I would like to take an alternative view to the above.
Low influx of Node Operators/Validators
Variable commission rate from 5-20%
Lock commission rate to 15%
Reasoning behind solution
- Completely remove gaming of the commission rate
- Leave gas price as the only factor
Node Operators form the foundation of Rocket Pool. Currently, a shortage of NOs and validators is limiting the growth of RP.
The reasoning behind the proposed solution is firstly, to remove gaming of the commission rate. It is quite obvious that NOs tend to come in at 20%, and the flow slows down and stops after the rate drops below 20%. As Ken kindly pointed out in discord, NOs choose when to enter, and hence would logically only choose to enter at maximal returns.
This would mean the current situation translates to a fixed 20% commission system effectively as NOs wait out until the rate goes up to 20%. This solution would effectively be a change from fixed 20% commission to fixed 15% commission, and is strictly disincentivizing NO growth.
Secondly, when we consider gas as a factor, we are fortunate in the past week to have very low gas fees in Ethereum. Coupled with significant time at high commission rate (with much thanks to the efforts of jasperthefriendlyghost), it would be a perfect time for new NOs to enter. Despite this, the Deposit Pool stayed full for significant periods of time. Low gas at 20% is insufficient to draw in many NOs, and it is doubtful that low gas at 15% would do better.
Ken has additionally pointed out that the aim of the change is:
To provide some reasonable APY for rETH holders, remove the gaming of the curve and to allow NO to form minipool at low gas times without penalty a fixed commission is a reasonable solution.
My take is that the limitation for rETH holders is not the commission rate right now. I am inclined to think more DeFi integration and more space in the Deposit Pool would increase the number of rETH holders, but I would be happy to hear any evidence to the contrary.
Gaming of the curve is addressed above.
Allowing NOs to form minipools at low gas times without penalty has also been addressed recently with a low gas situation and high commission rates.
[object Object] has also pointed out that a fixed commission rate would be more attractive to whales who would then be able to launch pools at 15% commission for the entire 2k Eth Deposit Pool.
It is unclear that this is a significant factor for many whales. It seems reasonable to believe that they would want to launch pools at or near the maximum rate they can get. The commission rate has been at/near 20% recently, and remains stubbornly stuck there.
This issue is also remedied with new batch commands that Joe is kindly working on, that may be able to specify a minimum at which to launch a minipool. Also, if/when the Deposit Pool is increased in size, this problem would fade.
IMO, I believe this proposed solution is nett negative for onboarding new NOs or incentivizing creation of new minipools, which is a counterproductive for the growth of Rocket Pool. I would propose leaving the current variable rate in place for now, while we work on improving other aspects to attract new NOs (new NO staking page, outreaches, guides etc).