SPS DAO - We Only Move Forward Through Compromise

in #dao4 months ago (edited)

NOTE: all proceeds of this post will go the sps.dao. @azircon suggested I start writing my thoughts on Hive and I think this could be a good way to support the DAO. I encourage others to do so as well.


There's a misperception promoted by some players that "whales" lord over the land by wielding their massive SPS stake and thwarting the "little guys" or "the community". This message is not only wrong, it creates division and unnecessary negativity.

I mean "who wants to be involved in an elitist and rigged economy?"... one where "whales can vote themselves all the spoils, while the little guys get shafted"?

I know I don't.

I've also communicated with many players from all over the world, and guess what?

I know they don't either!

In fact, not one time has anyone approached me to "rig" anything. Never has anyone suggested to me that we vote for anything other than what they felt was fair.


Why Owning SPS Is Important

SPS is the governance token of Splinterlands. Its a decentralized token that anyone can buy (or better, earn). The holders of this token can vote on a variety of issues within the Splinterverse, from gameplay to tokenomics. This is a powerful and valuable token, that is if you care to have a voice in the community.

The players that own the most SPS naturally fall into 2 categories:

  1. strong players with a lot of success and
  2. investors.

Many times large holders fit into both categories.

Ownership of the token does give you a "vote" or "influence" over the issues as they come up, but at the same time this ownership is spread across many players and is very well distributed. No single player has an ability to do anything on their own. In fact the largest holder has about 2% of the token, and even the game's Devs don't have a majority with which to impose their will.

So anyone that thinks that "whales" control the outcome of anything must feel that the "whales" are one big block that follows the directions of their master SPS lord. This is not only absurd and insulting, but if anyone stating such a concept took the time to do the research, they would find many votes where "whales" voted different from each other.


Reason For Such Baseless Claims

People don't like to lose. When things don't go their way, then they tend to make up reasons in their mind that justify why they lost. If you've ever raised children, you will know exactly how this works. Ever heard the term "spoiled brat" - same concept. When money is involved, then it will magnify that process.

Just like with children that cry to get attention, there are adults that do the same thing. They want to win, so they will try to find a narrative that can possibly "hurt" their competitors. It doesn't have to be true or based on facts, it just has to be stated loudly enough in hopes of causing fear, uncertainty, doubt (ie FUD).

In the minds of these "baseless claimers" is the mantra "the means justify the end". They don't want to lose, therefore whatever they do, whether ethical or not, is meant to change that outcome. And if there weren't side effects, then maybe this would even be ok. But there are side effects.

First and foremost is a loss of credibility. If a person makes too many false arguments, then they will eventually lose respect and a belief that they are honest participants. People will tend to ignore these claims outright, and after awhile ignore the people making them.

Second, these allegations create a negative atmosphere. The vast majority of people intuitively know these things aren't true. Some people fight against it and try to prove the accusers wrong, while others simply leave or "tune out" such conversations. So instead of talking about opportunity and strategies as a community, we are reduced to a never-ending fight where players can't stand one another.

Finally, these allegations destroy confidence in the project. Who would want to participate in such a system where whales are out to "get me"? How can we ever recruit new people to join such a horrid system (if the allegations were true)?


How We Move Forward With Any Future Proposals

Almost all issues are contentious. We have players from all over the world and they see things from many different perspectives. This is both a weakness and a strength.

Its a weakness because its hard to find solutions. It requires lots of discussion and figuring out where the other side is coming from. Many times people don't want to put in that effort, so we can also feel deadlocked and defeated. Its hard.

But despite the weakness, its also a great strength. Because when problems require more effort to solve, they generally have better solutions. More effort = better outcomes. In addition, with more effort comes a deeper entrenchment into the community. And with this comes a stronger understanding of not only your friends, but also of your enemies.

Put another way, the SPS DAO has entered into a phase where we are gelling together. This is exciting and will be very powerful once enough people understand it. Its a natural outcome to move to more negotiations to resolve issues, and away from childish antics to "get our way".

