A new Ethereum Improvement Proposal, or EIP, has emerged amid opposition from miners to scheduled changes to the network’s fee market. While some are looking to the proposal as a means to cool flaring tensions between Ethereum’s miners and developers, the EIP appears to have secured little support from the community.
In recent weeks, tensions have escalated over EIP-1559 — an upgrade slated for integration in July that is expected to discipline Ethereum’s volatile fee market while significantly impacting miner revenues.
The new proposal, EIP-3368, advocates that block rewards immediately be increased to 3 Ether (ETH) and then reduced to 1 Ether over the two years following EIP-1559’s implementation to ease the impact on miners of Ethereum’s transition to proof-of-stake.
On Saturday, Ethereum developer Tim Beiko took to Twitter to share EIP-3368, encouraging robust debate over the proposal within the Ethereum community. While Beiko emphasized that EIP-3368 “is not accepted” or “scheduled for a fork” yet, the developer described the proposal as “the most tangible thing to come out of miner conversations [regarding EIP-1559] in the past few weeks.”
Coming out of my twitter break to share this: miners' "counter proposal" to 1559 is EIP-3368, which would raise the block reward to 3 ETH and lower it to 1 ETH over ~2 years. @BitsBeTrippin should present it at the next AllCoreDevs. @EthMagicians thread: https://t.co/CLxc30AUPf— Tim Beiko | timbeiko.eth (@TimBeiko) March 12, 2021
While many mining pools have long opposed EIP-1559, news that the upgrade is scheduled for deployment in July saw prominent miners threaten to organize a “show of force” in which EIP-1559’s opposers would divert their hashing power to a single pool for 51 hours.
However, in response to EIP-3368, Red Panda Mining, a social influencer and crypto miner who was among those pushing for a miner rebellion, pledged their support for the proposal and announced they will “rescind from the show of force”:
We have been heard. EIP-3368 has been proposed. Reward to 3 ETH but drops 0.25 every quarter till 1 ETH over 2 years. I am going to rescind from the show of force to @etherchain_org April 1st and so should all of you (unless you were already on ethermine)— Red Panda Mining (@RedPandaMining) March 13, 2021
While the comments from Red Panda Mining and Beiko suggest Ethereum’s miners and developers may be readying to work toward some form of compromise, discussions regarding EIP-3368 on the Ethereum Magicians forum suggest Ethereum’s community is still very divided.
User “Green” described the proposal as “a subsidy of users to miners to delay impending change,” adding:
“The personal business decisions of miners are not the concern of Ethereum users. You don’t socialize profits, then you don’t socialize losses.”
Other forum users emphasized efforts from Ethereum’s core developers to expedite the existing network’s chain-merge with Ethereum 2.0, describing EIP-3368 as merely delaying the inevitable. “DCInvestor” said: “Further, accommodation of this form only delays the inevitable as we move swiftly towards a merge of eth1 and eth2, where PoW mining rewards will be zero.”
“IMO, we should avoid measures which encourage further investment in mining hardware by miners given this reality,” they added.
There also appears to be resistance to EIP-3358 from within the miner community, with numerous replies to Red Panda Mining on Twitter indicating that many miners still wish to proceed with a show of force.