Name: John_TotalValue_Locke (nicknames: JTVL, Johnny_TVL, John, TVL)
TG username: @TVLocke
I have read and understood the Delegate process: yes.
I understand that becoming a delegate is a significant commitment: yes.
My commitment to my delegates:
- Liveliness: I will participate in at least 50% of the weekly voting blocks each month.
- Communication: I will be engaged in key debates/issues and communicate clearly my positioning and reasoning for those key votes.
- Principled: I will do my best to be consistent in my voting and guiding principles so delegates can have confidence on how their voting power is being used.
- Honesty: Disclaimers and conflicts will be shared early and often. Whether economic or simply biases I am aware of.
My reasons for wanting to be a delegate:
Purpose of a Delegate in DAOs: “Elected” leader in a hyperfluid democracy. Hyperfluid means you can change your vote at any time. Democracy because anyone can try to aggregate votes and anyone with votes can direct them as they choose.
I’m a big fan of the protocol and community. I have relationships from covering the DAO/protocol over the last 18 months. I have the utmost respect for the way they have led, built, and generally operated.
Believer in the product.
Have expertise in the product and space.
My belief on Delegates: They should be issue-driven, not voting-power driven. Meaning, unlike today’s elected officials, delegates should not pander to their voting power. In my mind, the best outcome is when delegates share their views and voters can decide if they are aligned. Often voters may (and probably wisely so) claim some ignorance on the matter and trust their delegates. Other times they may disagree and change their delegation. Lovely outcomes, both.
So, why do I want to be a delegate? Well, if Trit hadn’t reached out to me I wouldn’t be pursuing it. As has been discussed, it is a rather thankless job; if you do well you have simply done your job and if you do something unpopular you get lambasted. It doesn’t pay. With Balancer, specifically, it can be a lot of work. And it adds complexity via conflict of interest (more on that below). Lastly, it certainly requires some ego to be willing or wanting to take on responsibility.
What’s the upside? The primary reason for me is because I think I will learn a lot. Per Teddy Roosevelt, I think there is great experience from being the man in the arena. Secondary is because I think I will enjoy it - smart people often debating complex topics. I have some experience writing about complex topics and breaking down the trade-offs, it is an exercise I enjoy. There is a lot of busy work mixed in, which I can cover confidently. Lastly, I want Balancer to succeed. Both for crypto, for the community, and for my bags (which I must admit, are somewhat diversified).
My view on Fernando’s vision for Balancer:
First of all, wow. I first read this over a year ago but re-reading it now, it’s incredible just how visionary of an outlook this was. It is certainly still relevant today.
This actually has me thinking that it might be good to reach out Fernando to talk about his perspective on the execution of this vision over the last ~2 years and perhaps some updates if there are any.
My focus for Balancer, quite aligned with my answer to the next prompt about my interests, balances Balancer’s clients or the users of the protocol, the ecosystem of builders on top/alongside Balancer, and the positive-sum funding mechanism that is Balancer’s tokenomics.
- To me, clients/users come first. I subscribe to the great thinking of others that recommends that great organizations should to be client-focussed, especially young ones. Who are Balancer’s clients? LPs and traders, of course. Traders want liquidity and efficient trading mechanisms to exchange assets as cheaply as possible. LPs want the best risk-reward value proposition for depositing assets and earning a yield on them.
- This is also where Fernando’s vision can be incorporated, which is unique to web3: Builder should be considered as clients. Certainly they have their own end-users in mind, but where possible, Balancer should listen to and work with teams who are using Balancer’s product to build their own. If we can help them succeed, we win too.
- The clients’ needs inform product. Balancer product innovation should be aimed at making it cheaper to trade or a better value prop to provide liquidity, also considering more nuanced needs from external teams.
- The DAO manages resource allocation, risk, and inflation allocation.
- Resource Allocation: the DAO earns revenues from product usage. How those are spent and managed is the primary concern of the DAO. Options include: direct distribution (currently where 65% of revenue is allocated), grants funding, operations, marketing, legal entity, etc. Not surprisingly, these are often the most contentious debates in the forums.
- Risk: the DAO controls which pools can have gauges, limits on rewards to those gauges, and other key parameters, as well as multisig and protocol changes.
- Inflation Allocation: This responsibility has largely been commoditized by bribe markets, but it is still a responsibility of the DAO. BIP-19 is a good example of how the DAO can try to affect this game.
- A final note on the DAO: Aura has become a very large and important part of decision making. I will be reaching out to their DAO as well to volunteer for delegation, as I believe the alignment of the two protocols and communities should be nearly 1:1. So far, the partnership has been symbiotic and productive and with the current people involved there is no reason to think it won’t continue to be this way.
In sum: Balancer’s clients, consisting of Liquidity Providers (LPs), traders, and builders using Balancer, are central to driving the protocol’s value and use-case. The key to thriving in the ecosystem is creating a mutually beneficial relationship with these entities. The DAO plays an integral role in managing resource allocation, risk, and inflation allocation, fostering debates and decision-making through community consensus on factors such as revenue management, key protocol parameters, and the direction of inflation.
My web3 interests: Product, Governance, Value Accrual
Disclaimers and Conflicts:
- I am a full-time Messari employee, which is a responsibility that will be paramount for me.
- My role as a Balancer delegate is wholly separate from my employment at Messari. This will be done in a personal capacity, not a professional one.
- Messari sells services and products to DAOs, including Balancer in the past and potentially future. I will continue to be a part of building and executing those products.
- I will not vote on proposals involving funding for Messari products or services.
- I will clearly state my Messari allegiance when discussing competing Service Provider offerings.