Since 2020, the blockchain world has been undergoing new changes and innovations, from DeFi through NFT to today’s DAO, and the world of crypto has unveiled another significant chapter. ConstitutionDAO’s bid starting from November 12 to November 19, 2021 not only attracted practitioners across the blockchain industry, but also stimulated founders of major American traditional VCs and tech companies to join. Despite its failure to win the first-edition copy of the U.S. constitution, ConstitutionDAO, as a spontaneous experiment and another popular DAO community project following CityDAO, vividly expresses the definition and execution logic of a DAO. Meanwhile, efforts of marketing with the first-edition copy of the U.S. constitution auction are of historic significance to the DAO, blockchain and even the future development of Web 3, and serve as a good reference for other DAOs:
We showed the world what crypto and web3, onboarding thousands of people in the process, including museum curators and art directors who are now excited to keep learning. @Sothebys has ever worked with, but we're sure we won't be the last one. We made history and showed the world how a group of internet friends can utilize the power of the Web to achieve a seemingly insurmountable goal and incredible results on an impossible timeline.
Over the past few days we've shown the world what a group of internet friends can do with the powers of web3. Raising +$47M, uniting 21k people on Discord and 42k on twitter in just 4 days. That's all thanks to you, and we couldn't be more grateful. We broke the record for the largest crowdfunding in kind and the record of crowdfunding in 72 hours. Of course, we will issue refunds to those who contributed to the fund."
Since November 12, 2021 when ConstitutionDAO retweeted the press announcement of the US Constitution copy auctioned by Sotheby’s and at the same time announced its participation in this auction and fundraising, a lot of users flocked to this campaign, including members of organizations whose identities were disclosed by the ENS addresses. Members from nearly a hundred DAOs made this tweet viral by posting comments to it and retweeting it. Around 1 million dollars were raised every day, bringing this campaign closer to the initial funding goal bit by bit. To be specific, NFT Studio and the investment company Metaversal donated $1 million, which inspired an anonymous donor to remit $4 million to this campaign.
As a symbol of freedom and democracy, the first-edition copy of the U.S. constitution coincides with the decentralization spirit of the blockchain. "We the People, For the People!" has become the slogan and spiritual guide for every participant and follower. To quote one of the enthusiasts: "We are the people. The American dream is still alive on the Internet. Web3 enables a new generation of free and collective action," a vivid expression of American blockchain insiders’ persistence in and earnest commitment to this campaign.
According to incomplete statistics, nearly 20+ organizations and 50+ DAOs including AAVE, Solona, Coinbase, Grayscale, SyndicateDAO, Techstars, a16z, Beetle and CityDAO, basketball star Shane Battier, Broadway star Brooke Tansley, and e-sports players 100T Nadeshot directly or indirectly promoted ConstitutionDAO, contributing to thousands of relevant tweets.
Such a boom as observed on web media like Twitter, financial media, college communities, and blogs turned ConstituionDAO into a spontaneous social movement where everyone fight for a common ideal as well as a symbol of freedom. They retweeted, posted comments, shared technical insights and suggestions, and provided resources, not for money, making ConstitutionDAO a golden example for DAOs in terms of how members function and empower DAOs with resources.
From an overview of the major contributors behind ConstitutionDAO, we can find a perfect combination of its composability, dedication and public resonance, and that may serve as a great reference for the establishment of event-triggered fundraising DAOs or other types of DAOs in the future.
- An ultimate goal that can be achieved through mass movement: This goal should be a physical object or asset that can be achieved to some extent. For example, ConstitutionDAO's goal is to bid for a first-edition copy of the Constitution, while CityDAO's goal is to acquire land management rights. Another key lies in a tight timeline that enables hunger marketing and makes this mission urgent and important.
- Spiritual resonance: DAOs are established for a spiritual resonance that can attract the general public to join, and in the case of ConstitutionDAO, it is the American Dream that matters. Nothing is more important than the democracy and freedom advocated by Web 3 and America. The Constitution reflects American independence and freedom, and the word “Constitution” naturally symbolizes the American identity.
- MEME elements: Every DAO should have its own meme, acronym or community gif. It can be animals, stars, social celebrities, planets, etc. With the identity of its own DAO, the (x,x) meme is remixed by offshoots of Olympus, such as Klima and Wonderland, and by projects that have nothing to do with Olympus’ model, like ConstitutionDAO. Putting the (x,x) in your Twitter name tells other people that you’re part of this movement.
