The Defiant

Optimism Launches OP Token With Airdrop For Early Users

Ethereum Layer-2 Optimism is launching its $OP governance token with an airdrop for early adopters.

By: Owen Fernau

Optimism Launches OP Token With Airdrop For Early Users

Layer 2 season is upon us.

Optimism, a Layer 2 (L2) network designed to scale Ethereum by executing transactions off the main chain, is launching the “Optimism Collective,” a bicameral governance system which will be tasked with increasing demand for the network.


An outline of the two houses of the Optimism Collective

One of the two houses of the collective will be governed by Optimism’s new OP token, which will be airdropped to early users. Qualifying activities include making transactions early or often on Optimism, and also actions unrelated to the L2 like Gitcoin donations, which facilitate public goods funding.

The Token House, as the token-governed branch of governance is called, will be able to vote on “protocol upgrades and project incentives as part of a Governance Fund,” said Optimism’s post outlining the new governance system.


OP Airdrop Eligibility

Users curious to see whether they’re eligible for the drop can check here.

The Defiant published a guide to Optimism last year alerting our readers to a potential airdrop.

Ape Diaries: The Early Bird Gets The Airdrop
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It has historically paid to be early in DeFi — literally. Traders (including yours truly) are betting that will also be the case on Arbitrum and Optimism.   DeFi has long fostered a culture of rewarding early adopters, with a great example being last year’s massive Uniswap airdrop in which the decentralized exchange airdropped 400 UNI…

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Citizens’ House

The second house, called the Citizens’ House, will be governed by what Optimism is calling “soulbound” NFTs. This means non-transferrable NFTs, meaning the token would act somewhat like a decentralized identity in the context of Optimism governance.

The Citizens’ House will be tasked with distributing “retroactive public goods,” something Optimism has been working on for a while. This branch of governance will go live later in 2022.

“Possibly the biggest attempt at non-token-holder centric DAO governance so far. Excited to see where this goes.”

Vitalik Buterin

To guide the process, Optimism is launching the Optimism Foundation, which will “serve as a steward of the Collective.” According to the launch post, the Optimism Foundation will progressively dissolve and pass its governance functions to the collective. This method of gradual decentralization has been championed by projects like MakerDAO, whose foundation dissolved last July.


At 226,000 ETH ($655M), the amount of Ether moved onto Optimism is at an all-time high as of Apr. 26.


Source: L2beat

Optimism outlined that there will be “an entire season of airdrops,” rather than just one. In light of this, it’s likely that the amount of ETH locked on the L2 will grow as users interact with the protocols built on the network in hopes of receiving subsequent OP airdrops.

Indeed, while 5% of the total OP supply has been allocated as part of this first airdrop, a further 14% of OP supply will be given out in the future, according to a chart of the token allocations.


OP Token Allocations

If successful in driving more users to its network, Optimism’s token launch could likely put pressure on other L2s like Arbitrum to follow suit.