Uniswap Community Reacts Against The New Proposal, Here is Why

The Uniswap community is debating against a new proposal that favors Flipside Crypto to the tune of $25 million in funding. The funding is for two years, but the arguments against it are numerous.

Many DeFi protocols such as Uniswap provide governance tokens for people to participate in core decisions on their network.

The recent proposal also passed through the votes of the community. Although, before the vote for the proposal could be concluded, Dune Analytics raised the alarm against it.

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The Flipside Proposal

The proposal states that holders of UNI will get funds from the project’s treasury to give it $15 million in grants. If the whole program succeeds, an additional $10 million will also go to Flipside next year.

Accordingly, Flipside will channel half of the grant to bounties for new Uniswap users who want to learn everything about analytics and DeFi as a whole.

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The bounties aim at attracting new users and holding them. Flipside anticipates that such a program would raise 900 new members who won’t cash out the bounties but remain in the network.

This is not the first of such programs that Flipside is funding. It is funding others such as yearn, Aave, Uniswap. Another thing is that this proposal would enable people to fund the service. Also, some other analytics providers who will be eligible include The Graph and Dune.

Flipside To Use Uniswap Governance For Educational Services

According to the proposal, Flipside will use half of the grant to run the program. They will pay up to seven staff members full salaries and seven other half salaries from the grant. Then the yield from the program will go into its funding.

Also, Flipside aims to use Uniswap’s governance process to become an official provider of continuing education services. It also expects payments for the services. Also, the seven members of the committee will generate 30% of the funds they receive.

Uniswap Community Is Reacting Against the New Proposal, Here is Why

Uniswap Community Is Reacting Against the New Proposal, Here is Why

The daily chart shows Uniswap is falling by 2% as the community criticizes the new proposal | Source: UNIUSD on TradingView.com

Another three-member committee will vote for the continuation of the program to another year. All the committees are from Flipside, giving it total power.  With such a structure, a lot of people have raised concerns about the proposal.

Before this controversy, one has occurred in July and caused a lot of commotion in the community. The “DeFi Education Fund” proposal and its controversy led another group to launch a new initiative called “Builder-First Legal Activism DAO” by LeXpunK.

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Many people voted against this proposal after Dune Analytics raised the alarm. Many people agreed that the proposal wasn’t okay, including Compound CEO John Palmer of PartyDAO and Dharma & Argent wallet teams.

However, it seems that it won’t be so easy to cancel the proposal. The people supporting it more are the university blockchain organization since it is about continuing education.

In addition, many of the top organizations in Standford, UC Berkeley, Michigan, and Penn have thrown in their support. So, there’s going to be a huge difficulty canceling.

Featured image from Pixabay, chart from TradingView.com


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Specialized workforce needed as crypto and blockchain courses enter colleges

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the need for candidates specializing in cryptocurrency and blockchain has become more apparent than ever before. This could be attributed to the fact that major companies are announcing job positions for candidates who are knowledgeable in alternative payments and emerging technologies.

For example, global software giant Apple has recently announced plans to recruit a new business development manager with alternative payment experience. Other leading companies, such as PayPal, Venmo and Tesla, have also been seeking out talent with blockchain and cryptocurrency expertise.

Colleges ramp up blockchain and crypto courses

Several colleges and universities are offering specialized courses to help students better understand the blockchain ecosystem. For example, director of X-Labs and Berkeley Blockchain Xcelerator Jocelyn Weber told Cointelegraph that there is an increasing demand for talent in this field, noting that the University of California, Berkeley is seeking to support the workforce of the future. As such, UC Berkeley will likely continue to expand course offerings in blockchain technology:

“UC Berkeley has been offering blockchain courses for over five years now on a variety of topics and in a variety of formats and lengths. The most recent one offered by Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship was ‘Building with Blockchain for Web 3.0,’ in which Parity Technologies provided support for, along with other protocols.”

Weber explained that UC Berkeley’s Building with Blockchain for Web 3.0 course allowed students to learn the entrepreneurial and technical skills needed to launch their own blockchain startup and pitch it to judges on a demo day. Parity Technologies — the company behind Polkadot — helped design the course curriculum and has even advised students hoping to launch their own startup.

According to Weber, courses that include initiatives such as startup building are one of the ways UC Berkeley strives to bring the latest technologies and developments into its coursework. “This provides our students with the tools they need to enter the workforce with the most relevant knowledge,” she said.

In addition to UC Berkeley, the University of Wyoming is also becoming a blockchain hotspot for education. Steven Lupien, director of the Center for Blockchain and Digital Innovation at the University of Wyoming, told Cointelegraph that UW has introduced a blockchain minor into its curriculum:

“This is an interdisciplinary minor available to students in our College of Business, Engineering and Applied Sciences, Ag and Natural Resources, and School of Energy Resources. The University has also stood up the Center of Blockchain and Digital Innovation to assist the academic units with faculty training, course design and to work with the university’s outside stakeholders.”

Lupien is aware of the impact that digital assets are having on businesses. He noted that it’s the responsibility of educational leaders to prepare students to become productive members of the work community. “It’s important for them to understand this technology and its applied use cases and how it will impact their futures,” Lupien said.

