The debate over some half a billion dollars worth of frozen eth, due to an eth noob accidentally killing a smart contract, has seemingly somewhat returned again.
Predictably, there are some who are in favor and there are some who are against, with most probably undecided or in the couldn’t care less category, while bitcoin core supporters try stir the rest.
The arguments are the same as they’ve always been. Slippery slope, bail-out, immutability, and other variations we’d umbrella under the crypto religion.
In favor are those who stand puzzled at what can be called fundamentalism, whereby the networks we ourselves run can not be affected by us, making us slaves to the machines, rather than the machines slaves to us, or perhaps as more eloquently we’ve put it, the crypto enlightenment.
Both sides hold a fairly strong belief because both sides are right in part, wrong in part, and what that part is no one knows because only diversity of competition and time can tell.
Ultimately, it comes down to money. Only a few people – mainly Parity devs and some ICOs as well as those that send the 500,000 eth to them – lost money. The rest would “lose” money if the eth is unfrozen.
That’s because the ethereum network is now half a billion more scarce. Bring back that 500k, and you’re bringing back quite a bit of supply. So naturally, when a quick token holders vote was undertaken back when, the majority voted against.
We think that’s a very short term view. Denying one of the main eth development team the necessary funds to engage in innovate projects and further strengthen what is a one hundred billion dollars market, which could rise to a trillion or more, is the proverbial shooting yourself in the foot.
These pioneers at the bleeding edge of innovation should not be punished for risk taking just because of a bug only a noob could find while going around randomly pressing buttons.
Especially when one considers coding smart contracts is at a stage where even the windows “blue screen of death” is comforting in comparison.
Microsoft, of course, did not turn around and say you’re an idiot for not saving your data every ten minutes while your focus is well lost in your dissertation. Instead, they built in an auto saving and auto recovery function because it’s just more convenient.
Eth too is also just data, but unlike ordinary data it is also money. Auto recovery or auto savings like functions are therefore quite a bit more controversial where money is concerned.
But would it not be a lot nicer if your eth actually couldn’t be hacked or be randomly frozen? Of course, who wants their money stolen? So if it can be built in, it will be built in.
The question is how such function would work, with the answer no where to be found at present. So it is for time to tell whether it can technically be done in a decentralized if-then manner without human intervention.
What can be done at present is forks. These are pro-active approaches, rather than automatic, and usually lead to astroturfing campaigns on social media as well as shouting matches.
But that’s only if you are trying to ask for permission. Only if you go to a virtual eth court and ask them to do something you want them to do. Which usually gives rise to a debate, with dissenters, those in favor, and a general mess.
The beauty of decentralized public blockchains, however, is that you do not need permission from anyone. You can just fork and then let the market decide what value they should give to your fork-chain.
For Parity, that value might be pretty high, perhaps even just below Bitcoin Cash. They have a fine team of developers, they’d have some dapps from the get go by those that were frozen, they’d probably have the support of however many people sent them the 500k eth, and they’d automatically make all current eth holders Parity, perhaps under the symbol of PAR, holders.
Sounds simple. Everyone would get some free money. Ethereum would get much needed competition to keep them on their toes, Parity can be a bit more experimental and fork to recover funds in clear cases since thats how they’d be founded, thus have it in their ethos, and then we can all see just what the market values and just what is the best approach.
Ethereans would lose a fine development team, but then if they want to be super-selfish, why should anyone expect Parity to be altruistic and be bound by some loud voices which keep repeating the same arguments over and over for now two years.
It is obvious some eth devs, including perhaps Buterin himself, have become somewhat too sensitive to the criticisms regarding the DAO fork, even though eth has increased by some 100x in value since, with no one really caring one bit about that fork with few exceptions.
Not that, necessarily, they do not have some good points to make, but some good points do not naturally mean good decisions for when one looks holistically, that the DAO isn’t held as a success, considering what followed, does show just how much power propaganda can have.
And when even the intelligent succumb to that propaganda or are led by it to believe it is a widely held view rather than the opinion of a small number of self interested individuals, then one would think at least someone would try and go against it, if for nothing else than to diversify.
And that someone couldn’t be any better in the circumstances than Parity. Eth could then become the conservative chain, while Parity can move fast and break things with their selling point being developers can be a bit safer on their chain.
As everyone would in effect be given free money, they’d probably have the support of most except for ETC and Bitcoin Core. Plus, unlike previous chain-forks, they would have an already established brand and a pretty competent team.
So then Parity why not just fork, since eth doesn’t have the guts to tell those that left to ETC to go back to it, instead of asking for permission from mythical consensus?