What is API3?
Interpreting a decentralized project
With the migration to the authoritative DAO where the governance is entirely and permissionlessly based on the API3 token, a lot of the concepts that comprise the entire foundation of a typical blockchain project will become more subjective.
- The whitepaper is not a constitution, yet it has power coming from being a gateway to buying the governance token (people tend to buy tokens whose whitepaper they agree with)
- The core technical team maintains https://api3.org/ and the marketing team manages its contents. If it’s the official website could be debated, and the same thing goes for the Twitter handle. Even ratification by the DAO is not a solution because of the next point.
- The DAO and its dashboard at https://api3.eth.link/ is built and maintained by the core technical team. It’s based on the whitepaper, yet if it’s the official DAO could be debated. What happens if someone builds another DAO that uses API3 as its governance token, claiming to be the actual API3 DAO?
- A co-founder is a person that calls themselves a co-founder. Their decision-making power is a function of their voting power and their influence on other people with voting power, which already applies for everyone else.
- The core technical team is a team that calls itself the core technical team. It does what a core technical team does, but it actually being the core technical team is based on other people being convinced that this is the case.
- Even the API3-ness of the provided services are open to debate. For example, if a grant recipient team builds a dApp that utilizes the API3 token for payments, would that dApp be a service that API3 provides?
In summary, where the centralized project is a modernist dictatorship, a properly decentralized project is a postmodern beast that is pointless to try to pin down. This is not to mean that API3 is a first; Bitcoin and Ethereum have been like this for a long time.
This is a weakness if not understood, and a strength when wielded properly. API3 is the Chainlink Killer, yet is not its competitor. Both are equally favorable and true, depending on the interpretation. Then, the way to ride this beast is interpreting it, rather than trying to define it.
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