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ZK Nation Breaks Silence on ZKsync Airdrop Controversy

2 mins
Updated by Bary Rahma
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In Brief

  • Matter Labs' ZKsync airdrop announcement sparked controversy due to key participants' exclusion.
  • Element and other major contributors criticized the airdrop for not recognizing their significant contributions.
  • ZK Nation clarified eligibility criteria, emphasizing rewards for long-term users over transaction volume.
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Matter Labs’ announcement of the first ZKsync airdrop, slated for June 17, has stirred significant controversy within the crypto market.

The airdrop will distribute 17.5% of ZKsync’s native token, but the exclusion of several key ecosystem participants has sparked outrage.

ZK Nation Breaks Down ZKsync Airdrop Issues

Prominent projects built on the Ethereum Layer-2 ZKsync Era, such as the NFT marketplace Element, have expressed their discontent. For instance, Element, which accounted for nearly 70% of ZKsync Era’s total trading volume up to June 12, voiced its frustration on social media.

“As the largest NFT marketplace on ZKsync, we didn’t receive any airdrops, is this a joke?,” Element wrote.

Similar sentiments were echoed by ZKApe, an NFT development platform that generated $15 million in gas fees for ZKsync, and DMail, a decentralized messaging platform. DMail labeled its exclusion as “unbelievable,” given its high user engagement and transaction activity.

In response, ZK Nation released a detailed blog post explaining the eligibility criteria and rationale behind the crypto airdrop allocations.

The post clarified that wallets qualified for the ZKsync airdrop through two primary categories: users (89%) and contributors (11%). Users needed to bridge crypto-assets to ZKsync Era and meet one of seven eligibility criteria. Meanwhile, contributors were recognized for their developmental and community efforts.

ZK Nation emphasized that the allocation aimed to reward long-term, organic users rather than opportunistic participants. The blog outlined that transaction volume alone did not impact allocation size. Instead, a combination of eligibility criteria, time-weighted average balance (TWAB), and bonus multipliers determined the allocations.

For example, early Ethereum adopters and holders of top ZKsync native NFTs received allocation multipliers.

“A wallet’s history across chains can reveal a lot about its owner. Real users tend to be more risk-on, especially when they feel part of a community. They spend time exploring, trying out new protocols, and holding onto speculative assets. On the flip side, bots and opportunists play it safe, putting in minimal effort while trying to blend in and extract value,” ZK Nation wrote.

The blog also addressed specific grievances. Some users who met several eligibility criteria but received smaller allocations may have held lower balances over time or lacked qualifying multipliers. Additionally, ZKsync Lite users needed to bridge assets to ZKsync Era to qualify, a step that some overlooked.

Read more: Best Upcoming Airdrops in 2024

The controversy highlights the issues with fair crypto airdrop distributions and the challenges of balancing recognition and reward. As the airdrop date approaches, the community scrutinizes the criteria and outcomes, seeking transparency and fairness from Matter Labs.

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Bary Rahma
Bary Rahma is a senior journalist at BeInCrypto, where she covers a broad spectrum of topics including crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs), artificial intelligence (AI), tokenization of real-world assets (RWA), and the altcoin market. Prior to this, she was a content writer for Binance, producing in-depth research reports on cryptocurrency trends, market analysis, decentralized finance (DeFi), digital asset regulations, blockchain, initial coin offerings (ICOs), and tokenomics. Bary also...
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