duty but also a rewarding experience.

Boost is a protocol and a new feature in beta on Snapshot, crafted to drive voter participation in specific proposals by offering ERC-20 token rewards. It allows anyone to enhance a proposal with rewards for voters, setting the stage for increased engagement. Traditional airdrops typically offer only temporary spikes in engagement. Boost encourages active participation, a method similar to what big DAOs like Optimism and Uniswap are looking into or using.

By incentivizing active participation, Boost adopts a strategy similar to approaches considered or used by leading DAOs such as.

How does it work?

Through Boost, creators can choose how rewards are distributed and specify eligibility criteria to give voters the right incentives to participate.

Boost a proposal

Anyone can create a Boost directly from a proposal’s page by deciding on three parameters:

1. Reward

The first step in creating a Boost is to decide on the token to be used and the amount to deposit. These tokens are deposited in the Boost smart contract for distribution to eligible voters.

2. Distribution

Second, select the reward distribution method. Using the “Lottery” distribution, you can define a number of voters that will be randomly selected, the voters with more voting power get more chances to win, with an option to cap probabilities for fairness. The “Proportional” distribution the rewards aligns with voting power — the greater your voting power, the larger your share of the rewards, there is also an option to set a cap to ensures no single voter can take too much of the rewards.

Boost is continually evolving to better serve DAOs and their communities with varied distribution strategies. If you envision a new approach or have suggestions for improvements, we welcome collaboration. Feel free to develop and propose your own strategy to enhance how rewards are distributed.

3. Eligibility

Finally, set eligibility criteria: decide to reward all voters to encourage broad participation, or specifically reward those voting for a certain outcome.

Note that the latter option, more commonly known as bribes, can be abused and have a negative impact on governance. This is the reason we only recommend this option for specific use cases, like deciding on how liquidity mining rewards should be distributed. By default this option will be disabled and can only be enabled by a DAO in the space settings.

Collect rewards

Voters can engage with a Boost by performing two key actions:

1. Vote

By voting on a proposal, voters become potentially eligible for its Boost rewards.

2. Claim rewards

After the voting period ends, voters who meet the eligibility criteria can claim their rewards.

Join the beta!

Boost is on its way to becoming available for all spaces on Snapshot. If you're ready to address voter apathy and make governance more engaging in your DAO, we invite you to join us. Complete this form to be part of this exciting journey.

To further validate Boost's effectiveness, we are collaborating with Eliza Oak from Yale University and a16z crypto on research to empirically document how giving token rewards increases DAO participation. If you're interested in participating and want to learn more, you can find additional details in this article.

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