Marinade Introduces Validator Gauges

Gauges allow Marinade users to vote with their Marinade NFTs to influence the delegation of 10% of Marinade’s total stake.

A True DAO Stake Pool

The staking protocol Marinade Finance launched validators gauges – a complex governance mechanism that enables $MNDE stakers to choose which validators get a higher share of Marinade’s staked $SOL.

The team introduced the new gauges on May 18 via Twitter. Usually, when users stake $SOL on the platform, these tokens are delegated to high-score validators that decentralize the network and have good performance. The new mechanism allows a more democratic approach and rewards validators for other community-focused efforts. This means that users holding $MNDE—Marinade’s governance token—can select the validators that should receive staked $SOL for other reasons than their on-chain score. Web3Wire caught up with Head of Governance at Marinade, Ricardo J. Méndez, to learn more about the intriguing development.

“Marinade wanted to both provide a way for the community to have a say on staking, and to help small validators pull themselves up by their bootstraps. As Chef Cerba mentioned when making the proposal to the DAO, a new validator’s main struggle is to become profitable. Implementing validator gauges provides a way for the community to be able to highlight and reward well-performing new validators beyond the stake pool algorithm.”

The move provides another route for users to have an impact on the future of the project. Validators will be paying paricular attention in learning about the kind of impact they can have.

“We wanted this to be the first on-chain vote to demonstrate how important validators are to the Marinade community. We expect that this will not only help new validators establish themselves but, by virtue of helping increase the total number of validators in the network, it will also help improve Solana’s security and censorship resistance,” Méndez capped off.

Validators are the backbone of most Decentralized Finance (DeFi) protocols – their job is to keep the networks secure. For this reason, it’s important to avoid concentrating too much power on a few of them and make sure their motives are aligned with the community. 

To encourage further decentralization, validator gauges control 10% of the total Marinade stake and forbid validators from having more than 1.5% of the total stake. The new system also incentivizes validators to be more active in the community, which could end up strengthening it. Moreover, gauges give more power and utility to the $MNDE token.

Check out Web3Wire’s deep dive by Abhinav Tewari into Marinade’s liquid staking protocol and Soumen Datta’s simple step-by-step guide to learn using it.

What is Marinade Finance:

Marinade Finance is a Solana-based liquid staking mechanism. It allows you to stake your SOL tokens using automated staking algorithms in exchange for “marinated SOL” tokens (mSOL) that can be used in decentralized finance (DeFi).

Each epoch, the price of mSOL increases compared to SOL, with benefits accruing to the underlying staked SOL. You may withdraw your SOL at any moment by either unstaking and waiting for the unlock period or paying a nominal charge instantly. Additionally, you can immediately exchange mSOL for SOL on secondary markets.

Where to find Marinade Finance:

Website | Twitter | Discord | Medium

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