Why you should resign from Bitcoin Unlimited

You should resign from Bitcoin Unlimited if any of the following resonate with you:

  • You don’t want bitcoin to be a peer-to-peer electronic cash system with instant transactions and low fees,
  • You believe the quantity of block space actually produced should be managed by a group of experts rather than the free market,*
  • You want protocol development based around one github repo and led by one dev team rather than multiple competing implementations,
  • You do not value feedback from non-technical bitcoin users, or
  • You are impressed by technobabble, a wheelbarrow full of degrees, and lawsuits against open-source bitcoin developers.

To understand Bitcoin Unlimited (BU) one must understand its history. BU is a grass-roots effort by bitcoiners who came together on social media in 2015. The reason we came together was to raise the block size limit, so that bitcoin could continue to grow the way Satoshi had intended — with more transactions per second and bigger and bigger blocks.

To avoid what we saw as “developer capture” with Core, BU would be governed by a democratic process that both technical and non-technical members could participate in. We recognized that developers could lose sight of the bigger picture, and forget why it is that we’re here in the first place. Non-technical people would provide balance. They’d remind us to keep our eye on the ball. That we’re here to fix money.

I am proud of what we’ve accomplished with Bitcoin Unlimited. What started as a grass roots movement online, achieved 50% miner support in 2017, and shortly after played a central role in the creation of BCH. From the development of Xthin (reducing the amount of data required to propagate a block by a factor of 30x), to our recent roll-out of Graphene, BU has proven itself a leader in efficient block propagation. We built the Gigablock testnet, where we mined and propagated the first gigabyte blocks across the world, and where we identified the next two scaling bottlenecks in the Satoshi code base. BU has organized conferences in San Francisco, Tokyo and Lake Garda, while sponsoring the Arnhem event where Bitcoin Cash was first announced. We’ve sponsored several research, development and outreach projects, and in my opinion BU has been a positive force in the battle to bring peer-to-peer electronic cash to the world.

I want changes to the bitcoin protocol to be slow. I see that as a positive thing, not a negative thing. Many people agree with me. We don’t really need Lightning, CTOR or the acronym of the month next month. The only change Bitcoin ever really needed to succeed was the removal of the single line of code that limited the block size. BU achieved that and so much more. Now we just have to convince the world that BCH is the real bitcoin!


While writing this article I re-read Bitcoin Unlimited’s mandates from 2016:

Three years later, Bitcoin Unlimited stands for the same things. If these mandates resonate with you, please consider donating or becoming a member.


Footnotes

*I believe the limit — if one exists — should be maintained above the free-market equilibrium block size whenever feasible so as not to distort the free-market dynamics.