When an issue is complicated and there are various moving parts, then players have to negotiate. We simply can not get everything we want at all times. We can not just throw a temper tantrum and expect people to be bullied into submission. This new negotiation phase will lead to more professional discussion and a seriousness in resolving issues.


We Are Lucky To Have The Whales We Have

The "whales" are not beholden to anyone other than themselves. They all have their own minds and their own views on each issue. In our community, we are fortunate that many of the whales have learned to respect each other, but make no mistake, every one of them has "earned" their stake by either playing or investing real "hard money". They do take their votes seriously and definitely want to see the game succeed to protect their money at risk.

Unlike many other organizations, we are truly lucky to have a group of people with such a large amount of money on the line. We are fortunate that they care about the game, the economy, and the success of the platform.

I'm personally more comfortable investing in this project for 2 reasons related to the whales:

  1. because I know these guys care

  2. because I know we need a super-majority to pass any vote

This is a very important point that I feel most people miss. Because we have a need to get 2/3rds support for any vote to pass, then it will have to be good. If its contentious, it will have to be negotiated. There will have to be thoughtful discussion, and in order for a resolution, there has to be a compromise. There's simply no other way to get anything passed.

Regarding the SPS DAO - the only way we move forward is through compromise. That's a feature, not a bug!


I love this! What an awesome read. I am so happy to see that we are finally moving back to the positive way that the Splinterlands community used to be long ago! Thanks for such a great post! I see a lot of players coming back which is great. You are so awesome, everyone is lucky to have you here!

Thank you Clove! I always like when I get a compliment from you because I always believe you mean it! Getting respect from you makes my day because I respect what you have been for all these years and continue to be for us all (everyone in the community)!

Its great to see old players return and I do believe we are moving forward! It might take a bit for others to notice we've turned, but the great thing is we have a lot of room ahead for great things!!!

Excellent post Jimmy!! Very well stated and very true. I hope those who regularly make those claims read this and recognize the truth and wisdom in these words.

Thank you Jimmay! :)

Except for the fact that one of the biggest sps holders in the game tells us every day that he controls the game and can make a vote pass or fail (with his friends). The claims are not baseless at all, quite the contrary.

Well stated homie. Hope sone folks who read this really think upon what you said here.

Thank you @blewitt :) ... and also thank you for all you do each day in our community too!

Thx homie. Leaders such as yourself are the real rockstars here though.

Great write up and I have to agree we are "lucky" to have the so called whales we have in Splinterlands. I'm not so sure Luck has to do with it as these are people are invested and committed a lot of resources and time themselves. I'm sure many are out big bucks since SPS has been stick at just a little over 1 cent compared to where it was before.

I feel the DAO has done a rather good job so far on voting and pushing things through that should be pushed through. While of course so of those things I don't agree with I am always open myself to learning others viewpoints as there are things I can be over looking or have not thought about. There are a few times it's swayed my vote in the past by hearing counter arguments to my own.

It's because of these factors I believe even though they might be looking out for their own pockets in some cases it's still towards the overall health of the ecosystem and so far it's been turning out great IMO.

I agree with all you said @bitcoinflood, very good points you made! And one day I think we are going to be very surprised at the implications for how strong and powerful our DAO will become as a result!

Thank you for the time to thoughtfully respond!

Thanks for sharing these thoughts. I'm glad my guildmate Azircon persuaded you to write these thoughts out on Hive. He's got a way of doing that, convincing people to put their opinions immutable on the blockchain, and Splinterlands as a game is better for it. I've never once doubted Azircon's dedication to preserving this game we love to play. Despite his unpopularity among some circles, I think he wants the game to succeed first and foremost. From this article, I can now see you do the same (I never doubted, just didn't consider it at all really). Keep it up. Everyone's voices need to be heard.

