What are Token Curated Registries and decentralized lists?

TCR designs and innovations

TCR don’t have to be binary by nature. There have been multiple proofs-of-concept around more sophisticated TCRs design patterns.

Ordered TCR

The ordered TCR creates an index amongst listee that can be used in ranking the list. Rather than having listees at the same level, ordering them can help consumer differentiate listees and ultimately make smarter decisions.

A list of good restaurants becomes a rank of the best restaurants.

Layered TCR

Adding layers to a TCR introduces the concept of leagues to decentralized list. Participants have to apply and get approved in multiple lists before accessing the last, most selective, TCR. Similar to a sports league, listees are moved to a higher or lower league depending on the curation market’s judgement of the application.

A list of good restaurants becomes a list of good, very good and excellent restaurants

Nested TCR

Building a TCR of TCRs enables users to generate their own TCR within the master one. Listees could then access a second-level TCR once they access the first one. A nested TCR introduces a second level (and beyond) curation market in the eco-system.

A list of good restaurants becomes a list of good restaurants with nested lists such as good Japanese restaurants or good street-food stalls in South America.

Investable TCR

If a TCR holds a list of assets that constitute a fund’s portfolio, introducing a second token — in addition to the governance one — can enable users to get access to a pool of investment, that is rebalanced automatically by the TCR.

A list of good restaurants becomes a list of good restaurant with tokenized equity of all the restaurant bundled in a single investment token.

For more resources, kindly review Matt Lockyer’s TCR design patterns

Some TCR projects

As TCR are yet to invade the internet, till the time comes, here are a few exciting projects to follow if this technology seems appealing:


Led by the TCR pioneers, the AdChain is focused on bringing transparency in the digital advertising ecosystem. The registry lists trustworthy web domains that are best suited for online advertising and slashes fraud across online campaigns.


The registry compiles physicians’ credentials to ensure they are fit to practice. In addition to regulating the health practitioner industry, Medcredit facilitates a global market where patients can directly connect with physicians


Digital media has been plagued by the proliferation of fake news, TruStory solves it with a social network and curation market focused on claim verification. The registry identifies accurate information and refutes inexact stories to solve one of the internet’s most stressing issue. One of the most exciting case studies out there.


Disclaimer: self-promotion. Cryptocurrency primary markets are plagued with fraudulent projects as anyone can set-up a token and commercialize in a few hours. Coupled with the lack of proper regulation enforcement, tropyc intends to curate good faith token projects in primary markets and beyond.

Wrapping up

A TCR is curated by a financially incentivized market and not by a single entity. Theoretically, the output is of much higher value than centralized lists, which are vulnerable to falsification and censorship.

Although the concept was first introduced in 2017, curation markets are still at an experimental stage as developing — and bootstrapping — a simple, binary TCR remains highly complex.

Lists are everywhere in our day-to-day lives: from grocery lists to asset portfolios and even music playlists. The use-cases are unlimited, flexible and definitely exciting, but we’ve just discovered the tip of the iceberg!

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