RFC: Proposal for a strategic alliance between Namada and Zcash

No, don’t ask people to do “tasks” to receive the airdrop. The community as a whole has contributed to the devfund for so long, why do you want to inflict such a burden ? And btw, this Zealy looks scammy it’s definitely not affiliated with the Zcash community (for example, the Telegram link isn’t the real TG of the community).


cz-nft about : Cypherpunk Zero NFT - Cypherpunk Zero
opensea collection : https://opensea.io/collection/cypherpunk-zero

Namada :heart: Zcash

It’s a good question and without putting too much thought into how to make it sound really nice i think a blog post about an examination of the potential security ramifications of claiming your shielded Zcash on this other chain through this method would be good. I can’t speak to any of it because i don’t know. Maybe an analysis of how or what kind of things may potentially be leaked, edge cases and pro-active measures. I think balancing the excitement of the airdrop with a healthy reality-check of the potential (if only theoretical) pit falls gives everyone a greater level of informed consent about deciding to participate in the program.
I agree with the subjectivity of the experimental label but I think the part about the dragons helps to define an/the extent of that label somewhat w/o simply being redundant. Whether that dragon label is appropriate is obviously up to you and the other developers and if it’s there then I assume that it is. To me it reads that the user should exercise just a little bit more caution than normal and probably not use the program yet for anything that necessitates any real security.

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I agree with you that zodlers have already done enough by holding their ZEC but in my view it would be more for an educational purpose e.g. to better know Namada, Zcash, the collaboration ongoing etc…

Zealy, formerly Crew3, is one of the many platform offering this educational service, and I don’t think the linked profile it’s a scam, probably it is related to this minor grant.

@zec.will.save.us IMHO cz-nft doesn’t have much to do with the Namada- Zcash alliance, or do you have any idea on how it could be integrated into this collaboration?

I can definitively say that it’s not related to the proposal. The minor grant proposal is related to the ZecHub space on Zealy (formerly Crew3).

Yes, zealy.io/c/zcash is sus and definitely in breach of the trademark. The associated Twitter account twitter.com/CommunityZcash and Discord server Zcash Community is also new (and suspicious). cc @decentralistdan


id say look into experimenting with ycash as an active testnet for whatever you are looking to do with sapling for smoothest experience when things go live for zcash


I’ve been a Zcash hodler since 2017, but as I’ve mentioned elsewhere, most of my dev time has been spent building on Avalanche, and I haven’t been active in the community here until recently. I have done a good bit of thinking about connecting Zcash to other ecosystems however, so perhaps my non-typical perspective on this will add some value.

First, I think Namada is a great edition to Cosmos, especially with a strong Zcash connection. Like everyone else here, I believe, “Privacy is normal,” and should always be an option, on every platform. I believe that the path toward worldwide default acceptance of this principle will come through commercial adoption of zkp services for business applications, and this is why connections to modular platforms like Cosmos and Avalanche are so important, since these are the platforms on which business will want to build. Once both businesses and citizens are using privacy tech ubiquitously for normal purposes, governments will find it impossible to ban.

And businesses absolutely positively need zkp tech. This past Thursday, I was at an event in NYC hosted by BitGo, and the guests were all working in one way or another on transitioning ce-fi to de-fi. When I told them that I was working on connecting Avalanche and Zcash, I repeatedly heard, “ZKP tech is what we need.” There are so many business-to-business use-cases for zkp tech, it’s nuts, and, they told me, the senior decision-makers on Wall Street will not adopt crypto until privacy can be guaranteed. Why? Because that’s how they do business now, in privacy, not with their wallets wide open for anyone with a web browser to examine. They want to expose transactions to specific counterparties in a gradated manner, and this is where zkp tech shines.

So Namada is an important project imo, and I am glad to see with this post the strong desire to not just fork and modify Zcash on Cosmos but to connect the two ecosystems.

