In conjunction with the Ethereum Foundation, Reddit is inviting Ethereum scaling projects to show the community how your scaling solution can be used to bring Community Points to mainnet.
The great bake-off event initiated by online forum provider Reddit isn’t judging bread, or croissants or cookies. Instead, Reddit is trying to find a winning system to administrate smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain, to modernize how users benefit from participating in the online community.
The idea is that Reddit wants to find a way to offer digital kudos in the form of ‘Community Points’ over an Ethereum smart contract model, which naturally accommodates this kind of tokenization.
So the great contest began. Reddit put its feelers out, and now 22 applicants are waiting to hear the results for the chance to use a proprietary smart contract system to reward people who provide upvotes, reviews, and administrative contributions to the Reddit platform.
Reddit Ethereum Ecosystem Contenders
In the maelstrom of activity to build the best Reddit community points smart contract system, some potential winners have emerged. Since Reddit has 430 million monthly users, any proposed contract has to be able to scale and scale well. Reddit wants the system to easily handle things like point claims, one-off points burning, and transfers. With that in mind, among the front-runners, there’s an unwavering commitment to access and secure use, with the abstractions that requires, and a speedy, convenient way for users to get, store and trade the token with transparency.
One of the front-running systems getting a lot of attention in today’s tech world is the Syscoin system done in collaboration with Matic, which offers scalability as well as low fees and accessibility for users. There’s Matic’s proof of concept based on the firm’s reputation for good layer 2 solutions. There are design aspects like reliable exits and composability that speak to that need for convenience and access.
Other great features of the system include quick settlement and sophisticated store of value, along with the decentralized security for the Ethereum blockchain that Reddit finds so important in evaluating competitors. It’s crucial to build a system that is resistant to tampering so that these little tokens of appreciation can’t be forged, altered or otherwise fooled around with.
We performed 100k @reddit token transactions on the @Syscoin Platform mainnet. The total cost was $0.63 USD (0.0000528 $SYS per tx). The speed and bandwidth of our on-chain settlement alone far exceeds the baseline expectation, not counting #ZDAG. #blockchain #scalability pic.twitter.com/TW0wLAFIJB
— Syscoin (@syscoin) August 4, 2020
Solana’s contribution is convenient for upvotes and other activity, while OMG promotes a system with zero fees complementary to the Google Chrome browser. NEAR uses sharding, and some other top contenders have models that work a bit differently.
In general, winning the bake-off is partially a question of balancing access with security. There’s quite a lot of abstraction in the best systems, so that there’s not too much intrusion – systems don’t have to “touch” the assets a lot while they’re trying to facilitate functionality. At the same time, there’s enough evaluation to prevent various kinds of tampering.
So are the community points consisting of Ether (ETH) since the project is administered on the Ethereum blockchain? Not quite. The values in question are not denominated in Ether, the fundamental coin in the Ethereum ecosystem, and a rival to Bitcoin in terms of crypto investment options.
Instead, they are in the form of ERC-20 tokens, which are more broadly defined ways to look at assets transferred and identified on an Ethereum blockchain that may not be centrally finance-focused.
An ERC-20 token is a unit functioning on the Ethereum blockchain – traded, transferred and held in that form – but it’s not Ether. Some experts try to explain the difference by suggesting that Ether is the ‘trunk’ of the Ethereum ‘tree,’ while the ERC-20 tokens are the ‘branches.’ A more scientific model would suggest that ERC-20 tokens are simple abstractions of ETH identity, not tied to the market cap or transactional model for Ether itself.
In any case, at press time, a single ERC-20 token was worth six cents. For contrast, a unit of Ether is valued at $390.17.