AIP 17: Update sAST Staking Design

Migrated from AIP 17: Update sAST Unstaking Rules · Issue #17 · airswap/AIPs · GitHub

Summary

Goal is to increase the number of community members who stake AST by easing the restrictive un-staking rules(only 10% every 7 days)

Rationale
Current rule to un-stake 10% every 7 days (while de-incentivizes immediate un-staking after voting) creates more friction for broader community to stake

  1. A large # of transactions needed to un-stake all tokens resulting in high gas fees
  2. General fear to stake and lock-in tokens

Specification

  1. Each stake creates a new staking line-item with a time-stamp at which the stake was initiated
  2. There is a 4 week cliff period during which AST cannot be un-staked (However AST is being un-locked during the first 4 weeks per below)
  3. 5% of AST is unlocked every week starting from time of staking

(Ex. at the end of 2 weeks users would have 10% AST unlocked but cannot un-stake since the user has not met the 4 week cliff period yet.
However, after 4 weeks, users can now un-stake their 20% unlocked amount or choose to wait further and accrue their 5% unlock per week so they an un-stake larger amounts in one single transaction. 100% AST would be unlocked at end of 20 weeks)

Start above process for any new stakes

Note on migration(Existing stakes): The current staking contract will be flipped to 100% unstakeable to enable existing stakers to unstake and move to the new contract.

Final thoughts:
I believe the above process will really help more community members to enter staking process. This creates a more open staking process with less restrictions and the actual fee rewards will incentivize people to stay staked rather than un-staking restrictions.

Let the open world win!

2 Likes

A few comments, written with the best intention. I hope they make sense as I found it a little difficult to highlight what is changes, what is questions and what is citations of the current text.

  • Try to keep the language neutral “(only 10% every 7 days)” is subjective remove “only”

  • In the first sentence “Goal is to increase more community members to stake AST” it sounds like we will increase the community member which I don’t understand the exact meaning of. I think it is something like: The goals is to increase the number of community members who stake?
    I don’t think I understand “(like cliffs)” in the beginning but maybe that’s just me.

Rationale
Drawbacks of the current system are

  1. A large # of transactions needed to un-stake all tokens resulting in high gas fees
  2. General fear to stake and lock-in tokens

Specification

  1. Each stake creates a new staking line-item with a time-stamp at which the stake was initiated
  2. 5% of AST is unlocked every week. (So at the end of 10 weeks, one can un-stake 50% of respective line-item and end of 20 weeks all 100% is unlocked) - does this mean that the AST are available for unstaking when they are unlocked?
  3. Is it correctly understood that you cannot unstake anything the first four weeks? and after four weeks you can unstake 20% after five weeks you can unstake 25% and so on? I think this point needs a little rewrite.

I think the idea to make a time-stamp of each stake and unblock 5% of it each week (not 5% of remaining balance but 5% of the initial amount) to make it available to unstake starting from week four looks interesting. That is really going to decrease the gas amount needed to unstake because you can unstake even 100% in one transaction after 20 weeks.

I think this is the main idea of this AIP.

But it also can effect the token price to drop after 20 weeks of this AIP implementation in one moment so we can create a “frozen bomb” to ourselves.

Reducing the number of tx to unstake is a good move. But one possible drawback I foresee: In the proposed implementation, there is no difference being staked for 20 weeks vs being staked for 40 weeks. We will need to incentivize longer term staking by some other means rather than restricting unstaking

Thats what we have voting and rewards for right? That happens more often than only once in 20 weeks, and keeps people incentivized to stake.

Yep. But voting is a snapshot based event so I could hold 20 weeks till the next voting snapshot, unstake and sell the pump, buy on the next dip and restake before the next vote theoretically.

Of course this opens me up to trading risks, but my point is to discuss if this sort of behaviour is what might possibly happen. And should we allow it?

In any case I think our proposed aip19 will solve this issue.

But this wouldn’t actually happen since voting is bound to happen at least once a month. So selling the pump wont be possible, because your sAST is still locked.

Note on migration: The current staking contract will be flipped to 100% unstakeable to enable existing stakers to unstake and move to the new contract.

While I think this is a great step in the right direction, I don’t believe it is a fully baked idea. Transitioning from a max unstake per transaction to a max unstake per unit of time is an excellent move and will drastically reduce unnecessary fees for loyal stakers. Even so, I have found that incentives always outdo disincentives/restrictions.

I believe the correct approach would be to incentivize stakers to keep sAST locked up for longer periods of time. Mayhaps this needs to be addressed in a followup AIP.

1 Like

Sorry in advance I’m going to be a little pedantic and play ‘devil’s advocate’ for a bit.

For point 1 - Can we see a table showing the number of unstaking transactions needed for the median staker (currently thats like 15k) in the current system vs. the proposed system? I think it would be good to let the community ‘see’ the proposed changes so they can determine exactly how it would affect them.

For point 2 - I think it’s important to examine the what drives the fear of staking. If that fear is something like, ‘AST will moon before the vesting period is over’, then your fear rooted in price speculation. Stakers are governance partners - were the primary motive is to have a voice in Airswap governance. Exercising that voice is rewarded. I think we need to be careful in pandering to speculation rooted fears since AST isn’t supposed to be a speculative asset.

Point 1 - I like.
Point 2 - I would like to see the ‘as-is’ system vs. the ‘to-be’ system in a table showing the vestment period for something like a 1000k staker, median staker, and a whale.

In general, why have the cliff at all? Why not 5% per week and the user can choose whether to unstake 5% at a time and incur gas fees or wait 4 weeks and make one larger transaction? Whats the benefit from imposing the 4 week cliff?

We should incentivize people to remain staked. We should avoid creating incentives that encourage people to unstake, buy the dip and restake. Furthermore, that seems too much like speculation to me. Admittedly, I don’t fully understand the proposal, but I want to make sure that the changes incentivizes the correct behaviors.