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EIP-1890

Commitment to Sustainable Ecosystem Funding

WithdrawnStandards Track: Core
Created: 2019-03-31
Gregory Markou <greg@chainsafe.io>, Kevin Owocki <kevin@gitcoin.co>, Lane Rettig <lane@ethereum.org>
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EIP-1890 proposes a mechanism for capturing a portion of block rewards for ecosystem funding in Ethereum. This is meant to provide a credible commitment to funding R&D teams fairly for their work on the platform, but the actual amount of rewards captured remains at zero. The proposal specifies two parameters, a beneficiary address and a per-block reward denominated in wei, both of which are set to zero. The proposal does not aim to change Ethereum governance and must go through the existing governance process before implementation. The proposal calls for the network to come together and fund its own development, rather than relying solely on the Ethereum Foundation. The best way to organize these funds is still being worked out.

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Commitment to Sustainable Ecosystem Funding

Simple Summary

Ethereum currently provides a block reward to proof of work miners every block, but it does not capture any block rewards for ecosystem funding. This EIP adds a simple mechanism for capturing a portion of block rewards for ecosystem funding as a credible commitment to doing so in future, but it does not actually capture any such rewards.

Abstract

A mechanism that allows specification of two parameters, a beneficiary address and a per-block reward denominated in wei, that allows a portion of block rewards to be captured for the purpose of ecosystem funding. Both values are set to zero.

Motivation

In order for Ethereum to succeed, it needs talented, motivated researchers and developers to continue to develop and maintain the platform. Those talented researchers and developers deserve to be paid fairly for their work. At present there is no mechanism in the Ethereum ecosystem that rewards R&D teams fairly for their work on the platform.

We recognize that, while technically trivial, the real challenge in inflation-based funding is social: how to fairly capture, govern, and distribute block rewards. It will take time to work out the answer to these questions. For this reason, this EIP only seeks to make a credible commitment on the part of core developers to securing the funding they need to keep Ethereum alive and healthy by adding a mechanism to do so, but the actual amount of rewards captured remains at zero, i.e., there is no change at present to Ethereum’s economics. Raising the amount captured above zero would require a future EIP.

Specification

Two new constants are introduced: BENEFICIARY_ADDRESS, an Address, and DEVFUND_BLOCK_REWARD, an amount denominated in wei. Both are set to zero.

Beginning with block ISTANBUL_BLOCK_HEIGHT, DEVFUND_BLOCK_REWARD wei is added to the balance of BENEFICIARY_ADDRESS at each block.

We may optionally add another constant, DECAY_FACTOR, which specifies a linear or exponenential decay factor that reduces the reward at every block > ISTANBUL_BLOCK_HEIGHT until it decays to zero. For simplicity, it has been omitted from this proposal.

Rationale

We believe that the technical design of this EIP is straightforward. The social rationale is explained in this article.

Backwards Compatibility

This EIP has no impact on backwards compatibility.

Test Cases

This EIP makes no changes to existing state transitions. Existing consensus tests should be sufficient.

Implementation

Reference implementations are included for the Trinity, go-ethereum, and parity clients.

Copyright and related rights waived via CC0.

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