DOTSwap Brand Name Must Change [Marketing]

I believe naming the potential new DEX pallet on the Statemint/Asset Hub parachain as “DOTSwap” would be very damaging for Polkadot and should be avoided at all costs. As Statemint’s name is likely being changed to “Asset Hub”, I’m proposing if this DEX does launch, it be called AssetHub DEX.

Although just a brand name, the DOTSwap brand is a massive risk for the ecosystem’s future. If you step back and think about this as a complete outsider (maybe a DeFi user on Solana or Arbitrum who has never used Polkadot), DOTSwap would make it feel like it’s supposed to be the go-to, state of the art DEX showcasing the best of Polkadot’s tech and where everyone should start when exploring Polkadot apps (which we all know is not the case).

It is very likely that, although this DEX is a Uniswap v1 (yes version 1) fork meant to be essentially backend infra for bringing more liquidity to Polkadot and not compete with DEXs on parachains, this DOTSwap brand will set high expectations the DEX and has a big risk of setting up users for a letdown and poor experience given the outdated tech, only having DOT pairs, etc. It also runs the risk of people using the DEX and demanding upgrades and better DEX tech (wen Uni v3), which then competes with the DEX appchains (HydraDX, Mangata, etc) and DEXs on parachains like StellaSwap, Interlay, or Acala.

It all goes back to the basics of crypto communities: a vast majority of people in the Polkadot community are only here for the DOT token, not the tech. More people hold DOT than any other parachain token, people hold DOT because they want it to appreciate in value, and those same people are the ones who want “DOTSwap” because they think it will help their DOT bags. Uncoincidentally, the 160 people who voted in the Twitter poll for branding the DEX even included their favorite token in the name of this new DEX because it’s the most likely brand name to help their DOT bags.

Similar to how Statemint is likely getting rebranded to “Asset hub”, I feel it would be best if we downplay this DEX as much as possible, make it feel like the infrastructure that it’s intended to be, and not brand it as if it’s a real DEX, especially not branding it as THE Polkadot DEX, which DOTSwap absolutely does. Something boring like “AssetHub DEX” would be more suitable. The fact the brand was chosen as the correct path by the people spearheading this initiative came from a random Twitter poll with 160 votes is also unbelievable but that’s beside the point.

I’m mostly worried DOTSwap would be “Polkadot.js 2.0” - imo, Polkadot.js and the lack of attention to app-layer UX single-handedly ruined Polkadot’s initial phase of industry-wide user interest where you usually only get once chance then they’re gone. And now with “DOTSwap” we’d run the risk of setting users up for failure again rather than promoting the parachain product ecosystem.

In summary, let’s scrap the DOTSwap brand to protect the Polkadot ecosystem’s reputation and go with a more boring brand like AssetHub DEX.

Does anyone agree/disagree? What are your thoughts? Thank you for reading and adding your views. This is meant to start a discussion and I’d love to hear valid points for keeping this brand name.

Note: here is the original forum thread on this topic:

Note 2: This post is only related to the DOTSwap brand, not whether the DEX should launch at all.


I think it should be named Steve

No one would assume a cutting edge DEX is named Steve


As I understand it, the UI will be made by other teams including 2 already seeking funding preventing any .js 2.0. It’ll probably be integrated into all DEX front ends some how as well. DOTswap is a good name to help people understand what’s happening behind the scenes.

It was also chosen by community participation. That’s probably something to foster and honour. Or maybe the few are smarter than the many. :thinking:


agree with the concern. Asset Hub/AssetHub Dex more opening for a much wide eco.

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this initiative is primarily in place to solve a liquidity headache and entry point for participants, given that in mind, we dont need a sexy marketable name which will merely confuse … lets just stick to its purpose and functionality Asset Hub Swap / Asset Hub DEX - clear and simple, does the job.

Agree with this - after discussing with others, there is some push back that DOTSwap hasn’t been “officially” adopted by anyone, but I would counter that it is being used regularly enough for it to become defacto “official”.

Take this treasury proposal for example - it’s been put together by a team working very closely with Parity, and they frequently use “DOTSwap”. It should be made abundantly clear that this will not be named DOTSwap in the UI.

I think it would be incredibly useful for everyone to understand the full scope of Statemint DEX/ Asset hub DEX - from my understanding it is a solution to onboarding problems with exchanges and other forms of integrations, that UIs would be developed by 3rd parties (we now are looking at 2 already… how many do we need?) and that’s where the buck stops.

Reading the new treasury proposal for the second UI, I am concerned about significant feature creep - with talk of regular user incentive programmes and even a “DOTSwap” token? Of course external parties are free to do what they want with open source tech, but there is significant risk in this being an “official” Parity-backed DEX - especially if we are paying for it through the treasury.

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Asset Hub +1

@danreecer Great question! I believe the combination of

  1. conceiving of DOTSwap as a verb like “XCMTransfers”
  2. conceiving of DOTSwap UIs (plural) as a “7/11” convenience store to get your snacks/drinks/gas (== small amount of DOT to keep you going) instead of the “Walmart” (== large amount which you should be doing in a “Real DEX”)
  3. the community committing to O(10) DOT Swap UIs

may address your anxieties.

