Cobra Client BCH fork to solve problem of too many forks with fork

Posted: 24 August 2018 12:00 pm

This is getting ridiculous. That is, even more ridiculous than it already was.

Bitcoin Cash has a bit of a problem right now. It’s on a seemingly inevitable path to a contentious fork. Much like the original bitcoin diverged into bitcoin on one side and Bitcoin Cash on the other, Bitcoin Cash is now set to split into two separate flavours called Bitcoin Cash SV, and Bitcoin Cash ABC.

This isn’t good for Bitcoin Cash, but it’s looking inevitable now, because both the competing SV and ABC teams and their respective minions all hold enough hashing power to maintain their own separate forks.

Of course neither side is willing to back down, because that would make them look silly.

“Such a consensus failure will be a disaster for all investors and users of Bitcoin Cash, but it is almost impossible to avoid at this point as all the developers and miners involved refuse to back down,” says the prominent self-appointed Bitcoin spokesperson who goes by Cøbra. “Such a scenario will wipe out huge amounts of value from Bitcoin Cash, lead to [even more] total ridicule of the currency, and widespread loss of trust and faith. Such reputation damage is simply not worth it, all just so some developers and miners can avoid having their egos bruised around some mostly unimportant and non-urgent changes.”

“I am therefore announcing Cobra Client, a safe and reliable implementation of the scheduled November hard fork,” Cøbra wrote.

If was any thunderous applause followed his statement, it was drowned out by the deafening irony.

Cobra Client is essentially yet another Bitcoin Cash fork set to be released at the same time as the Bitcoin SV and Bitcoin ABC forks. Its defining feature is that it doesn’t make any of the controversial changes which prompted the fork in the first place. Instead, it implements replay protection which basically means people should be able to sell off coins on the SV and ABC forks without affecting their coins on the Cobra fork.

“Users of Cobra Client should be wary of competing chains claiming to somehow be the real Bitcoin Cash,” Cøbra advises, even as the two other competing chains are undoubtedly issuing the exact same warning.

An inherent flaw


Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash are mostly driven by ego. It’s not a community so much as a church full of scheming preachers trying to rope in as many faithful adherents as possible, and the clout that comes from those minions.

In this case, Bitcoin Cash is going through all this pain over a set of features that mostly only impact miners, rather than anyone else who actually wants to try to use it as cash… you know, like Satoshi apparently would have wanted.

Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash don’t need bigger block sizes or smaller block sizes, or a way for miners to choose or not choose their transactions, as much as they need a way to accommodate multiple opinions without completely falling apart.

If mass adoption is the goal, a coin needs a way to attract and retain users other than cultists.

This problem is more in the nature of a technical issue than anything else. In any decentralized system like bitcoin, it’s critical that there are systems for reaching consensus within a community, plus fallbacks for the inevitable situations where consensus is not reached. These kinds of wishy-washy design elements aren’t beyond the scope of programming. Rather they’re an essential part of decentralized community design, and many projects are deliberately working towards them.

Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash never had these features. This is exactly why so much effort is wasted trying to decipher the bitcoin whitepaper like holy writ, and why Satoshi Nakamoto has been elevated to the status of Godhood. In the absence of such intelligent design features, participants turn back to rabid faith as a unifier.

Bitcoin was meant to be a new adventure in decentralisation, and how communities can grow without a clear leader. But maybe humans weren’t cut out for that.

Bitcoin Cash was only decentralized until someone came along and got traction by claiming to be God against a mountain of evidence to the contrary, and someone else got traction for justifying anything they do as carrying out God’s will.

Bitcoin is a religion, or perhaps a nation, and like any good religion or nation it’s schismed in the face of internal power-grabs and periods of restlessness, written them off as glorious victories and promptly failed to learn anything from the lessons of the past.

1 August

Disclosure: At the time of writing the author holds ETH, IOTA, ICX, VET, XLM, BTC, ADA

Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of cryptocurrency or any specific provider, service or offering. It is not a recommendation to trade. Cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex and involve significant risks – they are highly volatile and sensitive to secondary activity. Performance is unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before relying on this information. You should also verify the nature of any product or service (including its legal status and relevant regulatory requirements) and consult the relevant Regulators' websites before making any decision. Finder, or the author, may have holdings in the cryptocurrencies discussed.

Latest cryptocurrency news

Picture: Shutterstock

Ask an Expert provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Go to site