It’s also noteworthy to point out that courses focused on financial literacy around cryptocurrency are being offered to students as well. Most recently, Electric Coin Company — the company behind the cryptocurrency Zcash (ZEC) — partnered with the Bronx Community College on a pilot program called “Crypto in Context,” which specializes in understanding cryptocurrency in the real world.

Andre Serrano, strategic partnerships at Electric Coin Company, told Cointelegraph that some of the most successful products in the industry are built and used by people who have already benefited from the current financial system. However, Serrano mentioned that “Crypto in Context” was created on the premise that others can learn from and build alongside the communities who have been most impacted by the failures of today’s status quo:

“Financial literacy is the knowledge that enables people to make responsible financial decisions — choices that affect our everyday lives. Our goal for this pilot program was to open the door for increased engagement in the Bronx and empower bi-directional learning in context. If we are not elevating their voices and compensating them for their feedback, we are failing.”

Serrano shared that “Crypto in Context” was open to all students and faculty at Bronx Community College, noting that 25 students have registered for the free virtual course. He also remarked that 70% of the program participants were female, coming from a range of academic backgrounds. This is notable, especially as the number of female crypto investors continues to grow.

In addition, Serrano mentioned that 80% of the students enrolled in the course downloaded a digital currency wallet. “Over the course of six weeks, students earned a total of 2.3 ZEC for completing tasks and optional assignments,” he said.

How important are these courses?

While blockchain and cryptocurrency courses are important for industry growth and adoption, it may be too soon to understand how these learnings will impact students looking for jobs in the field. For instance, candidates applying for positions at Apple or PayPal may come from traditional finance backgrounds yet have little knowledge of crypto simply because it’s so new.

Although this may be the case today, some industry innovators are hopeful that cryptocurrency and blockchain courses will help bring in better talent moving forward. Nilesh Khaitan, crypto lead at Venmo, told Cointelegraph that a lack of awareness and overall knowledge about crypto is the number one problem when it comes to the adoption of digital assets:

“People generally have no idea where to begin their research or knowledge. A course sculpts a curriculum and a journey towards becoming knowledgeable in the space.”

Khaitan further pointed out that there are a number of non-engineering role job opportunities in the crypto space, such as business development, community marketing and more. “Having a non-tech curriculum is equally important to drive the knowledge of crypto without diving into the deep technical aspects of it,” he commented.

Moreover, blockchain and cryptocurrency courses can be beneficial for those already familiar with the space. Guy Malone, a certified Bitcoin professional, told Cointelegraph that he recently completed the University of Nicosia’s Introduction to Digital Currencies course. According to Malone, although he understood the importance of Bitcoin (BTC), he wanted to take a deeper dive into crypto by taking courses:

“I know that by taking some of the courses, or obtaining one or more of the verifiable credentials that do exist to date, that I could perhaps provide a greater sense of confidence for interested parties.”

Will blockchain and crypto courses go mainstream?

Although useful, it may take some time for all major universities and colleges to start offering blockchain and cryptocurrency courses. For example, Lupien noted that limited resources are a challenge for universities looking to expand their curriculum. “As a nascent technology, there are few faculty that have both the academic credentials as well as the experience to effectively teach this technology — but that is changing rapidly,” Lupien said.

Moreover, students might question the relevance of these courses due to the fact that crypto and blockchain aren’t entirely mainstream. Piergiacomo Palmisani, vice president of the Blockchain Acceleration Foundation — a nonprofit organization helping universities incorporate blockchain curriculum — told Cointelegraph that for students, the challenge is to get them interested enough to choose a career in blockchain over a safe and well-paid job in tech, finance or any other field. “I believe that, as more success stories come out of the crypto industry, students will be more attracted to it,” he said.

As for the universities and colleges already offering blockchain and crypto courses, advancements seem to be underway. Weber shared that while UC Berkeley doesn’t have plans to offer students a degree in blockchain technology currently, there is a possibility moving forward: “I would never rule it out as a future possibility, especially as a minor offering.”


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NFTs of Nobel Prize-winning inventions to be auctioned by UC Berkeley

UC Berkeley will auction data for immunotherapy and gene editing from the Nobel Prize winners to non-fungible tokens (NFT) next week. The revenue it raises will help the future research for the University.

Bloomberg reported that the auction would take place next week on Jun 2 at an Ethereum-based NFT auction platform, citing the University’s statement released on Thursday. One of the auctions regards data by the scientist James Alison’s cancer immunotherapy invention, who submitted his masterpiece in 1995 and was awarded the 2018 Nobel in Physiology or Medicine. More than 15 types of cancer, including those of the skin, lung, kidney and bladder, are treated with immunotherapies nowadays based on Allison’s subsequent research and technique. Another auction will be held later for the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing work by Professor Jennifer Doudna, a Nobel Prize winner in Chemistry, in 2020.

“Why not use a revolutionary new mechanism for memorializing these breakthrough discoveries and industry-defining inventions?” said Randy Katz, UC Berkeley vice-chancellor for research.

