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Question: Interested in a cryptocurrency that operates similar to a publically held corporation except without regulation?  (Voting closed: April 05, 2012, 05:13:26 AM)
Yes - 12 (66.7%)
No - 6 (33.3%)
Total Voters: 18

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Author Topic: Unregulated Corporation Cryptocurrency  (Read 2200 times)
cunicula
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April 02, 2012, 05:13:26 AM
 #1

It would be possible to make a cryptocurrency run much like a corporation. The shareholders are the miners. They mine under proof-of-stake, so they have ownership shares of the currency proportional to their mining power (see https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Proof_of_Stake). They also vote on some mining rules.

For example, they could elect a manager. With each block they submit the managers address. Whichever address gets the most votes in the last 5000 blocks is the managerial address.

They also vote on a share of mining proceeds which all valid blocks must send to the managerial address. In each block they submit a percentage 0%-100%, the median percentage in a sequence of say the last 5000 blocks is the manager's share. Any valid block needs to pay the managerial address at least this share of mining proceeds in order to avoid rejection.

The manager spends these funds as he sees fit to develop the currency or promote related businesses (as well as to reward himself and his staff for a job well done). If the manager does a bad job, then the stakeholders can elect someone else by voting for a new managerial address. If the manager is overpaid, they can vote to reduce his share.

Snce a new manager can be readily elected, there is no central point of failure. It is just like a corporation, but without the legal apparatus. Laws are replaced by a blockchain. The currency owners are the shareholders. They vote in a manager and give him resources. They vote him out if he does a bad job (or gets pinched by the feds).

This sounds like a no-brainer excellent idea to me. Please explain why it isn't?

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Ukigo
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April 02, 2012, 05:42:35 AM
 #2

Who and how will count the votes !?
How that counting entity/authority will be established ?

"...Enemies are everywhere ! Angka is all rage ! Be a good soldiers, blow everything... " <-- Pol Pot (C)
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April 02, 2012, 05:49:59 AM
 #3

Who and how will count the votes !?
How that counting entity/authority will be established ?
Each mined block contains a vote. Past votes determine validity rules for future blocks. The blockchain is the authority.

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April 03, 2012, 10:58:10 AM
 #4

At last, altcoin with some unique features that won't be implemented in bitcoin any time soon.
Definitely interested.
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April 03, 2012, 12:53:42 PM
 #5

So if you get 51% of hashing power you can require 100% of revenue go to the manager account which you also control?

While a monopoly can form in "open blockchain" wouldn't the structure almost guarantee a monopoly.  Once a monopoly is formed it would be trivial to modify the rules to ensure that nobody could break it.

For example make 100% of mining revenue to to manager and increase the voting period to 500,000 shares (would require those trying to break the monopoly to mine for years at 100% loss to break the monopoly).


Maybe I am not seeing it.

What benefits/advantages would this structure provide that current blockchain doesn't?
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April 03, 2012, 11:05:25 PM
 #6

So if you get 51% of hashing power you can require 100% of revenue go to the manager account which you also control?

While a monopoly can form in "open blockchain" wouldn't the structure almost guarantee a monopoly.  Once a monopoly is formed it would be trivial to modify the rules to ensure that nobody could break it.

For example make 100% of mining revenue to to manager and increase the voting period to 500,000 shares (would require those trying to break the monopoly to mine for years at 100% loss to break the monopoly).


Maybe I am not seeing it.

What benefits/advantages would this structure provide that current blockchain doesn't?

+1
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April 03, 2012, 11:38:34 PM
 #7

Sorry to nitpick an example, but you should probably elect the manager using the Schulze Method or another clone-independent voting system. Plurality voting causes a "spoiler effect".

Go for it! I'd certainly prefer that the two ideas (work vs stake) compete than have everyone argue about it indefinitely. Most Bitcoiners won't support this until they see experimental evidence.
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April 03, 2012, 11:47:02 PM
 #8

What would stop people from adding to their hashing power to increase their number of votes?  Or is that the goal?

If that's the goal, seems like a bad idea.

1.  1/10 of the hashing power does not necessarily mean 1/10 of the votes, because of variance.
2.  Why not use a simpler/more traditional method of voting?
3.  Anyone who thinks they have something to gain by acquiring the majority of the votes could go out and buy more hashing power.  Other people don't necessarily have individual incentive to counter such a hashing power purchase.
4.  Because of 3, the voting system would become unfairly biased towards those who invested in hashing equipment.  No one should be required to make such an investment just to vote in a company.

