most of us probably bought a lottery ticket before. The investment is low, the hopes are high - aaand the money is gone. All you can do now, is to buy another ticket. National and state lotteries most-usually encourage gambling and greed, even though they are regulated by governments.
What's Pool Together?
Pool Together is an open source and decentralized protocol for no-loss prize games. Instead of encouraging gambling it away, the Pool Together protocol encourages you to save your money. Basically you can't lose, but can only win. This is possible, due to the established concept of "No Loss Lotteries" and "Prize Savings Accounts".
Pool Together offers different prize pools, on either Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain or Polygon network, with weekly or daily prizes. Once you entered the lottery, you don't have to re-enter. Your tickets remain in the prize pool, until you decide to take out your funds. All your funds belong to you, and you can get your money out anytime by exchanging your tickets back for the funds you deposited (you will have to pay a network transaction fee though). To prevent fraud, the Pool Together protocol put an early withdrawal fee in place, so nobody can just deposit any funds for the drawing, and take them out just after. You may ask, how can this be free?
Where are the winnings coming from?
Pool Together uses the combined force of all deposited funds, their treasury, and the money from the sponsorship pools, to utilize the power of DeFi (Decentralized Finance). Their smart contracts deposit the whole batch into protocols with high interest, such as Aave and Compound, and let them collect interest for a week (or a day, for daily prize pools). You can view the Yield Source for each pool in the pool's overview. After the winners are selected, the protocol distributes the interest gained, and the contents of the lootbox if there is one, to them.
How are the winners selected?
In order to choose a winner, the protocol has to generate a random outcome (a number in this case). To achieve this in a secure and fraud proof way, it is utilizing the Chainlink VRF (Verifiable Randomness Function). This integration enables the protocol to randomly select prize pool winners, without needing to rely on anybody tied to the project itself. Chainlink VRF acts as a decentral, and provably fair source of on-chain randomness.
How to participate?
1) Get Tickets
Pick a pool of your choice and deposit your funds. You will receive tokenized tickets in advance. All you now have to do is, to wait for the weekly or daily prize drawings.
2) Win Prizes
As long as you have deposits, you're eligible to win prizes. Prizes are made up of the all the interest earned on deposited money in the pools.
3) Never Lose
Remove your deposit at anytime. As long as you stay in the pools you continue to be eligible to win.
What else can you do on Pool Together?
A Pod is similar to a private lottery syndicate. You can group your deposits with others, to increase your chances of winning, and lower the transaction fees. This way many small depositors, can become a big one.
Pool sponsorships swap your chance for winning the prize for a juicy APR in return. Your funds are used to generate yield for the prize pool.
And not to forget: get active in the community, and vote on proposals in the Pool governance, using the POOL token.
The POOL Token
Pool Together is a DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization), and the POOL token is what makes it truly decentralized. Being a DAO means, Pool Together is controlled by its token holders and community contributors. $POOL is a cryptocurrency in the first place, but it also grants you voting power in the pool governance protocol.
One of the great things about the Pool Together protocol is, that doesn't need to earn money anymore. The team was backed by investors of the time they were funded, and the investors were compensated with 7.52% of the total token supply, locked for one year. The contributors of the core team also got a share of 12.44% of the total supply (also locked for one year). This means everybody was already compensated for their work. Now the protocol acts completely autonomous and decentralized.
To make it easy, you could say the protocol automatically distributes the POOL token, to anyone who deposits into the protocol. The more you use the protocol, the more POOL tokens you gain for doing so. Over time, this improves your voting power. Currently you don't receive any POOL incentives on the Polygon prize pools, but it is being discussed on their forums.
All changes to the protocol are submitted as proposals and have to be approved by voting.
Main Functions of Pool Together Governance:
- Voting on proposals
- Managing Prize Pools
- Managing the POOL token distribution
- Managing the protocol treasury (Look here)
Find out more about Pool Together's governance mechanics on their Medium article.
My Personal Opinion
You know by now, that I love projects that try to make existing things better by disruptive innovation. Pool Together is definitely one of them. If we are able to make concepts like this accessible for all and everybody, I don't see why anyone would need the government-sponsored lotteries, that make people lose their money all the time, anymore. You get the joy of playing the lottery, and even if you don't win, you keep all your money. In the end Pool Together acts as a great savings mechanism for the people.
I myself was never a big lottery player, but but decided to give it a shot in this one. I've deposited my first 1000 USDT into the Polygon pool. This may not seem a lot, but you might want to check out the Leaderboard of Luckiest Winners. And if I don't win - at least I can't spend it. Have you tried it yet?
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