August 2022 - This month in Cosmos Hub governance

We’re posting monthly or bimonthly summaries of the latest governance discussions, as well as highlighting proposals that have been up for consideration on the Cosmos Hub. This last month has seen lots of current discussion about commissions, as well as lots of upcoming governance meta proposals.

This work is happening as part of our forum activation work, which we scoped in Proposal #63 (view in block explorer, see forum discussion).

We’d love to get feedback so let us know if there’s anything else you’d like to see in these updates.

Upcoming proposals

Use MiB’s upgrade handler to give Gaia the ability to use minimum commissions

See forum discussion.

Following Proposal #76, this draft suggests using Made In Block’s feature to allow for a minimum commission to be enforced on the Hub (by checking validator’s commission rates against the set minimum commission). This draft does not suggest that the minimum rate be changed, only that the feature be adopted to make it possible to set a minimum rate in the future.

Mandate the use of the forum for governance discussions

See forum discussion.

This suggests that all upcoming proposals should spend at least 3 days in-discussion on the Cosmos Hub Forum before moving on chain. Proposals that do not follow this mandate should be vetoed. Discussion continues on this topic and how it related to Proposal #75 (Establishing a definition of NoWithVeto) and the length of the voting period on the Hub.

Decrease voting period to 7 days

See forum discussion.

Cosmos Hub currently uses a 14 day voting period which some have criticized for being too slow. This draft suggests that we reduce the voting period to 7 days, and some discussion has proposed that this happen in conjunction with mandating use of the forum to encourage thoughtful deliberation before a proposal goes on-chain (and can no longer be changed).

Conversation about voting period and the use of the forum is tentatively expected to occur at the Cosmos Hub Fireside Chat (hosted on Twitter by @cosmoshub) on September 14th, 7 PM BST, 2 PM EST.

Gaia v8-Rho Upgrade

See forum discussion.

v8-Rho focuses on public goods offerings on the Hub including updates to the gov module and the introduction of the groups module, which will allow a wider variety of multisig and DAO behaviour. This is the first of three software upgrade posts intended to encourage discussion of the roadmap as it develops.

Gaia v9-Lambda Upgrade

See forum discussion.

v9-Lambda will focus on interchain security.

Gaia v10-Epsilon Upgrade

See forum discussion.

v10-Epsilon will focus on the ATOM monetary policy.

On-Chain and Closed Proposals

Require a minimum 5% commission for all validator nodes

View in block explorer, see forum discussion.

Proposal #76 went up without any discussion on the forum or community spaces, but a thread has been started for it by community members. This signaling proposal asks whether a minimum commission rate should be mandated for validators on the Hub to encourage decentralization and guarantee a minimum financial incentive for validators. This proposal has also spawned discussion about the ramifications of having a minimum commission at all.

Establishing a definition of NoWithVeto

View in block explorer, see forum discussion.

The first formal definition of a governance term on the Cosmos Hub has passed. While the coded behaviour has not changed, the social definition of NoWithVeto has been accepted by community consensus as: “A ‘NoWithVeto’ vote indicates a proposal either (1) is deemed to be spam, i.e., irrelevant to Cosmos Hub, (2) disproportionately infringes on minority interests, or (3) violates or encourages violation of the rules of engagement as currently set out by Cosmos Hub governance.”

Governance meta

Parameterizing minimum commission rate

Whether you agree or disagree that 5% is a good minimum rate, there is a more basic question at play here: What might happen to the security of the network and the distribution of delegations throughout the validator set if minCommissionRate were to be a parameter on the Hub (i.e., One that can be changed by passing a param change proposal)? Discussion on this topic is largely happening on the draft proposal: Use MiB’s upgrade handler to give Gaia the ability to use minimum commissions.

ICF delegation policy

The Interchain Foundation has faced much criticism for its outdated delegation policy. The foundation has now published a draft of a new policy, with context, timeline, and suggested criteria for getting foundation delegations. This is a first draft and conversation around it is taking place on the forum: New ICF Delegation Policy ~ Draft.