Cryptocurrencies, blockchain, NFT and new trends

Community-driven crypto projects still thriving despite headwinds

Community engagement has always been a key aspect of crypto, and it’s proving its value during bear markets.

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The highly anticipated launch and airdrop of Arbitrum’s native governance token ARB took place on March 23, creating a buzz around the layer-2 protocol as hundreds of thousands of eligible users and DAOs tried to claim the token. Overwhelming user demand led the airdrop claim page to crash shortly after its launch, displaying 404 and 429 errors for over an hour, Cointelegraph reported. 

Since Arbitrum was one of the largest blockchain projects without a token, the hype around its drop was expected. Nevertheless, it exemplifies how community-driven projects in the space can still thrive, despite competitors, technical challenges, market downturns and regulatory uncertainty.

Arbitrum wasn’t the first — and certainly won’t be the last — project to mobilize massive audiences. In February, the token distribution of the layer-1 protocol Core DAO followed a similar engagement recipe, with 1.2 million tokens airdropped to individual users. Even before its mainnet launch, the project, established in 2021, had over 1.6 million Twitter followers and over 215,000 Discord members.

“From the start, community ownership and inclusion was a major goal,” Core DAO contributor Brendon Sedo told Cointelegraph. “Transparency is another key for our community. Too many projects keep the curtain closed on their progress and development. We’ve made it a priority to distribute information across a variety of platforms.”

Core’s blockchain runs on a combined proof-of-work and delegated proof-of-stake consensus mechanism known as Satoshi Plus. Its airdrop was carried out in partnership with the Satoshi App, an application allowing users to “mine” in-app rewards without requiring a payment or exclusive invite. According to Core, the app was crucial to helping to get tokens into the hands of the true users of the network, with 25% of the token supply dedicated to the partnership.

Community engagement is also key for Web3 games and metaverse platforms. Virtual world Aftermath Islands Metaverse is about to reach 4 million resource pack NFT generated in just 140 days after releasing its first play-to-earn game, adding the last 1 million users in a period of just 15 days, says the company. 

“Our focus is not on the number of users, as our users are anonymously verified using our Proof of Humanity solutions, where they can only have one account with no duplicate accounts, fakes or bots. This effectively removes the ‘eyeball’ measuring and false results, so we focus on what the users are doing,” explained David Lucatch, managing director at Aftermath Islands.

The resource pack NFTs represent real ownership of items that can be traded or used in different ways within the platform as personal items. Pack’s daily generation of real users sits at 60,000, the company claims.

Decentralization and community engagement have always been key aspects of crypto. Core DAO’s Sedo argues that project insiders and lack of community ownership pose threats to blockchain’s potential. “[…] chains had to make tradeoffs between security, scalability, and decentralization,” he explained, adding that “the classic blockchain trilemma gets plenty of time in the spotlight with too few solutions. Many chains and projects simply concede that to be scalable, they must sacrifice decentralization.”