Bitcoin’s Price Tanks as Coinbase Pivots and Users Complain

May 20, 2016

Bitcoin is being tested like never before as one of the biggest and oldest Bitcoin company, Coinbase, announced their exchange will be renamed to Global Digital Asset Exchange (GDAX) to support Ethereum trading. A first for the four years old bitcoin company which has never added any other digital currency.

The move comes as Ethereum gains mainstream attention due to the DAO raising a record-breaking $165 million as of publishing, leading to a moon-like-price-increase of ether and trading volumes of more than $50 million per day.

The Ethereum community is euphoric with one Ethereumer stating: “I could not have dreamed of what has in fact happened in the last 4 days” and a general atmosphere of jubilation in the community  as they open their metaphorical bottles of champagne.

They believe in smart contracts, the internet of things, a fourth industrial revolution and, of course, decentralized autonomous organizations. They are supported by an impeccable team of developers with their own open source culture and spirit, along with boy genius Vitalik Buterin.

In contrast, the mood in Bitcoin is somber with some expressing worries and concerns while some could not keep their anger. R/btc, the biggest uncensored Bitcoin-related social forum was metaphorically on fire as everyone took turns to voice their complaints. Even in r/bitcoin, a heavily censored subreddit, most users expressed puzzlement with a lack of capacity increase, interrupted by some complaining about their transactions that’re stuck for hours.

Bitcoin remains the most accepted digital currency with the largest market cap and trading volume. Few Bitcoiners, on either side of the debate, or even ethereumers, want to see it fail, with one ether holder expressing the mood: “Bitcoin tanking – kinda makes me sad to see an old friend that way.”

However, the never-ending debate is taking its toll as any resolution seems unlikely with Mark Friedenbach, a Core Tech Engineer at Blockstream, stating:

“I don’t know anyone who is actually working on a hard fork right now… very few core developers were at the HK meeting and that ‘agreement’ is mostly not acceptable to those who were not there.”

Per Bitcoin Core’s “consensus” requirements, that makes the hard-fork controversial and unlikely to be merged, breaching the Hong Kong roundtableconsensus” which clearly states:

“We will run a SegWit release in production by the time such a hard-fork is released in a version of Bitcoin Core.”

It may well be the case, therefore, that we do not see any capacity increase for many more months, if this year at all, adding fuel to Ethereum’s bid for mainstream adoption.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

Andrew Quentson @Aquentson

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