Requiring super majority or a fee on certain proposals

You know, I was collecting data for the draft I was putting together for a repeal of Abstain when I noticed a voter with substantial voting power voted “Abstain” on a recent proposal, and then considered that this is someone who would have a conflict of interest but also should have a vote recorded. Which, of course, ties in directly with your comment.

Part of my pushback was in the optics of it: to the casual viewer a proposal passing with an apparent sub-50% In Favor rate doesn’t exactly look great from a democratic perspective, even though we internally are aware that the Abstain feature is throwing off those numbers.

I wasn’t aware that “Ignore Abstain” was a setting, and this would actually help tremendously. I also was under the impression that an eventual supermajority vote might be rendered all but impossible to achieve under this current system, but Ignore Abstain would go a long ways toward alleviating that.

My initial vote In Favor of the Abstain came from wanting to encourage more people to vote, rather than sit on the sidelines. Then, after 15 AIPs with the Abstain option my sense was that many people were using it as a way of taking attendance, as a proxy for excusing uninformed voting.

I admit that’s incredibly presumptuous, and acknowledge that there may be genuine conflict of interests on proposals. Also, the rise of delegated voting means delegates are obliged to honor the requests of those delegating their votes, so that might also mean Abstaining is the best option for them.

I’ll be crumpling up my amendment draft, assuming we are able to make use of the Ignore Abstain button. I’m hoping such a request doesn’t involve the necessity of an AIP, but if it does I’d be happy to write it.


I’m totally opposed to “ignore Abstain”.

  1. That is the opposite of transparency.

  2. It wasn’t part of the Abstain AIP, IIRC.

  3. Dar, I saw you mention this to a Steward on Discord. Thanks for posting it here too. On Discord a Steward said they’d discuss this with Webslinger. Seems a huge overreach to me, if it’s not part of the Abstain AIP and it’s certainly not in the spirit of transparency.

Whatever reason someone may have for voting “Abstain” - and I’d bet it’s “DGAF / TLDR” a very high percentage of the time - it should be shown.

Ignoring it is one thing, but hiding that it happened is quite another and like it or not “Abstain” is definitely a vote. Never heard of a credible organization hiding abstain votes, and hiding it would be not only overreach without an AIP amendment for doing so but a huge step in the wrong direction.

No audits, no oversight, no Mission, hiding majority of votes … what’s next?

@CryptoLogically - Please reconsider the amendment. IMO this gives it added impetus.

@secengjeff should be included if this issue matters to him too.

Hello @br00no,

I am the author AIP-200 and I clarified both in the AIP and the DAR report with the administrators that abstentions do not affect the outcome of the vote.

Implementing the ignore Abstain flag is purely optical and again has zero effect on voting options or outcomes. There’s no “hiding” of majority votes.



It is absolutely NOT “purely optical”.

No credible organization hides abstain votes, and if it’s not in the AIP neother the AIP author, Stewards, SC or Admins have authority to arbitrarily hide those figures.

I voted In Favor of adding “Abstain”. Definitely would not have if it were stated that those figures would be hidden, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. No reasonable person would’ve presumed those figures would be hidden, and I’ll bet the related conversations never referenced hiding those figures but rather how they would in fact be shown.

I’m confused by what you mean here regarding “it should be shown”. The abstain votes will still be recorded and you can view them and the comments. The only part that is ignored is in the summary box, if I understand how the setting works correctly. I’m basing my understanding on the images here: Basic voting "hide abstain" option by mktcode · Pull Request #1124 · snapshot-labs/snapshot · GitHub

Does this not keep full transparency of who voted abstain, while clarifying in the voting summary that the percentages for and against are not decreased by the number of abstain votes?

Transparency is including the total in the Results, like any credible organization counts and shows ALL legit votes which totally include “abstain”.

Transparency is not forcing people to take initiative to spend a lot of time trolling through hundreds of votes, the blockchain, etc. to find figures that should be in-your-face but were hidden without mandate when most reasonable people would expect, and all precedents (including here) suggest, the figure would be shown in the totals.

I think the issue is that each of us wants to see both versions of the results simultaneously. Maybe I’ll see if I can work on a pull request for snapshot to add this option.


Thank you, @dar

That’s a great idea.

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You probably know this but many don’t… Most nations do not have a US-style 2 party (uniparty) system, so in most democracies the ruling party typically has at most 30% of the vote and sometimes far, far less. And that’s without counting “won’t waste my time with this circus” non-voters which is very arguably a vote too. Canada and most of Europe, for examples.

Worse, to affect unopposable rule two minority parties will often band together to form a majority which still adds up to much less than 50% of all votes, and in the process not only supercede the party which actually did get the most votes but also totally ignore the will of voters who voted for the two distinct parties who then form a coalition de facto single party without voter mandate. Don’t think it can’t happen here.

Abstain votes here never did count. The discussion is whether those should be shown, and I agree with your “taking attendance” comment.

I hope @secengjeff will chime in on “supermajority” however it’s my belief in a supermajority scenario the idea is to have In Favor a minimum 2/3 of ALL votes including Abstain. I think that’s his stated preference too, and it’s a point we should get consensus on. These are points of fundamental importance to the DAO’s processes and future.

For me, and many of the other Stewards and members of the Special Council, we use the Abstain button to be able to participate in voting while not passing judgement on whether it should pass or not. Even before, I would abstain from voting sometimes, for various other reasons, none of them being not reading the proposal.