- Fund security: Ideals alone make no sense. In the real world, the ability of securing funds matters most when it comes to a DAO’s technical strength and commitment to contracts. In that case, a well-functioning fundraising place and smart contract are the top priority in Web 3 and blockchain spaces, as they guarantee the fast and smooth fundraising process, the transparency and traceability of funds, a well-rounded fund governance mechanism and a clear refund process. JuiceBox, for example, provides a golden model for smart contracts: it makes fundraising quite convenient, safe, open and transparent, and incorporates the redemption mechanism and refund process in the smart contract, showing donors its contract commitment.
From all the above, we can see that the focus of the blockchain field has shifted from decentralized finance (DeFi) to decentralized governance (DeGov) for the past year. Although the year 2020 is considered the first year of DeFi, the growing complexity and prosperity of DeFi projects have pushed DAOs that function as the governor and decision-maker of project development into the spotlight. Examples from within Ethereum include YFI, Compound, Synthetix, Uniswap, and Gitcoin that have all gone live, and some of them have even started as a DAO.
It is undeniable that some form of real decentralized governance is becoming increasingly popular for reasons. Still, there are risks, as evidenced by the recent hostile takeover of Steem and the subsequent massive Dapp migration to Hive.
As the market grows and projects of various kinds emerge, DAO’s purpose has expanded from fundraising or governance alone to a broad variety.
The DAO Today v.s. The DAO in the Future
Having survived the “DAO Hack”, the DAO started to find a foothold. It’s still in its infancy: according to DeepDAO data, the assets under management of the top DAOs are only $952 million. In terms of market value, however, all DAO assets can rank 86th on the list of the most valuable cryptocurrencies.
*Data source: coin98
Impressive experiments and movements are already taking place.
Before anyone notices it, the DAO has quietly developed and launched various social experiments, making a difference to both the real world and the blockchain space. Meanwhile, the DAO has long been influencing the blockchain development and segments such as DeFi protocols, GameFi and investment. DAOers are bringing their expertise (in writing, UI design, ideas, programming, laws, finance, etc.) into full play. Their contributions earn them not only honors but also financial rewards at various levels, making for a sound and healthy internal incentive mechanism.
Some day in the future, we may all become DAOers. As we can see today, many DAOers have spontaneously organized presentations on DAO-related concepts, tools, and novice training. So here comes a question: how can we find the next ConstitutionDAO or join a DAO we’re interested in and contribute our know-how to this new paradigm of social/corporate architecture? Below are some basic tools for your reference:
1. Tally: https://www.withtally.com/
Tally empowers user governance by providing voting dashboards, governance tools, real-time research and analysis, and Wikis. At present, it’s a gathering place of the governance information of most mainstream DeFi protocols (Compound, ENS, Fei, Gitcoin, Uniswap, etc.), including relevant proposals, voters, and holders. It is worth noting that major capital institutions still hold the majority of votes of the mainstream DeFi protocols, with the biggest say in the decision of the protocols’ development.
2. DeepDAO: https://deepdao.io/
DeepDAO aims to collect various quantitative and qualitative data about a DAO, and display it to the public in the form of an interactive dashboard. Keeping expanding the metrics collected, the platform is committed to covering more DAOs.
Although the DAO is uniquely attractive in terms of finances, its core lies in governance. To this end, DeepDAO works to dig into every detail of a DAO by studying its internal operation, proposals, voting models, decentralization levels, and member activity and growth.
DeepDAO is developing a system to evaluate DAO’s financial stability, accountability, overall participation and internal participation over time, as well as their correlation with other factors. Considering the DAO’s role in fundraising, DeepDAO is also developing methods to track the investment performance as part of the DAO indicators. We have every reason to believe that, in the future DeepDAO data will help more institutions and individuals make well-informed decisions in choosing DAOs that suit their needs, just like how they use and invest in Dapp today.
Up to now, DeepDAO has included 164 top DAOs, covering protocol DAOs, investment DAOs, tool DAOs, writing DAO and community DAOs. At the same time, DAOers are ranked by multiple dimensions such as voting participation, holdings, contribution, etc., so that novice DAOers can keep an eye on their DAO participation.
The continuous innovation of the DAO has set a good example for urban governance in the modern era and the blockchain world. Perhaps we may work with each other in various DAOs some day in the future for the cause we’re devoted to.
If you are still interested in the DAO, click the links below for numerous DAOers’ insights. Thanks to all the DAOers for their collection: