This post is a follow-up and summary of the proposed changes outlined in these previous forum posts:
As the Solana ecosystem continues to mature, the Solana Foundation’s validator incentive programs are also evolving to move towards a path of sustainable growth and support for our growing network of validators.
This post outlines the current state of the Foundation validator compensation programs as well as the Foundation’s vision for the longer term structure of these programs.
Please note: Please keep in mind that Solana is completely permissionless. Anyone can operate a validator without permission or authorization from the Solana Foundation or any other party. The programs described here, which do require participant registration and KYC, are only for those validators who wish to be eligible for a grant or delegation from the Solana Foundation.
Compensation for Tour de SOL
As of Tour de SOL stage 12, which began in February 2021, the payment for successfully completing current and future Tour de SOL stages is US$500 per stage, paid in SOL tokens.
SOL tokens are delivered as a 1-year locked stake account, and the amount of SOL earned per stage will be determined by the spot price of USD/SOL on the last day of each stage.
Compensation for Mainnet Beta
Compensation for maintaining good uptime and performance of eligible validators on Mainnet Beta currently consists of a direct SOL payment of 500 SOL/month, delivered as 1-year locked stake, and an ongoing-performance based delegation from the Solana Foundation.
After the end of April 2021, the Foundation will no longer offer direct monthly SOL payments to eligible Mainnet Beta validators.
The Foundation delegation program, through which eligible validators earn commission rewards from Foundation stake, will continue to be the long-term mechanism through which the Foundation encourages long term growth and performance of the Solana network.
Mainnet Beta Invitations
The Solana Foundation is re-evaluating the criteria needed to receive and maintain a delegation from the Foundation for eligible Mainnet Beta validators, and is re-implementing our staking tools and monitoring solutions to make the delegation behavior and requirements more transparent. Until this solution is implemented, the Foundation has decided to pause the addition of new validator nodes to its delegation program.