Reading this comparison between IPFS and Swarm, I came across this section:

Filecoin is a sister project of IPFS, it adds an incentivisation layer
to IPFS and relies on its own altchain. Proof of retrievability "mining"
on the filecoin blockchain is a scheme providing ongoing compensation to
storers for preserving content. Random audits as part of the proof of work
task are responded to with proof of retrievability and the winning miners
get compensated accordingly. Such a system has inherent limitations: IPFS
can only implement positive incentives and relies on collective

But what is the problem with only implement positive incentives and relies on collective responsibility? Is there something that Swarm's incentivisation system does that Filecoin/Storj does not?

1 Answer 1


positive incentives means that nodes get rewarded for storing content. filecoin's proof of retrievability mining is such a scheme.

my insight is that someone missing a reward is not strong enough incentive for a collective service to insure preservation of rarely accessed content.

For this reason swarm intentives introduce a different scheme for storage insurance which is able to identify particular nodes as being responsible if chunks get lost. Registered storer nodes stake a deposit which they stand to lose in case they are found liable for a lost chunk. Such non-collectivised punitive measures are very strong incentives and we believe are crucial for permanent secure storage.

This is spelt out in detail in the orange paper entitled swap, swear and swindle http://swarm-gateways.net/bzz:/theswarm.eth/ethersphere/orange-papers/1/sw%5E3.pdf

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