Second, regarding the proposed Zcash-Namada bridge, I have looked over your design goals and principles, and it’s reassuring to see that it would work almost exactly the same way as the Zcash-Avalanche bridge that we are proposing to build. Not only is it an indicator that we are probably all moving in the right direction in respect to bridge design, but it also means that the two projects could help each other advance. For instance, in our proposal, Deliverable 2.1 is a series of UML diagrams that will spec out the decentralized bridge in detail. This spec could then be repurposed to build the Zcash-Namada bridge that you propose, with adjustments. This excites me.

Third, regarding the proposed air drop, everyone likes free money, but I urge some caution. (Sorry, I can’t help but picture the Oprah meme!) While I admire what you’re trying to do—connect and reward the Zcash community—as you probably are already aware, a poorly designed airdrop can inflict self-harm if the people receiving the tokens are not otherwise bought-in to your project. If they all sell, your token price drops. A lot.

Avalanche actually did an amazingly good job distributing air dropped tokens when it launched. They didn’t call it an “air drop” though. Before mainnet launch, they did one final testnet launch, Denali, with over one thousand validators participating. I got to participate. We all had to keep a validator running for two weeks and do various tests and upgrades as they instructed, and if we did what they wanted, we would each receive 2000 AVAX which was worth about $1000 USD at the time. For the amount of time it took, it was generous but not outrageous compensation for the work required. But, that 2000 AVAX was locked for a year, and the only useful thing anyone could do with that AVAX for the next year was to stake it on a validator. So sure enough, nearly everyone who participated in Denali continued to validate the mainnet for the next year. But here’s the cool thing—after those tokens unlocked, nearly everyone kept validating. There was no sell-off, no drop in price. We were all firmly committed to participating in the new ecosystem.

So I recommend doing your air drop somewhat like this with the key elements of (1) something (even small) must be done to earn it, (2) the tokens are initially locked, and yet (3) they can be used for in-network tasks, like staking, even when locked.

Hope all that helps!


fyi: @ZcashGrants


LOL sorry then, I thought it was some genuine initiative. Should be reported to Zealy.

The snapshot date shouldn’t matter much because Zcashers do not have to do anything in advance anyways. Airdrop rates will be calibrated such that shielded ZEC receives slightly more than transparent ZEC (so there’s no time like the present to shield your ZEC :smile:).

One question to @cwgoes , how can Namada will be able to see the Zcash users shielded balance? In my (poor) knowledge it shouldn’t be possible unless the user disclose the viewing keys. Or are you planning to do some ZKP interactive tool to do that? Wouldn’t feel that safe to disclose to a third party.

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I second to this question, since I doubt that non-interactive shielded airdrop is possible.

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Agreed on both counts. We will publish a blog post explaining the process in full along with code (once ready), and the code will be internally & externally audited and subject to a public bug bounty before we recommend that anyone use it. Before spending a lot of time implementing and auditing, however, we wanted to check in with the Zcash community - so in that spirit, let me explain briefly how we plan for the shielded airdrop to work (also answering @bloxster and @miodragpop’s questions, I think):

We plan to do an interactive, privacy-preserving shielded airdrop. It will be interactive in the sense that users have to make a proof to claim it - as you intuit @miodragpop, a non-interactive privacy-preserving airdrop, at least of the non-interactive sort common in Ethereum-land (ERC20 tokens sent to an address), is not possible because Zcash shielded notes are known only to their owner (and anyone with the viewing key). Our proposed airdrop mechanism consists of two parts:

  1. Part of the Zcash network state is copied over to Namada. In particular, we would copy the note commitment tree and the nullifier set (and some information for transparent accounts, but that part works like regular transparent airdrops). These note commitments and nullifiers will be combined with the note commitments and nullifiers for Namada’s MASP, such that users who held ZEC on Zcash will also hold “ZEC” on Namada (let’s call this ZEC’ - to be clear, this is unrelated to ZEC which might be bridged in the future).
  2. Namada would add an entry to the convert circuit which allows users holding this ZEC’ to convert their ZEC’ to NAM (Namada’s native token) at a fixed rate. This conversion will require a proof, and the created NAM will still be shielded (basically like a shielded-to-shielded transaction, but with different input and output assets). After that, users just have regular NAM in the shielded pool, which they could send, unshield, unshield & stake or send elsewhere, etc.

