AIP-337: Re-evaluating ApeCoin DAO Special Council Salaries Structure

Re-evaluating ApeCoin DAO Special Council Salaries Structure

Category: Process


This AIP proposes the re-evaluation of Special Council salaries from AIP-1 with an immediate salary adjustment for future Special Council members, suggesting a 50% reduction in their compensation (from $20,833 of ApeCoin/month to $10,417 of ApeCoin/month). This adjustment will be applicable to all future terms as detailed in AIP-137 and AIP-138, exclusively affecting Special Council members elected after the implementation of this proposal.


Since March 2022, the Special Council member positions have been established to fulfill the essential role of administering DAO proposals and aligning with the community’s vision. The question of whether the compensation for this responsibility is justified remains a subject of community deliberation. I believe It’s important to enable the community to reach a collective decision regarding this matter, recognizing that varying perspectives exist regarding the appropriateness of the compensation.


Before we dive in here’s the current structure of the ApeCoin DAO (Thanks @Vulkan for the image):

Now let’s have a look to what the community has to say:

Yat Siu response (Yat Siu’s Twitter thread):

example 12

Vera’s response (Vera’s Twitter thread):

As Vera suggests, there’s always room to write a proposal but also taking into consideration that the right compensation is necessary to attract and retain talent.


Financially, the DAO stands to accrue savings of up to $104,165 ApeCoin monthly. It will also elevate community engagement by granting ApeCoin holders the opportunity to vote on this delicate matter, enhancing the overall governance.


Special Council Members: Administering DAO proposals and aligning with the community’s vision.

Administrators: WebSlinger, in charge of Finance, Legal, Operations, Compliance & Treasury.


If the AIP passes, initiate a dialogue with the Administrators (WebSlinger), to implement and execute the proposed modifications to the salaries of the future Special Council members.


If the AIP is approved, it shall come into effect as soon as possible.


$0. No costs for the ApeCoin DAO. Instead it will save the DAO up to $104,165 ApeCoin/month.


I should point out that this is a reconstructed version of the original AIP-277: Re-evaluating ApeCoin DAO Special Council Salaries Structure which was rejected (1, 2) due to its implementation affecting pre-existing salary contracts.

There was a lot of emotion, passion, heated debates etc. in AIP-277. But more importantly, it resulted in a very engaging discussion. If only we had that in the voting reform discussions. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

In my opinion, I believe that the Special Council made a huge mistake by not bringing that AIP up to vote as was originally written. The DAO mandate - which admittedly created a paradox of sorts - clearly indicates this:

  1. A Board member may be removed and replaced prior to the term pursuant to a majority vote of token holders.

If the DAO can vote to remove any Special Council member “prior to the term” ending, so too can it vote to revise the salaries during said term. In both instances, contracts are clearly involved.

Regardless, nobody was advocating for the Ape Foundation to breach signed contracts, but since we have no clarity as to said contracts, we have no way of knowing what exactly the problem entails nor what breaches would have resulted if this AIP were to pass (as most expect that it would have).

For the record, I had personally said that the reduction of salaries just “because they’re too high” isn’t a reasonable reason to do it.

That said, this is a DAO, and we have to abide by the rules - whether we like them or not. And if we don’t like them, well, that’s what AIPs are for. But what happens if the Ape Foundation flat-out rejects your AIP because it affected them? If nothing else, AIP-277 proved that was clearly untested waters. And so, here we are.

I also want to note that, since the AIP-277 fiasco, we’ve had AIP-282: Information Request - Role of Special Council go to vote and passed! And so we ended up with this : APE Foundation Players – The Special Council [AIP-282] explanation of what exactly the Special Council does. So, there’s that.


Are you actually creating a salary structure, with things like band levels based on Job Complexity Index?

It looks like your proposal is for a salary cut by 50% as the only term.

If you are asking for a salary cut please can you rename your idea proposal title.


This topic is really a very important one however I think a salary review should come after a review of what is expected of the committee, time / hours / function etc and also the sorts of people you want to attract. Given the long term desire to make APE a powerful global token you need experienced strong indivduals at the helm, the current salaries could be deemed extremely low to attract talent but it then comes down. to what is expected and what is required. I feel a more comprehensive review should be taken. for example if large parts of the role perhaps are adminstrative in nature… would you down size the number of Special Councils but add people at lower price points who potentially are working to a different set of responsibilities. Its very easy to just cut salaries but with out context and what we are trying to achieve then its really only scratching the surface.


Thanks for the suggestion. I don’t think changing the title really changes anything, the goal is for this AIP to go up to vote, then people can vote on whether they want to change the current salaries or not. Yes it’s a simple cut, still the structure will change. Maybe we could think about the structure and have a part of the salary paid fixed in ApeCoin (similar to what Ape Assembly is being paid) instead of dollars, what’s your thoughts there?

Mind you, I’m ok either way, as long as the community has the right to vote on it.


Thanks for joining the Discourse, glad to see you here participating for the first time! :slight_smile:

Yeah… I think Special Council’s job is not about expanding or making the token increase it’s value, it’s mostly just administrative work so whether the token does well or not I believe it won’t matter much to them. So the case of attracting talent with higher pay it’s a bit of a grey area here imo.

Thanks @SmartAPE! Yes this is coming after the Facilitators suggested me to publish the AIP again. Instead of just editing the AIP-277 to only affect future SC members and send it to vote, they said the process was to start over with a new AIP.



