DYdX DeFi Grants Renewal Proposal Spurs Polarized Community Discussion

Nearly 90% of voters favor the grants proposal, but many in the community pointed out controversial limitations.

AccessTimeIconFeb 10, 2023 at 1:09 p.m. UTC
Updated Feb 10, 2023 at 4:29 p.m. UTC

An ongoing proposal on decentralized exchange (DEX) platform dYdX that seeks the renewal of its decentralized finance (DeFi) grants program is seeing mixed community reactions.

The grants program aims to support the growth and development of the broader DeFi community that contributes to dYdX. Selected projects were provided with funding, resources and developer support and grants ranged from $10,000 to $100,000.

The ongoing vote has 90% of voters in favor of a grants renewal. (dYdX)
The ongoing vote has 90% of voters in favor of a grants renewal. (dYdX)

“Since the release of [version] 4 is currently scheduled for Q2 2023, we don’t think it makes much sense to launch dYdX grants proposal (DGP) 2.0 now,” developers wrote in the governance proposal. “Instead, as part of this proposal, we recommend using DGP v1.5’s remaining budget to continue operating the program until the timing is ready for DGP 2.0."

“For now, due to conservative operations, the DGP still has plenty of funds to continue operating without needing a top-up from the community. As of this writing, the program has ~$2,700,000, which consists of ~$2,170,000 worth of DYDX and ~$530,000 worth of USDC,” developers said.

The renewal of the grants program is part of dYdX's ongoing efforts to support the growth and development of its popular trading protocol, which holds over $392 million in total locked value (TVL) as of Friday.

The proposal suggests making changes to the operational budget such as monthly compensation paid to trustees and grant leads, as well as reducing the overall number of multisigs from eight entities to just five.

Multisignature, commonly referred to as multisig, requires more than one signatory to authorize or sign transactions for any smart contract digitally.

So far, the program has funded 62 grants for a total of $2.1 million in funding in categories such as tooling, marketing and education, and community-led initiatives. It is open to projects of all sizes, from early-stage startups to established DeFi projects.

Divided community responses

The dYdX community had mixed opinions about the ongoing proposal. The community was mostly in favor of renewing the grant but flagged several limitations they had observed or experienced.

“Despite the successes that the program has had, I cannot support its continuation in its current form due to the severe lack of accountability and transparency,” wrote aluchard.eth, a community member.

“In my opinion, the grants team has added nothing but red tape to the process by unnecessarily restricting funding, haggling constantly with key team players, and attempting to replace team members that are performing to the required standard at the mid-late stages in the project,” they added, with the comments gained eight upvotes as of Friday.

Some members complained about the long wait times required to get a response from the team, as well as object to the “exaggerated salary” paid to Reverie, the grants lead at dYdX, who currently receives $70,000 a month in compensation.

Others members were more supportive, however.

“Our experience with the grants program has been largely a pleasant one,” wrote Max Holloway of Xenophon Labs, which received a grant. “We have been afforded the opportunity to work on projects that touch modules with high commercial impact, and we have generally been treated with respect and professionalism by the grants program.”


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Shaurya Malwa

Shaurya is the Deputy Managing Editor for the Data & Tokens team, focusing on decentralized finance, markets, on-chain data, and governance across all major and minor blockchains.

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