P-17: Reward Contributions in $CODE

Authors: @kempsterrrr @Erik_Knobl @willblackburn
Previous disussion:


This proposal seeks to provide clarity on how contributions in Developer DAO are rewarded in our non-financial Governance token, $CODE.

This proposal has the following objectives:

  • Get $CODE flowing into the hands of contributors
  • Simple system for calculating budgets which will ensure proposals to secure funding do not get blocked by significant debate around allocations
  • Flexibility for experimentation on the DAO Org Structure and Rewards mechanisms at the Guild and Project level.

The aim here is a “good enough” framework we can iterate on and improve as the DAO matures. It is NOT intended to be perfect or permanent.


Since the start of Developer DAO in September, many contributors have been pouring their time into helping move the DAO forward without any clarity on how they will be rewarded for this.

Addressing this is key to ensuring a healthy community for the long-term.

By rewarding contributions in our Governance token, $CODE, we can ensure the people contributing most to the success of the DAO are also the people with the biggest say in Governance decisions via their $CODE vote.

Whilst this will not help to pay people’s rent, it will help reward actions and incentivize activities that can result in meaningful meatspace funds i.e. projects receiving grants funding or generating revenue that is distributed between contributors and the treasury.


Flow of $CODE to Contributors

In the pursuit of simplicity for Season 1, this proposal suggests that all contributions across the DAO share the same largely trust based process for rewarding contributions:

  • An agreed flat hourly rate denominated in $CODE to serve as the basis for calculating budgets across the DAO.
  • Guilds and Projects define their own budgets. Contributors estimate their own hours. For bounties, time to complete is estimated and then multiplied by hourly rate in $CODE.
  • Projects that are expected to drive revenue will suggest a % split of revenue between contributors and the DAO Treasury to be included in their Budget Application and therefore discussed/voted on by DAO Members.

Budget Calculations & $CODE Hourly Rate

$CODE Budget and Reward Calcultions

In our Governance Token Proposal, 50% of $CODE allocation goes to the Community Treasury.

That’s 5,000,000 CODE.

For the purpose of calculating $CODE budgets, this proposal assumes the following:

  • 4 Year linear vesting of available $CODE
  • Seasonal length of 4 months

This means that each Season there will be 416,666.67 CODE available to be allocated to Guilds, Projects and other initiatives. For the purpose of calculating a suitable initial hourly rate in $CODE, this proposal assumes the following:

  • 100 active contributors
  • Average 10 hour weekly contribution

Based on calculations for in the attached spreadsheet, this extrapolates out to a suitable hourly rate of 15 $CODE which totals 240,000 $CODE per Season, or 2,400 $CODE for the “average” conributor. This is well inside the 416,666.67 $CODE budget thus leaving room for other initiatives (Gifting memberships, potential token swaps etc.).

The 2,400 $CODE seasonal rewards could be much larger for people who were contributing more. This is a good thing as it further decentralizes Governance power into the hands of people contributing the most.

Guilds can include Projects/initiatives run by the Guild in their budget or they can apply for a budget separately as a Project. Each can have a mixture of “salaried” roles and bounty pools, or only one or the other. It is up to the team how to approach this but budgets must be calculated using the hourly rate.

A worked example:

Design Guild

The Design Guild may choose to have some “salaried” roles for ensuring Guild functions correctly. The formula to calculate the budget for each role would be:

Estimated hours per week X Weeks in Season X Hourly CODE rate

They may also want to offer bounties for creating POAPs. The formula for calculating this budget would be:

Estimated number of POAPs X Estimated hour(s) to produce one X Hourly rate

However Guilds or Project decide to calculate and allocate their budgets is up to them.

Experimenting with DAO Tooling such as Coordinape, DeWork and Wonderverse is encouraged to find what works best for each group.

It is recommended that rewards are sent to contributors on a monthly basis (at most) so as to reduce gas fees. The Operations team will provide a spreadsheet for tracking transactions before the start of Season 1.

Budget Application Process

Existing Guilds and Projects can skip to Phase 2, new ones must start at Phase 1

Phase 1 - Conversations and Brainstorming

  • Post to discord: share your idea in a relevant discord channel to get feedback and have it out in more detail. If you’re unsure of the correct channel use #brainstorming
  • Generate Consensus, form a team: gain support for the idea from at least 5 other DAO members who are committed to scoping out and delivering the idea. Remember, your proposal will need to be voted on by the community so their support is important for the budget to be approved.

Phase 2 - Form a Team and Draft Budget Application

  • Form a team: get commit for at least 5 other people who want to be actively involved in the Guild / Project
  • Create a draft proposal: use this template to create a draft Budget Proposal and share on the forum for Feedback for at least X days
  • Gain support of a Budget Steward: for S1, a Budget Stewards Committee is being created. The committee’s first members are the guild leaders and the top 5 verified members from our early contributor rewards round, chosen by DAO members. A Budget Steward role will be created on discord and discourse to identify these people. Budget Stewards cannot support their own project.

