If you spend enough time with anyone who is into the crypto world, you will quickly realize — it’s all about politics; Not in a republicans vs. democrats [or insert your country’s party system here] kind of way, but rather it’s about a balance of power and who has a say in how decisions are made. In theory, at least as it was originally conceived, the internet is a democratic space where knowledge can be freely shared. In reality, its a heavily controlled and monitored cyber-space owned by companies that sell your data and personal information to the highest bidder; it is anything but democratic. The blockchain era promises to change all that, which is why people who are passionate about blockchain love to talk about its politics.
Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Bureaucracy
The primary benefits of blockchain technology are transparency and decentralization. This solves two problems that face practically every industry today, many of which are currently being disrupted by blockchain startups.
Take bitcoin, the crown jewel of blockchain applications that is shaking up how we view the financial establishment. By removing middlemen, in this case banks, bitcoin enables trading directly between peers because the traditional role of the middleman, to create trust and act as a guarantor between parties, is filled by the trustless nature of a transparent, unalterable blockchain.
The thing is, in many applications, middlemen do actually promote a certain kind of efficiency by being able to quickly get stuff done that the population cannot do on their own. Decentralized, peer-to-peer networks, while they offer individuals choice and free will, are not always as efficient at dealing with problems as a more top-down system. Bureaucracy may not be sexy, but it does allow for certain benefits that anarchy does not.
Efficiency vs. Representation
And so these decentralized networks need governance, a way for people to organize, make decisions, and resolve disputes. Installing a singular governor, though highly efficient, would defeat the whole benefit of decentralization. A peer-to-peer network, where people are already investing their time, is primed and ready for a democratic solution. But again there is a twist; democracy comes in several flavors.
A simple direct democracy gives people the most amount of representation, but decision making is slow and extremely inefficient. It also relies on an educated and invested population who are ready, willing, and able to vote regularly.
Meanwhile, a representative democracy, where the population votes for delegates to represent them for a period of time, is certainly more efficient but lacks real, direct representation on all issues. There are plenty of examples in world politics that demonstrate the problems, and benefits, of both of these systems.
The Best of Both Worlds
Liquid democracy combines the best aspects of these two systems into a new form of democracy that gives the individual a radical choice; whether to represent themselves or to give their vote to a delegate. Individuals may choose depending on the topic at hand, for example delegating their vote to an expert one round, while casting their own vote on a subject they are passionate about. The beauty of this system is that it stays true to the political spirit of blockchain, giving people agency and choice by removing middlemen, while still allowing for the increased efficiency of a representative system. It also helps to promote voting from people who know what they are doing, hoping that if they don’t they will delegate to someone who will.
Another benefit of using liquid democracy in blockchain applications is that voting and the selection of delegates is done using tokens. This means that you can divide your tokens among delegates, for example giving half your vote to an expert you know and half to your friend who just got into crypto and still doesn’t quite know what he is doing.
Blockchain technology is revolutionizing how we do pretty much everything, from finances to fine dining because it brings clarity and trust back to systems that have long been broken, corrupt, or abused. It’s easy to see why, at its core, blockchain is such a political topic.
For distributed solutions like dApps or really any other blockchain enabled platform that uses tokens and needs a mechanism for decision making, liquid democracy provides users with choice and representation, while still being efficient and effective. Out in the world of domestic politics, liquid democracy, secured by blockchains, could even help remedy issues like voter fraud and corruption or the constraints of a two-party system… but that’s a story for another blog.
Liquid Democracy in Action
Aerum is building the next generation of decentralized infrastructure, fully compatible with Ethereum, to launch dApps, ICOs, games, marketplaces, and any other application that can benefit from increased speed, throughput, and scalability. To govern this blockchain 3.0 we have chosen to use the delegated liquid democracy model to govern our ecosystem and token economy.
To learn more about our unique solution, please visit our website. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news on Aerum and to stay up to date on new Air Drops & Bounties, as well as our upcoming ICO. If you have any questions, we would love to hear from you; drop us a comment or get in touch with us on Telegram.