MIT Panel: Democracy Is Antithetical to Exactly what Bitcoin Represents

Day one of last month’s MIT Bitcoin Exposition included a panel discussion on various improvements to Bitcoin that are either currently in the works or currently deployed on the network. Participants on the panel were Blockstream mathematician Andrew Poelstra, Blockstream Core Tech Engineer Mark Friedenbach, Lightning Network co-creator Joseph Poon and Bitcoin Core factor Jonas Schnelli.During the Q&A portion of the panel, an audience member asked the participants to share their opinions on the previous discussion, in which the World Bitcoin Network’s James D’Angelo presumed the idea of changing Bitcoin’s proof-of-work with elected individuals who would be trusted with mining blocks. The panel seemed generally bearish on D’Angelo’s proposition. Generally, the panel disagreed with the idea of turning Bitcoin into a democratically controlled currency.Bitcoin Is Not a Democracy Friedenbach was the first to react to the audience member’s concern, and he made a point of straight handling the idea of Bitcoin as a democratically controlled currency. He kept in mind:”Bitcoin is not a democracy. It was never ever designed to be a democracy. Democracy is antithetical to exactly what Bitcoin represents, which is

consensus even in the face of mob-rule voting the other way.” The idea that modifications to Bitcoin ought to be governed democratically has actually been promoted by some fans of Bitcoin Classic. Most notably, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong has actually referred to hard forks as elections.Bitcoin Runs on Agreement Friedenbach went on to discuss that any modification to the agreement algorithm in Bitcoin that does not have universal assistance from nodes will result in a fork.

He added,”That is as user-protecting as it is scary when things break. “In Friedenbach’s view, the difficulties associated with making changes to Bitcoin’s agreement guidelines are exactly what make the system valuable in the first location. He stated:” It’s the source of everything that makes Bitcoin terrific in

terms of irrevocability of payments and the fact that you cannot have your funds seized. This is all due to the fact that it is truly challenging and really tough to alter the Bitcoin protocol.”While

systems that do not require consensus can progress faster, it’s likewise more likely for the wrong changes to be made when near-universal agreement on those changes is not needed. With a system based upon agreement, Bitcoin holders can be assured that a bitcoin today will still

be a bitcoin tomorrow. Although this makes it harder for Bitcoin to upgrade at the base level, development can still happen at layers above the Bitcoin blockchain.Advocates of Bitcoin’s usage as digital gold have the tendency to concur with the near-universal consensus requirement of Bitcoin advancement, while people concentrated on the P2P payments aspect of the system, such as Bitcoin Classic designer Gavin Andresen, want to see the method progress quicker– without the requirement for approval by nearly everybody on the network.Political Cash Currently Exists Friedenbach also concurred with remarks made by Bitcoin Core factor Cory Fields in terms of the healthy contentiousness discovered in the neighborhood. In regard to the block size dispute, he specified,” If this was political money, 18 months ago this would have been over.”Poelstra agreed with Friedenbach’s talk about Bitcoin as apolitical money. He specified:”It’s not an option to replace Bitcoin with a political currency. There are lots of political currencies out there today. If you think that’s a solution, you’re welcome to switch to a political currency. Changing Bitcoin to be another one– however you could do that– I do not think

that’s a solution. That’s just turning off Bitcoin.”The post MIT Panel:

Democracy Is Antithetical to Exactly what Bitcoin Represents appeared first on Bitcoin Publication. Bitcoin Magazine

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