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A '''decentralized autonomous organization''' ('''DAO'''), sometimes labeled a '''decentralized autonomous corporation''' ('''DAC'''), is an organization represented by rules encoded as a computer program that is transparent, controlled by shareholders and not influenced by any one central authority. A DAO's financial transaction record and program rules are maintained on a blockchain. The precise legal status of this type of business organization is unclear.
[[Charles Stross]]'s 2005 sci-fi novel ''[[Accelerando]]'' contains a very early description of DAOs and how they might weld enormous power.