Also, what size of company are we talking here?  Seems like it'd be pretty easy to do a vote-by-email, or even a paper tally vote for most companies.  No need to have people hashing unnecessarily, relying on statistics with variance and wasting electricity.
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April 05, 2012, 02:56:06 PM
 #9

Sorry to nitpick an example, but you should probably elect the manager using the Schulze Method or another clone-independent voting system. Plurality voting causes a "spoiler effect".


Approval voting. It's also relatively resistant to single-party takeovers as it would actually require close to a 51% attack rather than just more votes than anyone else.

Argumentum ad lunam: the fallacy that because Bitcoin's price is rising really fast the currency must be a speculative bubble and/or Ponzi scheme.
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April 06, 2012, 08:09:56 AM
 #10

@SgtSpike
You missed the proof of stake mining component. Stakeholders have to buy more coins to increase votes. Hashing power alone wouldn't get you far at all. Variance would be smaller under proof-of-stake, say 100,000-fold smaller.

@d&t
the point is to create and fund an organization that represents the interests of coin owners and pursues projects that increase coin value. Very few people will make any money off the initial nonfinancial, nonmining cryptocurrency businesses. The prime beneficiary of these businesses will be the coinholders. Therefore, private actors won't (aren't) step(ping) forward to create or invest in nonfinancial, nonmining businesses. Privately, cryptocurrency entrepreneurship is a low-return, high risk activity. A coinholders organization, run by a manager elected by coin holders, would have much stronger incentives to develop and promote professional businesses. The businesses would not need to be profitable in the short or medium term. They would just need to boost coin value and have potential long-run prospects.

@voting nerds
you are right some more refined form of voting would be better. Has to have low data overhead though, so maybe each block can contain at most 3 rank-ordered choices. Schulze Method good.

@developers
Someone step up and create this.

@people who suggest voting by email.
Why? How is this done securely? Who would count the votes?

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April 06, 2012, 01:27:21 PM
 #11

A question about "proof of stake". Do you need to keep all your coins in online wallet to vote? What about coins stored offline (cold storage)?
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April 06, 2012, 02:19:30 PM
 #12

A question about "proof of stake". Do you need to keep all your coins in online wallet to vote? What about coins stored offline (cold storage)?
[edit: you would have two different private keys; one for voting (online) and one for spending (offline). Someone could steal your online voting key. You could 'recover' it by moving coins to a new wallet.]

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April 07, 2012, 01:16:33 PM
 #13

Perhaps an example would help. Consider online gambling.

One of the biggest potential markets for bitcoin is US online gambling. This market is largely unrealized because say 99.99% of US online gamblers are unaware of bitcoin and are not motivated to learn how to use it. If these gamblers knew how to acquire and use bitcoin, then they could easily become addicted to bitcoin-denominated gambling. However, they are not willing to learn because the intial learning costs are significant. In addition, the existing gambling community is small, so there are hardly enough people to play with even after you have learned the ropes.

To persuade gamblers to learn about bitcoin and become addicted to bitcoin gambling, you need to lure them with subsidized tournaments. These subsidized tournaments lose money for the online gambling site, but bring in future customers. The customers gamble in subsidized tournaments because they have positive expected value. To make bitcoin gambling big, you need to do the following.

1) Design a professional site that is competitive with the sites of other leading players in terms of visual appeal and functionality (this is expensive)
2) Provide massive subsidized poker tournaments which reward people who learn how to acquire bitcoin and use it to gamble on the site. (this is very expensive)

Small-scale private entrepreneurs are trying to do (1) and (2) already, but are failing to attract a large audience due to lack of resources. If 50% of all mined bitcoin were invested in site development and subsidized tournaments for 2 years, it is almost certain that a very large number of gamblers would be motivated to learn how to use bitcoin and bitcoin gambling sites. Once these subsidies were withdrawn, the gamblers would almost certainly continue purchasing bitcoin en masse and gambling with it.

If the investment of mined currency was centrally managed, then substantial funds could be made available for projects like this.

Without central management and major funding, it is quite likely that projects like bitcoin gambling will never take off. Bitcoin is simply too complicated for members of the general public to learn about unless a substantial reward is offered to incentivize their learning. It is not worthwhile for a private entrepreneur to throw money at the general public in order to promote bitcoin gambling. It would be worthwhile for a collective organization devoted to promoting bitcoin to throw money at bitcoin gamblers.

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April 10, 2012, 05:08:50 PM
 #14

You keep saying bitcoin, instead of some newfangled coin.

Bitcoin is not very likely to devote half of all mined coins for two years to one thing.

