On Airdrop Farming, Sybils, Geo-Limitations & KYC

There is a misconception on who a degen is. Degens I know shipped needed structured products, & they do not resent. However, calling people who play for delegation, & engagement farming by deploying 1000s of haters a degen creates a gambling eco that does not test anything. Airdrop farming is a side effect of quests.

Quests are the rent extractors that were apparently needed when some protocols thought that dealing with testnets were burdensome time-preferentially, and they needed vaporwave masses to test in prod.

Who are these masses even if only some portion of them are vaporwave?

  • Actual degens who are easily nerd-sniped by crypto-primitives

  • Devs & builders who like to experiment

  • Strategic black hat airdrop farmers with an army of not only bots but in actual people who are paid to operate these farming well

  • Clueless and well-meaning, or not, market participants who are new to the game

Somewhere along the lines of mid-2022, and early 2023, quests have turned into shitcoing farming except a few early protocols thereof.

Many product managers and core devs with whom I exchanged roadmap ideations were always irritated and uneasy about these quests—they still are. They know that it reflects nothing.

Are all aidrops bad?

No, as long as they do not treat each and every participant like a thirsty coyote. If you are imagining that a perfect airdrop strategy is possible for vaporwave masses via sybils, please check the previous sybil hunts where aforementioned whales with literal click farms kept continually dust-attacking thousands of wallets everyday.

Dust attacks are a malicious method where otherwise eligible wallets are instrumented into a network of addresses whose main origin then looks like a liquidity seeding address. Seeing these, many "community police" think that legit adresses are sybils.


Some people think that KYC is an option. Yes, it is—as long as it is not CEX based, or CEX-exported. Many CEXes have withdrawn from the unpriviliged regions. The very same regions that some good-willing builders think deserve better opportunities, and they are not either aware of dust attacks or non-access to CEXes—early airdrops helped me bootstrap myself onto the ecosystem but we were not toiling in bridge-operated rotational gulags.

So you want to design a well-functioning airdrop?

  • Award devs, node operators, miners/ stakers, solvers, blockbuilders, sequencers and the like etc, etc, and etc since some of these are interchangeble due to recent development proposals, and might mean different in the context of different networks

  • Award "community" who does not resent but directly inform you of your choices' robustness by actively participating without any quests

    • If a sybil resistance is needed, instrumentalize ZK based proving processes, and check if the infrastructure providers have geo-limitations

  • Also, look for "grandiose" airdrop moguls who operate gated-groups, and mobilize vaporwave masses for delegation at top-notch protocols, and just ban them.

    Quest try to malignantly gamify an existing game without offering any meta-plays given that the actual crypto-economics games are defined by the limitations of blockspace and its underlying components—which in turn offers up a sandbox for any observer if only they invest in compotetent data analysts.

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