Changing what "verified" means on Giveth


The word “verified” in the English language mean something is true or accurate.

We use the word “verified” to mean a project has applied to our system & found to be creating free, non-excludable value to end users, with a history of impact & repuration at take, and THEREFORE is eligible to be part of our GIVbacks donor rewards program & GIVpower.

This creates a lot of confusion for 1st time users on Giveth & a lot of frustration for many project owners when they are “rejected” by our verification system.

This also created a lot of frustration & actually a weird imbalanced incentives mechanism in the last QF round because only SOME projects (if they could get verified) could appear at the top via GIVpower, and only donations to SOME projects led to GIVbacks.

We’ve had a lot of discussions on what to do here, here is the main idea on how to fix this:

Step 1: Separate out Verified & GIVbacks Eligible

From our last stewards call, this is what the general idea of this could be:

Verified means:

  • Is a real project, not an imposter
  • Has reputation at stake
  • can be flagged
  • can be attested
  • GIVpower applies

GIVbacks Eligible means:

  • Is Verified, so all the above applies
  • Is providing a Public Good
  • Has a history of success
  • Gets GIVbacks when donors donate

Step 2: Determine how to decide what make a project “verified”

There are a lot of ideas on how to do this, here are some:

  • Add something to the verification form/process where projects can say if they are a public good or not. If they are… there are more questions. If they are not, verification team can see verify to see if they are legitimate (this adds a great deal of verification team scope & creates a lot of centralization)
  • Allow trusted users to “attest” that a project is legitimate (this adds a lot of PM/dev scope)
  • Make verification process very minimal & automated, i.e. similar to with gitcoin, a user can/must verify ownership of Twitter / Github / other socials

I would love to move forward with this sooner rather than later as it really has been the PRIMARY feedback & complaint we got through the Polygon QF round (which as we know was huge on Giveth!), and I’ve heard from other orgs as well that they are confused about what “verified means”.

This forum post is meant to be a space where other people can throw out ideas. I am hoping that we can try to keep scope creep at a minimum, and think of a solution that is intuitive for users, low friction for implementation & communication.


Separating both, verification and Givback eligibility may work for most of the scenarios but if we face another QF round with startups as the Polygon one we need to be aware many projects are “just” projects and not even a business yet and that should not exclude them from Round benefits, only from Giveth regular functioning.

To me, the confusion comes from treating the projects in the round the same way we treat any other project landing into Giveth and this time, some of the participants were somehow different from what we usually enroll. On top of that, there was much previous frustration from all the issues Jokerace platform had during the previous qualification, and that also did not help.

In QF rounds, visibility should not be linked to verification unless the round is a public goods round.



  1. Yes, split “verified” (as is?) from “GIVback eligible” and call them “Public Goods”!
  2. email projects (or just GivethDAO) with a call for feedback linked to a forum post for a broader discussion “what makes a project verified”

I’m in favor of diving Verified into Verified & GIVbacks Eligible for the reasons you listed.

Re: how to implement this - I like the idea of making this an automated process like Gitcoin, so ‘verified’ really just means that we’ve automatically verified that you control a social account like Twitter. That also streamlines the process of onboarding for projects and eliminates the back and forth with the verification team for non public goods or for the first step of getting listed for public goods. Perhaps that doesn’t have to be a blocker for launching this though; verification team could theoretically handle this manually until the automated verification was ready to ship.

Thanks for pushing this forward @karmaticacid!


Thanks for putting more light on this conversation @karmaticacid! It has been something that has been talked about here and there for a while now. Its seems that the demand is here and we can formulate the best way to implement a change like this.

I see the biggest challenge being that we have created an expectation for our current user base and throughout all of our documentation that when people donate to a project labeled “verified” it means that someone from the Giveth team has reviewed and approved that project and that they will receive GIVbacks. We should utilize some resources throughout this process to ensure that our current users are well informed of the change and all of our documentation and articles are accurate.

I would like to advocate very strongly for an automated or decentralized way of deciding which projects will be in this new ‘verified’ tier. This could be done through a flagging system… or an attestation system in which users can vouch for a project and once they have so many unique vouchers, the get a checkmark. Or maybe the get a little checkmark on each social media account the verify or something… I’m not sure of the best system. Maybe we can somehow use passport score or a similar method.