Thank you for the nice comment Duce! I agree with everything you said too! :)

Botters have SPS. Let's remain aware of that.

yes definitely. Its in everyone's personal interest to own as much as possible. Once enough people realize it, then I suspect SPS will become even more valuable! :)


You guys are not whales. You have lots of assets in the game that are worth a certain value to others in the free market. Those values fluctuate in price. If you were to sell your assets it would mean you no longer wish to hold them. The price of the asset would change in value and then someone else would then hold that asset. Im just a bronze player who owns all my cards and one day i will decide to buy a Prince Julian to add to my collection. I would of course would have to patiently wait till the NFT comes into my price range. SPL never once sold the PRINCE for 10k or any other NFT for the values that they are now. Its the players in the free market decide to change the value of the price.
Im glad you are here and writing your thoughts. Following. Loved your interview with the peoples guild.

I love your attitude and way of thinking about things @rubenski2020! Great mindset and I hope you get that Prince Julian one day!!! :)

Well done! You made a good point. !DHEDGE


This post has been selected for upvote from our token accounts by @heruvim1978! Based on your tags you received upvotes from the following account(s):

- @dhedge.bonus
- @dhedge.oneup

@heruvim1978 has 14 vote calls left today.

Hold 10 or more DHEDGE to unlock daily dividends and gain access to upvote rounds on your posts from @dhedge. Hold 100 or more DHEDGE to unlock thread votes. Calling in our curation accounts currently has a minimum holding requirement of 100 DHEDGE. The more DHEDGE you hold, the higher upvote you can call in. Buy DHEDGE on Tribaldex or earn some daily by joining one of our many delegation pools at app.dhedge.cc.

interesting and enjoyable I enjoyed reading it

Thank you, that's nice @dewamke44 :)

After a while I use my HP because of SPS DAO. What a great idea to support. Congrats @davemccoy and @azircon

Thank you Funworlding! :)

I like your thoughts. At the same time, we need to be very careful to not become an oligarchy. The way SPS DAO is built won't prevent that. I assume this is a conscious decision, because there would've been other design options.

If compromise leads to "the whales know the way", we have to be even more careful. I personally believe we should just pay attention to that.

Compromise simply means that everyone has to realize that they must find solutions that take into account what others care about too.

ps... I agree with VetteV's idea below and I think many other SPS holders would too.

Thanks Dave. I appreciate your reply and the openness to develop the system further.

Thank you for your witness vote!
Have a !BEER on me!
To Opt-Out of my witness beer program just comment STOP below

Hey @sc000, here is a little bit of BEER from @isnochys for you. Enjoy it!

We love your support by voting @detlev.witness on HIVE .

Thank you for your witness vote!
Have a !BEER on me!
To Opt-Out of my witness beer program just comment STOP below

Hey @sc000, here is a little bit of BEER from @isnochys for you. Enjoy it!

Learn how to earn FREE BEER each day by staking your BEER.

Many have discussed this point.
One idea: have a one-account = one-vote mechanism in addition to Staked SPS. This would work with the current KYC program launched for KYC tournaments. KYC account = 1 vote.

For any proposal, it requires 50% vote from KYC accounts to get to DAO vote, then it is 2/3rds of staked SPS vote to pass.

While there are many die-hard Web3 purest who resist KYC, those types can load up on Staked SPS to still have significant voting power.

I would definitely support this VV

First of all, Dave, thank you for writing a post. I expect this is the first of many to come!

I never much liked the world 'whale' or the opposite 'minnow'. That feels like a caste system to me, and belive me I know what a caste system is and how detrimental it could be to a community. I am from India, you see, I have seen the dark depth of the caste system in the works. I don't want that in my life.

I think I would echo all the things you have said and I agree. I am not here for any personal gain. I am here so that the community as a whole gains and the ecosystem thrives. That will be our success

I agree AZ and I'm not a fan of the term whale either. I'm glad you shared your personal experience of where you grew up and how you've seen the negativity of the caste system. I know many parts are the world where many are never given a chance. I think we are both lucky in life and understand this issue well.

