Tell us how you REALLY feel!

The full article was originally published by Soonlabs on Medium. Read the full article here.

The Soonaverse Twitter Poll Recap

Over several days the other week, we polled the IOTA community to gauge opinions on a number of topics impacting the long term operations of the Soonaverse platform. Primarily around some of the most controversial topics of decentralization and DeFi. This article is a summary and exploration of the opinions expressed in those polls.

Question #1: Rebranding the FAB500. What do you think?

Well over half of the respondents felt that a move to something more “branded” was warranted and we agree. We have decided to move forward with this recommendation and will be publishing an updated plan for the Soonanauts SOON!

Question #2 and #3: How many “validators” make a project decentralized?

These two questions shined a light on an important knowledge gap that seems to exist regarding our upcoming EVM release. 86% of the people polled think that all of the upcoming ShimmerEVM projects are centralized. We did a follow up poll and changed “chain validators” to “smart contract” validators (which are the same thing since there are no specialized validators on a single chain) to make sure we were getting an accurate result and it was still a whopping 78%.

To be clear, the upcoming ShimmerEVM will have 12 validators. When Assembly goes live those validators will rotate creating a more decentralized environment for EVM based smart contracts (SCs) on the network, but until then it will be fixed.

These answers made it clear to us that the community is waiting for the IOTA 2.0 end state to declare ourselves “fully decentralized”. We agree with this sentiment 100% and believe everything we are doing is traveling down a path to decentralization, starting steps toward the moment we remove the coordinator and fly.

Question #4: Does using upgradeable Smart Contracts make a project centralized?

SCs are a new topic for the IOTA community, which is why over half of people polled were not aware that some SCs can be upgraded at any moment in time by a small centralized team. Most of these types of SCs have a governance structure managing them, but its important to point out that they exist.

Upgradable SCs have pros and cons. On one side it makes it easier to react to vulnerabilities, so it can act as a kind of insurance. However, on the flipside, it also means the SC is not immutable and can be accessed by bad actors. They can improve bug fixes and allow DAO communities to vote for adjustments and new features, but it also means a single dev or team is able to access or gain unauthorized control. There are different reasons teams use immutable versus upgradable SCs. The important takeaway is that the community needs to learn the differences to establish whether a project is properly prioritizing their concerns (i.e. decentralization, security, etc.).

Question #5: How important is it to have a doxxed team in DeFi?

This was a question that we were really curious about, since it’s something we discuss regularly within our own team. How important is it to have a doxxed founding team in DeFi? SoonLabs started as an anon team and we made the decision to doxx our team as a recognition of the escalating stakes we were operating with as we moved deeper and deeper into categories like DeFi. However, we never took time to gauge what the ecosystem’s overall opinion was of this particular move. Now we know, a little over half agree it’s very important. Almost 26% of the respondents polled saw it as necessary in some situations, over 10% said that no DeFi should be anonymous, and only 13% felt it wasn’t important at all.

It should be noted that nearly every blue chip DeFi protocol (MakerDAO, Uniswap, Compound, Aave, Synthetix, etc.) has a doxxed founding team. There seems to be a trend where true innovators in the space that write code from scratch don’t mind revealing their identity while projects who merely fork these types of protocols tend to be anonymous.

Question #6: Does using cloud (AWS, Azure, etc.) for any part of a dApp (nodes, UI, etc) make it centralized?

We are really glad that the bulk of people polled understands there are no, as in, zero crypto projects that run completely independently of Web2 infrastructure. 70% of ETH nodes run on centralized web services. This is something that we think is important for the almost 40% that want the “all or nothing” dedication to a decentralized system. We simply aren’t in a place where this is possible with the current tech stack.

The Soonaverse is going to be a place where projects of all shapes and sizes will find a home. Some with a dozen founders, some with just one. There will be projects that use upgradable smart contracts, others will choose immutable. There will be anon teams, doxxed teams, and all will have hybrid systems of decentralized and centralized technology. The key to navigating them all and deciding who to support is to remain an educated and informed community. Look deeply into each project and make the right choices on your terms, question their choices, demand information, use your best judgement, and DYOR.

The more we know, the more we can maximize the opportunities we have during the next bull cycle. Let’s be prepared, so we can make the absolute most of it. Thank you to everyone for participating and telling us how you REALLY feel.

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