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Author Topic: [2018-07-18]Democracy of Two: NEO and the Crypto 'Election' That Wasn't  (Read 11 times)
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July 18, 2018, 10:22:24 AM
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What constitutes an election?

According those backing ethereum competitor neo, just one candidate and two voters.

The public blockchain project, whose tokens are valued at over $2 billion by crypto investors, went so far as to claim in a July 4 blog post that it had entered a "new era" in which its token holders will have a say in how decisions on the network are made, but even insiders are skeptical such assertions are little more than rhetoric.

Case in point, the NEO Foundation, which develops software for neo, announced this month that it had elected the first node to its network, a foundation-funded collective of NEO developers calling themselves City of Zion. Less publicized at the time, however, was that token holders were not allowed to participate in that vote.

As such, even those running the newly elected node aren't exactly convinced that neo is fully committed to running its blockchain with broad participation from users, at least at this time.

"I would personally disagree with calling it an election," Ethan Fast, a member of the City of Zion team, told CoinDesk in an interview. "That's not a word I would choose."

More broadly, such a conclusion is instructive in that neo is one of a growing number of public blockchains seeking to implement a more centralized model for how blockchains can be managed. Called delegated byzantine fault tolerance (dBFT), neo's specific idea is that by consolidating decision-making to a small group of nodes, the software can become faster and more useful.

Its a break from bitcoin's mining model in which any node operator who abides by the rules can compete to approve transactions, and one that has seen a handful of projects including EOS and Tron raise billions with big promises that it can prove viable.

In this way, neo, which has close ties to blockchain solutions company Onchain and the public Ontology project, has adopted technology it believes will address scalability issues — specifically, slow transaction speeds and controversial network upgrades.

"[The] NEO Council values efficiency (quick response and protocol upgrade) over decentralization (sometimes a crypto-political correctness) at this early stage," the project's governing body, now called the NEO Foundation, explained in a May post.

However, neo is perhaps unique in that it hasn't provided much in the way of details on how it aims to do this in a way that will add up to the democratic process its touts.

Neo's white paper and website do not provide a detailed description of its governance model, and further, the foundation has said in blog posts that it plans to maintain "decision-making power" until the "core protocol stabilizes," though it has not defined what criteria constitute stability.

Once the foundation is confident in the strength of the network, it says it "expect to see one to a few dozens of consensus nodes to be elected by NEO holders." But before token holders are able to vote for candidates, the foundation plans to "elect" several private nodes, of which City of Zion is one.

See more: https://www.coindesk.com/democracy-of-two-city-of-zion-and-the-neo-election-that-wasnt/
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