Change the meaning of "Abstain" voting

The meaning of abstaining from a governance vote in Cosmos.

ABSTAIN : You wish to contribute to quorum but you formally decline to vote either for or against the proposal

I have narrowed it down to the flowing major reason why validators “Abstain” ?

  1. Governance proponent failed to educate the Cosmso community resulting in indecision.
  2. Governance proposal is of very low potency or remotely associated with Cosmso core issues.
  3. Governance proposal is too political to be voted on by the validator, and the validator doesn’t want to take sides.

I am sure there will be more reasons, but I have narrowed it down to these three after talking with multiple validators in the cosmos.

The proposed meaning of Abstain
ABSTAIN: You wish to contribute to the quorum but you formally decline to vote either for or against the proposal, but if the majority (75%) abstain the proposal will be rejected and funds will be returned.

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I’m genuinely curious: do we have any case in the past of a proposal that passed with >75% abstain?

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No, i don’t think so, the closet would be

One passed and the other failed with nearly 50% of abstain votes.

But this doesn’t mean we should not update the voting mechanism.

Just out of curiosity - why is it that you chose ‘75%’ to represent the majority and not 51% as the meaning of a majority?

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I’m against changing the meaning of abstain.

But if you come to the Cosmo’s hub governance chat, there’s some really interesting discussion about assigning costs to veto votes.

Abstain is really important because of the ookidao case and because they fear retaliation

Read the text of proposal 787 carefully and then ask yourself why the abstain rate was so high. Anybody who didn’t recognize that people fear retaliation could have easily voted. No. Abstain was the retaliation proof vote.

51% to reject a vote is always available via “No” vote. Changing the meaning of “Abstain” is not to reject the votes but to add a responsibility on the proponent to educate the community/validators before going onchain.

I would like to term it as a “warning” for a proponent. Hey, your proposal lacks context or is too political, or doesn’t concern the cosmos community so please give it another try.

But for that we need 3/4 people thinking in the same direction. if people are already against/for a proposal we have got no problem.

Hey, thank you for letting me know what you think about this. But, I will remain an advocate of;

Changing the cosmos governance
Sustainable validator funding
Untie VP to staking reward 1:1

Where is this chat happening? Cosmos discord?

Is it just me or are we having de ja vu? Joking aside, can someone seriously explain to me what is this for? Why this uncontrolled desire to hard-code other token holders opinions, rather than just leave it to the wisdom of the crowd


[quote=“waqarmmirza, post:1, topic:10667”]
e flowing major reason why validators “Abstain” ?

  1. Governance proponent failed to educate the Cosmso community resulting in indecision.
  2. Governance proposal is of very low potency or remotely associated with Cosmso core issues.
  3. Governance proposal is too political to be voted on by the validator, and the validator doesn’t want to take sides.

dude, abstain literally means, I’m not getting involved. “[formally]decline to vote either for or against a proposal or motion.” That does not mean the proposal is rejected as an automatic default as part of my decision to not be involved. This is not a good idea. I’m sorry and I truly appreciate the sentiment here, but functionally this puts weight on the scale and will cause me to just Not Vote At All and Not Participate. Abstain is saying I’m here, but leave me out of this. It’s more to acknowledge your presence than to have any effect whatsoever on the outcome.

If you change abstain, people will abstain by actually not voting. Literally abstaining.

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It is an effort to make cosmos governance non-political and better. Where Validators actually vote what they want to vote without fear of retaliation from the cult.

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Okay, your comment made me laugh.

Don’t you think making cosmos governance easy and non-political is our duty as stakeholders?

I totally agree with your comment, but I propose changing the outcome. Because I do think it is a proponent duty to check the sentiment/make it less political and educate.

Also, I am against the public name and shame of validators who abstain from a vote. But, “abstain vote is not recommended in the hub” If you see the foundation delegation policy it says 80% of the votes should be yes/no/nvw.

If we manage to give a proper meaning to Abstain vote, it will be easier for validators to avoid peer pressure and do their duty.

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We don’t always agree, but I find that I always enjoy the conversations that we have.

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To waqarmmirza

I appreciate your efforts to refine the governance process within the community. However, before we can thoroughly engage in a discussion on this matter, I would like to request more information on the fundamental premise behind your proposal.

Could you please provide a detailed explanation of why you believe there is a need to redefine the meaning of abstaining in our governance framework? It would be helpful if you could share the context that led you to believe that such a change is necessary.

Furthermore, it would be beneficial for the community to understand the specific problem this proposed change is trying to solve.

Is there any evidence pointing to the existence of the problem within the current governance process that this redefinition will resolve?

If so, please elaborate on those issues and how your proposed change would improve the overall governance process or solve the specific problem.

There is a huge context gap in this proposal that needs to be filled. Although there seem to be small elements of “why” sprinkled within the above posts, unfortunately, there is no clear explanation of what the problem actually is and how your proposal is going to directly solve the undefined problem.

Basically, can you more clearly define the problem(s) with the current definitions of abstain?

By providing this additional information, you can help us better understand the rationale behind your proposal and engage in a more informed and productive dialogue on its merits.

Looking forward to your response.

is an effort to make cosmos governance non-political and better

  1. how is hard coding opinions non political?
  2. who decided that this is non political, imo, it is
  3. validators should be banned from governance altogether in the long term. they are selfish, centralized entities.

Appreciate the effort, but GATA DAO will not support this. Because i don’t see any problem here.


@wassie @serejandmyself @jacobgadikian @CML

I have downgraded the topic to conversation, I believe it was hasty of me to start this conversation as a Hub proposal.


Thank you for your clear answer, I will try to explain myself, and see if you change your mind. Please keep following the conversation as I add more material to it.

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The way I see it, it is not a hardcoding. It is refinement. There is a meaning of voting abstain and we are just changing the meaning here.

I would love to listen/learn about it more.

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Thanks for going forward with this. At least for now =)

About validators. Well, it’s just the uncormofatble truth as I see it. Decentralization shouldn’t (IMHO) have a middle man. And governance seems to be the most important aspect of digital consensus. Hence, as they are today, validators are self-interested and centralized. So is Citizen Cosmos. Of course, some like posthuman, stakin (I think it was them), etc., do try to create DAOs, have incentives, etc. and to distribute the power of the validator among the community and / or workers. Still, with today’s tools whatever we will do, it will not change the fact that it’s just a middle man. IMO, token holders should start to learn that politics and consensus (political and social + in the future dev) is the responsibility of each citizen, not some entity, that, Satoshi knows where they spend their money on. An analogy. I know better than my local council what my local area needs as someone that has seen that area being built and lives there (the council doesn’t, they just pass here to receive the taxes and promise me good work)

I agree 100% with you here.

Okay if we want to talk about the true Satoshi narrative of the cryptocurrency, that was Anonymity, sovereignty, and decentralization. Cosmos fell way short of achieving this.

I am a huge supporter of overhauling the cosmos governance and validator narrative. But space is so politicized independent cosmos citizens like me can not do anything without the major support from either of the 2 major cults.

Also, the overhauling has so many changes that it can not and should not be passed IMO as one prop, it should be a long way of doing the small changes. I know informed people in the community know the truth and they are working on it. But they are more focused on shipping new features rather than correcting the basics. We need a dedicated group of people working on this.