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BCH miner donation plan update again - a perspective
I wish to address some of the points made in a little detail to show my perspective.
Before I do that, however, I want to say that after reading the fourth point in the update, I felt encouraged that there is real glimmer of hope for us all avoiding a Bitcoin Cash currency split. This is certainly a wish at the top of my mind and I believe it is shared by the many in the Bitcoin Cash community.
4. There are numerous objections now, I am inclined to start the donation plan after that the community reaches a basic agreement. If they fail to achieve it, we could set up the General Foundation first, let’s see its operation effect funding by donation, then we could proceed the hash voting next time.
As I tried to put into words on Reddit, I do have several strong concerns about the current plan. I do not claim to represent the community, only myself, but in my opinion, the discomfort with the plan is significant and real. I am very glad that is is fully acknowledged by "There are numerous objections now".
The fourth point mentions that the community could reach a basic agreement. This seems possible to me. The proposed way to set up a General Foundation to receive donations (from which developers could be paid for work) appears to be a good step toward enabling the community to show whether there has been improvement in the donation approach.
If it works, "then we could proceed the hash voting next time" strongly suggests an openness to giving the donation approach a firm chance first - something the community would certainly welcome.
This could be done using newly developed mechanisms like Assurance Contracts (Flipstarter) or other smart contract mechanisms and voluntary donation services which are currently being researched and developed.
I wish to comment with my own perspective on some of the other statements in the most recent update.
(I believe the miners have right to vote on how to spend their output)
This is a point I and many others certainly agree with. We may disagree on whether I have the right to collect and spend my neighbor's block reward output - I think that is a matter which needs to be considered both ethically and from a practical viewpoint of introducing changes to consensus rules which facilitate this.
I think the question must be asked whether such changes fundamentally change the nature of the system, e.g. by re-introducing third parties into the protocol itself.
I strongly support miner's right to deploy voting mechanisms to find consensus, although advice over the last 2 years informed me of the risks of using coinbase voting mechanisms while BCH has low minority hashrate. I would like to ask what has changed in the hashrate distributions from then to now, to make re-introduction of BIP9-like voting in ABC safe at this particular time.
For the 5% of the coinbase donated by miners, the miners shall have the option, at their sole discretion, to select a number of donation objects, such as: General Foundation, ABC, BCHD, Electrion Cash
Here too I think no-one would deny miners the discretion of who should receive their donations.
However, when those donations are in reality enforced upon anyone wishing to mine the chain, then the term "donation" loses its proper meaning.
The donation plan will last for 6 months (as one version is valid for a maximum period of 6 months). I suggest that we stop the fund raising after 6 months, and we may restart it eventually to prevent it becoming a permanent rule.
I would recommend that we investigate ways to create a smoother development funding system which is more decentralized. This could avoid completely the need for introduction of funding-related consensus rules which otherwise require strong deliberation to avoid conflicts of interest and moral hazard.
Let's try to construct a better path together- one which lets all future participants in the system enjoy the same economic freedoms that we have enjoyed in Bitcoin before, and Bitcoin Cash since 2017.
1Libre7MGkCXr7pUAEbwihCR9X4quYAyQ4 // my first post on read.cash :-)