A group of Bitcoin developers along with the makers of btcsuite have, in an announcement today, revealed that they are building Decred, an alternative digital currency. The project, according to the press release, is seen as one to address “the issues of project governance and development funding” that is seen as prevalent in Bitcoin today.
Citing concerns of an increasing centralization of power in the Bitcoin project and the prioritization of interests of those who fund the project, a group of Bitcoin developers and the creators of btcsuite have started building a new, alternative currency called Decred.
In a press release, Jacob Yocom-Piatt, CEO of Company 0, a firm that has funded development of Bitcoin since 2013 said:
Many people may not know that despite the technological decentralization Bitcoin has brought the world, there are serious and growing issues of centralization that rule decisions made about the present and future of the project. The Bitcoin software is controlled by a small group of people who decide exclusively what can and cannot be changed.
This is in part due to a lack of mechanisms and pathways for funding development work directly from the community, and as a result Bitcoin development is funded by external entities that create conflicts of interest between the developers and the representative power of the community that uses Bitcoin.
We want to change that.
Although bitcoin and the blockchain are decentralized and devoid of manipulation, a group of insiders including the cryptocurrency’s present developers see reasons to be worried in the way decisions are made by the core group.
Christina Jepson, a developer of Decred added:
The intention is not to attack what we currently have in Bitcoin, we want to recognize what has been done well, but instead we want to take that and improve on what we think can be done better.
That is the spirit that started the technology and we want to return to that to explore options to problems we cannot explore in the current system, while we continue to support the Bitcoin software. Alternatives are progress and a way forward to improve the greater ecosystem.
Decred’s website contains a full list of its features, the technology and security measures used along with insights into the community-based governance principles of the new digital currency.
Some of the notable features of Decred, taken from the project’s website includes:
- A hybrid proof-of-work and proof-of-stake technology-based consensus system that will balance consensus between miners and voters.
- Open and self-funded development using a block subsidy to ensure long-term development sustainability.
- Using the Blake-256 hashing algorithm.
- Possible bitcoin implementation/compatibility due to the main contributors being those behind the development of btcsuite.
- Bottom-up non-financial decision making through the Decred Assembly by community members contributing to the project through work and effort.
The press release adds that governance of the project is open to any participant and there will be voting for any proposals looking into software integration.
Notably, the development funding “comes from using the technology itself,” the release explains, paid to any developer who implements community-chosen proposals that will represent those “who make up the larger system.”
Decred is also inviting members of the public as well as those interested in contributing ideas and work to unconditionally sign up and join the launch of the alternative currency project by receiving Decred. The initiative to reward new contributors with Decred is seen as an effort to spread the network among as many people as possible.
Furthermore, there will be an ‘airdrop’ of 4% of the total Decred supply that will be distributed equally and unconditionally among valid participants of the project.
Images from Shutterstock and DECRED.