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Uniswap introduces Token lists – a better way to manage ERC20 token list

Photo of: Dennis Ramos
by Dennis Ramos

The substantial growth in the number of ERC20 tokens issued determines how the Ethereum ecosystem is evolving and becoming more trustworthy and robust. Now with the presence of several tokens, comes the additional burden to pick out tokens that are fake, duplicates, and scam-worthy. The rate at which token issuance is increasing, managing them and filtering the legitimate from the illegitimate ones would end up in a slow listing process, waste of time, scammed users, and a lot more. 

Token lists – a new tool for token management

Token lists got announced today and the product is quite convincing. It is a new standard for creating lists of different ERC20 tokens. This community-led initiative is an attempt to improve the findability factor of a genuine token and establish trust in the ERC20 token lists in a transparent and decentralized manner. The token list announced by Uniswap follows the usual JSON schema which can be publicly hosted on ENS, IPFS, and HTTPS. 

Current approaches

The current approach merely lists the ERC20 tokens automatically. It displays every asset there is in a decentralized manner but at the same time, it is also a breeding ground for phishing, scams, and renders the user confused with umpteen options. Another approach is the creation of a decentralized governance system as a gatekeeper so that an equitable system is established. But the current projects take the easier route and maintain a list supported by their own reputation.

How does the Token list work?

The token list represents a new-age thought process that leverages Ethereum’s core strength which is the abundance of high-quality projects and communities, interoperability, and its vast public infrastructure. Now the working is simple, any project on Ethereum has a list of ERC20 tokens which it lists publicly following a standard JSON schema. Projects attach their reputation to the list by hosting them on a domain under their control. Now since these lists are hosted publicly in a standard format, they can be disassociated from their individual interfaces and combined and shared across different projects. 

The main advantage of such lists is the speed at which new assets can be discovered and used. For instance if a reputable project releases a new asset the project only has to update its own list and interfaces subscribed to that list can import it automatically all in real-time. To make Token lists more adoptable the obsolete Uniswap interface ‘default list’ has now been replaced with a list explorer and a new importing mechanism. Uniswap has also partnered with several reputable projects who could be creating and maintaining its own list. Tokenlists.org already has more than 10 lists available while many others are in progress.

Initial Launch

The initial launch includes:

Token Lists can be used right now in the Uniswap Interface. Maintaining a default list is no longer required.