This post is a quick follow-up to my previous post on Bitcoin’s Hard Fork (i.e. SegWit2x).
As I mentioned in that article, it looked like we were about to lose Bitcoin, but the circumstances which led to this fear are not happening now.
Spoiler: Bitcoin’s SegWit2x hard fork has been cancelled.
the people have spoken pic.twitter.com/CRHlJxmjj4
— Jim (@JimBTC) November 8, 2017
This is what Bitcoin exactly did to segwit2x.
SegWit2x Historic Roots – Why Did This Thing Start?
For those of who you have joined the fork party late, I would like to repeat (in short) the whole drama…
Bitcoin scaling solutions were being debated for the last 3-4 years, and a proposed scaling solution called NYA was seen as the best. NYA (aka New York Agreement or aka SegWit2x) was a Bitcoin scaling solution that was signed and agreed to by a large number of miners, developers, and investors in Consensus 2017.
SegWit2X is a fancy derivative name given to a combo of scaling solutions (i.e SegWit and 2MB block size increase). It simply means implementing SegWit first, and then within 3 months of SegWit activation, it aims at implementing a 2MB block size for the entire Bitcoin network.
And since SegWit2x’s first leg (i.e. BIP 91 (SegWit)) was already put in place on July 21, 2017, the last and final leg was still pending and was due for this mid-November.
This fork would not make an altcoin (like Bitcoin Gold) but was acclaimed by the SegWit2x lead developer (Jeff Garzik) as a Bitcoin upgrade, and it was proposed without any replay protection in place (intentionally so).
Why Was SegWit2x Called Off?
SegWit2x was called off yesterday by its lead proponents stating that they had failed to gather up sufficient consensus for the fork among the Bitcoin community, and hence, were not going ahead as planned. They further added that they didn’t want to disrupt the whole Bitcoin ecosystem, yet were in favor of bigger blocks on the chain for cheaper fees and higher scalability.
SegWit2x proponents were mainly Xapo CEO Wences Casares, Bitmain co-founder Jihan Wu, Bloq CEO and co-founder Jeff Garzik, Blockchain CEO and co-founder Peter Smith, and Shapeshift CEO and founder Erik Voorhees, who gave this following statement yesterday which is available on Linux Foundation:
The Segwit2x effort began in May with a simple purpose: to increase the block size and improve Bitcoin scalability. At the time, the Bitcoin community was in crisis after nearly 3 years of heavy debate, and consensus for Segwit seemed like a distant mirage with only 30% support among miners. Segwit2x found its first success in August, as it broke the deadlock and quickly led to Segwit’s successful activation. Since that time, the team shifted its efforts to phase two of the project – a 2MB block size increase.
Our goal has always been a smooth upgrade for Bitcoin. Although we strongly believe in the need for a larger block size, there is something we believe is even more important: keeping the community together. Unfortunately, it is clear that we have not built sufficient consensus for a clean blocksize upgrade at this time. Continuing on the current path could divide the community and be a setback to Bitcoin’s growth. This was never the goal of Segwit2x.
As fees rise on the blockchain, we believe it will eventually become obvious that on-chain capacity increases are necessary. When that happens, we hope the community will come together and find a solution, possibly with a block size increase. Until then, we are suspending our plans for the upcoming 2MB upgrade.
We want to thank everyone that contributed constructively to Segwit2x, whether you were in favor or against. Your efforts are what makes Bitcoin great. Bitcoin remains the greatest form of money mankind has ever seen, and we remain dedicated to protecting and fostering its growth worldwide.
-Mike Belshe, Wences Casares, Jihan Wu, Jeff Garzik, Peter Smith, and Erik Voorhees
Now that the imminent threat of disruption of Bitcoin is gone for some time, we can all breathe a sigh of relief.
We can safely say that Bitcoin is now not under imminent threat; but believe me, when the Bitcoin blockchain gets congested and fees increase, even more, then this debate will emerge again. The high chances of another debate coming soon are quite evident from the statement of SegWit2x’s supporters who say: “We hope the community will come together and find a solution, possibly with a block size increase. Until then, we are suspending our plans for the upcoming 2MB upgrade.”
The next thing to look forward to on the Bitcoin network is the lightning network.
Another interesting thing which I have been waiting for is RSK.
RSK is a Bitcoin startup that is about to launch a smart contracts sidechain over Bitcoin’s blockchain. This technology will give the much need functionality of smart contracts to Bitcoin. Also, this will be an interesting test for Bitcoin, and I would love to see how other smart contracts players in the ecosystem like Ethereum, NEO, and Stratis will be impacted by this innovation.
My Final Thoughts
It is a good thing that this fork has been called off, because otherwise, it would have created havoc for Bitcoin if SegWit2x’s chain would have survived post-fork.
Also, this was an indicator that a few people can’t turn Bitcoin into their monopoly and bring it under the control of corporates.
Today was a massive win for Bitcoin as decentralized, censorship resistant digital gold. Miners & corps are not in charge, savers are!
— Tuur Demeester (@TuurDemeester) November 9, 2017
But I am quite convinced that such types of attacks on the Bitcoin network will only increase as time progresses.
That’s why I think the Bitcoin community should come together and find a strong solution for such future threats against a group of people who come by and say “we are forking Bitcoin without replay protection and we don’t care…”
Also, I would like to tell our community that forks are a good thing. They teach us a lot about what a censorship-resistant currency actually is. In the future, you need not worry about forks as they will make the whole ecosystem and the users within that ecosystem more mature.
So that’s all from my side in this article. I think the fork season of this brilliant 2017 year is finally over, and I don’t foresee any more Bitcoin forks coming anytime soon.
Now its time to hear from you: What do you think about SegWit2x’s fork suspension? Did you like basilpuglisi’s efforts during the recent fork drama? How was your fork journey with basilpuglisi during the past few weeks? What do you expect more from basilpuglisi during such difficult fork times?
Your feedback, comments, appreciation, and criticism matters a lot to us! Let us hear your thoughts in the comments section below!
It is good that this fork is now called off but this has led a sudden spike in interest of users in Bitcoin Cash (BCH), which was formed in August. It currently trading well above $1000 per unit and it is largely due to Roger Ver’s promotion of Bitcoin Cash on the Bitcoin.com.
He has also several times claimed the Bitcoin Cash is the real Bitcoin that Satoshi Nakamoto wanted to create.
The Bitcoin Cash price is certainly taking off after the Segwit2x collapse and it is quite evident from these memes as well as propaganda by Roger Ver.
But we don’t believe in it yet and want to make the new users aware that Bitcoin is Bitcoin and not to get mislead also Bitcoin is not owned by anyone neither-Roger Ver.
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