RIP Bitcoin Unlimited, Bitcoin Can't and Won't Fork: F2Pool Owner
Support for Bitcoin Unlimited weakens even among Chinese miners. F2Pool, the second largest bitcoin mining pool in the world behind Antpool, turned down Bitcoin Unlimited earlier this week.
Wang Chun, the owner of F2Pool, shared a rather abstract statement with the Bitcoin community on March 27, which read:
“Bitcoin can’t fork and won’t fork.”
Instinctively, the majority of the community acknowledged the statement as F2Pool’s rejection of Bitcoin Unlimited, considering Chun’s previous statements across online Bitcoin communities and social media platforms such as Twitter.
In particular, on March 22, Chun wrote, “rest in peace Bitcoin Unlimited,” almost immediately after the second bug of the software was exploited.
SegWit is also a fork
However, several members of the community began to question the intent of Chun’s statement as Bitcoin Core’s Segregated Witness (SegWit), which currently is the market-favored scaling solution, is also a fork of the Bitcoin network.
Unlike Bitcoin Unlimited, SegWit is a soft fork which requires a 95 percent support threshold from node operators in order to activate.
Chun offered yet another ambiguous explanation of his earlier statement and wrote:
“Why not pick a side? Because you have to think twice before decide to support someone who often see you as their enemy.”
Guo failed to convince
The short answer is that Chun and F2Pool are not willing to pick a specific side. Chun doesn’t support Core or Bitcoin Unlimited specifically. However, he has made it clear that his mining pool is not in support of Bitcoin Unlimited most likely due to technical and economical reasons. Bitcoin Unlimited as a contentious hard fork will inevitably lead to a split chain, which will damage the brand of Bitcoin that is portrayed in the mainstream.
One interesting piece of information to consider is that when Chandler Guo, a Chinese miner, Bitcoin and Ethereum investor, switched to Bitcoin Unlimited last week, he stated that he will convince other mining pools in the region such as F2Pool to also support Bitcoin Unlimited.
At the time, the hash rate of Bitcoin Unlimited was at 37 percent and with F2Pool on board, they would have been able to launch a 51 percent attack.
Now that F2Pool owner Chun has clarified his stance on Bitcoin Unlimited, the only factor left is BW. If BW rejects Bitcoin Unlimited as well, then it will almost be certain that Bitcoin Unlimited will not be hard-forked and Chinese miners will not be able to launch an attack against the Bitcoin network in order to activate Bitcoin Unlimited.