Embrace the Coming Bitcoin Fork (5 of 5)
Ladies & Gentlemen the the Bitcoin hard fork arrives tomorrow.
This Is A Good Thing, Everyone Should Welcome It
As of August 1st 2017, at 12:20 p.m. UTC, the Bitcoin network will hard fork and after that point there will be two bitcoin tokens going forward.
Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the branding that has recently emerged for the resulting tokens.
For both sides this hard fork offers a clear means of aligning ones preference for scaling solution (SegWit vs Bigger Blocks) with the token you hold your value in. Hopefully having this choice will short cut all the divisive arguing and politics that has emerged in the bitcoin community the past 2 years. Anyone that wishes to opt their value into a version of Bitcoin with a 8MB blocksize and which opts out of SegWit, will be able to do so directly without the need to lobby developers or the community as a whole.
A large number of exchanges (15) and wallets (8) have announced support for the new Bitcoin Cash token (BCH). See the growing list here: https://www.bitcoincash.org/
Its About Time, SegWit Was The Trigger
When I published my first article on this topic it was October 11th 2016 and in the almost 10 months since then, the debate has continued to rage ever more intensely about how best to scale the Bitcoin network.
Finally as of July 2017 due to the imminent inclusion of SegWit, many in the community came to the logical conclusion that the fundamentally different visions for Bitcoin will be better served by a hard fork that results in two chains and thus two different bitcoin tokens.
Next Major Tigger Event May Come In November
The next trigger that will determine how much of the Bitcoin hashpower and economic majority will stay with the legacy version of Bitcoin or move to Bitcoin Cash will likely come in November as that is when SegWit2X is scheduled to kick off a hard fork upgrade from 1MB block size limits to 2MB blocksize limits in Bitcoin.
Should developers fail to enact SegWit2X in November 2017, this will be seen as a broken promise / expectation considering more than 98% of the mining hashpower has signaled this as their desire and having already implemented SegWit in August of 2017, as the first half of the process. Already statements have been put forth by at least 1 major mining pool that they will move all their hashing power to Bitcoin Cash should the 2MB hard fork fail to materialize on schedule in November.
Today the two communities emerging can be defined as those in favor of SegWit and those in favor of 8MB blocks. What’s up for grabs come November is a large segment of the miners and community that were ok with SegWit as long as the block size was increased to at least 2MB. If the developers of Bitcoin Core prove unwilling to implement a hard fork to 2MB (as part of SegWit2X), than those who wanted 2MB block sizes may move over to Bitcoin Cash. This would tend to increase the clear distinction between those who envision primarily off chain scaling vs. those who prefer primarily on chain scaling.
I personally believe there are strong use cases for both versions of the Bitcoin Network and my sincere hope is that this split will allow each group to pursue their vision with far less friction and without divisive conflict going forward.
I’m already starting to get a feeling similar to the early days of bitcoin, when the possibilities felt unlimited and the community had a clear path forward.