Fees Switch Follow Up: Supporting the Evolution of Uniswap Protocol Design


  • This post is an addendum to the comment posted summarizing the UF’s analysis on paths to mitigate compliance uncertainties related to the fee switch.
  • After a thorough review, we believe that the best path forward may be to implement new mechanisms for distributing protocol fees to specific persons, for instance to those who have “opted-in” by taking some action to benefit the Protocol.
  • In the same vein, we have had many discussions with stakeholders who are excited to research new methods for accruing fees to the DAO, and to innovate upon the applications of the UNI token to support the protocol.
  • The UF has already allocated 25% of our total Grants budget (spread across Protocol R&D, Incentive Program R&D, and Protocol Development) to support this area of R&D, which includes, amongst other things, new designs for fee collection, distribution, and for innovative applications of the UNI token.
  • We invite those interested in contributing to do the following:
    • For those beginning to explore ideas, or who would like the community to consider an idea, to share it below
    • For those who have an idea and are looking for support and financing to do the work, review the questions posed below, and apply for a grant here.

This post is an addendum to the comment recently posted in the latest proposal related to the fee switch, and results from a thorough analysis and discussions with stakeholders within the community.

For one, we have also had a number of conversations related to fee distribution. Much of our research have led us to the conclusion that implementing a programmatic distribution of fees directly to persons, for instance to those who have “opted in” through taking some beneficial action for the Protocol, may be a superior path forward. This kind of mechanism would represent a significant mitigation of risk for the Uniswap DAO because tax obligations would rightfully be the responsibility of the individual in their respective jurisdiction, among other potential benefits. For instance, properly designed, this mechanism could further incentivize productive behavior to support the Protocol.

There have already been many comments in the forum exploring different uses of fees, including but not limited to: gas fee rebates, incentivizing LPs to lock their liquidity, and distribution directly to UNI token holders who actively “opt-in” through taking some beneficial action. Programmatic distribution of fees directly to stakeholders would relieve some, but not all, of the uncertainties associated with fees directly routing to the DAO.

Discussions we had with several community members over the past several weeks have also explored alternative methodologies for accruing fees within the Protocol. While Uniswap Protocol v3 launched with only the ability to extract fees from the LP fee, it is possible there are superior mechanisms by which to extract fees for the benefit of the Protocol in the future. Two recent blog posts by community members (one by Wilson Cusack, one by Jesse Walden) have explored the idea of “productive fees” – fees which “make the protocol better off”. As an example, they bring up the idea of fees on Just in Time liquidity provision, which would discourage flash LPing, at the same time accruing value

Further, since the Uniswap Protocol, and UNI token, were initially deployed, there has been considerable research and learnings in the area of token design that we can all learn from. New applications for the UNI token may overlap with research into new mechanisms for fee accrual and distribution. As just one example, almost 2 years ago Vitalik Buterin suggested that the UNI token become an oracle token. Depending upon its design, this model would potentially provide a built-in fee distribution mechanism to its contributors, and benefits for the entire DeFi ecosystem. This is just one example to explore in a massive design space. Just as the design of the Protocol as an AMM has evolved over time, so too can its fee accrual, distribution, and token design.

It’s within the Foundation’s broad mandate to explore novel incentive mechanisms, and general protocol R&D. We have already allocated 25% of our total Grants budget (spread across Protocol R&D, Incentive Program R&D, and Protocol Development) to support this realm of research and development, focused on, amongst other things, new designs for fee collection, distribution, and for innovative applications of the UNI token.

We wrote about this in the forum during the UF’s governance process, have directed a large percentage of our grants budget to incentive program research, design, and experimentation, and we have already funded research in the area. Two additional partners recently kicked off research grants in the same design space; we plan to announce those in the coming weeks. And we hope to collaborate with and support many more of you in the coming months.

How can you contribute?

  • If you would like to begin to explore an idea, or would like the community to consider an idea, post your idea in this forum post
  • For those who have an idea and are looking for support and financing to do the work, apply for a grant here UGP Application Form

For those looking to apply for a grant, we are specifically interested in funding projects centered around one, some, or all of questions:

  1. What new fee types might Uniswap Protocol implement? What would be the objective of the fee? How might those new fees be implemented?
  2. How might fees be distributed programmatically to Protocol stakeholders? What would be the objective of this fee distribution mechanism? What would be required to implement this new mechanism?
  3. How might the UNI token be redesigned in order to support the Protocol? What would the objective of this redesign be? What would be required to implement this new mechanism?

