An open letter to Gavin and EthCore

Parity has been a pretty amazing client. In fact, were it not for Parity, the denial of service attacks last year could have had much more serious consequences. I’ve appreciated the speed of your client and the general reliability and diversity it has contributed to the Ethereum ecosystem. Thank you.

But you guys can do better. I’ve seen a pattern of behavior that I’d categorize as “not playing nicely with others”. I’ve seen a willingness to use underhanded tactics to advance your own interests.

And the big one that deserves a bit more than a bullet point is your recent blocking of the re-licensing of cpp-ethereum. My understanding is that you (Gavin) indicated early in the process that he was open to it, but when it came time to sign the paperwork you stopped responding to communications and eventually hid behind your company Ethcore who eventually communicated that you would not be signing.

First, you wasted months of effort paid for by the Ethereum Foundation. You had every right to decline signing the paperwork, but the way you went about it was dishonest, cowardly, and demonstrated a lack of general integrity.

Second, it looks a whole lot like your refusal to sign may have been to ensure that cpp-ethereum did not become a competitor to Parity. It’s one thing to refuse based on licensing ideology. We’re all entitled to our own opinions about how software should be licensed. It’s entirely another thing to hide behind licensing as a way to eliminate your competition.

So what’s the deal? I get that there will be competition between clients, but that competition should be done fairly and on a level playing field.

And why the secrecy around the Kovan network? I would understand if this was a product launch or something like that where you’re looking for a competitive advantage. But this looks a whole lot like more anti-competitive behavior.

And why won’t you sign the paperwork to re-license cpp-ethereum? You said you would. Can you not put the success of the overall Ethereum ecosystem above your own short-term personal benefits?

The greatest things I have ever been apart of were done collaboratively and cooperatively. I’d love to see your team turn over a new leaf and demonstrate that you’re committed to an open, honest, and fair ecosystem. Where the quality and power of Parity stands on it’s own merit.

I’m sure the truth in some of these situations may not be entirely black and white. I’m also sure that you can do better. Please fix the rift that has formed between you and the go-ethereum team. Show some integrity in how you market your product. Show me that I’m wrong about you.

Maybe this behavior is just who you are but I sincerely hope not. I hope you are something else entirely. And if my picture of who you are is right, I hope you choose to change into something new. A company that is part of this community. A company that chooses to put the community first. A company that inspires respect. A company with integrity.

- Piper
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