We didn’t want a split, but the practical reality right now is that there is a split. We have bugs in our anti-split software that we need to fix, and it is a burden to try to fight an uphill battle with a community that wants a split. If we stick with unified coin, our product will become increasingly useless as the transaction history rapidly becomes completely split. Our best option right now is to pick a side and pivot from unified coin to split coin on that side.
Both sides are extremely similar, but we choose SV for the following reasons:
- Bitcoin SV is the closest blockchain to the original Bitcoin protocol. The original protocol (not the software) fully and completely solved the problem of sound money for the entire world. The primary issue we face at a protocol level now is not what features to add but rather scaling the software that executes the protocol, primarily by increasing parallelization of transaction validation, but also by fixing every other scaling problem that comes from removing every limit (including max block size, max transaction size, max script size, unconfirmed transaction limit). Also, we just like Bitcoin.
- Bitcoin SV is committed to keeping the base protocol in place – “set in stone”. This is extremely desirable from our point of view, as the protocol as it stands today is sufficient for our business indefinitely into the future. What we need is not more changes to the protocol, but more stability so we can focus on the things that actually matter to our company.
- Bitcoin SV understands the urgent need to scale. We need to raise the limits to the edge of the abilities of the software, and identify and fix all scaling limitations. We need to do this while simultaneously pursing adoption in entirely new markets where the transaction volume is high.
- Being friends with Bitmain has been exceptionally valuable and we are incredibly happy with the relationship. Same with nChain. But into the future, since we are forced to pick sides, it seems we likely have more to gain by being friends with nChain, because they have patented so many applications of the base layer and are committed to providing these patents for free on their preferred chain. This likely saves substantial cost for our company in the future and will allow us to create better applications than would be possible otherwise. We like Bitmain and nChain equally and are not making this decision based on any particular individuals in either company.
We have some constructive criticism for Bitcoin ABC:
- We recommend establishing a clear mission statement congruent with your actions. It can be sound money for the entire world (what other goal would you be interested in?), but be careful not to be perceived as “the anti-Craig Wright chain”. In effect, the rallying cry for ABC was not CTOR, DSV and clean stack, which not everyone agreed to or cared about, but rather a mutual hatred for Craig Wright. ABC has a lot more to offer than merely being anti-Craig Wright, and mission statement and roadmap should reflect this.
- It is unclear what is the governance process for Bitcoin ABC. It is dangerous to pursue a path of endless checkpoints as this would imply subversion of Nakamoto Consensus – any protocol that involves constantly adding checkpoints by key central figures is certainly not decentralized. Assuming the ABC side does not plan to constantly add checkpoints, having some clear governance process in place (is pure Nakamoto Consensus possible?) to make sure ABC is not centralized and is not perceived as being centralized seems smart.
- Probably the biggest risk to ABC is being perceived as “split culture”. This is the second time ABC has split away from people they don’t like. Endless splitting will never get to world money, and will probably never get to any other conceivable goal. It would be wise to establish some kind of guideliness for splits, presumably regarding them as a worst-case scenario when all other options fail.
We have deeply valued our interactions with everyone on the ABC side. If Bitcoin SV ultimately dies, we will pick whatever is the next best chain for our company, which will likely be ABC in that case. Best of luck to you in your future endeavors. May the longest chain win (in the end).