For these grants, we are interested in understanding how you would go about your work, whether that be research, design, developing a POC, or the actual code which could be used to achieve your objective. We are also understanding the potential long term impacts of the changes you suggest, as well as relevant open questions which we may fund other teams to explore.

We look forward to hearing your ideas, and to support the community in pushing the Uniswap Protocol forward.

The Uniswap Foundation supports a community of individuals and organizations dedicated to a more open, fair and decentralized financial system through education around and broader adoption of blockchain technologies and smart contract-based decentralized protocols.

This post does not constitute, and is not intended to constitute, any kind of legal advice, and readers are not to construe the contents of this brief as legal, business, tax, accounting, investment, or other advice. Each UNI token holder should consult its own advisers as to legal, business, tax, accounting, and other related matters concerning the proposal in light of such token holder’s particular circumstances.


You must do 2 AND 1 or 3 in order to access protocol revenue.

  1. Lock your LP tokens
  2. Hold UNI
  3. Trade a minimum volume monthly

This way active ecosystem participants are rewarded rather than solely token holders.

I wonder if this would be an idea the foundation would be interested in my team (Blockworks Research) exploring on the DAO’s behalf?


To expand on this initial idea of gas fee rebates:

  • Use Account Abstraction to pay for the gas fee’s on behalf of the user.

  • Have different sponsored fee levels depending on the Layer/Chain. For example: Layer 1 ETH would only rebate fees on swaps over $15k, while layer 2 would rebate over $100.

    • To run the economics: a $15k transaction on layer 1 Ethereum for a .3% fee pair, with a fee switch of .05%. Would rebate about $7.5 to the swapper, covering a portion (during high network usage), or potentially all (with low network usage)

    • For Layer 2 a fee rebate minimum for a >$1000 swap on a .3% pair and .05% fee switch would give .5 covering a portion or all gas cost* depending on L2 network usage.

    -Bonus: If the mechanism was structured in a way that the native L2 or dapp for a specific token pair could put up their own token (in addition to the fee switch) to further sponsor the swap fee rebate to fully cover/distribute the token to users.

In conclusion, “how does UNI and LP’ers benefit?”:

The idea here is that small amounts of UNI is going to existing user’s of Uniswap, or new users to further distribute out governance. The small amounts of UNI will add up over time for the most loyal users. Leading to more engagement.

LPer’s could see an increase in volume on the pairs that are fee sponsored. Also the small amounts of tokens being fee rebated may be sold back into those pools further increasing volume.

  • Bonus: if the fee switch mechanism was designed so collected fees are switched into UNI for rebate then that creates incentive for UNI holders to LP for the UNI/pair as there will be increased volume. i.e. fee switch on ETH/USDC > collected fees of ETH and USDC switched into UNI, then that UNI is used for fee rebates = increase in volume for UNI/pairs.

** Just an “ideaaaa guy” here. I have no coding experience. Feel free to take apart and point out errors in reasoning and/or infeasibilities. **

Is UNI registered as a security?

People buy UNI with the expectation of profits based on the efforts of the Uniswap Foundation, right?

I think it would be appropriate to open up a new forum category for this discussion.

Can you reach out to the UF on Twitter @UniswapFND - we can connect and discuss!

1 Like

Really like this idea – if fees accumulate towards a pool specific pot, it could be used to drive more user volume from dex aggregators or users of the webapp which in turn could result in a more volume, or even liquidity to move up fee tiers.

It could be structured similar to Matcha gasless – free trades for sizes above 5k and trialed on L2.

Jumping in to mention that Angle built a Angle Labs built a Merkl distributor for rewards distribution to Uniswap v3 LPs and have been using it since August 2022.

This was already mentioned by guil-lambert (here).

Merkl could be used to let other protocols distribute collected fees back to holders.

For your information, Merkl gives extensive control to protocols as it allows the customisation of the distribution to favour active liquidity and/or LPeing of one token in particular (e.g. protocols could easily allocate 50% to active liquidity, 10% to Token A and 40% to Token B). Also no staking contract is required and no LP funds deposited on Merkl.

Sharing the Merkl beta (1) claim page for LPs, (2) deposit page for protocols, and documentation.

Please feel free to reach out with any question or ask directly here. This has helped us solve the distribution problem to Uniswap v3 LPs and we’re willing to make this a part of the solution here

说的太好啦 瓜啊 呜呜呜呜呜啊啊啊啊啊啊