HOPR, a Swiss crypto project building a privacy-by-default layer-0 mixnet, plans to release a unique gamified staking program with NFTs in late July, to reward HOPR token holders and allow for more latitude and experimentation as they develop their cover traffic mechanism, per a streamed call with HOPR community and investors on June 23.
HOPR Staking and NFTs to Cover Traffic Mechanism Development
Inspired by HOPR’s past gamified and incentivized testnets, the creators of HOPR are modifying their staking program by incorporating NFTs. Participants who collect NFTs for completing tasks such as testing the protocol will earn an APY boost for each NFT they earn. This will boost yields for token holders while encouraging community participation, aiding in development.
According to details released on the community call, HOPR staking will begin on July 27, 2021.
All HOPR token holders can stake and farm tokens, earning an APY of 18.25 percent if they lock their tokens for 175 days (six months).
Although the HOPR token has already launched, the HOPR development team is banking on harnessing community participation during this incentivized period to complete its cover traffic mechanism in a safe testing environment. Cover traffic is a vital part of how the HOPR protocol protects user metadata and incentivizes node runners.
In a unique gamified twist on yield farming, the HOPR incentivization plan adds NFTs to the mix so that stakers can further boost their APY.
Users who participate in bounty programs, HOPR testing, and other promotional activities will receive NFTs. NFTs can be linked to HOPR staking addresses, boosting yields from the base of 18.25%.
HOPR has said that users can earn as many NFTs as possible. Staking different NFTs leads to a multiplicative effect due to stacking, increasing effective APY and therefore HOPR rewards.
To prevent abuse, especially from whales that might be hell-bent on gaming the system, HOPR has introduced protective mechanisms that won’t affect ordinary users.
Privacy-Preservation in the Age of Transparency
Although disruptive, blockchains are transparent and data, by default, can be tracked and mapped out.
Accordingly, innovations built on top of any public ledger are susceptible to data mining.
Determined third-party analytic firms like Chainalysis, are continuously refining decrypting technologies as they join forces with government agencies.
The HOPR project is keen to prevent third parties from taking a defining feature of blockchain — transparency — and turning it into a weapon.
As a result, the HOPR protocol is adopting a two-prong approach to achieve their privacy-preservation goal.
They are building a decentralized messaging platform that is private by default. Notably, messages will be Sphinx packet-formatted sent through multiple hops offered by globally distributed nodes. In this way, the creators hope to sever any links that might divulge details about the sender, the recipient, or the content.
Concurrently, the protocol will be an incentived mixnet with layer-0 data transfer capability and decentralized governance. In contrast to similar privacy services like Tor, which are unincentivized and rely on good-will of users, HOPR incentivizes all node runners, encouraging scaling.
All nodes will operate a HOPR Core Service over publicly available infrastructure, receiving compensation in HOPR through blockchain channels for resources offered.
Uses of the HOPR Token
Central to the HOPR project is the HOPR token.
It is used for making payments (at rates determined by the project’s proof-of-relay system), staking, and voting. Through voting, the project diffuses control to end users.
In addition to voting on proposals, HOPR holders will be able to apply for membership with a Swiss-based non-profit, HOPR Association.
Intriguingly, staking in HOPR protocol is different from other programs.
For example, holders must run the HOPR node and contribute to the network to earn tokens. The more tokens staked, the more private data a node processes, earning more HOPR tokens—a virtuous cycle.
Introducing NFTs and merging with exciting aspects of DeFi will spark more network activity, securing the protocol.
NFTs will be primarily distributed to node operators and users who participate in various promotional events, helping during HOPR testing.
The HOPR development team also plans to distribute more NFTs during the EthCC conference in Paris, where HOPR will be presenting some of its latest research into mixnets and DAOs.
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