Ethereum L2 Optimism launches long-awaited airdrop

The initial airdrop will reward “those who have been instrumental as early adopters and active users of projects in the Optimism ecosystem,” the white paper reads.

A stock photo of a military plane airdropping cargo.

The anticipated airdrop had a “turbulent start,” witnessing a rush of users who overwhelmed the network. The race for OP tokens resulted in numerous failed or delayed transactions as the Optimism team deployed additional resources to stabilize the mainnet. Optimism’s official Twitter account admitted that the network had issues with satisfying the demand.

To be eligible for the airdrop, users had to fall under at least one of the following categories:

  • Optimism users (those who have used Optimism multiple times receive higher allocation)
  • Active DAO voter on Governor Alpha and Bravo, Aave, Curve, Maker, Aragon, DAOHaus, DAOStack, and forks
  • Multisig signers who have executed at least ten transactions all-time
  • Gitcoin donors who have made an on-chain donation on L1
  • Users who bridged to Terra, BSC, Fantom, Avalanche, Solana, Polygon, Arbtirum, Optimism, Metis, and Boba but still made an app transaction on Ethereum each month after they bridged

A table of OP allocations for the six categories of eligible users.
OP airdrop allocations. Source:

In total, just under 250k addresses qualified for the airdrop. Those who fall under more than one category will receive an extra overlap bonus that increases as more criteria are matched. At the time of writing, the OP token is available for trade on Coinbase, OKX, Bybit,, MEXC Global, and Uniswap.

As it often happens, the greed for tokens attracted a number of freeloaders. After the announcement of the airdrop, the Optimism team had to deal with thousands of sybils who managed to slip past the initial filtering. A Sybil attack is a type of attack on a computer network service in which an attacker creates a large number of pseudonymous identities to gain a disproportionately large influence. In the case of the airdrop, sybils established numerous addresses to receive more tokens. In total, Optimism excluded 17k sybils and recovered 14m OP that will be redistributed proportionally to the remaining addresses. “Optimism is for the people, not the sybils,” the team stated.

The Optimism team hinted that they might be preparing an airdrop on April 20, announcing the new chapter driven “by community ownership and governance.” The Optimism Collective will drive rapid and sustainable growth of the Optimism decentralized ecosystem, governed co-equally by two houses.

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OP token will power the Token House, which will be responsible for monitoring protocol and network parameters as well as incentivizing users to enter the ecosystem. Citizens’ House will distribute public goods funding generated from the network’s revenue. The citizenship will be untransferable, conferred by “soulbound” NFTs.

Since participating in Token House governance requires a serious time commitment, Optimism encourages people claiming OP in the airdrop to pledge the voting power of their tokens to active community members. Such volunteers are called delegates and will be rewarded for their time commitment once the role is stabilized.