Stacks is the name of a token developed by Blockstack Token LLC in 2017 and activated in the third quarter of 2018. This page discusses a brief history of the Stacks token and deployment on the Blockstack network as well as the current role of the Stacks token.
If you are a developer interested in the specific technical changes related to the 2018 launch, see the announcement in the Blockstack forum.
In 2017 Blockstack did a token sale. Participants became token holders when they received allocations of Stacks tokens in the genesis block. A genesis block is the first block of a blockchain.
During the draft genesis block period token holders setup a seed phrase (sometimes referred to as a recovery phrase or a recovery seed using the Stacks Wallet software or their own hardware wallet.
It was each token holder’s responsibility to store their own seed phrase in a private and secure location. Holders could use their wallet to verify their holdings and allocations on the genesis block explorer. Beyond that, while in draft state, token holders were in a lock down period.
The initial block in the Stacks blockchain V1 allocates 1.32 billion tokens. The launch is the culmination of two year’s hard work across the greater Blockstack community. With the launch, Stacks tokens unlock for accredited token holders under a predetermined unlocking schedule. The events on the unlocking schedule are the same for each investor, the dates of these events depend on the holder's purchase date.
Note: If you are a token holder and would like to review your unlocking schedule, visit the For current token holders page in this documentation.
The genesis block launch makes possible the following interactions:
Token holders can purchase names and namespaces with the Stacks token. Previously, names and namespaces required the purchaser to hold Bitcoin. Initially, this process relies on the Blockstack command-line interface (CLI).
Application developers can earn Stacks by building an application on the Blockstack ecosystem.
Any Stacks tokens held at the time of launch or after remain usable under the Stacks Blockchain platform.
Finally, in addition to the development of Stacks token, this launch enables further development of Stacks Blockchain itself.