How to Apply to become a Factom Authority Node Operator

Factom is a general purpose data protocol and tokenization platform that extends blockchain’s immutability and security to any form of data. To decentralize the protocol, there will eventually be 65 Authority Node Servers run by 65 Authority Node Operator (ANO) companies. To incentivize the companies to decentralize the protocol and enable them to pay their bills and profit, the protocol rewards them with 1,123 FCT per month, per server, minus efficiency*. With the increasing popularity of the protocol and thus the potential for appreciation in value of the Factoid (FCT – the native token of the protocol), becoming an ANO is becoming increasingly popular and competitive.

Anyone can apply to become an ANO, the hard part is getting elected as there are always other teams applying. So far there have been two rounds of elections;

– Round #1: 38 applicants, 21 were selected.
– Round #2: 16 applicants, 6 were selected.

Efficiency and Types of Authority Node Operators

An ANO’s “efficiency” is the percentage of FCT they set to forego receiving from the protocol as they don’t need it to operate because they are so “efficient”. This FCT instead goes into the Factom grant pool. You can see the current ANO efficiency rates here.  What this means is that if you’re at ANO at 40% efficiency, the total amount of FCT you receive per month is 1,347.6 (2,246 x 60% = 1,347.6).

A.  Infrastructure ANO – The provide outstanding uptime for their servers to ensure the protocol is decentralized.  Infrastructure ANOs tend to operate at 60% efficiency+.  Infrastructure ANOs are expected to take part in governance processes.

B.  Development, Marketing, Other Type ANO – These are ANOs who not only provide outstanding uptime for their servers, but also perform some other task(s) to further the protocol.  These tasks may be development, marketing, or some other type of task that supports operating at a reduced efficiency.  These types of ANOs are also expected to take part in governance processes.

How to Apply

  1.  Read the application process seen here.
  2. Spin up a testnet server so you can familiarize yourself with running an Authority Server and demonstrate competence.
  3. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the ANO Expectations Document.
  4. Begin to form a campaign strategy and determine what sort of ANO you will be.  The existing ANOs and their teams can be seen here.
  5. Provide an informal introduction in our Prospective ANO forum and if you have any questions, please ask in there.
  6. It is suggested that you become acquainted with how our governance process works.  You can educate yourself here.
  7. Apply when the election round starts as outlined in the document in step 1.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q.  Do ANOs have to be a company?

A.  Yes.  Authority Node Operators must be companies, not individuals or sole proprietorship.  It is ok to not be incorporated during the application process, but it is expected that you will do so very quickly after a successful election bid.

Q.  How are ANOs removed from the Authority Set?

A.  That process is described in this document.

Q. Can I see the question and answer portion of past ANO elections?

A. You can see those archived here.