I think the privacy properties of claiming this airdrop should be basically equivalent to the privacy properties of privately spending a Zcash note you own on a fork of Zcash (e.g. Ycash) - the same nullifier is revealed, so if you spend on both chains an observer can see that someone both spent on Zcash and claimed the airdrop on Namada, but they don’t learn any more information than that. Of course, you still might want to be careful about timing and linkage as outlined in ECC’s blog post.

This topic deserves a comprehensive write-up (which we plan to provide in due time :sweat_smile:), but I hope this summary gives a basic intuition.


Just to follow up as I said I would:

I see potential for needing various protocol features to play well together which are being developed by different teams.

For example, depositing NAM into a future Sustainability Fund would need: the fund itself (thus Shielded Labs support, cc @aquietinvestor), and ZSA support (thus Qedit, cc @LeCryptoMath), and a good bridge support (thus ECC, cc myself), and these three different protocol features would need to be well integrated.

The go-to coordination point for cross-org protocol development is Arborist Calls and Zcash R&D Discord on one the realtime/conversational end, then on the very-nailed-down side we have ZIPs. The Zcash community needs better coordination on everything in between, including upgrade planning, one or more proposed “tech trees” (a DAG of protocol feature dependencies), and a good venue for long-form asynchronous technical collaboration (perhaps the Zcash R&D category on this forum).

I’ll bring up the need for more planning/collaboration tools on the next Arborist call. Hope to see Anoma there!


I assume zolders using hardware wallet will be receiving lesser amount of the airdrop compared to hot wallet zolder that able to shield their zec?

So I assume the airdrop proposal is considered an encouragement for cold wallet users to switch to hot wallet in order to shield their zec and get more airdrops? Some risk involved for certain users in transferring funds between cold & hot as none of hardware wallets supports shield zec yet.


Cold wallet support is possible right now with Ywallet which is currently the best Zcash wallet (a “cold” phone is required as the offline component).

I think anything that encourages more usage of the shielded pool is a good thing, plus I’m also eagerly awaiting the day we can use the shielded pool with standard hardware wallets.

With regard to the questions in this thread, it’s refreshing to see teams recognising the huge amount of effort that has gone into Zcash.

I love the idea of allowing teams to “give back” via the sustainability fund. I think airdrops are a good way to reward holders. And the more bridges to different protocols the better.


To be clear, our intention is not to encourage anyone to move their assets from a wallet they think is more secure to one they think is less secure - I don’t think that’s worth doing for any airdrop. The idea is mostly just to give back to ZEC holders who have contributed to the shared privacy set (which I understand may have been difficult to do if proper hardware wallet support wasn’t in place - hope that’s rectified soon!)


Yea, we agreed that the safety of Zolders always the priority.
thank you for the understanding!

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Dumb question. If a namada <> zcash bridge was built, could that bridge support the transfer of multiple asset types?

I.e. I have wBTC in the namada shielded pool, but want to move it to Zcash for whatever reason, could I do that?

Thinking about this while watching this talk from Zcon4.

I assume “yes” based on this comment from the bridge sketch.

“The user creates a transaction sending however many ZEC (or another asset) they would like to bridge to the z-address generated from the FROST threshold multisignature key…”


If (and when) Zcash implements ZSAs - in principle, yes!

(btw as a general note: we are currently working on the technical infrastructure required for the shielded airdrop, and finalizing some other stuff such as the Namada ledger app - more details soon!)


Only just saw the Taiga blog post. Here it is for anyone else who may have missed it. Zexe vs. VeriZexe vs. Taiga | Blog - Anoma