For now, we could consider using the first part of the verification form where they are already asked to connect social media accounts… maybe once they have verified 2 accounts they get a checkmark?.. that could be a simple solution although I would like to see something a bit more robust that considers more than just having a password to a social media account in the future.

I hope it doesn’t sound harsh but, personally, I don’t feel confident enough in my verification skills to sign my name to the validity of these types of projects. I don’t feel that I may be able to know that someone is who they say they are. Especially with AI generation tools, its very easy to spin up a realistic looking project and buy a few hundred twitter followers. I just don’t feel good about being the person to make these decisions and possibly being a key player in the funding of fraudulent projects or providing a false sense of security to donors.

I do think it is important to give projects an opportunity to show their legitimacy to donors and I want to help support the transition!


Thank you @karmaticacid for spearheading this transition. I really like the direction this is going.

From my perspective, separating verified (checkmark) and givback eligible (“givback eligible”) is probably the smoothest approach to this change while considering the already existing user base which isn’t small.

I do strongly advocate for automating the check mark/verification process, and I like the idea of using something like Gitcoin does because it seems to work and rep at stake can generally be a tricky thing, I agree with @WhyldWanderer on that, and in that, I can see why a personal score can matter. Also wondering if Proof of - xyz (pick the most suitable) protocols could be useful here.
One more like on automation is from a user perspective, adding something automated that can be done within minutes on your own vs waiting for a review process are two different experiences and so this will not only save a significant amount of time to the verification team and adds more decentralization, but also doesn’t add too much extra energy on the user side.

And even though this is the smoothest transition I can see, it might still be a bit challenging to make sure this change gets reflected in our documentation accurately in all the places, including the website, we are also expanding the GIVpower eligibility, right? And I agree with preparing our current projects for the change and likely letting them know that we gave them the checkmark?! Making some noise via emails, explanatory blog post, and social media posts, after estimating how much time we need to make this happen. And so all I’m saying is just that it sounds to me like we should phase and communicate it wisely.


I think the idea makes sense and thanks Lauren for putting it out there with clarity, as always!

I spent some time this afternoon thinking a bit deeper about solutions

We currently have this issue that @ramramez will be working on soon around adding social media accounts to projects as badges, this came out of project quality discussions w/ @NikolaCreatrix and @WhyldWanderer

Here we will have a wide selection of different social media platforms that users can add links for their project to that show up as badges on the public view of their project

We could build further on this issue by giving the option to verify a given account ownership with Oauth - such as twitter, facebook, linkedin… not sure what others make sense and that support Oauth.

If they verify with x number of sources we could automatically give them a verification badge. Furthermore, if we can do it from the create/edit project page maybe we can skip ever having them go to the verification form?

Then the current Verification form would be used only for public goods who want to become GIVbacks eligible.

I also have more ideas around decentralizing and automating the project verification process altogether but maybe that’s a later forum post. :stuck_out_tongue:


I agree that Giveth is now needing to use “verified” in the same way the wider ecosystem uses it.

We do not want to alienate ourselves due to our selection of terminology.

GIVbacks eligibility is unique in both term and platform — so makes sense to use a separate term and explain the change to existing users.

Gitcoin passport makes the most sense to me for verified. On chain, more transparency and trust.

Basically I support this initiative, and hope we ensure the verification process becomes less headache for everyone involved.


Great to have an automatic system!

This part is the one I think we can work more:

Verified means:

  • Is a real project, not an imposter
  • Has reputation at stake
  • can be flagged
  • can be attested
  • GIVpower applies

GIVbacks Eligible means:

  • Is Verified, so all the above applies
  • Is providing a Public Good
  • Has a history of success
  • Gets GIVbacks when donors donate

Im just thinking how the comms would look like:

“Get verified so you can get boosted with GIVpower” - which is the tangible benefit, right?

“Apply to be GIVbacks Eligible & be part of our GIVbacks program, get boosted with GIVpower & more!”

We always used “verified” at what “GIVbacks Eligible” could mean from now on. Not sure if will be great to keep using the word “Verified” or better change it to cause less friction with the community thinking “oh, verification is not attractive anymore!”. (With all my respect to GIVpower, not sure if our community understands the benefits of GIVpower yet.)

