ecosystem

Call for Community Feedback: Weigh in on the new Filecoin Governance Process Proposal (FIP0001v2)

Oct 18, 2023
Filecoin Foundation FIP 0001v2 Governance

After several months of in-depth research, consultations, and community engagements, Filecoin Foundation is proud to announce the release of the FIP0001v2 draft, coinciding with the 3 year anniversary of the Filecoin Mainnet launch. FIP0001v2 is the Filecoin Foundation’s coordination effort to improve the FIPs process and scale Filecoin network governance capabilities. The FIP0001v2 draft is a significant milestone, representing a single proposal for achieving these goals, which was only possible after months of input into the needs, preferences, and pain points that Filecoin community members have expressed in regard to the governance process. You can read the full draft of this FIP on GitHub.

The FIP0001v2 draft introduces procedural changes to the governance process. For example, it proposes five distinct FIP types:

  1. Technical FIP: Technical FIPs are those that seek to change the way the Filecoin protocol works. These are changes that require network consensus and often introduce changes, bug fixes, or enhancements to Filecoin network operations. Most FIPs are Technical FIPs.

  2. Cryptoeconomic FIP: These FIPs seek to  alter economic policy within the Filecoin network. Unlike Technical FIPs- which may introduce secondary economic impacts- these FIPs intentionally modify the network's economic logic and are subject to heightened scrutiny and consensus requirements.

  3. Community FIP: Pertains to processes, norms, or tools essential to the Filecoin community. These FIPs are more than recommendations and typically cannot be ignored, including governance changes. Subject to heightened scrutiny and consensus requirements.

  4. Security FIP: Addresses network security issues.

    • Level 1: Targets future-looking scenarios without immediate risk. This may include remediations for newly identified bugs or fixes to address unforeseen network behavior due to new FIP implementation.
    • Level 2: Targets immediate, high-risk vulnerabilities. Addresses n-day or zero-day threats.
    • Level 3: Remedies emergency network conditions requiring irregular state changes. Examples include chain halts and fund draining.
  5. Filecoin Request for Comment (FRC): Informational documents suggesting standards and best practices. Reviewed but not mandated by community consensus.

The new categorization of the FIPs aims to streamline reviews and decision making leading to more community engagement and transparency, and reducing ambiguity throughout the process.

Consensus Pathway

This FIP draft also introduces defined consensus mechanisms and pathways aimed at optimizing governance within Filecoin. Part of this includes setting up distinct governance constituencies thus, empowering the Filecoin community with greater decision-making autonomy.

As a result, FIPs will employ three primary consensus mechanisms:

  1. Soft Consensus: A process of passive consent managed by Core Devs, suitable for technically complex or minor maintenance FIPs. Acceptance is based on near-unanimity and absence of unresolved technical concerns. Rejection reverts the FIP to draft status.
  2. Hard Consensus: A quantitative measure determined by community polling, appropriate for contentious or wide-ranging FIPs. Acceptance is achieved with a simple majority (>50%). No minimum quorum is required.
  3. Hybrid Consensus via Filecoin Community Guild: A seven-seat body aimed at enhancing decentralized governance by representing diverse stakeholder groups: Token Holders, Storage Providers, Clients, Developers, Ecosystem Partners, and Filecoin ecosystem founding entities (Protocol Labs and Filecoin Foundation).

The Guild isn't just an advisory panel; it's a decentralized entity designed to make key decisions on a range of issues, including security and cryptoeconomic proposals.

The Guild doesn't replace Core Developers; it complements them by adding layers of scrutiny and expertise in areas that require multidimensional evaluation. This guild will function conjunctively with community polling to make decisions for specific FIP types.

Taken together, these three consensus pathways offer consensus mechanisms that ensure proper community feedback, review, and approval for a wide array of different proposal types.

During the initial roll-out, governance stewards from the Filecoin Foundation will be working to institute additional rules and policies to help guide the usage of new mechanisms. Community members are also welcome to suggest changes, modifications, and propose policies that further specify the changes laid out in FIP0001v2.

Pathways for Different FIP Types

FIP0001v2 also introduces new categories of FIP, which map to various consensus pathways and requirements. The purpose of these categories is to colloquially describe the type of change proposed by different FIPs, and to ensure that these different FIPs are appropriately reviewed, deliberated and that the standard for acceptance is appropriate for the scope of changes proposed.

FIP Editors are asked to determine the FIP type as soon as the FIP PR is accepted. Proposed FIP categories are as follows:

Technical FIPs: Soft or hard consensus is employed based on the nature and controversy level of the proposal.

Cryptoeconomic & Community FIPs: Both community vote and Community Guild approval are required. These FIPs are inherently high-risk due to their impact on core functions.

Security FIPs: Decision-making is predominantly the responsibility of Core Devs, varying with the level of security threat. Levels range from 1 to 3, with Level 3 allowing unilateral action by Core Devs.

FRCs (Filecoin Request for Comments): Do not require consensus and are essentially community standards or recommendations.

Community Engagement

The FIP0001v2 initiative has been a community-driven project and to this end, all improvements proposed were developed in close consultation with a wide range of stakeholders within the Filecoin ecosystem. Community members are always encouraged to weigh in, ask questions, make suggestions, and generally participate in this process to refine our governance procedures. More information related to community feedback regarding this initiative can be found here.

Conclusion

The introduction of FIP0001v2 offers an opportunity to enhance the governance of the Filecoin network making it more effective, resilient, and responsive to the community's needs and responding to the scale at which Filecoin is growing. We strongly encourage community engagement with this FIP.

For more information and to learn how to participate in this process: