A Heartfelt Message to the Metis Community

Metis
5 min readSep 14, 2023

We’re pleased to announce our retribution plans for two groups of recently affected METIS holders.

First, we will compensate the users who held METIS on BNB Chain and suffered the consequences of an attack on the PolyNetwork bridge. Metis’ total lifetime supply of 10 million tokens is locked in a smart contract and thus immutable, and we would not want to dilute the token’s value for existing holders even if that were possible. As a result, the retribution of 117,000 tokens will come from the Metis Foundation’s own reserves, with all of those tokens already being in circulation.

Due to the size of the hack and in consideration of existing holders, retribution will come in the form of a vesting plan. You can read details of the plan here:

Second, we will compensate the users who fell victim to a scam perpetrated by a hacker who stole the credentials for the MetisDAO Twitter account. Affected users are encouraged to submit a support ticket in the Metis Discord channel, where we can verify on-chain activity to confirm the claim. (We will not provide any retribution for wallet addresses related to the hacker or his confederates.)

While we’re happy to close this difficult recent chapter, we are also disappointed that both these events happened in the first place. The Metis team has thus taken aggressive steps to help ensure incidents like these don’t happen again.

As described in today’s press release, here’s how we are handling cross-chain interoperability moving forward:

Metis will upgrade to the OFT cross-chain standard developed by LayerZero. This enables native Metis tokens to be seamlessly traded, held, and utilized across supported blockchains. The first two chains to be supported are BNB Chain and Avalanche.

Users will be able to own real Metis on these chains, not just wrapped versions. For example, suppliers to Metis’ USDT pool on BNB will earn native Metis rewards. This also unlocks potential for greatly improved cross-chain dApp integrations leveraging Metis’ token.

The upgrade provides a more decentralized and secure alternative for holders on external chains. Metis’ mainnet design will allow easy transfer of claimed, native METIS tokens between chains.

Regarding security protocols on Metis social media platforms and other communications channels, we have implemented more robust two-factor authentication, and upgraded to more robust security protocols. The Metis Twitter hack was the result of a malicious case of identity theft; nonetheless, the new protocols are designed to prevent such hacks from ever again occurring, even in the event of such extraordinary circumstances.

Beyond procedural steps, today we want to talk to our Metis community from the heart.

First, we deeply regret that these hacks occurred in the first place. Yes, PolyNetwork was a Community Ecosystem Governance-approved cross-chain bridge provider, having been ratified as a Metis Community Verified Project (CVP) by community vote. Yes, the MetisDAO Twitter hack was a reckless illegal act perpetrated by a dangerous thief.

Nonetheless, the results in both cases could rightly be seen by our community as a violation of the sacred trust we have worked so hard over the years to build with all of you.

We understand the financial, intellectual, and emotional commitment each of you put forth when choosing to engage with any Metis-related product, be it Metis community-approved third-party dApps, the METIS token, or the Metis Layer 2 network.

While our highly secure network was and remains unaffected by security breaches, for affected Metis users that can come across as a matter of semantics. You still had to deal with the fear and uncertainty of hacks, and not knowing if you would be able to recoup your lost assets.

Also, the Metis team required a period of time to explore potential legal action against PolyNetwork, as well as action plans that would make affected users whole without adversely affecting other Metis community members. Nonetheless, we recognize the fear and uncertainty that affected users went through while they waited for a concrete response from the Metis team, not knowing what the outcome would be or if they would ever see their lost assets again.

For all of this, we are deeply sorry.

From day one, Metis founders Elena Sinelnikova, Kevin Liu, and Yuan Su have made it their mission to build a project that would belong to our community.

This was and is reflected in:

• Metis’ tokenomics, which include having half of our lifetime supply allocated toward community mining rewards. Those rewards include: builder mining, verifier mining, governance mining, and sequencer mining. (Stay tuned for exciting news about our soon-to-launch, first-of-its-kind, decentralized sequencer pool, and how community members can participate in sequencer mining! Once the sequencer pool launches, it will mark the first instance of an Ethereum Layer 2 network sharing its sequencer revenue with the community).

• The founders’ approach to bootstrapping the network, bringing in as little venture capital-related assistance as possible to prevent some of the unseemly actions taken by large investors in numerous other projects.

• Our approach to community governance, where we actively encourage our community members to take part in weekly calls with potential partners, ask questions, make suggestions for dApps and use cases they would like to see in the ecosystem, and be part of the everyday process of growing Metis into the kind of project that all of us want to see.

• How our team of moderators interacts with the Metis community on Telegram and Discord. We work around the clock to answer any questions, comments, or concerns you might have, and stand ready to patiently and sympathetically help with any technical or operational challenge you might face.

• The Metis team providing full compensation for users affected by these two attacks.

We didn’t decide to compensate users affected by hacks on third-party platforms because of any legal or contractual obligation. We are doing it because we love our community, because preserving your trust is vitally important to us, and because we owe our entire existence to our passionate, enthusiastic, knowledgeable, meme-loving, smiles-bringing army of Metisians.

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for supporting Metis. Onward and upward.

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