Segwit Moves Closer to Full Proposal for Bitcoin as Accusations of Politicking Flare

By September 6, 2016Bitcoin Business

Segregated Witness (Segwit), proposed as a solution to bitcoin’s block size debate, is 99% a full proposal, a development that hasn’t occurred without some controversy. Peter Todd Many expect Segwit to increase the volume of transactions without altering the block size. The change will ultimately be triggered with a soft fork, in which the majority of the nodes have to update to make the change compatible with older software versions. The method by which the proposal has been advanced has been called political by some, including Vitalik Buterin , co-founder of Ethereum. Segwit’s Benefits Unlike other proposed solutions, Segwit can be introduced to the network as a soft fork, thereby avoiding the need for bitcoin software users to upgrade their clients in near-unison. Soft fork advocates say it would reduce the risk that an upgrade would split the bitcoin blockchain. Some observers, including bitcoin code veteran Jeff Garzik, have noted the soft fork solution is not an inclusive solution. Garzik noted in May that the soft fork is a where a few miners and developers approve changes to bitcoin economics. With the hard fork, the entire network approves the changes. Blockstream has cited security concerns and the risk of further centralization in resisting proposals to quickly increase the permitted size of blocks, according to American Banker . But others have claimed Blockstream has a vested interest in limiting bitcoin’s volume, since doing so would drive transactions to the sidechains that Blockstream is developing. In response, Blockstream co-founder Gregory Maxwell has noted that Blockstream uses time-locked bitcoins that cannot be accessed before a specific future date, as incentive compensation for its employees, giving them a stake in bitcoin’s long-term success. Segwit Consensus Challenged As Segwit reaches proposal stage, some Reddit posters raised the question about Segwit’s consensus. Other Reddit posters […]

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