This post is a continuation/expansion of a previous post, “On-Chain Vote Buying and the DAO Dark Ages“, published on HackingDistributed. In this initial post, we provided an efficient private vote buying infrastructure that could be used to arbitrarily alter stable game theoretic equilibria in any on-chain voting protocol by allowing votes, identities, and restrictions on behaviors to be bought and sold on an efficient, private, trust-minimizing market.
We also explored an attack on blockchain systems we called a “Dark DAO”, in which a network of incentivized participants pooled to form a vote buying or consensus attacking cartel that was opaque to outsiders. These attacks have implications on on-chain voting incentives, general blockchain security, and e-voting in the permissionless model (where users can generate their own keys using untrusted hardware).
We will now explore these ideas in the context of other complicating factors, such as direct on-chain governance for consensus rules, and schemes which explicitly allow for vote buying such as quadratic voting.