Kiriakos Krastillis's Blog

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Economic Incentives for Multi User Art

Designing protocols for decentralized applications is no trivial task. While in a classical application you typically can attribute some administrative agency to the backend, an open decentralized application will confront you with tradeoffs. If you want to keep control of specific parts of the application you walk the risk of centralizing it. If you want it to be as open and decentralized as possible, you end up having to define an explicit protocol that explains how your application works via transactions, that needs to keep its intention safe while having safeguards that ensure intentional abuse is either impossible or at least economically impractical.

This was the challenge that I have been trying to address with the Pergamon Weave protocol.

The Weave will do multiple things. As stated elsewhere I want it to be a place where people can come together to interact in various decentralized forms. One of those forms is the Pergamon Weave protocol. A weave is the collective expression of multiple players over a predefined amount of time. Think of it as a blank canvas that you can paint on and gets turned into an NFT after some time has passed.

Now what is the intention here and what would misuse look like?


The intention is quite clear, you want to motivate the participants to collaborate so that the pixels each one places amount to a great artwork at the end. This is easily taken care of by involving the painters in the financial results. You create an NFT? Well, auction it off and split the result among the painters based on their contribution. This not only gives participants of the Weave a financial motivation to aid in creating a good result, it also gives added incentives for being a major contributor to the Weave!

And what would intentional misuse look like?

Malevolent Actors

First off, there is the obvious troll that will try to disrupt the result with minimal effort. Typically this would manifest in one individual trying to place one single well timed pixel in a position where it is conspicuous and evident that one player was not acting in the best interest of the group.

A second type of misuse is the botter/spammer this one is the core opposite of the troll. It represents a player that has considerable resources (computational and financial) and can therefore take over the Weave. This actor can roughly be split in two categories

  1. The Quantitative Moocher: Tries to game the rewards algorithm by painting unconspicuous areas but with a very high rate. In a reward sharing scheme where participants get a split of the rewards based on the amount of their participation, this one could take a top spot taking a profit from everybody else's creativity.
  2. The Over-Rider: This actor wants to ruin everybody's day by overriding the weave so that an image of their own choosing appears in the end. This can be broken down in two categories

    1. The Advanced Persistent Rich-Kid: Can just spam paint transactions for the whole duration, making everybody miserable for the duration of the Weave.
    2. The Script-Flooder: While the Rich Kid tries to consistently drown out the other participants, the Script-Flooder has considerable TX making resources and can override the whole Weave in the last minute.

Dealing with Malevolence

In the past weeks I have done a lot of thinking, modeling and research about these points above and have come to a protocol that not only incentivizes for fair play but also adresses all above abuse scenarios and makes a fair player out of everyone. I'll be very happy to share the details of the protocol as the implementation progresses!

As always, if you want to stay up to date about what is happening in Pergamon, sign up for the early access list at

Cheers, K