[Phase 1] HIP #53 UBI Token Legitimacy Standards

HIP 53: UBI Token Legitimacy Standards

HIP: 53
title: UBI Token Legitimacy Standards
author: @kaprikosa
status: Draft Phase 1
created: 2020-07-09
requires (*optional): HIP-5
languages: EN

English version

Simple Summary

This HIP institutes a mechanism to filter legitimate UBI tokens which are eligible to be considered as official by Proof Of Humanity DAO (e.g. official UBI tokens can be added to a default ubi token list to start dripping on official PoH front-ends after registration is complete).


The first application integrated with Proof of Humanity was a Universal Basic Income token developed by Democracy.Earth. Although this Democracy.Earth version of a $ubi token was first, it will not be the last. This HIP serves to detail a base set of requirements that any $ubi token integrated with POH needs in order to be considered legitimate.


The most scarce resource in crypto is legitimacy.

Proof of Humanity, as a social Dapp layer with 1p1v powered by it’s sybil resistant registry integrated with Kleros has lots of legitimacy. It is the PoH DAO’s discretion of where to spend this legitimacy.

Since the time UBI DAO split from the POH DAO in HIP 22, much development has occured on various UBI projects. Besides Democracy Earth’s UBI token, there are other UBI projects in development including the following (see github repository path for each)

  • @green 's $ubi project (greenlucid/ubi/blob/master/contracts/UBI.sol)

  • GoodDollar (GoodDollar/GoodContracts)

  • Circles UBI (CirclesUBI/circles-contracts)

  • Democracy Earth’sUBI v2 (DemocracyEarth/ubi)

As key UBI DAO, the DAO formed around Democracy.Earth’s version of $ubi, members supported HIP-49, an attempt to insert their token into the PoH protocol by greedy forking Kleros, this HIP seeks to clarify the independence of PoH from any particular UBI project. It has also come to light that the $ubi token had a pre-mine for early investors and liquidity was gathered, and the investor exited soon there after taking this initial liquidity.

Considering this crisis of legitimacy, this HIP seeks to clarify which $ubi tokens PoH will spend its legitimacy to be associated with. It’s clear that the ideals of Universal Basic Income and Proof of Humanity are closely aligned, however this HIP seeks to clarify a minimal set of values for any UBI project to be considered legitimate.


A policy shall be drafted defining the minimal requirements for a $ubi token to be considered legitimate. For example,

  • No pre-mine for initial investors.

  • 3rd Party Audited.

  • Tokens are allocated to humans on PoH fairly and equitably.

  • Founders and Developers of the token should not be directly connected to any scam.

Further inspiration for ideation can be drawn from the Ethfinex token listing policy.


Kleros curate is a generic solution for list curation. A curated list will be created with the policy document created from this HIP ideation phase for conditions under which a $ubi token can be considered minimally legitimate.

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As I’ve said before, I favor the creation of alternative UBI tokens that improve on what we had built so far…

If it turns on better economic results for everyone on Proof of Humanity, then I’m definitely willing to pursue this path.

The accusations against Democracy Earth are blatantly false and maliciously missrepresent my tweets taking them out of context though. My only interest during the early days was to build a community around UBI and help people learn about the Liquidity Pools since we had a Liquidity Farming program in place which would be beneficial to all.

The whale we had during our pre-sale agreed with me to not sell 90% of her holdings. A promise it then later broke against the interest of the project and what’s more: selling at a significant loss. Since the whale engaged in a regulated offering, there’s not much I can do to stop her from doing that.

Democracy Earth has contributed to the success of UBI onboarding people like Vitalik Buterin, Pope Francis and Bjarke Ingels among others. Rallying up a community of global influencers who favor universal basic income took considerable time and effort.

But I do agree that there’s probably many things we can improve on how to handle the powerful promise of Universal Basic Income in the future. In that sense, no one can stop alternative implementations of UBI and I celebrate that more efforts around it appear.

Hopefully one day we can figure out how to provide sustainable UBI of a few hundred dollars to everyone in PoH without price volatility. That definitely requires more experimentation and forks.


Such malicious…
Im a UBI DAO member and have not supported HIP-49.
Good luck with your hip

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Why did the $ubi token launch with a pre-mine for investors anyways? What part of digital democracy, as you say was the original goal of Democracy.Earth, involves premines for investors?

