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MinerGate CEO Opposed Ethereum Hard Fork On Legal, Business And Philosophical Grounds

Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:50 PM
Lester Coleman
Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:50 PM

While most miners supported the Ethereum hard fork to prevent future breaches, Claude Lecomte, CEO at MinerGate, opposed the plan and posted a statement shortly before the hard fork took effect yesterday, claiming it will jeopardize Ethereum on legal, business and philosophical levels.

Ethereum holders previously voted for a hard fork to deprive the DAO thief of his ill gains and return the funds to token holders. The hacker was able to penetrate the system and transfer funds from the DAO to a dummy version of the organization to which only the hacker possessed the key.

All DAO tokens, whether in white or dark DAO, child or main DAO, innocent or not innocent split, will be frozen and sent to a new contract address where DAO token holders will be able to withdraw their share. The extra balance will be sent to a multisig controlled by DAO curators who will then return the extra ether paid during the “creation” stage to their rightful owners.

Lecomte Issues Warning

MinerGate’s Lecomte believes the hard fork has not been sufficiently thought out or reported on. He released a statement summarizing his objections from proof of concept, legal and business logic perspectives.

Lecomte pointed out that Ethereum’s official website states that it is a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts with no chance for censorship, fraud, downtime or third party involvement.

When the DAO hack demonstrated fraud capability, Ethereum’s core developers responded by offering to remove the inability for censorship and third party interference. Lecomte claims the developers want to eliminate the decentralization on which the technology is based.

“This means the proof of concept has already failed,” Lecomte wrote. While “concept” is an intangible entity, the hard fork’s impact won’t be evident immediately, but it will be over time.

Is It Legal?

From a legal perspective, Lecomte noted that Ethereum code has continued to work as the only rule, even when the DAO attack took place. During the DAO attack, the code was not compromised, only the DAO, he noted. The code has determined what takes place in the network. It has been the only trusted and trustless entity.

The DAO hack caused core developers and many community members to advance concepts such as humanity and justice, concepts that aren’t mentioned in Ethereum’s legal agreement and aren’t recognized by the Ethereum network.

“It’s not just that refunding DAO investors will create a negative precedent, when any transaction can be reverted in a blockchain,” Lecomte noted. When there are no rules to regulate such incidents, “trusted” developers will be free to propose any solution they want which most of the community will support.

Also read: Ethereum Successfully Hardforks

Where’s The Business Logic?

From a business logic perspective, Lecomte posed the question: Who is responsible when someone loses money on an investment? Business logic holds that investors take responsibility for the assets they acquire. The DAO is a high-risk venture with a high likelihood of loss. But Ethereum developers have a different idea. Using their specific tools, they can take everything back and compromise the technology to benefit a limited group.

“This proposal washes away the idea of the irreversibility of smart contracts and interferes with the core technology,” Lecomte stated. Ethereum has joined those entities that can be labeled “too big to fail.” Lecomte, on the other hand, believes the technology can learn from its mistakes and become even more successful. He favors this course of action over trying to save a particular entity.

MinerGate finds itself forced to move to the “winning chain,” as it will not otherwise be able to provide Ethereum mining, Lecomte noted. Nor is MinerGate interested in preventing the technology’s further development by voting against the hard fork.

Featured image from Shutterstock.