Weekly Wednesday Crypto Episode 2 – Roger Ver and Bitcoin Cash
In this episode, I talk about Roger Ver and Bitcoin Cash. I’m a fan of neither.
Summary of this Episode
When I saw Roger Ver’s discussion with Charlie Lee, it was a huge eye-opener for me. The man is obnoxious and solipsistic. In the meantime, Bitcoin Cash has no real use case that isn’t fulfilled in a better way by either Bitcoin or Litecoin. So Roger Ver doesn’t play well with others, and his product offers nothing to make it a better option than either Bitcoin or Litecoin and moving forward, Bitcoin Cash is going to be hard pressed to keep its niche in the market.
Some General Observations About the Crypto Market
It seems to me that, in order for a blockchain project to carve out a niche in the marketplace, one of two things must be true. Either it has to provide a service that is significantly superior to all of its competitors, or it has to have a particular niche, and then cooperate with other projects to form a broad economic ecosystem.
Monero and Cardano are examples of the first case. Monero (as of now) is, arguably, the best privacy token in the marketplace. It does that better than any other project in the space (in my opinion). Cardano, on the other hand, attempts to provide a wide enough balance of somewhat mutually exclusive aims to provide one of the best overall currency and platform projects in the space.
Bitcoin and Litecoin are examples of the second case. Bitcoin is extremely secure because of the sheer size and decentralization of its network. However, because of its size, it is somewhat less scalable than its competitors. Litecoin, on the other hand, is somewhat less secure than Bitcoin, but it is massively scalable. The two projects have always had a cooperative relationship. They are both integrating into the Lightning Network and will integrate, to a large degree, with one another. Thus, they can shore up each others’ relative weaknesses.
Bitcoin Cash in Light of These Observations
Where does Bitcoin Cash fit into this picture? In August of 2017, Roger Ver hard-forked Bitcoin to form Bitcoin Cash. Hard forks do happen, however, in this case, the event was unusually contentious. Roger Ver did not present the fork as a fork; he presented it as a replacement. He went so far as to represent Bitcoin Cash as the original Bitcoin online on social media, and with [Bitcoin.Com].
Many people in this space (including myself) considered this move to be highly dishonest and antagonistic. His contention was that, in order for Bitcoin to continue to be scalable enough to be used as cash, the block size had to increase. The result of this would be that the currency would have to be somewhat more centralized. In other words, he was forking Bitcoin in such a way as to sacrifice some decentralization for scalability.
Bitcoin Cash as a Competitive Project
When we evaluate Bitcoin Cash as a competitive project, it’s hard to see what its place in the world is. It is less decentralized and secure than Bitcoin. At the same time, it is less scalable than Litecoin. Now, admittedly, I’m a philosopher, not a technician, but based on my research, this is what seems to be the case. So it isn’t clear what Bitcoin Cash has to offer that is uniquely superior to what is offered by other projects.
Bitcoin Cash as a Cooperative Project
It is laughable, in my opinion, to think of Bitcoin Cash as a cooperative project. Roger Ver is still the biggest spokesman for Bitcoin Cash, and he seems to go out of his way to make enemies and poison the reputation of his project. It is an aggressively stand-alone project. It is an aggressively stand-alone project that doesn’t offer anything particularly unique.
The Social Ethics of Bitcoin Cash
Roger Ver is an adversarial personality. I think this, above all else, is what has ensured that (in my opinion) his project will not be a part of the dominant economic ecosystem moving forward. It may, perhaps, continue to be an alternative to the Lightning Network, and that could be a positive thing. However, it isn’t clear that it can do, even that, more effectively than, say, Cardano.
In the marketplace, there is a role for competition, and there is also a role for cooperation. I believe that, contrary to popular belief, cooperation, and not competition, is and should be the default mode of operations. Human need is an extremely complex thing, and cannot be met by competition alone. Usually, different groups need to cooperate with one another for mutual benefit in order to better serve their customers. Occasionally, cooperatives get too big, too corrupt, or too inefficient. If and when this happens, competition is essential in order to keep the cooperatives honest.
However, when the default is to be adversarial, especially to the extent that you are engaging in dishonest tactics, the rest of the market will cooperatively outcompete and crush you. And rightfully so.
This post is for academic and entertainment purposes only. It is not financial advice. All cryptocurrency investments are highly risky. Always do your own research, and never invest more than you can afford to lose.