Maybe we could use “checked” and have a :white_check_mark: in the profiles (without even having to use a word).

Other options:

  1. Confirmed
  2. Authenticated
  3. Validated
  4. Substantiated
  5. Corroborated
  6. Proven
  7. Established
  8. Accredited
  9. Certified
  10. Checked

Hey folks, after going through the comments, I think this is the best/simplest solutions:

  • Use the word “GIVbacks eligible” on the dapp instead of “verified” - and for this, projects need to apply in our verification system
  • Generally/slowly stop using the word “verified projects” in our comms, but instead say “verified public goods projects” or “GIVbacks eligible projects”
  • Add OATH in the create a project flow w/ use can verify the ownership of their social media accounts & have these show up with a checkmark next to them on their project single page.
  • Expand GIVpower so that projects who verify ownership of their social media can be part of GIVpower, and that’s all it takes for that
  • Create an option on Giveth to “flag” or “report” a project (that anyone can use and get to our attention on something scammy/fishy that we should tag down/cancel/unlist)
  • Scope out how we’d like to use attestations to decentralize a verification process where trusted people can “attest” that projects are who they say they are etc. @mitch has already started something on that.

So basically, our MVP will have:

  • GIVbacks eligible projects who become eligible for GIVbacks same as always, but we’ll change the labels & names on the dapps & in our docs.
  • Projects who verified ownership of their socials, who on the project single page get a checkmark next to that particular social handle, and can now be part of GIVpower.
  • A plan to scope out a system for verifying projects as legitimate but not necessarily public goods that is decentralized and involves community attestations.

And we just basically do away with saying we “verify” projects.

Sound good?

  • Yes, I like this MVP
  • No, WAIT - I’m leaving a comment explaining my issue w/ this
  • Maybe, I’m a bit skeptical, but am willing to see how this goes

0 voters

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Thanks for summarizing it all Lauren!

It seems like something that is safe enough to try and I honestly think that just changing our language will make things much less confusing for project owners.

I like that more projects will also be able to participate in GIVpower.
I’m curious if we also need to consider the GIVbacks percentage without GIVpower affecting it. Will it just go back to being “up to 70%” like it was before GIVpower?
We might have to change our documentation in a few places for this as well.


Adding social media links +1
Adding a flag/report projects +2
Scoping an attestation initiative that short term addresses this, and long-term opens up a lot of decentralization, partnership and scaling potential +3

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that’s a really great question @WhyldWanderer - we did discuss in the retreat possibly changing the GIvbacks % to be more simplified, but then @Griff also had a good point about that… basically that it’s a good concept that basically GIV token holders are able to influence how much GIV is issued to whom (i.e. GIVpower affects what GIVbacks% is on which project → which donors get more GIV).

I think for now, we should just leave GIVpower on verified projects as it is… it affects the GIVbacks % for them… and then for unverified projects, it only affects the sort order.

This is the type of project that deserves a verified tag, but shouldn’t be GIVbacks eligible.

The value of being able to be verified is one of the most important features of Giveth…

Why create a project on Giveth, when you can just tweet a donation address?

Knowing that Giveth has verified the legitimacy of a project is really important IMO.

I am having trouble understanding why it is more difficult to create a policy around verifying non-public good projects and executing on it than it is for public goods projects.

I feel that we can have virtually the same policy, and save the donors the hassle of having to do their own due diligence on the projects.

I also worry that if we DON’T do this work, we are likely to create an environment for scam/impostor projects to look the same as a real project.

If Roman Storm wants to fundraise for his legal fees on Giveth, and a scammer puts up a fake version of the same project, verifies a fake twitter and boosts his project higher… We will need to do the research to figure out which project is verified anyway.

I really think we need a policy for verifying projects that are not public goods, it can be strict but we will need it if we take this route IMO.

I also think that the long term strategy of attestations is for sure the way to go, but in the interim, we should really keep the verified badge, not remove it from any projects that have it, and start giving it to projects that apply thru the verification form. I don’t see how we won’t end up there eventually anyway.

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Hey folks, in an effort to reach a conclusions on some of these polarized opinions on the MVP, I scheduled a call to discuss it. 12pm ET this Wednesday in the Governance voice channel Giveth discord, here’s the cal invite

Please join if you want to say something! Here is the agenda

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