Blockchain interoperability network ICON has announced a token giveaway in the run-up to its eagerly anticipated community elections. 3 million ICX tokens (about ~$600,000 USD) will be disbursed to members of the ICON community throughout the pre-voting period, which commences on August 26.Scheduled to run for 30 days, ICON’s pre-voting period is designed to familiarize its community with the staking and voting process which is at the heart of the project’s decentralization process. In return for their participation, community members will receive a share of the 3 million ICX tokens that have been earmarked. Because ownership of tokens carries governance rights, the giveaway will also help to dilute the holdings of the ICON Foundation, further distributing the decision-making process and reducing the power of major stakeholders.“We are very excited about the upcoming P-Rep elections,” said Min Kim, Council Member and Founder at the ICON Foundation. “We have been working on it together with the community for a long time. With the giveaway, we expect not just to re-distribute 3 million ICX for better decentralization and voting capabilities, but we also hope to encourage current ICX holders and ICON community members to transfer their coins to the ICONex wallet, so they can properly stake and participate in the upcoming P-Rep elections.”One chain to unite them allICON is one of the first crypto projects to focus on interoperability, having launched in September 2017. Finding a way for blockchains to “talk” to one another has become one of the greatest challenges faced by developers as the number of crypto protocols has proliferated. Since ICON’s launch, a string of similarly focused projects have followed suit including Wanchain and LiquidApps. ICON has achieved the most headway so far in this regard, particularly in growing an active community, whose votes will determine the election of 22 Main Public Representatives (P-Reps).Use cases for ICON’s technology include providing a framework for different chains operated by businesses such as hospitals, insurance companies, and NGOs to communicate with one another. Each chain will have the power to create its own system of governance, with ICON’s interchain technology facilitating the exchange of assets. Essentially a blockchain of blockchains, ICO relies on loopring technology that enables multiple channels to be created, each equipped with smart contract functionality and high throughput, allowing transactions to be settled in near real-time.The many faces of blockchain governanceAfter solving the interoperability problem, blockchain governance has proven to be one of the greatest challenges facing the designers of crypto networks. Opinion remains divided over the best way to maximize stakeholder voting and community engagement. Some figures, such as analyst Nic Carter, believe the governance problem will never be satisfactorily solved, and that low voter turnout is inevitable. Others are more bullish, however, pointing to the success of projects such as Dash, whose masternode voting system has been emulated by the likes of Decred and Horizen, as proof.For community members interested in participating in ICON’s forthcoming elections, be it for altruistic or financial reasons, a detailed tutorial on the staking and delegating process has been provided. Candidates seeking to be elected as P-Reps have also created videos outlining their case for inclusion. Through democratizing the decision-making process, projects such as ICON aim to boost community engagement, while adding further utility to their native token, giving holders an added incentive to participate. When voting commences on August 26, ICON token-holders will have the opportunity to vote for up to 10 P-Reps, and to decide how much staked ICX they wish to delegate to each one.
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