If a supermajority included Abstain, that would effectively mean that they would count as a no, which would basically renders the Abstain option useless in my opinion. And there’s people who might not realize that their Abstain vote would count as such.

Rather than counting Abstain in a vote that requires a super majority, if it’s a problem that it doesn’t count, is it possible that Abstain not be an option at all for these types of votes?


The vote for new Admins did not include the Abstain option, so there’s a precedent for what you’ve suggested.

Much could (should?) be discussed and maybe amended re: Abstain now that it’s been tried awhile. I doubt most who voted In Favor for it are happy with major initiatives passing with a very small percentage of the overall vote.

Idea: AIP authors allowed to choose if they wish to have an Abstain option.

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A very relevant and timely example…

Voting on “AIP-239: Working Group Guidelines & The Governance Working Group Charter” is currently “In Favor” with only 16% of the votes actually in favor.

240 voters so far, which is about half what an AIP normally gets.

Here’s the kicker: a full 36% of In Favor votes are by a single Steward and co-author who stands to gain considerably if it passes ($9k / mo for 2 years +++) since statistically incumbents win re-election a large amount of the time.

There are probably others in similar position that have also voted in favor. I haven’t checked.

No suggestion here that person doesn’t deserve re-election, if we get there - I’d be inclined to vote for that person as of today - and choosing to recuse or not is their own business.

The point here is that once a large group of people is making that much $APE they can individually or collectively swing whatever vote they want.

Even as the vote stands now that may be exactly what’s happening, as without just that one Steward-voter the proposal would pass today with only 8% of the total vote: 8% In Favor vs. 5% Against.

Not a good look, to say the least.

Hello @secengjeff,

Why do you consider a qualified majority of 2/3 necessary for proposals involving significant cost or changes to the structure or voting rules of the DAO? This question aims to better understand the man’s thinking behind this proposal. By asking for explanations on the need for this qualified majority, you can better evaluate the pros and cons of this measure, as well as its potential impact on the DAO’s future decisions.
And how will you determine which projects require additional fees to be proposed? This question aims to clarify the decision-making process regarding the setting of additional fees for proposals requiring significant costs. By asking for details on how these fees will be determined, you can better understand how the man plans to implement this measure and how it could affect the future participation of DAO members.


This is off the topic of super majorities, but I also voted for the Abstain option, and I like having the option to participate in voting without affecting the outcome of the vote, as well as seeing the data on others who Abstain but participate. I don’t consider those votes as counting towards or against a vote. It’s just additional data in my mind. If people didn’t have the Abstain option, they would just not vote like before (that’s what I did), and there’d just be lower voter turnout.

What I do think is a problem is if people are thinking about Abstain as similar to an Against vote. That would defeat the purpose of it and then maybe it’s usefulness should be revisited.


Why is it important to vote if you don’t have an opinion about the proposal?

My intent is to make it very difficult to pass any AIP that has a large cost associated. For those particular cases it should be the clear intent of the community and not just a simple majority that the treasury funds be spent in this way. This is especially crucial where the writer of the proposal is direct or indirect recipient of the treasury funds.

To put it more bluntly, there is a risk of the DAO’s treasury being treated as a slush fund for pet projects that do not have a proportionate ROI.

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My thoughts on 2/3: 2/3 "Supermajority" Requirement to Alter Fundamental Tenets of ApeCoin DAO - #15 by Sasha

I disagree with a fee as it’s an easy requirement to meet (esp for companies who already raised a seed, like ApeWater from your example). Any suggestion that separates applicants by economic class instead of quality of idea/proposal I would be against.

I do agree that better governance process and DAO segregation should be implemented. See here: Ape16z - an Angel/Seed Fund managed by professional VCs - #25 by Sasha. In my evaluations, I treat treasury money like my own (well, better even, ha), and I think being careful (but not unreasonably harsh) is important.

Right now we’re trying to push everything through a process that’s really only optimal for small-to-medium grants. We need some due diligence team that can work with authors offline to interview/gather info and then report back, maybe, if proposal is over $X amount?

Agree on this for large projects. I would say however that “ROI” is subjective and isn’t just money. Art has ROI. Events. Shows. Other entertainment. Hackathons. None may result in any $ape sink, but must remain one of categories DAO invests is (just question is how much). The DAO is not a venture fund and has no imperative to only prioritize monetary returns. I’d argue it’s very far from that. Not sure if you meant it that way, but I’ve seen a few people talk about it that way.


welcome to the forums, @Barbapapa !

For me, it’s a way to show participation without affecting the outcome. I read all of the proposals. Some of the reasons I vote Abstain are because I don’t feel strongly either way, think it’s not a bad idea, but just not the right time for it, or disagree with some details, but not the basic concept. As a WG0 Steward, I started voting Abstain to stay neutral.

Voting participation is also something that affects a person’s Karma score, the tool the DAO approved through AIP-132: Karma - Reputation system for ApeCoin governance contributors.


It’s a terrible idea to reward people in any way for disinterested / uninformed voting.

That’s not participation, it’s noise. It’s also turns it all into a grab-bag shill fest MLM / pyramid type of thing, as does other similar initiatives, plus gives regulators easy ammo.

The Foundation has zero true oversight and no auditing. So too the slew of Working group proposals. It’s arguably the textbook definition of a slush fund.