Thank you for asking me to write my thoughts on a Hive post, I will continue to do so and encourage others to do the same. I will keep sending the rewards to sps.dao as well. Its a small thing I can do to help us grow! :)

Oligarchy (from Ancient Greek ὀλιγαρχία (oligarkhía) 'rule by few'; from ὀλίγος (olígos) 'few', and ἄρχω (árkhō) 'to rule, command')[1][2][3] is a conceptual form of power structure in which power rests with a small number of people. These people may or may not be distinguished by one or several characteristics, such as nobility, fame, wealth, education, or corporate, religious, political, or military control.

this is what the dao is now, the whales decide if a proposal passes or not, 90% of the community might be for or against but when whales decide, thats what wins. Like clay hire, he was in good relationship with whales and there you go, one hand clear the other.

it is totally pointless to vote any dao proposal for a normal and average player

I disagree on it being pointless. I know in my case I look at all the votes and look for people I know in the community to see what they think.

Said another way, maybe their vote won't make a difference in the total vote count by itself, but it does affect how your friends and other community members think. There are a few times I have decided to change how I will vote because of what people I respect think. (if they didn't vote then I wouldn't know their thoughts)

Then you are referring to discussion and ideas sharing, thats fine, but i dont know how large is your stake, if azircon decides to sink a proposal because for example he doesnt like the dude proposing, then anything wont change the outcome

AZ is big, but no holder has more than 2%. Put another way, you would have to have at least 17 of the top holders to agree to "sink" anything for sure. And if you look at the past votes, people disagree on pretty much every proposal.

Anything controversial will need a large segment of the holders (big and small) to agree. Just go look at the past votes and you'll see.

Well you see, i had a perception which you telling me Is wrong, but thats what i got from Reading discussions, chats (not to Say i think a lot of people are afraid to express my same idea and get their account downvoted bombed)

I'm happy to help clear up that perception David. I don't want people to be afraid and they don't need to be.

That's really the whole point of the article, we have to work together even when we don't agree on every point, because if we don't, then nothing will change until we do! :)

I don't think it's quite an Oligarchy but Azircon has done a fabulous job at creating this perception. Not sure what his motive is but it certainly isn't a good look for a web 3 game.

Motive is, as always, inside human nature, greed for money, power and the percepition to have control and power over people

I know where you come from and appreciate what you do for Splinterlands and the community, the message is a good message in theory but I have my concerns as of obvious reasons. We need to see both sides of the coin and their thinking.

Talking to you via DM right now, but I agree completely that we need to always look at the other side's valid concerns. By doing this we will find better solutions in the long run.

I'm glad you're here Uwe and thank you very much for commenting on my post!

This post has been supported by @Splinterboost with a 12% upvote! Delagate HP to Splinterboost to Earn Daily HIVE rewards for supporting the @Splinterlands community!

Delegate HP | Join Discord

Thanks for sharing! - @azircon

It doesn't help when one of the major sps holders openly boasts about their significant influence in the community. This individual claims to dictate what proposals will pass or fail, asserting their dominance in a political game rather than participating in the overall community spirit. They frequently mention their lobbying efforts and private discussions with the top 15 stakeholders to shape voting outcomes. Moreover, their communication style in Discord tends to be extremely condescending.

Before accusing everyone as trolls or spreading baseless claims, it might be beneficial to address the concerns of those who genuinely worry about the concentration of power among a few whales. Perhaps it's time to engage in a conversation with the individual who seems to have created this perception, rather than dismissing those with legitimate concerns.

My point was that we have to compromise, everyone is included if we want things to happen. There may be some whales you don't like and vice versa, but everyone has to discuss the issues and be willing to work together to get anything passed.

That's the point of my article. And I believe that is where we stand. Whether people like that is another issue. I support VetteV's point above as well here:


You're missing the point Dave, this has nothing to do with not liking people. My point is that if you don't want to give people the impression that the game is controlled by a few whales, then stop acting like you control the game.


I apologize if I have given you the impression that I control the game. I didn't realize I gave this impression, its the first time anyone has told me I act this way. I certainly don't feel that I control the game, so it must be in my communication skills.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts cyberblock and I will be more aware in the future to this perception.

OMG geezes dave! not you... you know who we're talking about

Its a shame, eh? That same individual is perhaps mentioned on this post! Tut tut!