Rich Lyons, UC Berkeley’s chief innovation & entrepreneurship officer, also said the “NFT plays the key role in all scientific breakthroughs for basic university research”.

UC Berkeley said 85% of the auction price would contribute to research funding and education-related, including the energy cost offset by the mining process of the NFT, while the rest of 15% will go to the auction platform. The college will also get 10% from any subsequent sale of the NFT, and the foundation will receive 5%. The proceeds of the auction in ETH will fund research for the University, including a hub of Blockchain facility on the campus.  

NFT refers to a digital collectable and blockchain token verifiable provenance of the object. These cutting-edge techniques are unique identifiers of digital data that effectively act as certificates of authenticity for their owners, which can be presented as a form of digital items that are traded on the blockchain.

In April, US Filmmaker Kevin Smith planned to sell his new Horror movie as NFT.

Image source: Shutterstock


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UC Berkeley To Auction Nobel Prize-Winning Inventions As NFTs

NFTs have been a pillar around a variety of upcoming projects and firms. From music, to fashion, to sports – and beyond – NFTs have been a hot topic. Now, the University of California Berkeley is looking to fund research by way of two NFTs at the heart of “biomedical breakthroughs”.

Magnificent Minting

In an announcement on the UC Berkeley website today, the university shared that two Nobel-Prize winning inventions will be up for bidding. The NFTs will consist of internal forms and correspondence centered around research that led to two groundbreaking biomedical advances.

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One of the two NFTs, titled ‘The Fourth Pillar’, has been minted on Foundation and will be listed in a 24-hour auction as early as Wednesday, June 2nd. The NFT represents an invention around cancer immunotherapy developed by UC Berkeley’s Jim Allison. Allison’s discovery shared the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The name is driven from immunotherapy becoming the ‘fourth pillar’ of cancer therapy, alongside surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.

The second NFT, yet to be minted, will recognize UC Berkeley’s Jennifer Doudna for her 2020 Nobel in Chemistry, centered around CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing. The informational release has noted that the university will continue to hold the relevant patents surrounding the research.

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Foundation.app is an Ethereum-powered NFT marketplace. | Source: ETH-USD on TradingView.com

Blockchain At Berkeley

The proceeds from the Foundation auction will go towards funding innovation research and education, with a portion going specifically to UC Berkeley’s blockchain innovation hub and student group, ‘Blockchain at Berkeley’. The university has also engaged in blockchain through other means, such as the Berkeley Blockchain Xcelerator, a blockchain-focused curriculum and partnership with industry executives.

The university’s chief innovation & entrepreneurship officer Rich Lyons said that the release “represents something magnificent”. Lyons added that “there are people who recognize and care about symbols of great science, and even if they never intend to resell the NFT, they want to own it and they want resources to go back to Berkeley, where the basic research behind these Nobel Prizes came from, to support further research”.

The university will also take a portion of the proceeds and allocate them towards carbon offsets to eliminate the energy costs of minting the NFT.

It’s uncharted territory for the university here, as no precedent has been set on an NFT like this. However, to Lyons and the Berkeley team, there seems to be a bit of allure in that sense; “people give us donations all the time because they care about the institution and the science, so here is a way for somebody to invest in the institution in a slightly different way”, Lyons said.

Related Reading | UPenn’s Wharton: DeFi Can “Transform Global Finance”

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UC Berkeley partners with Parity Technologies to bolster blockchain curriculum

Blockchain infrastructure company Parity Technologies has joined forces with the University of California, Berkeley to strengthen the institution’s blockchain curriculum and promote adoption among students and the community. 

For the 2020–21 academic year, Parity Technologies will work with UC Berkeley’s faculty and students in curriculum preparation, project ideas and other initiatives to strengthen the blockchain learning experience. Parity will also advise students and entrepreneurs looking to launch their next blockchain startup.

The partnership centers around UC Berkeley’s Blockchain Xcelerator program, which launched in January 2019 to support new startups and create a globally competitive blockchain curriculum. Since its inception, Xcelerator has bootstrapped 45 blockchain companies, including Acala, which went on to raise $7 million in series A funding.

Parity Technologies is the company behind Polkadot, which has now become the world’s sixth-largest blockchain ecosystem by market value. It, therefore, comes as no surprise that Polkadot’s ecosystem is being promoted by Xcelerator. As part of the initiative, Polkadot co-founder Gavin Wood is scheduled to give a lecture later this month. 

Blockchain Xcelerator’s Jocelyn Weber said her group’s work with “Parity and other Polkadot ecosystem startups has demonstrated the potential of this technology in educating our community.” She stated:

“We strive to expose our students to the tools and skills they will need to enter this space and immediately start making significant contributions — which is why improving their knowledge with tools such as Substrate and networks like Polkadot will be an important part of our curriculum development.”

UC Berkeley is quietly becoming a hotbed for blockchain activity. As Cointelegraph reported, a student group at the university became the tenth-largest delegate on Uniswap in December 2020. The university has also launched an online program dedicated to blockchain applications for business, which provides an overview of digital assets and industry adoption.