Conviction Voting

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= "Rather than relying entirely on majority rule decision making, resource allocation decisions are regulated by staking on proposals to accumulate conviction over time. This allows resources to be allocated fairly, while minimizing the political and divisive process of coming to consensus on a single course of action". [1]

Contextual Quote

"Governance mechanisms don’t do anything directly, they merely convert the signals expressed by their participants into a collective decision. Acknowledging that value is inter-subjective, it is incredibly important to reflect on what values you express through your participation in governance processes — and the extent to which your community shares those value determines the direction your governance process steers your system."

- Michael Zargham [2]


Sacha Saint-Leger:

"Conviction voting is the heart of a Garden. It allows folks to signal their preferences continuously rather than forcing them to “make a decision.” From the perspective of a community member, the UX is simplified to just showing up and supporting things you care about.

To quote a passage from Jeff Emmett’s wonderful introductory post:

- Conviction Voting offers a novel decision making process that funds proposals based on the aggregated preference of community members, expressed continuously. In other words, voters are always asserting their preference for which proposals they would like to see approved, rather than casting votes in a single time-boxed session. A member can change their preference at any time, but the longer they keep their preference for the same proposal, the “stronger” their conviction gets. This added conviction gives long standing community members with consistent preferences more influence than short term participants merely trying to influence a vote. Conviction Voting sidesteps sybil attacks, provides collusion resistance, and mitigates many of the attack vectors of time-boxed voting mechanisms. Under conviction voting, the majority doesn’t need to achieve consensus on everything. As such, we get real proportional representation. Community members can propose and support things they care about without fear that a whale will vote them down. In fact, there is no down voting. People with large stakes and strong opinions can’t suppress the community."

Proposals simply need enough support to pass – the fewer funds they ask for, the less support required. This means there’s a real sense in which everyone has a voice. The only thing token holders have to think about is whether or not they support something. That’s it.

Under this framework, many divergent initiatives can be proposed and run in parallel. This allows the DAO to explore, experiment, and innovate quickly and seamlessly. If an experiment works, a larger proposal can then be submitted.

One underrated benefit of this is that it allows the DAO to grow as a headless brand, iterating through cycles of divergence and convergence, and continuously reflecting the preferences and interests of token holders (a true living organisation!).

In sum, by giving small token holders the agency to contribute, conviction voting helps lay the foundation for a fiercely loyal community, solving the problems associated with governance attacks, low participation, and the overall inability to effectively prioritise and decide when there are many potential options all competing for consideration at once."