Guidelines Update: POAP Pre-Announcement

One of the things that POAP has been heavily working on is eliminating the farmers of the ecosystem. As explained in the POAP Glossary, farming is the act of collecting POAPs from events/activities in which the collector did not actually participate.

In the last weeks, the Curation Body discussed POAP pre-announcements. What’s that?
Publishing on Social Media that there will be a POAP for participating in an event.

We concluded that pre-announcing there will be a POAP for attending an online event is against the POAP Quality Guidelines since it attracts farmers –people that are only after free NFTs and don’t really care about a project or community.

Pre-announcing the POAP doesn’t only attract farmers, but also it seems to be used as an engagement farming activity. Engagement farming is generally defined as issuers using POAPs in a way that incentivizes transactional behavior. Any statement to the effect of “Do X to get a POAP” is basically a marker of engagement farming.

POAP is a curated ecosystem for the preservation of memories. POAPs can be issued for special events and memorable moments of all sizes, physically or virtually, provided there is a good cause. Issuing a POAP is more a “Hey, thanks for coming! Here’s a POAP for your time and passion for this project”, when an incorrect thought would be “Hey come to my event and I’ll give you a POAP!”

What happens with IRL events?

For IRL events pre-announcing the POAP is not seen as a major risk to the protocol at this time, generally the people who participate IRL events genuinely care about the community.

Next steps:

Curators haven’t changed the Issuer Guidelines document yet, updates will be quarterly, but this topic will definitely be added in the next review.

Thoughts? We would love to hear your perspective as POAP citizens! :point_down:

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Agree. There is no need to pre-announcing the POAP before the event, people who really care about the community/conference will actively participate even without a poap.

Thousands of poaps are witnesses and participants in various community cultures, and the chaos of receiving will make everything meaningless.

I think this is something that all issuers should pay attention to. The crypto industry is very impatient, and good products should be guarded by a group of responsible community members together.

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Thanks for the update, @Fio.

This thread below is well worth another read and gives further insight with thoughtful inputs from @DrMalachi and @isabel :

The elephant in the room :elephant:

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That is a valuable and deep discussion topic. Nonetheless, it is in contradiction with what is currently done in certain platforms to attract users, followers etc. For example, it is a usual practice to give away NFTs as incentives to attract users. Those campaigns are announced in advance as well. Pre-announcement does not necessarily lead to loyal users/followers though and as mentioned can result in engagement farming as well.

Despite this fact, there are some exceptions. For instance, consider the case where an NFT is given as an evidence of passing a course on Solidity after passing tests and submitting programming projects. It is apparent that everybody can not do that and this kind of pre-announcement does not attract farmers and it is good to be announced in advance. There might be other exceptional cases as well.

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I couldn’t agree more. Pre-announcing that there will be a POAP for an event has appeared more frequently on social media. And seeing these bad practices for social engagement is resulting in bringing in more farmers to the protocol. People who show up to your event should have in mind that they genuinely believe in and support the community.

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You can’t tell in advance what the rewards are for getting poap, because even if there are no rewards it will attract farmers to farm, and people with lots of poap never care about the project, they just want to buy and sell poap. Controlling the quality of privately issued poap is necessary, and not telling about airdropped poap in advance on social media is a good idea.

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Hmm, I like pre-announcing POAP’s to people who haven’t heard about it or received on before because it gets them excited to take home something from the event just by turning up

I think this is a valid mention, if the POAP is for an event that isn’t simply “show up, listen and receive a POAP” but something more like “Go through this relatively advanced course, and receive the POAP as a recognition of a significant contribution”, then I agree pre-announcing should potentially be allowed.

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very good The points were very interesting

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After all these calls, we will find more suitable options. I am very happy that profiteers are removed

Yes, POAP should not be a means for project parties to attract participation. A good project doesn’t need this.

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Good decision i agree with that

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In my opinion, the recognition of the real citizen by mechanisms such as Bright ID can reduce the number of POAP Farmer.
There are, of course, other mechanisms.
For example, a wallet check that is supposed to receive POAP or Twitter account control

One of the beautys of great things is, when people are able to repurpose them and give them other uses that the originators did not think of or did not want to be used for. POAPs are a fantastic use case for blockchain technologies. Obtaining POAPs, or most things for that matter, for the sake of collecting them or to re-sell them for profit is not an improper conduct by itself, at least in my environment. The fact that these people exist is a sign of a healthy environment; POAPs represent a value of some sort for them and they therefore contribute to enhance or even popularize the perceived importance of POAPs. Now, the issuer of the POAP may have reasons why they do not want POAPs to be “farmed”. Therefore I think it is upon to the issuer to take measures for this not to happen. Online, in presence, in real time, deferred, it does not matter to me. Using POAPs as a marketing tool in online events: Why not? And of course they are suited for a web3 Ads model, but this is another story.

There is a second element, which is to me the important one: The POAPs currently are subsidized and do not have a clear business model. The POAP organization is enabling the profit taking of re-sellers without getting something back. The way I would prevent this is asking issuers for events with more than X POAP mintings requests for money. This would entice issuers to prevent “farmers” and request reasonable mint numbers, or otherwise pay for using POAPs as a marketing tool. Btw using Guild or crypto is complicated enough for web3 people. Using FIAT should be the way to go for POAP issuers if we want them to be used everywhere and become the entry card for web3.

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Broadly, I think using Delivery in conjunction with some requirement/role gating via Guild.xyz or similar access-control system would be the ideal solution. Completion of a simple micro-quest (e.g., placing a certain emoji in ones’s Twitter bio) for each drop might introduce a minimal but sufficient amount of friction to deter farmers but not unduly burden valued members of the community.

I wonder, too, if establishing a blocklist of addresses that have sold POAPs on marketplaces like OpenSea might also serve as a modest deterrent for would-be farmers.

I think this might be a good idea.
Each project should ask its users during the week for tasks and activities on their Discord server, which will be placed in a special list when they are completed, and they will be reminded to attend the meeting and receive a poap. Only these active Poap users will be rewarded.
I don’t think farmers participate in weekly activities.

Lo primero que se deberia de eliminar seria entonces el tablero de proximos eventos dentro del mismo POAP ya que es de ahi donde la mayoria de los farmers obtiene la informacion de todos los poaps, o al menos que sea privado por defecto

Pre-announcements, in my opinion, are a horrible idea because they consistently and primarily draw farmers.

Usually, attendance can be unexpectedly high, which leads to people missing the poap and criticizing the administration for not receiving one.

The poap team, in my opinion, prefers that actual users collect the poap rather than engaging in farming, which could result in problems with farming and destroy future utility.

I personally believe that curators should individually asses the intent of the issuer.

In most cases it’s easy to distinguish when a creator is trying to lure thoughtless collectors with the intent of boosting attendance rates, and when it’s just announcing that there will be a POAP because it’s useful information for community members to make a decision.

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I think you should announce events for real community. for hunting farmers I think you should track wallet addresses that have more transactions on buy and sell POAPs.