How to Receive Airdrops
Crypto airdrops are a popular method for projects to distribute tokens to users, often as a reward for early adoption, community engagement, or platform usage. Airdrops provide an excellent opportunity for newcomers to accumulate cryptocurrencies without investing their own money.
In this article, we will outline the key requirements for participating in crypto airdrops, provide specific examples from seven projects ($UNI (Sep 2020), $1INCH (Dec 2020), $DYDX (Sep 2021), $RBN (Oct 2021), $ENS (Nov 2021), $OP (May 2022), and $ARB (Mar 2023)), and offer tips on how to increase your chances of success.
The first and foremost essential requirement is using the network or protocol.
Early airdrops only required users to interact with the protocol at least once, such as $UNI (Sep 2020) and $1INCH (Dec 2020). But later airdrops like $OP (May 2022) and $ARB (Mar 2023) implemented more complex mechanisms to emphasize transaction frequency and size.
Simply bridging to Arbitrum was insufficient to qualify for the $ARB airdrop. The minimum requirement (at least 3 points) was bridging to Arbitrum (+1) and completing more than four transactions (+1) across two different months (+1). To be eligible to receive the highest amount (12 points or more), one must complete more than 100 transactions across nine different months totaling more than $250,000 in value.
We expect this trend to continue, where networks/protocols reward continuous, organic usage in large amounts.
Do you not have $250,000 to play around hunting for airdrops? Don't worry. Arbitrum allowed addresses to receive the maximum amount even if their total transaction size was less than $10,000. They could compensate for the lack of capital by conducting more than ten transactions on Arbitrum Nova.
The key takeaway is to regularly use all products offered by potential projects while utilizing the maximum amount of capital you are comfortable with. As a reference, the most recent Arbitrum airdrop set four levels for transaction sizes, <$10,000, $10,000 - $50,000, $50,000 - $250,000, and >$250,000.
Depending on the nature of the project, some airdrops reward users who provide liquidity to the project. For example, the dYdX airdrop rewarded those who had contributed to their liquidity pools. Arbitrum also rewarded liquidity providers, while Optimism did not. However, liquidity provision may not apply in cases like the Ethereum Name Service airdrop.
Moreover, the dYdX and Uniswap airdrop amounts were linear and proportional to the liquidity provided.
On the other hand, Arbitrum used a more complex points system and awarded more tokens if one crossed the $10,000, $50,000, and $250,000 marks.
Maintaining a minimum balance in your wallet is essential. This requirement helps projects exclude bots or fraudulent users from participating. For example, Ribbon airdropped $RBN to any user who had deposited at least $100 worth of assets into either of the three vaults (ETH Covered Calls, WBTC Covered Calls, ETH Puts) before May 2021, while Arbitrum required users to keep a minimum balance of 0.005 ETH on the day of the snapshot.
In the ENS airdrop, the future commitment was also a factor, where a user got more tokens if he committed to renting his ENS longer.
Similarly, a future project may reward users if they commit to locking up their LP position for a prolonged period.
Optimism rewarded community engagement in its airdrop. In airdrop 1, Optimism rewarded DAO voters (both on-chain and off-chain via platforms like Snapshot), multi-sig signers, and Gitcoin donors.
In airdrop 2, Optimism rewarded users who participated in governance via token delegation.
As the most common type of airdropped token is the governance token, becoming an active community member and participating in governance can be very rewarding.
Are you tempted to establish multiple accounts to receive a more significant sum when payday comes? We advise against trying to game the system and maliciously farming for airdrops. Projects pay more attention to fighting Sybil Attacks nowadays and have developed complex filtering criteria to weed out bad actors. For example, the accounts will be at risk if they ever send or receive funds from the same wallet, including centralized exchange deposit addresses. However, most criteria are undisclosed to avoid being countered by airdrop farmers.
Check out "What is Sybil Attack?"
The rule of thumb is to keep good faith. If you want to use multiple wallets for diversification or risk-reduction, don't be afraid to do so because you worry that you might be identified as a Sybil attacker. For example, using fresh burner wallets for risky activities like NFT minting is highly recommended. An individual created a new wallet every time he aped into a new project on Arbitrum. His wallets were not disqualified during Sybil detection.
Crypto airdrops can be a valuable opportunity for newcomers and experienced users alike to acquire new tokens and engage with different projects. By understanding the critical requirements for airdrops and following the tips provided, you can increase your chances of benefiting from future airdrops in the rapidly evolving world of cryptocurrencies.
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