Phase 3 - Forum Vote

  • Add a vote to the Budget Application post on discourse
  • If at least 100 people vote and there is at least 66% in support of the proposal then submit your successful budget application via this form .

There are specific requirements for submitting Budget Applications:

  • Projects must have at least one Champion to serve as the primary point of contact for the rest of the DAO including the budget application. Guilds must also identify who plays this role in their structure.
  • Projects must have a discord channel where DAO members can join the conversation. New proposed Guilds should provide an overview of the Category to be created.
  • Projects must have a Project Page in the Developer DAO Notion Projects table, Guilds a Page in the Guild section on the Notion Home Page.
  • A multisig setup with at least 3 signers, budgets will be sent to this address.

The Operations Team will act as processor of Budget Applications and allocate funds to Guild/Project multi-sigs during Season 1. This may sound like centralisation and a single point of failure however the purpose is solely to enact the will of the DAO based on the Budget Application Process.

Budget Distribution, Accountability and Visibility

Budgets will be distributed on a monthly basis by the Operations Team.

To help DAO members maintain some visibility of project progress and also to ensure some level of accountability during Season 1, Guilds and Projects must submit a bi-weekly update to the forum to receive the next month’s allocation.

No updates, No $CODE.

If an update is submitted and the Operations Team have any reason to question whether or not the next month’s budget should be issued, they will refer this to the Budget Stewards to Vote on allocating/not-allocating the next month’s budget. This vote will be carried out in public via a sesh bot poll restricted to people who hold the Budget Stewards discord role.

This process will be improved during Season 1 as we figure out better ways of coordinating work and sharing updates across the DAO. Ideally the Budget Stewards is either and elected committee or it is tied to a threshold of $CODE holdings, then delegated power by the DAO to make these decisions on behalf of members.


See “motivations” section above


In the pursuit of simplicity and forward momentum, a few compromises have been made and should be acknowledged:

  • Valuing all work across the DAO equal in terms of reward in elevated Governance via $CODE allocation. This is imperfect as the value generated on hourly contributions is not flat and is something we should explore in more detail during S1.
  • Trust-based system for rewards rather than explicitly outcome-based system. We’re relying on social constructs to ensure lots of $CODE isn’t wasted and it is unclear how well this will work in practice but massively simplifies getting $CODE into the hands of contributors.
  • All rewards being in $CODE does not directly help people pay their bills. It is hoped the incentivisation of action by rewarding in $CODE will drive initiatives that generate grant funding or revenue which is then distributed to contributors who brought in that funding/revenue on their project.
  • These calculations cannot be perfect and there is a reasonable chance we could go over the budget for Season 1
  • Yes - move vote to snapshot
  • No - I support the proposal, but with amendments.
  • No - I do not support the proposal

0 voters


There are references in this doc to Operations Team. Is that accurate? Should it be “Guild” instead?

Will there be a central ‘place’ where DAO members can see all of these?

I don’t want to create extra work for anyone, but I’m thinking ahead to estimating Season2 long before it comes, so that the DAO can begin to see which of these platforms works best for which types of projects.

For example, if I’m recording my contributions for a whole season for School-of-Code in DeWork, it might be subjectively difficult for me to judge how that works on Wonderverse, or Coordinape. So an objective opinion might be helpful.

It’s okay to say I’m overthinking this. I do that sometimes, hehe!!

Otherwise fantastic work for all the context gathering and putting this together @kempsterrrr @Erik_Knobl @willblackburn and the DAO!

good questions dude. guess there is a balance here regarding what activity the DAO should direct people to take versus the freedom they’re given to act. Should the DAO enforce or encourage a specific tool?

The retrospective process during the off-season after Season 0 I personally found quite valuable and believe it is something we should ensure happens at the end of every season so we can learn our mistakes/success. Maybe that is the place we think more about how we review which tools are working best for different use cases.

There is currently no central place however thanks for reminding me as prior to Season 1 starting guides will be created for various things including how to manage/track budgets, how to use various tools related to this including DeWork, Coordinape and Parcel.

Some WIP docs are here already.

What else would you like to see?

great spot. “Coordination Operator” so it’s very clear? are we supposed to edit proposals once there are vote stage? cc @willblackburn … seem like that kind of doesn’t make sense

No changes unless they are small typos, immaterial, and clearly noted.

thoughts re @Erik_Knobl question above given this?

cc @willblackburn @Erik_Knobl - went to edit this post to replace the operations team with DAO Coordination Operator but was worried it might reset the vote.

I think you should keep it as it is.

What a super late reply. Sorry!

Maybe a nice idea to create a Quest for doing a short-ish video, halfway into Season 1, on the use of all three platforms and their merits/minus-points using a couple of well known and also less-well known projects for context/ as examples.

And I don’t see why we couldn’t collectively view a short video like this during a town hall, or other relatively big meeting to get some initial feedback. All going to the movies together to in the DAO!! hehe.

And the video is still there for reference for later. Much nicer than more docs… imo!!