For 1 – With O(10) teams rather than O(1) team building open-source DOT Swap UIs (plural) based off of DEX pallet, the term “DOTSwap” won’t be a brand, it will be a feature/verb/thing that you do in some UI, like “XCM Transfers” in different places right now – inside wallet UIs, a menu item in dapps (including and especially polkadot.js apps), widgets within block explorers, or parachain dapps that do or do not have DEX functionality. I think the ecosystem should be able to afford $1MM for 10 teams, and then 50 other teams will use one of those efforts in their own dapp.

For 2 – with the underlying DEX pallet intentionally having (a) much higher fees and (b) lower functionality than any parachain DEX, it will be clear that users are getting a “7/11” convenience store experience. This is OKAY because they are just getting a snack of X (or getting back DOT), not swapping 1K - 1M DOT. This enables a lot of interoperable parachain activity, especially when the DOTSwap UIs combine swaps with XCM Transfers.

For 3 – I suggest funding O(10) DOT Swap UI teams, O(10) being much larger than 1-2 with
(a) easily copied reusable widget code that can actually be easily incorporated into dapps and mobile apps
(b) different UI frameworks covered (iPhone! Android! React! Next.js! polkadot.js apps!)
with so much emphasis on (a)+(b) that DOTSwap UI becomes a pervasive feature in every UI rather than a single trusted/crowned place where people go to. The plea for O(10) over O(1) is to avoid a single entity developing a single brand like “Metamask”, and I do agree that crowning O(1) UI as “the DOTSwap UI” like feels like a brand and the community should avoid that – otherwise your fears are justified.

A closely tied branding discussion is about polkadot.js apps being at, which is what O(10) UI teams will definitely use for building DOTSwap UIs. Here, I think crowning O(1) Developer UIs is fair game. But I see no reason why polkadot.js apps couldn’t have one of these convenience store DOTSwap UIs itself.

If you buy into 1+2+3, I think “DOTSwap UIs” as the best way to describe these commodity widgets. IT is is better than a “brand” like “Apple” (or “Steve”) which can come to mean more and more things, appeal to emotion, etc. – unlike “Statemint DEX”, the term “DOTSwap UIs” says exactly what it does, and leaves nothing to the imagination.

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Fully agree, your analysis is actually too kind. It must be rebranded.

I get the point. But why not choose a brand that is nevertheless likeable, maybe funny but especially catchy?
It is never a bad thing for marketing and success of the whole thing to choose terms that are smart instead of just boring like Asset Humb DEX would be.

I’m a bit late to this thread as I was on vacation last week, but before going right for the name part, I think there are some misconceptions throughout this thread that are worth addressing because they factor into choosing a name.


The first is this “full stack” or “siloed” view of an application. That is, that “DOTswap” represents not only the protocol but any tooling or UIs that people use to interact with it. I think if Web3 in general is to succeed, we have to be diligent about separating protocol from tooling from UIs in our discussions. Web2 bundles them all together in a silo because they are forced to due to their built-in trust assumptions. The fact that they are separate in Web3 is our advantage. If we speak about these things all bundled together then we are failing to communicate our number one value proposition over Web2: That we don’t need to trust a service provider to use a digital service (protocol).

The second is that the the main motivation for the DEX is to bring liquidity to other parachains. This is more of a tertiary objective. The primary objective is to allow accurate conversion of small asset balances. This feature will remove a lot of security concerns that hamper UX (e.g. being strict about which assets are sufficient). The ability to swap small (i.e. transaction fee, existential deposit) balances greatly simplifies fee payment and secures the network from several attacks. The DEX is also meant to contribute to a better Treasury system that allows proposals in other assets besides DOT. The fact that this same protocol can also be useful to other parachains is an added benefit, but not its raison d’être.

Moving Forward

Now to make some progress…

Similar to how Statemint is likely getting rebranded to “Asset hub”, I feel it would be best if we downplay this DEX as much as possible, make it feel like the infrastructure that it’s intended to be.

I’ve been frontrun :joy:. This is another forum thread I’ve wanted to start. I’ll write that shortly, but for now, yes, in my opinion we should rename Statemint to Polkadot Asset Hub. In brief, I think system parachains should have more neutral/functional naming to emphasize that they are in fact just sub-protocols of the Polkadot protocol.

Taking these into consideration, I can see where Dan is coming from. I think what Dan is saying is that DOTswap sounds like an end-user application. But DOTswap is actually a protocol, and we want to attract lots of tooling and UI developers to work with it, so we should choose a name that’s more indicative of that.

From the protocol’s point of view, the “swap” functionality should rarely even be seen by the user. The user stories can be things like, “Pay your transaction fees in any asset.” The wallet of course needs to know how to construct the SignedExtension with correct instructions, but the user doesn’t need to know what’s actually happening with that asset.

When I hear “DEX”, I think “protocol”. But it’s apparent that a lot of people think “application”. So perhaps it shouldn’t be called a DEX at all, something like “Pooled Asset Conversion {Protocol/Pallet}”. I think it’s great that the community got engaged in naming, so let’s try to keep that engagement, but also include other protocol developers and tooling/wallet developers in the discussion. No name has been “officially decided” (although yes DOTswap is being widely used now, but it’s still early). I think we can re-open this discussion and choose a name that does indicate that it’s a protocol and appeals to its target audience: tooling, UI, and parachain developers.