The Uniswap team has restricted access to several dozen tokens from their user interface, leaving users questioning the role of decentralized governance in the move.

According to the team, the abrupt decision was applied only to the widely-used user interface that Uniswap Labs controls – the underlying protocol, however, remains unchanged.

What Did Uniswap Do?

Uniswap Labs removed access to a considerable list of tokens from their user interface, with little warning to Uniswap users.

The list includes, but is not limited to:

  • Synthetic assets from popular protocols Synthetix, Mirror Protocol and UMA
  • Opyn insurance tokens 
  • Gold Tether (XAUT).

The Uniswap community – largely advocates for the platform’s decentralized model – has expressed outrage at the sudden asset restriction. The anger was primarily focused on the lack of community input on the decision, especially as the move completely circumvented the platform’s decentralized governance model. 

The action appears to have drawn a distinct line between the protocol and the user interface itself, which has been clearly claimed as property of Uniswap Labs.

The Reason

An accompanying blog post published by Uniswap Labs offers little explanation for the move, simply alluding to an “evolving regulatory landscape”. However, it may be reasonable to conclude that the restriction has been made in response to SEC Chairman Gary Gensler’s recent remarks about “security-based” crypto assets. 

Binance recently took down their own tokenized stocks in response to growing regulatory pressure, and it appears that Uniswap Labs’ move continues this trend of caution to protect themselves from liability for infringing on securities laws.