Leading Chinese Polkadot Community, PolkaWorld, Declares Shutdown

PolkaWorld, the largest Chinese community within the Polkadot ecosystem, announced that it would cease its operations. The decision comes after their proposal for official funding was rejected, resulting in the platform being inactive for half a month. This marks a significant moment in PolkaWorld’s four-year journey since its inception in 2019 and raises concerns about the impact of Polkadot’s OpenGov initiative on its contributors and the broader ecosystem.

PolkaWorld expressed its disappointment in a tweet, acknowledging the rejection of its proposal and the subsequent suspension of operations. The organization attributed these changes to the introduction of OpenGov by Polkadot’s founder, Gavin Wood, aimed at increasing decentralization, democracy, and transparency in governance and treasury management. However, the most contentious aspect of OpenGov appears to be the handling of the treasury, which has led to the departure of many long-term contributors and organizations from the Polkadot ecosystem.

Here are some key points raised by PolkaWorld and the wider Polkadot community:

  1. Integration of Expertise: In the previous governance system, a professional council elected by DOT holders evaluated proposals based on their expertise. PolkaWorld suggests that this approach should not be abandoned but rather integrated into the OpenGov system. They argue that decentralization may work best when it includes informed participants who can make well-informed decisions.
  2. Exploring Alternative Funding: PolkaWorld interviewed some DOT holders who expressed concerns about the conversion of treasury funds into cash, leading them to vote against proposals. The suggestion here is to explore other forms of funding, such as stablecoins like USDT or other tokens, to alleviate these concerns and promote a more diversified treasury management strategy.
  3. Empowering the Ecosystem: It’s crucial for all DOT holders to recognize that the treasury’s primary purpose is to empower and enrich the Polkadot ecosystem. If OpenGov results in the loss of talented teams and contributors, it could be detrimental to the ecosystem’s growth and innovation.
  4. Optimism and Adaptation: Despite the challenges posed by OpenGov, there is a call for a more optimistic outlook. OpenGov is seen as an upgrade and optimization for Polkadot’s governance model. Rather than walking away, stakeholders are encouraged to adapt to evolving rules and work together to guide the system in the right direction, allowing time for improvements to be realized.
  5. Community Engagement: PolkaWorld commits to updating its proposal based on community feedback and suggestions. This emphasizes the importance of genuine voting decisions, encouraging stakeholders to consider the proposals individually rather than following the crowd.

The announcement by PolkaWorld underscores the growing pains experienced by blockchain projects as they navigate the delicate balance between decentralization, governance, and financial management. As the Polkadot ecosystem continues to evolve, it remains to be seen how the community will respond to these challenges and whether adjustments to the OpenGov model will address the concerns raised by PolkaWorld and others. In the fast-paced world of blockchain technology, adaptation and cooperation are often the keys to success, and the Polkadot community is now facing a pivotal moment in its development.

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