In Search of a Discord Alternative, One Protocol Built Its Own

A series of Discord hacks have led interest rate protocol Voltz to move its community on-chain


Source: Shutterstock


key takeaways

  • Community members will be able to earn soulbound tokens through participating in on-chain activity
  • Roughly 15,000 community members are active on Voltz’s Discord platform, according to Simon Jones, Voltz Labs CEO and co-founder

Interest rate swap automated market maker Voltz has made the decision to move its community on-chain after a series of Discord hacks plagued Web3. 

Members using the new open-source tool will be able to verify their identity in a programmatic and composable way, and will have the opportunity to earn so-called soulbound tokens through participating in activities and tasks within the community.

Based on their participation in DAO activities, these tokens can later be redeemed or minted at the end of each quarter.

The concept of soulbound tokens was introduced by Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin. It could be described as a non-transferable NFT that represents an aspect of a user’s identity and their achievements in Web3. Ethereum layer-2 network Optimism was an early adopter of the concept.

In an interview with Blockworks, Simon Jones, the CEO and co-founder of Voltz Labs, said the decision to move its community on-chain happened after a team member’s account was compromised.

“It put us in a position where we really began thinking deeply about our community and the fact that it all exists in what is a centralized single point of failure, where if one thing was compromised, you are at risk of losing a whole bunch of infrastructure that exists around your community,” Jones said.

By moving activity on-chain, Jones said that even if the Discord server completely falls apart, the community will still be able to exist.

“It kind of introduces an element of Sybil resistance because you are earning these tokens into a non-transferable single address wallet,” Jones said.

An estimated 15,000 community members are active on Voltz’s Discord channel today, according to Jones, and the process of moving them on-chain is something he sees as a “more Web3-native way of building a future.”

“As soon as you take something out of the centralized service, and you put it on-chain, it expands what can be built on top of it,” Jones said. “It’s the composability that is really exciting.”

Voltz locked in Aave- and Compound-based stablecoin rates earlier in July and has been steadily growing by 30% to 40% each week, according to Jones. 

“It’s exciting that we’re not just innovating from a protocol perspective, but we’re also innovating from the perspective of building a community in Web3,” he said.

Updated Oct. 25 at 2:07 pm ET.

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