With the likely (or so I hope!) passage soon of MIP50 and at least the potential for other assets from Maker Foundation activities, I think it’s smart we begin thinking now about how the DAO should handle outside tokens. To some extent this is a hypothetical, but it’s better to let people throw out their ideas and let it marinate when we’re not in a hurry.
My own (non-binding, totally changeable) initial thoughts are that the DAO should not use any acquired tokens for involving ourselves in governance of other protocols.
For one thing, our own governance is still somewhat rickety from what I’ve seen, and until we can operate our own structure without Twitter blasts and pleas for votes, we shouldn’t further entangle ourselves in other protocols and all the bandwidth just being up to date would consume. Obviously this may change as things like delegation become a reality.
The other is whether we want to embrace our de facto position as a (de)central bank. If so, we should focus solely on our own currency, as we will live/profit and die/lose money by the health of the DAI supply and circulation. Becoming governors/equity holders of other protocols will force us sooner or later to make a decision that’s either bad for DAI or bad for a protocol we are vested in. I think both as a practical matter and to keep the DAI’s image untarnished, we need to avoid getting involved in what will be seen as market manipulations beyond what is necessary to secure the supply of DAI.
Assuming you agreed with what I just wrote above, what would be the next step? I don’t know if we’d just want to sell any tokens into the market and pocket the proceeds. Maybe? Or perhaps there is room for a fund that takes an active role in other protocols as both a steady hand and a friendly ally? In which case we should spin off that fund as a separate entity that begins with the same ownership (just airdrop a token for that fund to current MKR holders). Common ownership somewhat negates the argument for this course of action if you share my concerns above, but it’s at least a degree of separation (optics matter) and over time the common ownership won’t be exactly the same as people buy/sell into both Maker and any spun-off entity.
As stated, I am super open to hearing what other people think about this and reserve the right to dramatically change my mind. But we should think about this before we wake up in 6 months or a year with a bushel of AAVE or WORK or other tokens we might incidentally acquire. That way we can avoid arguments over a windfall of treasure and have a plan that will set everyone’s expectations ahead of time, regardless of what route we want to go.