Creating a Referendum

Who can start a Referendum?

  • Anyone is able to start a referendum at any time and they can do so as many times as they wish.

  • Origins and Tracks, have been introduced to help aid in the flow and processing of the referenda protocol.


When a referendum is initially created, it can be immediately voted on by the community. However, it is not in a state where it can end, or otherwise have its votes counted, be approved and summarily enacted. Instead, referenda must fulfil a number of criteria before they are moved into a state known as Deciding. Until they are in this state, they remain undecided.

The criteria for entering the Decided state is a follows:

  1. A lead-in period that outlines the amount of time that must elapse before deciding can begin. This helps mitigate against the possibility of "decision snapping" where an attacker controlling a substantial amount of voting power might seek to have a proposal passed immediately after proposing, not allowing the overall voting population adequate time to consider and participate.

  2. There must be room for the decision. All Tracks specify their own limit on the number of referenda which can be decided simultaneously. Tracks that have more potent abilities will have lower limits. For example, the Root level Origin has a limit of one, implying that only a single ΓΌber-dangerous proposal may be decided on at once.

  3. A Decision Deposit must be paid. Creating a referendum is cheap as the deposit value consists of only the value required for the on-chain storage needed to track it. But, having a referendum reviewed and decided upon carries the risk of using up the limited spots available in the referenda queue. It makes sense to have a larger, but refundable deposit requirement to help mitigate spam.

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