Cryptocurrency forks and splits are a natural result of the decentralized and open-source nature of most cryptocurrencies. They occur when a cryptocurrency’s underlying code is changed, resulting in the creation of a new version of the cryptocurrency that is incompatible with the older version. This can be a controversial process, as it can result in the creation of two competing cryptocurrencies, each claiming to be the “true” version of the original. In this article, we will explore some of the most controversial forks and splits in the history of cryptocurrency.
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
One of the most well-known and controversial forks in the cryptocurrency world is the creation of Bitcoin Cash (BCH). In 2017, a group of Bitcoin (BTC) miners, developers, and investors decided to fork the Bitcoin blockchain in order to increase the block size from 1 MB to 8 MB. The increased block size would allow for more transactions to be processed on the network, potentially making it more scalable and efficient.
However, this move was met with significant resistance from the Bitcoin community. Some argued that increasing the block size would centralize the network, as it would require more resources to run a full node. Others were concerned that the larger block size would make it more difficult for small-scale miners to compete.
Despite these objections, the Bitcoin Cash fork went ahead as planned, and BCH was born. Since its creation, BCH has consistently ranked among the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization and has a dedicated following of supporters. However, it has also faced criticism for its centralization and alleged ties to fraudulent activity.
- Ethereum Classic (ETC)
Another controversial fork in the cryptocurrency world is the creation of Ethereum Classic (ETC). In 2016, the Ethereum (ETH) network was hacked, resulting in the loss of over 50 million dollars worth of ETH. In response to the hack, the Ethereum development team proposed a hard fork of the Ethereum blockchain, which would allow them to reverse the transactions and return the stolen funds to their rightful owners.
The hard fork was implemented, and the new version of the Ethereum blockchain became the dominant version. However, a small group of Ethereum users refused to accept the hard fork and continued to use the old version of the blockchain, which they dubbed Ethereum Classic.
Ethereum Classic has faced controversy for its association with the hack and its refusal to implement the hard fork. Some have accused the Ethereum Classic community of being “conspiracy theorists” who are unwilling to accept the consequences of the hack. Despite this, Ethereum Classic has remained a popular alternative to Ethereum and has a dedicated group of supporters.
- Bitcoin Gold (BTG)
Another controversial fork of Bitcoin is Bitcoin Gold (BTG). Bitcoin Gold was created in 2017 as a response to the increasing centralization of Bitcoin mining. The developers of Bitcoin Gold claimed that their cryptocurrency would be more decentralized than Bitcoin, as it would use a different proof-of-work algorithm that was resistant to specialized mining hardware.
However, the launch of Bitcoin Gold was met with significant criticism. Some accused the developers of attempting to profit from the fork by pre-mining a large number of BTG before the fork occurred. Others were skeptical of the claim that BTG would be more decentralized, arguing that it would simply shift the balance of power to a different group of miners.
Despite these criticisms, Bitcoin Gold has remained a popular altcoin and has a dedicated group of supporters. However, it has also faced controversy for its association with fraudulent activities and has struggled to gain widespread adoption.
- Bitcoin Diamond (BCD)
Bitcoin Diamond (BCD) is another controversial fork of Bitcoin that has faced criticism from the cryptocurrency community. BCD was created in 2017 with the goal of improving the scalability and privacy of Bitcoin. BCD increased the block size to 8 MB and implemented privacy features such as stealth addresses and ring signatures.
However, the launch of BCD was met with skepticism from the cryptocurrency community. Some accused the developers of engaging in pre-mining, with some estimates suggesting that the developers pre-mined up to 90% of the total supply of BCD. There were also concerns about the centralization of BCD, as the developers retained control over a large portion of the supply.
Despite these controversies, BCD has remained a popular altcoin and has a dedicated group of supporters. However, it has struggled to gain widespread adoption and has faced criticism for its association with fraudulent activities.
- Bitcoin Satoshi’s Vision (BSV)
Bitcoin Satoshi’s Vision (BSV) is a controversial fork of Bitcoin Cash (BCH) that was created in 2018. The fork was the result of a dispute within the BCH community over the direction of the cryptocurrency. The proponents of BSV argued that BCH had strayed from the original vision of Bitcoin as outlined by Satoshi Nakamoto and that they were returning to the “true” version of Bitcoin.
The launch of BSV was met with significant controversy, with some accusing the developers of attempting to profit from the fork and others arguing that BSV was an illegitimate attempt to hijack the Bitcoin brand. The controversy surrounding BSV has only increased in the years since its launch, with the cryptocurrency facing numerous legal challenges and being delisted from several major exchanges.
Despite these controversies, BSV has a dedicated group of supporters and has consistently ranked among the top 20 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. However, it has struggled to gain widespread adoption and has faced significant criticism from within the cryptocurrency community.
In conclusion, forks and splits in the cryptocurrency world are often controversial and can lead to the creation of competing cryptocurrencies. The forks and splits discussed in this article have all faced significant criticism and have struggled to gain widespread adoption. While they may have dedicated groups of supporters, they have also faced accusations of fraud and centralization, which have limited their success.