Great post, thanks for sharing your thoughts and continuing to be a community leader.

Thank you VV, that is very nice to say :)

Hey FM... if you pay attention you will see that people vote different ways on each proposal. While you lump the big votes into one group, that's simply not the case. If you look at this vote for the exchange listing, AZ voted a different way that me. Its not like the "whales" sit in a room and do what each other wanted.

I hope that Clay focuses on finding ways to listen to everyone. I'm a big proponent of that. I also think he should have conversations with large votes too, because I don't want him wasting our DAO funds making proposals that won't pass.

Finally I am for VetteV's idea of an addition layer of voting, I think many so called whales would also be for that too.


Not only that, the exchange listing proposal have absolutely zero chance of passing and yet I upvoted it :)

I say this exchange listing proposal is “dead in the water”! ;) @jarvie

Another misinterpretation Dav... it doesn't matter if the game is or isn't controlled by a few. It's about the perception that one individual has created.

I always believe that we should want people to perceive the truth. This is even more important when the truth is good. I realize the fighting and bickering that goes on in the community distorts people's views of reality. I wish all players worked together to create an environment that was conducive to growth.

It would be in all of our interests to bury the hatchet and move forward.

I realize its a dream, but honestly I think it could be a reality when we all realize we are passengers on the same plane heading to the same ultimate destination.

Read the room, everyone else can see it

Cyberblock, if you want me to say that you or @azircon or me (and countless others) are responsible for bad perceptions in the community at any one point in time, then I would say we all have been involved to various degrees at various times.

I don't think its important to assign a weighting though as all activity from us that creates a negative perception is not good. I believe we all know what we did, why we were triggered, what the consequences were, and whether or not it was worth it.

I also think its not important where or why it started, because it just did. I see the activity (including my own) and try to understand it. That doesn't mean I agree with it, it just means I try to understand the motivations.

I realize that AZ feels the need to deal harshly with people he feels deserve it. I also understand the impression many people have of him as a result.

I think AZ is a person who cares about the game and he gets frustrated by people's behavior much easier than I do. He's very direct and no-nonsense, and he reacts with lightning speed to what he perceives as a threat.

I also think that people that treat AZ with respect, get treated with respect in return. I have encouraged many people to have a direct dialogue with him and many have come back to me and said their perception of him has changed.

I encourage you to do so as well.

But having said that, I don't like to see the negativity that gets created. I hope we all try to work on doing things better. We can all improve and we can all contribute by setting good examples.

Hopefully one day we can be publicly positive towards each other too. I know that sounds far-fetched, but what can I say I'm a dreamer! :)

This isn't a singular event, it's an ongoing behavior problem that dozens of people have an issue with. It has nothing to do with AZ being harsh, direct, or passionate. It's an entire persona/perception that he's created to make everyone think that he and a few friends control the game. It's also the condescending tone he has with everyone he disagrees with.

Instead of attacking the dozens of people who are raising concerns and calling them, trolls, baseless claimers and various other names why don't you go to the SOURCE of the problem?

If you really want everyone to get along then this needs to stop. Otherwise, the narrative around (Oligarchy) and a few whales controlling the game will continue to foster.

Thank you for the respectful reply FM! I'm glad you read both the post and the replies. That's exactly how we all should communicate.

I don't want to get into the issues between people, there are many interactions that people have and both sides will feel justified in their position.

My point is I want to think about the future, especially when people want to point out what people have done wrong. I don't see the benefit in calling out anyone for the past.

I know I've said things that were inflammatory and unprofessional in the past, I didn't set a good example. But I try to learn from my mistakes to make myself better for the future. Can people still point out what I did wrong, sure. But what matters more in my eyes is if I can be proud of how I act now. Did I realize my mistake and correct it?

The bottom line is I definitely appreciate you being here FM and I want you to realize that your vote does matter. I don't care what anyone else says, I know I will look to see how you vote on future props. I might not vote the way you do on any particular vote, but I will certainly try to see what see on each vote and hope we are aligned. If not, then I'm also happy to discuss our differences too!