I’ll bet you $5,000 that bitcoin’s first hard fork works out just fine

  1. Bitcoin is not splitting, it is upgrading
  2. Hard forks are one of the most important innovations of bitcoin
  3. Multiple teams working on the bitcoin protocol is a good thing
  1. Samson Mow and the folks who signed the call for consensus letter, write that “any contentious hard-fork contains additional risks and potentially may result in two incompatible blockchain versions, if improperly implemented”.
  2. Aaron van Wirdum writes that the “Minority can simply refuse to upgrade, or quit.”
  3. Alex Morcos writes that “To say there is only one coin after fork is very misleading. We do not know, and two coins is realistic if no consensus.”
  4. Meni Rosenfeld writes that “this view is easily contradicted by the existence of hundreds of alt[coins]”
  1. At the moment the network upgrades (or forks), 95% or more of all hashing power will be on a single chain. This will be true regardless of what threshold is used to trigger the upgrade — for example, BitcoinClassic uses a threshold of 75%, and other forks could use an even lower threshold — but, irrespective, 95% or more will be on a single chain by the time the network upgrades.
  2. At the moment the network upgrades (or forks), 95% or more of all consumer wallet and merchant companies (by number of users) and exchanges (by trading volume) will support the new version. This may be tough to measure, but for example we can look at public numbers of users for major wallet and merchant software, and the trading volume is public on most exchanges, so I think we can reasonably approximate a 95%+ threshold.
  3. Two days after the upgrade (or fork) takes effect, the bitcoin price will be higher than it was 1 month prior to the upgrade (or fork) happening.

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Brian Armstrong

Brian Armstrong

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Co-Founder and CEO at @Coinbase. Increasing economic freedom in the world. Join us: https://www.coinbase.com/careers