Bitcoin is in a state of emergency – or, at least, the community thinks so.
Tensions are high as bitcoin’s long-standing scaling debate escalated this week, with some miners talking openly about forcing a possible bitcoin fork that could result in two competing coins.
If that’s not enough of a concern, some miners have even been discussing a possible attack on the old blockchain once they move on to mining the new one – dialogue that has prompted concerning statements from exchanges and other industry startups.
It’s unclear if either will happen, and others aren’t terribly concerned, with some going as far as to describe the recent frenzy as an attempt at price manipulation.
But amid all this, developers seem to be at least responding to community pressures, putting forth creative, if controversial, solutions, such as a way of making upgrades to bitcoin that depends on the economy rather than mining pools.
While Bitcoin Core developers might not agree on much, they do have an aversion to forks without near unanimous support. This algorithm switch, though – recently taking shape into a more formal proposal called Bitcoin Proof-of-Work Initiative (complete with a website and a Twitter account) – requires one.
One developer even called it a “likely” course of action, at least in the right circumstances.
James Hilliard, a developer, and technician at Bitcoin mining supply company BitmainWarranty, told CoinDesk: