Should DReps have a vote saturation limit?

It’s anticipated there will be 5k-10k DReps during bootstrapping, and more beyond that.

There is a concern that large amount of delegations will pool to a small set of DReps, maybe even 25 or less. Youtubers, Founders, Whales, MPOs, etc. We all love these folks (including me), so why not!

Does it make sense to limit how much delegation a DRep can receive, similar to SPO limits?

The saturation limit would not apply if you control the keys to a wallet and represent yourself.

Only for delegation of voting power.



I’ve thought of this, but haven’t had time to really think about it, so I’m glad someone is (and opening it up for discussion…)

In fact, the more I think about it, the more I’m convinced that being a DRep (one accepting delegation from others) should absolutely work a lot like a stake pool does… I mean, voting is finding consensus, just like producing blocks is… So a lot of the mechanics for one do seem to make sense for the other…

Still though, haven’t had time to really think about it, but I hope this sparks the conversation, so those who do have the time and are thinking about all this and driving it will at least consider the idea that delegating your vote and delegating your stake are much more similar than they are different…

And, again, I’m going to shamelessly plug my post (since it still hasn’t gotten any traction on its own yet) about slashing the rewards (to whatever degree) of wallets whose ADA is not participating in governance… Non-participation makes you a ‘bad governance actor’ and should be punished the same way a ‘bad block producer’ is… Or if not that, then we need any active/direct incentive (just like we have for staking) to get voters to participate, otherwise they won’t


One problem I see with putting a limit on DRep voting power is that it, in a way, is compromising your free right to delegate your vote how you see fit. Or, it is unfairly limiting your righteous voting power, if your DRep gets over-saturated and therefore your vote counts for less.

I do think voting is fundamentally different to staking.

We all understand that staking is important for proper functioning of the protocol. It is important that stake is distributed across many stake pools and that these pools are widely distributed across the world. These things are important for decentralisation and resilience against attacks or censorship. Consequently it is a good idea to limit the amount of tokens that can be staked to one particular pool for the good of the protocol. Furthermore, I would argue that there should be limits placed across geographical regions, but this is not the case currently in Cardano staking.

On the other hand, voting is about freedom to choose a direction the community should go in the future. I think if limits were placed on DRep voting power then this could result in people being forced to accept “second best” choices. Or it could force other DReps to form to meet demand, and these may not be as good, in the minds of the voters, as their preferred DRep.

I believe it will be quite easy to, delegate to / undelegate from, a particular DRep. So these DReps may become somewhat like single issue votes for a series of similar governance issues. For example, if there is a series of votes about a particular issue that involves some deep understanding, then it might be preferred by many to delegate to a DRep which represents their interests, because they lack the time to properly understand the intricacies. After these votes are completed, these people may then choose to undelegate from this DRep. I don’t think this sort of liquid delegation mechanism should be limited.

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