What is GAS DAO?
Following in the wake of the wildly popular $SOS airdrop comes another universal airdrop from GAS DAO. The GAS airdrop applies to anyone who has spent at least $1559 USD in transaction fees on the Ethereum mainnet. The exact airdrop amount varies by wallet history, with weights as 10% on ETH spent, 80% on USD value spent, and 10% on transaction count.
Weirdly, the claim site does not support Metamask wallet connection – only WalletConnect. The eligibility snapshot was taken on December 26th, 2021. The tokens will be eligible to claim until May 1st, 2022. The token supply is 55% airdrop, 30% treasury, 15% core team. A quick review of the contract does not reveal obvious malicious code. Users are always advised to DYOR before interacting with any smart contract.
Airdrops can be a powerful tool for a protocol, but the form of the airdrop is vitally important. The eligibility of users will depend on the use case of the airdrop.
Type 1 – Reward Early Adopters
Let’s call an airdrop that only affects the protocol’s existing users a Type 1 airdrop, or reward airdrop. The ENS airdrop earlier this year is an example of a massively successful Type 1 airdrop. The protocol rewarded its existing users for their early support, and the token promises a valid use case in DAO governance of the important Ethereum Name Service.
Users who did not want to participate in the ENS DAO found willing buyers at high prices. Dumping the token at the generational bottom shortly following the launch of the airdrop, as this author did, still netted thousands of USD in value.
Type 2- Attract New Users
A Type 2 airdrop, or marketing airdrop, applies to nonusers of the protocol. This brings attention, and attracts users to the protocol. The success of a Type 2 airdrop depends entirely on its ability to generate hype. Hype depends on the size of the eligibility pool, and the actual value of the airdrop.
Done right, a successful marketing airdrop turns a protocol into a digital Mansa Musa, riding through the blockchain throwing gold to the lucky populace.
Converting a flock of mercenary token dumpers into genuine users is a harder problem, but a protocol with a strong product and legitimate use case may still succeed.
Type 3 – Extract Value
The Type 3 airdrop is pure grift. A rug in sheep’s clothing. Unscrupulous developers can launch a token for a pittance, airdrop it to the widest possible base, and hype it up. As retail rushes in, the team can then dump their holdings on the unfortunate speculators who were willing to exchange their real, valuable assets for the vaporware token.
The GAS DAO airdrop shows many signs of the grift-drop. The Github was created and code was pushed just yesterday. There are 25 core team member addresses listed in the contract, to develop contracts that are mostly boilerplate. 20% of the team’s tokens are immediately available to sell and the rest are 6-month vested. The website is all about the airdrop and has only a few sentences about the DAO.
GAS DAO and The Airdrop Meta
Copycats follow in the wake of any successful crypto project. Dog Coins. Binance meme coins. Food-named DeFi farms. 10,000 unit profile pic NFT mints. Useless governance tokens. OlympusDAO forks. 99% of the copycat projects will ultimately go to zero. Savvy users may ride the pump and profit from them, but many will lose everything in the inevitable winter.
Airdrops are not new to crypto, but the ENS airdrop generated a particularly powerful mixture of euphoria and cope. Users chasing another high of free money or seething from missing out are vulnerable to aping into illegitimate protocols. The scene is set for an airdrop meta.
At the time of writing, the GAS DAO github repository has already been forked 19 times. Even if 99/100 of these are only academic forks, we are likely to see several clones of variable quality appear.
If your favorite protocol decides to seize the meta by rewarding its users, congratulations on being early! If a promising project that actually has use cases gives you a stake in it, congratulations! If not, stay savvy, stay rational, and do your due diligence before participating in any airdrop projects.
Otherwise, you may end up paying for a rogue developer’s Rolex.