Recently, I experienced long delays in node unstaking, and it has me worried about the unstaking mechanism in general.
Currently, a node that is set to unstake can only begin unstaking when it next earns. During times of bounty when a node earns every week, this wait time feels comfortable; however, when a node hits an unlucky streak and stops earning for a month or more, the unstaking mechanism feels like a trap. With my unstaking pnode, I felt like I was trapped. The pnode did not earn for 29 days (winning me The Badge that Must Not Be Named), and I fear the wait times are set to get longer.
With the current Dai sale on pnodes, I read that nodes are now back-ordered (or at least shipping is delayed), indicating a high volume of sales. Soon, those pnodes will go online, potentially reducing the chances of other nodes to earn and therefore unstake. This worries me greatly, as it could effectively imprison the money that validators have staked in the network. For nodes, the value of the 1750 stake is currently $1400. Validators can only get that back once they win the Incognito random selection lottery.
Earning based on chance is one thing. Unstaking based on chance is just unfortunate, especially when you need that 1750. And with the way validation currently works, not only will validators earn less as more nodes come online, but, worse, they will have less of a chance to transfer their money to wherever it can work the hardest for them. Fourteen hundred per node is a lot of money to sit idle.
Moving forward, I would ask the devs to please prioritize a change in the unstaking mechanism, so that users can divest when they need or want to. I feel that unstaking based on chance (and decreasing odds) will ultimately harm the platform’s user base and adoption of the product itself, whereas I think we all would rather see Incognito expand, excel, and succeed.