Argent Newsletter - Issue #20

Run a validator, creator royalities, a gamechanging feature and much, much more...

Edward Wilson
Aug 28, 2022

gm everyone - welcome to our newsletter, where we cover the latest updates from the Ethereum ecosystem. 

This week has been quieter than usual, so we’ve gone deeper into the topics we’ve covered. If you have any feedback or suggestions to help improve this newsletter, as always, please email edward@argent.xyz. 


  1. Run a validator to keep Ethereum decentralized and secure
  2. Creator royalties matter and shouldn’t be avoided
  3. Session Keys are going to transform blockchain usability

Now, let’s get into it all! 🚀

🔐 How YOU can keep Ethereum censorship resistant

Recently, each Issue has shared something interesting or exciting about the Merge, and this Issue is no different. With the Merge only a few weeks away, we want to highlight one of the ways you can help keep Ethereum decentralized and censorship-resistant.

Run your own validator.

There’s been a huge campaign recently to encourage as many people who can run their own validator to do just that. It requires 32 ETH, some money for the technical setup, and some time.

People across the world have been sharing their setups, and we’ve found some cool examples.

The move to Proof of Stake is designed to enable true decentralization, and you can do your part by running your own validator. It might sound challenging, but we wrote a great non-technical guide back in 2020, and there is a great community willing to help out with any problems you may have.

If you don’t have the 32 ETH or the time to put a validator together, you can run a node! It requires a computer and an internet connection. You don’t even need ETH. If you want us to do a guide on how to do this, let us know.

🖼 Should creators get royalties?

Royalties are a way for NFT creators to get paid for their work each time a piece of theirs gets sold. The fee can vary, and it’s the creator who decides how much it is. Usually, it’s between 5-15%. Then, if their work takes off, they, too, get to reap the rewards. It’s one of the great things enabled by NFTs.

But recently, royalties have been up for debate as NFT dapps, like Sudoswap and x2y2, have found ways to avoid paying royalties to reduce fees for sellers.

How is that possible? Royalties cannot be enforced at the contract level.

There is an Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) - a way to update Ethereum - called EIP-2891, which standardizes royalties. But this hasn’t passed yet. So there are a few ways to circumvent the fee.

For sellers, this is great. They can sell their NFTs and get more back. But it goes against the essence of NFTs as the seller wouldn’t have anything to sell if it wasn’t for the creator.

This topic has been debated by many within the NFT space, and if you’re interested in learning more about this topic, we recommend Letter 30: Creator Royalties in NFTs or this thread by PUNK6529.

📈 This feature will radically improve blockchain UI

Account abstraction is something that gets us at Argent very excited. It enables better security, more flexibility, and a significantly better user experience

When using the blockchain, we’ve all been through the annoyance of dealing with confirming transactions. We see ‘Would you like to confirm this transaction’ tap confirm and do that over and over again to complete the thing we want to do.

This experience leads to mistakes, confusion, frustration while you wait for approval, and sadly, in some cases, losing money. It won’t bring crypto to the masses. It’s terrible.

Luckily there’s a solution - Session Keys! And it’s made possible through account abstraction.

Session Keys allow you to pre-approve an application’s transactions according to a set of rules, like: time, gas usage, set transaction volumes of a token(s), or particular functions on specific contracts.

Thanks to these rules, a session key can only do what the user has approved. Everything outside will be blocked by the account and solves the problem of needing to approve transactions constantly.

Simply pre-approve a session, sign in, and do the things you want to do. Say goodbye to being bombarded by wallet notifications!

📚 What we’re reading

Data Availability Sampling: From Basics to Open Problems - Joachim Neu

Can Aave’s GHO stablecoin help the protocol further grow and overtake MakerDAO and DAI? - TokenBrice

How does Tornado Cash work? - Coin Center

💭 What’s happening at Argent 

Julien, our co-founder, was interviewed on the Into the Bytecode podcast. He discussed smart contract wallets, building on StarkNet and zkSync, gave an excellent primer on account abstraction, and much more. We really think you’ll enjoy listening to it!

We also emailed all the winners for our recent Buy DAI, Win DAI campaign for zkSync with MakerDAO and Ramp, where we gave out hundreds of prizes. If you bought DAI using Ramp in your Argent zkSync account between the 1st and 14th of August, check your inbox to see if you’ve won!

🤔 Smaller but interesting news

Here are a few smaller things we’ve found interesting this week:

BendDAO allows you to use your NFTs as collateral to borrow ETH. It’s one of many new Dapps that are bringing NFTs and DeFi together. But, with NFT prices falling, there’s been a liquidity crisis as this thread explains

Why buying the dip isn’t always the best thing to do

If you’re excited about the Merge (you should be!) and you love data, these Dune Analytics dashboards are perfect for you

What’s next for FRAX

Legendary on-chain sleuth ZachXBT reveals the alleged person responsible for the recent hacked NFT Twitter accounts

BitBoy Lost His Lawsuit the Instant He Filed It

What are soulbound NFTs?

Web3 Legal AMA with Marc Boiron, Rebecca Rettig, & Jesse Walden

Eminem and Snoop Dogg will perform within the Otherside Metaverse in partnership with Yuga Labs

NFTfi (NFT x DeFi) ecosystem in one thread

Loot, One Year Later: The NFT Hype Is Dead—But 'Lootverse' Hope Lives On

Fei Community Up In Arms Over Dissolution Plan

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