Shot at Snapshot - the platform that is making decentralised governance happen in a snap!
If you’ve ever looked into DAO proposals - you’ve heard of Snapshot! 🔉
But what is it? 🤔
Snapshot defines itself as a “decentralized governance platform” and that’s exactly what it is. The complications of voting for different DAOs, and varying proposals, have been made easier with Snapshot. This platform ensures that one can not only contribute to the decentralized governance ecosystem by voting without gas fees but can also actively create proposals to advance such governance. This also makes it easier for communities such as DAOs, DeFi protocols, and/or NFT communities to govern themselves through customized voting processes. Keeping in line with the core values of web3 - Snapshot is entirely open source. All of its code can be accessed on its GitHub which is easily and publicly accessible on its website. 💯
An off-chain voting platform that enables gas-less voting - isn’t that the best match ever? 🤗
Wait, it gets better!
Snapshot understands that every community has different voting mechanisms, every vote has a different value assigned to it, proposal mechanisms differ, and more. This is precisely why Snapshot has aced the ‘customization’ game wherein you can select the voting mechanism that is applicable to that particular vote - for instance if one token = one vote mechanism applies, or a more complicated governance mechanism applies, such as delegated voting, then that can be selected too. In addition to this, Snapshot also does the calculation of the users’ voting power and you no longer have to manually calculate the percentage of those in favor and those against! There are many other such customization options offered by Snapshot and discovering their platform in its entirety, is the best way to get a holistic perspective of the tools provided. ✔️
There’s a story to its name!🚀
The term ‘snapshot’ in the crypto world refers to a record of the state or status of the blockchain at a particular block height. This essentially means that you can track the holdings of a specific wallet back to a specific point in time. The voting platform, Snapshot has found a parallel use case for this. Snapshot is similarly using snapshots in order to validate whether voters met the voting criteria when the proposal was created.
How does Snapshot work? 💭
Let’s understand some key terms pertaining to Snapshot.
A space is essentially an organization’s (for instance, a DAO’s) account or page on Snapshot which is publicly viewable. In this space, all of the DAO’s proposals would be hosted, and other relevant info about the DAO would also be hosted. This space would also act as the platform for all votes that take place pertaining to the DAO’s proposals. To create a space, although anyone can create it; the creator must have an ENS domain and must have performed at least one transaction completely on the chain. 💸
Secondly, let’s dive into ‘proposal’. While this term is pretty self-explanatory, a proposal is essentially a formal request to change/ add/ subtract/ modify something pertaining to the organization. This could be, for instance, the name of the DAO or even the governance structure of the DAO. It can range from small to massive changes being effected. It is essential to note that usually members of the said organization are eligible to create proposals, and usually said members are eligible to cast their votes on these proposals. 🫂
Thirdly, let’s get into when a person can actually vote. On Snapshot, every space that is created is required to define its own requirements or voting strategies. For instance, if I create a space titled ‘MUND’, I can choose to create a voting strategy that states that 1 token = 1 vote but to be eligible to vote, one must hold 34 governance tokens. Accordingly, the space that is created would automatically require every person, at the time of proposal creation, to hold 34 governance tokens or more, to be eligible to vote. The voting strategy and therefore, the inferable eligibility to vote can be seen in the image below 👇🏼
Source: Snapshot’s FAQs
Snapshot makes voting miraculously easier 🪄
Well, the answer is simple - Snapshot thinks of every possible scenario! For instance, in a delegated voting setting, if you choose to, for whatever reason, take back the delegation, Snapshot has multiple options enabling you to do that. You can either directly remove your delegation, or you can simply vote by yourself which would automatically override the delegation! In addition to this, unless the voting strategy deployed by the person who created the space is shielded voting, you can, using Snapshot, also write down a message while casting your vote (optionally) which could explain the reason behind casting such a vote. This improves governance.
Source: Snapshot’s FAQs
As can be seen in this image, you are enabled to not only share your reason but also the preview screen of the vote that you’ve chosen, which is pretty informative. It lets you know what your voting power is, as well as the choice that you are making, before you ‘confirm’ the vote.
Furthermore, very often, an organization may just want to test a voting strategy out in order to gauge how successful it would be, in order to run governance. The platform has a ‘playground’ feature wherein you can go and create a space with a voting strategy and play it out. This would purely be for testing purposes and gets you the goal you wanted, as well. Lastly, we saved the best for the last, the voting is gasless. ✔️
Key features of Snapshot that set it apart 👇🏼
Well, it's not just that the voting is free and therefore, without any gas fees but that creating spaces and proposals also doesn’t require gas fees! The votes are also cast through signed messages with the help of universal sign-ins and therefore, the votes are easily verifiable online. Unlike other platforms, Snapshot understands that there are various governance systems and that these continue to evolve. Accordingly, Snapshot allows for multiple voting systems such as single-choice voting, approval voting, quadratic voting, and so many more that continue to crop up. For instance, as can be seen in the image below, the voting strategies are not only explained while one is determining which one to choose - but there are also multiple options offered with a custom option! This custom option allows you to customize your voting strategy and therefore take complete control over how the voting would take place in your space. What more could one ask for? 🚀
Source: Snapshot’s Documentation
Furthermore, Snapshot also enables customized branding for the spaces that an organization creates, and therefore, the organization can through various tools such as customized color schemes - ensure that the identity of the organization is reflected in the space as well. 🎨 Snapshot also has a very user-friendly UI wherein anyone can choose to ‘join’ a space from the comprehensive directory of spaces that can be accessed as soon as the website is opened. Once a user chooses to ‘join’ a space, it automatically appears on the left sidebar as a shortcut and this helps keep you updated with any new proposals pertaining to that space. 💭
What does the future of Snapshot look like? 🔮
Most certainly, DAO governance mechanisms will continue to evolve and consequently, newer voting mechanisms will crop up. With the dynamic nature of Snapshot, we believe that it will be fast to adopt the said changes within their platform and make voting seamless. With 12K+ Spaces that have already been created by leading DAOs and NFT Communities in web3, and Snapshot’s presence only growing as it is soon becoming the preferred platform to cast votes on - we can only say that the future is brighttt! 🔆
Source: Browsing Spaces on Snapshot
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