Only voting 'YES' determines outcome for proposals. Voting 'ABSTAIN' is a signal only and serves for privacy preserving properties from cryptographic properties to counter balance your 'YES' votes. Your goal as a voter is to cast 'ABSTAIN' in each category as well to mix up your voting profile to help improve voting privacy. Otherwise, practically speaking both actions are the same. However, 'ABSTAIN' registers action on chain. 'Not voting' doesn't. Once you've cast any vote to blockchain - you cannot change it anymore.
What are you doing to mitigate bad actors putting forward scam proposals?
The remarkable aspect of a decentralized innovation fund, like Catalyst lies in its inherent self-governance, accountability, and resilience. Catalyst is a bunch of mini ecosystems working together to bring innovation to Cardano from the ground up. Since everyone is interested in seeing the highest impact proposals get funding, the community does a great job of doing community reviews and sorting out which proposals aren’t the best fit for Catalyst funding. Another fail-safe measure in place is the moderation of submitted proposals. Incomplete or spam proposals are filtered out before undergoing a thorough round of community reviews.
Will IOG vote for their own proposals with their ada?
No, IOG will not influence the vote with any wallet under our control. IOG has a long-standing policy about not participating in Catalyst voting. This policy will continue throughout Fund11.
How transparent will the voting be? Will it be on-chain?
Catalyst voting has always occurred on-chain, utilizing the Jormungandr sidechain, initially utilized to test the Ouroboros Shelley Incentivized Testnet's infrastructure. This allows Catalyst voting to benefit from the same high level of security as the Cardano mainchain in many cases. Catalyst voting is designed to be privacy-preserving. While there is a degree of transparency surrounding the voting process, it is impossible to determine the specific direction of an individual voter's choice. As with all blockchains, the ledger itself can be audited. From Fund10, we took additional steps to ensure transparency and verifiability. We made the tally independently verifiable, and all voting data is publicly available to the community. This effort will continue for Fund11. To learn more about how you can validate the vote results, click here.