Community Call Sophon Candidate AMA - Nathan Worsley

This community call featured an AMA with Nathan Worsley, a searcher and Sophon candidate.

Rook branding with white cubes; recap by Starbased

The community met to discuss Nathan’s Sophon nomination proposal, and to ask Nathan (Nathan_#2260 on Discord) about his background, qualifications, and expectations for the role.

Sophon Nomination AMA with Nathan Worsley

  • Nathan has been involved in MEV since before Flashbots as a searcher, and gained prominence in the community for authoring a write-up on the Salmonella exploit.
  • He is now responsible for running an MEV firm called Convexity (previously DeFi Cartel).
  • As an early searcher, Nathan was in contact and sharing alpha with JZ back when Rook was KeeperDAO, and was brought on to contribute to a number of efforts that included programming the Compound liquidator for the Hiding Book. [1:45]
  • Nathan transitioned to an advisory role at KeeperDAO/Rook as his own firm grew larger.
  • Having experienced poorly run DAOs, Nathan is drawn to the role of a Sophon due to favoring Rook’s governance structure. [3:08]
  • He believes reviewing governance proposals should be priority-based, with timely responses.
  • The team mentioned that generally there is low contention among Sophons during the proposal review process, since KIPs have already undergone rigorous and documented community review by the time they reach the Sophons. However, Sophons’ expertise is needed to provide high-level diligence. [4:38]
  • Roughly 35 KIPs in total have been passed over the past year. Many are recurring proposals, such as budget approvals; some are novel, like tokenomics changes or features. [7:18]
  • On the moral implications of MEV: Nathan believes that there is both good and bad MEV. Most real-world impacts don’t result in harmful outcomes, but sandwiching and front-running are examples of extraction that does have a victim. [8:35]

“MEV is inherently a user-generated property, and thus users are probably some of the most deserving parties to profit from the MEV that they are creating. That’s where I ethically… align well with Rook, an organization that has also believed this since pre-Flashbots days.”
- Nathan Worsley [11:00]

  • In terms of treasury management, Nathan favors a conservative approach. Regret management is at least as important to him as profit generation. [11:40]
  • Hazard’s take on where Sophons can provide the most value: a Sophon’s purpose is to take proposals that express ideas from the crowd, and view them through the lens of the protocol itself. [14:05]
  • A key responsibility for a Sophon is to respond to proposals with reasoned thoughts, and participate in internal debates on proposals.