Talking About Governance Voting In The Cosmos Ecosystem
Governance voting is one of the most important features for both delegators and validators in the Cosmos ecosystem. Staking your tokens in an IBC blockchain gives you stake weighted governance voting over those blockchains. Voting is how changes are made and deployed, so it is important to keep up to date with what is happening with your investments.
Unlike common stocks, which don't really get you any say so in what a company does, tokens in a Proof of Stake (PoS) or Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS) systems, token holders have a say so in what happens on the blockchain. Not only can you vote, but you can also submit governance proposals to be voted on!
First off, a quick note, that anyone is able to submit a governance proposal on any of the IBC blockchains, but there is a fee that you will have to pay to submit it. Different chains have different costs for submitting proposals. This keeps people from spamming the chain with useless governance votes.
So let's get into it...
Voting As A Validator
Voting on proposals is one of the most important jobs as a validator. Like we discussed in this article, a validator has the job of being a representative for delegators, who are people that stake their tokens with validators.
Most people delegate thinking that it's just a way to earn more tokens, which it is, but it also gives the validator more voting power in that blockchain. This is why it is extremely important to delegate your staked tokens to a validator that cares about the ecosystem and works hard to help secure the chain and to provide these up to date governance votes. Like we said in the linked post, it's a validators job, just like congress, to vote on these governance proposals, helping to drive the democratic process of the blockchains. If a validator is not doing their job, delegators can do one of two things, they can move their stake to another validator, or they can take action and vote with their own power, removing that power, for that one vote from the validator. That is what we are going to get more into now...
Voting As A Delegator
So as we discussed, a delegator is someone who holds tokens and stakes them with a validator. In the real world, that is the average citizen putting in a vote for their area's representative.
Once big difference in blockchain governance versus the malarky we have going on in governments across the world, is that delegators can vote on proposals themselves in spite of their validator.
What this means, like discussed in the previous section is that someone can use their own vote instead of just leaving it up to the validator. When you vote yourself, it takes that staked power away from the validator for just that one vote. So if you don't agree on a proposal and your validator votes yes, you can vote no and override them.
In this section we are going to go over the voting responses that you have to choose from for each governance proposal.
This one should be pretty obvious. A YES vote on a governance proposal means you agree with the proposal and you want to see it passed, whatever it may be. It is important to read the proposals and any attached documents so you understand what you are voting on.
This is another obvious choice. If you do not agree with the vote and do not want to see it passed, then you can select the NO option to vote against the proposal.
NO With VETO
This one is a bit different than just your regular, garden variety NO vote. This one means that not only do you not agree with the proposal, but the idea is that this is a vote that if passed, you plan to leave the chain either as a validator or a delegator. This means you really do not agree with this proposal and you want nothing to do with the chain anymore if it passes. Basically you are going to take your ball and go home.
The abstain vote means that you do not feel one way or the other and you are basically sitting this one out. It is still a vote, but not everyone will always have a strong feeling one way or the other. Validators will use this at times for very controversial proposals that they don't want to take sides on, same with delegators, but it is slightly more meaningful for validators to vote abstain. In most cases they don't want to rock the boat and upset their delegator base, as a preservation move.
In these cases, it is up to the delegators to voice their opinions and use their vote if they feel strongly one way or the other.
Blockchain governance voting is an experiment in governance overall. Basically taking real world governance ideas, but giving the people more power and say over those votes. This is extremely important for many reasons. One it keeps the development teams accountable, as well as the validators.
Unlike in the US congress, if a turd of a politician is voted in, then you have to wait at least 2 years as a representative and 6 years as a senator to vote them out, in blockchain governance, you can take your voting power away or just simply move your delegation to a validator that aligns more with your values! Those that truly want to see their blockchain succeed are highly active in governance.
As we are seeing now more than ever in the global unrests due to unchecked governance, we hope that this experiment can run into the main arenas as the old guards start to either get voted out or age out of power. This is why it is important to review proposals and submit your vote as you would want to see fit!
We hope this guide has helped you see the importance of governance in the Cosmos ecosystem, as well as any other proof of stake, or delegated proof of stake systems like Hive (although the setup is a little different than IBC governance, it's the same concept). Here's to a better world through blockchain voting!
We Are carbonZERO
carbonZERO is a full service, eco-conscious validator node operator for the Cosmos ecosystem, providing infrastructure for several blockchain in the Cosmos ecosystem. We run top of the line bare metal servers, utilizing 64GB RAM, 1TB NVMe SSDs, and 8-core / 16-thread CPUs. Our node architecture consists of frontline sentry nodes for ultimate security. Future plans for additional security & performance include implementing threshold signer nodes, as well as additional sentry and RPC nodes.
Stake your $CMDX, $ROWAN, $HUAHUA, $CRBRUS, and $NOM with carbonZERO using our Restake app! You can also visit the Staking page on Coin Logic and click the chain you want to delegate and it will take you directly to our delegation page!
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