However, in general I do not see how a collective having a certain size of stake / income of coins differs from an individual who owns just as large a stake / income. If an organisation could be put together that controls as many coins as Satoshi does, why would it be more likely than Satoshi is to do something calculated to increase the value of the coins?

Maybe it is naive to imagine that part of the usefulness of having an early adopter phase where a few people rake in vast numbers of coins is precisely to create a bunch of people who ought to be highly motivated to try to ensure the coins become valuable?

Is the problem that they don't have an incentive to ensure the coins *remain* valuable, instead having more incentive to pump and dump than to pump and keep pumping?

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April 10, 2012, 05:22:30 PM
 #15

You keep saying bitcoin, instead of some newfangled coin.


Bitcoin is just for convenience. Insert whatever term you like.


However, in general I do not see how a collective having a certain size of stake / income of coins differs from an individual who owns just as large a stake / income. If an organisation could be put together that controls as many coins as Satoshi does, why would it be more likely than Satoshi is to do something calculated to increase the value of the coins?

Standard argument about why the corporate model facilitates large-scale, risky, entrepreneurial activity.

One individual owning 100% is clearly impractical [not really a currency anymore], so let's say 90%. If the individual owns 90% of all coins, then he would reap almost all the return from increasing coin value. So far so good. However, he would also face all the risk associated with funding the operation. Unless this individual is extremely wealthy (or the coin is worthless), he will not want to throw coins at risky, entrepreneurial activity. He could lose his shirt. However, throwing coins at risky, entrepreneurial activity is just what is needed to developed bitcoin businesses.

If ownership is divided amongst a large number of people, then each individual does not face significant personal risk. Security from personal risk encourages them to channel funds to high risk - high return activities such as large-scale, professional, semi-legal bitcoin poker. This is the basis for entrepreneurial development.

Finally, people seem to prefer a decentralized model of currency operation. Periodic, decentralized election of a representative could satisfy this desire in my view. Centralized ownership and control could not.

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April 10, 2012, 05:26:21 PM
 #16


Maybe it is naive top imaging that part of the usefulness of having an early adopter phase where a few people rake in vast numbers of coins is precisely to create a bunch of people who ought to be highly motivated to try to ensure the coins become valuable?


The problem here is that no one has enough coins to have a strong incentive. If an extremely wealthy person owned say 30% of the coins, then they would have an adequate incentive (though still much weaker than all coin holders collectively). Note also that they would have to be wealthy enough to not only own 30% of coins, but also to be able to gamble with them without facing risk of substantial personal loss. In short, they would need to be a billionaire. We would also have to hope that very wealthy person had ambitious plans to develop the currency. These are rather unlikely conditions.

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September 29, 2012, 08:00:46 AM
 #17

Thought that the Bitcoin Foundation might generate new interest in this topic. It is an alternative way of funding something like a foundation without the corporate legal apparatus, corporate sponsorship, etc.

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markm
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September 29, 2012, 08:58:07 AM
 #18

DeVCoin allocates 90% of mined coins in accordance with what might be regarded as kind of articles of operation, or bylaws, or somesuch, with the guidance of executives / officers / whatever.

So in some ways it might be giving a glimpse toward some of the intent of this proposal?

It is unfortunate that GMC and GRF, both being corporation created currency, had to retreat away from using the blockchain format due to merged mining not turning out afterall to create a safe environment encouraging the deployment of altcoins. Maybe they will yet achieve sufficient transaction volume someday though to move back to the blockchain format as they were originally intended.

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cunicula
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September 29, 2012, 09:34:58 AM
 #19

DeVCoin allocates 90% of mined coins in accordance with what might be regarded as kind of articles of operation, or bylaws, or somesuch, with the guidance of executives / officers / whatever.


Right, funding development is one of the aims. However, Devcoin is inflexible and not accountable to users. Who is designated as the head developer? Is there even a head? How is the head selected? If the head sucks, can the users replace him or reduce his salary? What is the head's incentive to make efforts/decisions that benefit users.

At least something like the bitcoin foundation is accountable to someone. The problem is that the foundation is accountable to BitInstant and MtGox and their interests do not fully coincide with those of the user base. Ideally we want an organization that is accountable to everyone who has an ownership stake. That is what shareholder voting aims to achieve.

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markm
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September 29, 2012, 02:21:16 PM
 #20

Actually DeVCoin does have stuff about appealing decisions, maybe even removing officers and such.

If it needs more clauses and such quite possibly there is reward in DeVCoins to be had for helping develop such things.

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