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Bitcoin.org Threatens to Publicly Denounce SegWit2x-Supporters

Josiah Wilmoth
Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:00 PM

Bitcoin.org has threatened to publicly denounce companies that support SegWit2x and have not committed to treating the competing blockchains as separate cryptocurrencies in the event of a chain split.

On Thursday, Bitcoin.org published a blog post  revealing that it will publicly denounce supporters of the controversial SegWit2x hard fork on October 11. The website, which was originally founded by Satoshi Nakamoto, serves as an open-source repository for bitcoin resources and information. As the top Google search result for “Bitcoin”, the website serves as the gateway for many people into the cryptocurrency community.

The current domain owners of Bitcoin.org have been vocally opposed to the SegWit2x proposal and the corresponding New York Agreement (NYA), even going so far as to remove links to SegWit2x supporters from the resources section. Now, just a month out from the scheduled date for the hard fork, Bitcoin.org is threatening to place banners on every page of the website denouncing companies that support SegWit2x.

From the announcement:

“On 2017-10-11 at noon (UTC), Bitcoin.org is planning to publish a banner on every page of the site warning users about the risks of using services that will default to the so-called Segwit2x (S2X) contentious hard fork. S2X companies will be called out by name. To ensure that we only warn users against companies that will actually put user deposits at risk, we urge all companies to publicly clarify their stance before the above date, either by a highly-visible public statement or by commenting on Bitcoin.org issue #1835  (or by doing both).”

Specifically, the announcement demands that companies that support the hard fork agree to not list the SegWit2x chain as “BTC” or “Bitcoin”. Additionally, they must state that they will not do anything to “deprive users of their bitcoins,” which may include crediting BTC deposits as “S2X”, automatically selling user coins derived from the original chain, or using SegWit2x software without the addition of opt-out replay protection. Finally, the bitcoin services must commit to continuing to provide normal service to the original blockchain following the fork.

The announcement goes on to list 50 companies it will denounce by name unless they comply with these demands, including prominent names such as Coinbase, BitPay, bitFlyer, Xapo, and ShapeShift.

SegWit2x Supporters Respond

Unsurprisingly, SegWit2x supporters were not pleased by the decision. BTC1 developer Jeff Garzik called the move the latest instance  of Bitcoin Core’s “culture of reprisals” which included his expulsion from the Bitcoin Core repository earlier this year. ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees was also critical of the decision:

“Using bitcoin.org for political positions… not a good precedent,” he posted on reddit . “Don’t people here often condemn Roger [Ver] for using bitcoin.com in the same way?”

Featured image from Shutterstock.