FerretCoin (FC) is a concept for a lightweight digital currency intended to support a socially-inclusive economy. The designed primary usage-case is a small organization that wants to ensure all of its members at least a minimum quality-of-life while also bringing in and accumulating resources from outside.
- "lightweight": minimal use of resources (including storage, transactions, and issuance)
- disincentivizes hoarding, while still permitting it
- minimal infrastructure required for issuance
- sold/issued in a way that equalizes buying power as much as possible ("marginal value token")
- A FC coin is just a chunk of data public-key signed by the issuer. The data could include details of the issuance, such as timestamp, server ID information etc.
- Trading (converting FC to/from other currencies) would be conducted through third parties approved by the issuer, possibly using some delegative FOAD/web-of-trust mechanism to encourage a trading ecosystem.
- The issuer would only accept payment for regular sales in FC, requiring all hoardable currency to pass through the various leveling mechanisms created by the FC ecosystem.
- At regular intervals, the issuer creates a new "series" of their FC.
- The issuer only accepts the current series as payment for regular sales.
- The issuer will sell new coin for old, but at a discount.
- e.g. 1 old coin will buy you 0.9 new coin
- The issuer may limit the time during which they will do this.
- After that, the old coin will retain some value in trade, but that value should continue to deteriorate over time.
This means that any given collection of FC will only deteriorate in value over time, encouraging holders to spend it instead of hoarding. This also allows the issuer to continually issue new coinage, giving it spending power without requiring taxation or continuous economic growth.
Method One: Marginal Value Tokens
Members of the issuing cooperative would have privileged access to that co-op's FC thusly:
- If your disposable income is below a certain level, you receive regular allocations at no cost
- If it's above that level, you have to buy them, but on a sliding-scale cost
Looked at more algorithmically, there would be a range of incomes relevant to the price:
- below the range, you get free regular allocations
- within the range, the price goes up from zero to full price
- above the range, FC are full price
"Disposable income" is something the issuer would either evaluate themself or delegate to a trusted third party, based on any of several possible methodologies.
- Costs: the difficulty of assessing income
- Benefits: stronger flow of downward redistribution
Method Two: Universal Basic Income
Under this method, all members would receive a regular allocation of FC, and could purchase additional FC at a fixed price.
- Costs: There's less incentive to ever buy coins, so issuance would have to be much more limited -- which would hurt lower-income members disproportionately.
- Benefits: No need to assess income.