Reputation is hard to build, and easy to lose.

Why did you spend your reputation to encourage providing liquidity for trading pairs of a token ($ubi) which the majority of unlocked liquidity was in the hands of an investor whale? Many alternatives come to mind

  • Launch the token without investor premine

  • If Democracy.Earth had a legal obligation to launch a token with investor premine, why not a) fork it immediately b) encourage the community to fork it without premine c) let the community launch it without a premine. If none of these were considered, the special relationship with the initial investor is questionable.

  • Just wait a few months for the whale proportion of $ubi to be small due to dilution and inflation of issuance to humans. This is all that was necessary, then make your call of action to provide liquidity. Patience could have solved this.

  • Use one of the many many token locking protocols like Team.Finance (launched Nov 2020) to lock the investors tokens. There was a verbal agreement that the whale wouldn’t dump 90% of their tokens ---- come on — with your political experience, what are non-verifiable backdoor verbal agreements worth? Is this part of digital democracy? digital corruption?

Were any of these considered?

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This you?

You see, this is the problem with empty promises. From whale investors, or from political actors — digital democracy or not. There’s no stake in the game. There’s nothing but reputation and legitimacy to lose by lying. The court of public opinion in the PoH will ultimately decide.

Atleast there’s a paper trail that digital investigative journalist like myself can uncover.

Civil society in PoH is nascent. In addition to division of powers between legislative, judicial, and exectuvie (PoH, Kleros, Governor) branches of government, there is a critical and vital fourth estate, the press. Core to any functioning democracy — digital democracy or otherwise — is a free press.

It’s shocking that Santi, a digital politician, would try to silence me, a digital journalist, on this forum, as Santi deleted my account and posts in the HIP-49 thread.

Fear of persecution from a mob led by a politician is precisely why journalists like myself need the protections of anonymity. When we speak truth to power, we need the anonymity layer to prevent mob attacks by populist leaders who spend most of their time tweeting and on social media (eg. Trump).


I deleted what it seemed like trolling from an anon account created solely for the purpose of fud and malicious accusations. That’s not journalism.

Regarding your recommendations on how I’ve should dealt with the whale, I think you are right about those and certainly would’ve done things differently back then with what I have learned since the launch. Those are all good tips.

You should take some time reading.
I said “I would” not “I promise”.
I explained the conditions on why I would vote in favor of hip49 and then explained the reasons of why I didn’t.

In any case, you were in favor of hip49 changing the pinakion token to a “new versión of UBI”. So who the hypocrite?

I don’t think initial supply to necessarily be a bad thing. Here the issue is that the entity who created UBI had spent the money for purposes other than the token and had no money left for supporting UBI.

If there is an initial supply and some funding, that would be positive and wouldn’t justify not supporting it.

I’m not sure the PoH DAO would want to do that. I think PoH should support all projects on top of it except scams.
I think it should try to get more or less neutral, so for example if there was DAO controlled UI show all of them.

Actually this could be done even without asking the DAO.


Any UBI token requires a sybil-resistant technology for its distribution, which is also the very thing that can enable digital democracy. We invested our resources on exploring the different avenues for that technology to happen which is fundamentally investing it for the purposes of the token.

The paper Who Watches The Watchmen is probably the best example of our efforts: [2008.05300] Who Watches the Watchmen? A Review of Subjective Approaches for Sybil-resistance in Proof of Personhood Protocols

EDIT: and one more thing… it is simply not true that we haven’t contributed liquidity. We have actually developed alongside the Yearn Finance community the UBI Vaults that use yield from ETH or DAI to burn UBI and I have personally allocated 25 ETH to them since the very beginning.

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I don’t think PoH needs to consider any UBI-like projects “legitimate”, or give “legitimacy”. I cannot agree with HIPs that will create bloat. PoH as a DAO should accept its limitations and not pretend to reach further.

Things such as “Token Legitimacy”, but also pretending to decide how PoH communities should be moderated, are outreaches like what I’m describing.

An example on how to make a more specific, but still similar HIP would be, making an HIP for PoH to sell its UBI tokens from the treasury (in an auction, for example). Now, that would be more specific and something that can be assessed, and gives the symbolic, “political” gesture you’re looking for.

EDIT: Or, you could use an arbitrary list of requirements, make an HIP such that any token that does not meet all the requirements must be auctioned off.