Agreed. We have no such clarity.


Yup. And I covered all of this in my synopsis (linked above) of the AIP-277 fiasco.

The issue here is that when the foundation set up the DAO, it basically had two high profile people (Alexis & Yat). And so, those salaries were set based on their caliber level. However, when the 2023 voting came around, those fixed salaries were retained irrespective of the candidates, their ability etc. It was basically the equivalent of promoting a VP to the position of CEO just because the board said so - and then not revising the compensation package accordingly. Or something like that.

AIP-1: Proposing the DAO - Process set the salary compensation back in Mar 2022 and it passed by a very wide margin during which 1438 wallets voted - most of them pretty large wallets because everyone was riding the $APE @ $14 (!) wave back in Mar 2022.

And that’s how we ended up paying each member of the SC almost $250K per year for what is, apparently, a part-time gig.



There’s nothing in AIP-1 nor the Ape Foundation mandate that addresses any sort of salary structuring.

In addition, the July 2023 nomination guidance was pretty clear in what credentials, expertise etc. the nominees would have.

And yes - for an entity that once had a $1b (?) market CAP, they totally didn’t care about pesky things like credentials, expertise, experience etc. And when you take into account the fact that the whole system is setup like a massive political enterprise, well, that’s how all the Special Council and other high-profile elections end up being a massive fiasco which mimics political agendas that tend to be rife with lobbying, favoritism, corrupt intent etc.

Yet - all this time, nobody (?) thought - for one minute - that there was something very wrong here. Then AIP-277 happened, word got out into the wild, and the sh*t storm ensued.

During this time, here are the AIPs related to the Special Council that have since gone up.

And like the retconned AIP-277, that accountability AIP-305 has been in admin review limbo since Aug 9th - even as later AIPs have been created, gone to draft, admin review and up for vote.

Amid all this, below is today’s performance metrics for $APE.

While the Ape Foundation wasn’t created to (wink-wink) improve the value of the token, clearly in the real world if the share price of a corp was this bad, heads would be rolling. And as the token has no utility (not even Yuga’s own games are moving the needle to any meaningful degree), with such a restrictive voting system, it shouldn’t be a surprise that the treasury is being drained while the DAO gains very little - if anything - of value.

As I said in my on-going outrage series (1, 2), “When there’s zero consequence for failure, what incentive is there to succeed - at anything?

In conclusion, the problems here aren’t restricted to the salaries because, aside from the original Special Council, the new people didn’t make the rules. So, hating on them for this isn’t a good look.

The bigger issues here are related to the voting system as well as the fact that the Special Council has seemingly placed itself outside the rules of the DAO, and thus, can do basically whatever they want as there’s zero recourse or consequence.

Below is an excerpt from the governance. Apparently the DAO community doesn’t actually have the power that it assumed that it was granted.

This governance guide is an overview of the proposal process. It’s a living document that will evolve and improve with the DAO community’s input.

So, the end result is that you can’t revise salaries, you can’t ask for accountability, you can’t ask for DAO docs or anything that remotely addresses transparency. And you certainly can’t fire anyone. For anything, you’d have to rely on the patently broken voting system whereby those with friends in high places and large wallets, get to decide. The end result is that you end up with the same churn of friends in rotation.


Thanks for the recap of what has happened and is going on. Hopefully things with time will change for the better, and people will start to think more about giving instead of just taking and caring about themselves.




You are responding to this excerpt by @StoicDegen

You know why that won’t work?

  1. The DAO is a non-prof and wasn’t setup to improve the value of the token.
  2. You can’t tie a contractor (in this case, Special Council) income to the performance of the token.
  3. You can’t do #2 because of #1 and also because the earnings would automatically be considered an investment.
  4. I don’t think anyone is dumb enough to even agree to any such thing due to the fact that crypto tokens such as $APE are the most volatile. To wit: If the present SC had agreed to this, well, look at the price of $APE since they signed to now. There’s your answer.

Totally agreed. You cannot tie the performance of an SC to the performance of $APE. Their entire purpose is to help us avoid regulatory concerns, not actively create them. :slight_smile:


I did not say it is tied to APE performance targets, it is simply given over a delayed time period. Btw I see this as only possible for future elections not passed signed contracts.

If they don’t believe in APE, frankly they should consider if they should be on the SC.


The concept is a non-starter for a grants DAO with a role designed to help us avoid being regulated. It works perfectly in a business where the goal is to increase the price of the asset they’re given. You add additional bias to every decision an SC makes when they’re thinking about the value of their future bags. That could end very, very poorly.


We are regulated, in the Cayman Islands.

There is no issue for SC members to have part of their payment vested over a longer time period.

I see no regulatory risk especially if they all have non US companies receiving the service contract payments.


The US has and will continue to go after entities in the Cayman islands. But that’s besides the point, due to the bias it introduces to SC members. They’re not here to raise prices. I do not believe it’s helpful to try to steer them to be more concerned about prices. Ideally they’d be completely neutral, although that’s obviously impossible for anyone.


I am talking about them holding APE I did not mention they need to increase/decrease or change the price.

Holding their tokens as they believe in a governance token.


I think there is a pretty implicit assumption within the proposed structure, speaking as someone who is paid 50% of their compensation in stock. :joy: