The number of Core nodes serving Bitcoin has dropped below 70% of the total for the first time in history.
Also read: Bitcoin Classic Team Unveils 2016 Roadmap
Old Tensions Continue
“If you’re not running a node, you’re not really using Bitcoin,” Core developer Luke Jr. wrote on Reddit in August. After months of debate on the block size issue, however, his comments have taken on an ironic light.
The latest data shows that with both Bitcoin Classic and Bitcoin Unlimited gaining nodes, Bitcoin Core is becoming increasingly weaker, managing only 69.8% as of Monday, March 7. Speculation is now spreading of continued historic lows in Bitcoin core propagation, with a growing consensus linking the reason to the performance of the Bitcoin Core development team itself.
One Bitcoin Classic node operator took to Reddit to comment on the changes.
“I’m surprised the core node count hasn’t dropped. Almost like people running classic haven’t turned their core nodes off. Or they are being replaced at the same rate,” u/decentralize_it wrote Sunday.
Several rounds of negotiations on the Bitcoin block size issue have recently been made public, notably as part of the Roundtable discussions, which featured participation from Core developers, leading businesses and others.
‘Way Things are Going to Be’
The results were reported to have been challenging yet positive, yet the most recent account of the recent events, published on Medium by Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, highlights a very different perspective. Armstrong, too, levels criticism at the Core team, but states that the results of the ongoing dispute over the block size problem could have considerably graver consequences than many imagined.
“[The Core team] prefer to withhold something that could help the network now, because they don’t trust the community to make educated decisions in the future,” he wrote. “They seem ok with watching bitcoin fail, as long as they don’t compromise on their principles.”
Armstrong foresees potential major shortages of capacity and hashing power once the block reward halves again this July, and while admitting it to be a “worst case scenario”, attributes direct blame to Core members. Armstrong:
The fact that bitcoin core has allowed the network to reach this point is incredibly negligent.
Armstrong continued to outline a roadmap for improvement, similar in vein to that proposed in previous Roundtable meetings.
Meanwhile, Factom CEO Paul Snow, also in attendance at the Roundtable, came out in support of Core develop Gavin Andresen’s synopsis of the event.
“There remains tension between Bitcoin Core and members of the Bitcoin industry, and some miners who are very concerned about the next few months,” Snow said. He noted the need for “personal attacks” to be avoided between the Core and Classic teams, stating:
What I would like to see is some ground rules between these teams, if they are going to exist, to keep their contributions cleanly compatible with each other. That doesn’t exist yet, but it is pretty critical if that is the way things are going to be.
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