Ethereum Classic

What is Ethereum Classic

Part 1 - What is Ethereum Classic

Ethereum Classic is not a new cryptocurrency, but instead a split from an existing cryptocurrency, Ethereum. Both blockchains are identical in every way up until block 1920000 where the hard-fork to refund The DAO token holders was implemented, meaning that all the balances, wallets, and transactions that happened on Ethereum until the hard-fork are still valid on the Ethereum Classic Blockchain. After the hard-fork, the blockchains were split in two and act individually.

Ethereum Classic still offers the same features as Ethereum, such as the creation and deployment of smart contract and Decentralized applications, and has all the same specifications, such as average block time, size and reward.

Part 2 - Why was Ethereum Classic created

The Hard-fork has been a controversial subject, that has split literally split the Ethereum community in two. Both sides have made some valid points regarding their position on the hard-fork debate.

Users that did not support the hard fork point out that

  • Code is law - the original statement of The DAO terms and conditions should stand under any circumstances 
  • Things that happen on the blockchain are immutable and they should never change regardless of what the outcome is
  • There is a slippery slope and once you modify / censor for one course/reason there is not a lot to keep you from doing it for other contracts 
  • The decision to return the money is short sighted and you might reduce the value of ETH down the line based on your decision to act now
  • This is a bailout

Users that supported the hard fork argued the

  • Code is law is too drastic of a statement at the current time and humans should have the final say through social consensus
  • The Hacker could not be allowed to profit from the exploit as it is ethically wrong and the community should intervene
  • The slippery slope argument is not valid as the community is not beholden to past decisions, people can act rationally and fairly in each situation
  • It would be problematic to leave such a big piece of the Ether supply in the hands of a malicious actor and it might harm the value of Ether down the line
  • This is not a bailout as you are not taking money from the community, it is just a return of funds to the original investors
  • It would stop an ongoing war between the white-hat hackers and the hacker that would demoralize the community
  • The exploit was big enough to take action and reverse it
  • If the community acts now it will make people that are unethical think twice before they use Ethereum as their platform of choice
  • A hard-fork to return the funds would keep regulators and the legal system out of the debate: our mess, we fixed it.

The Ethereum Classic was, in this sense, created as a way to allow smart contracts to run exactly as they are programmed to, without the interference of a third party. The ETC community argues that the DAO smart contract did what it was programmed to do and that no action should be taken to censor the contract.