There is no way forward without a hardfork?

In light of the decision by the top steem witnesses to implement HF 0.22.2 which esentially temporarily prevents the steemit account's from voting on witnesses, powering down and moving funds in anyway until clarification happens from Tron on their intentions I have reached the conclusion that a hardfork is inevitable down the road.

The reasons are the following:

Together, TRON Foundation and Steemit Inc. will look to create further value for their users and to augment their advancements in decentralized technologies, including moving old STEEM token to a new TRON based STEEM token...

  • This was also communicated on Poloniex (which is owned by Tron/Justin Sun).

The way I see this (and also by others on the blockchain) is that Tron is saying to us what they wann't to do.

It seems logical to think that the acquisition of Steemit Inc by Justin Sun was done with the intention to prop up the value of the Tron blockchain not Steem.

Now in order to do this Justin Sun would need to setup and vote on his own witness nodes to the top positions which he can do with the stake that steemit inc currently has.

This is not a far fetched posibility . Just a few days ago Justin Sun used his stake to vote in two Super Represenatives on the Tron blockchain which caused quite a controversy in that community:

So this recent event shows that he is willing to carry out any actions in order to further his agenda.

Going back to HF 0.22.2...what is going to happen after Tron clarifies their position?

Well, there are several scenarios:

  • An agreement is reached to remove the witness voting rights of the steemit account's but not the right to transact with those accounts (I can't imagine a scenario where anyone would agree to forfeit their right to use their assets).
  • No agreement is reached and a harfork is inevitable.
  • An agreement is reached to handover steemit's stake to the community (highly unlikely).

Option one still gives the posibility to steemit inc to power down and reroute the stake to other accounts that can futher be used to change the witness positions (in which case a hardork is inevitable).

If I was to make a bet on which outcomes are posible I would give an overall 50% chance of a hardofork that removes steemit's stake.

As a side note...I view the posibility of a token swap as an attempt to infringe on my property rights. It may be that Tron does not have the intention to force anyone to accept such a deal. But as stated in their official communications it doesn't seem that they know the difference.

The current situation poses some interesting questions regarding DPOS governance. What if Justin Sun (or anyone else for that matter) purchased his stake on the open market and tried to steer the blockchain into becoming a side chain for Tron (or simply shut it down)?

I dare to say that in that hypothetical case we would also need to hardfork the stake of anyone that would make such an attempt. Given the fact that voter apathy is the norm on steem (maybe it is also the case on other DPOS blockchains?) it is not necesary to have a majority stake to take over a chain like this one and the only defense is the marketcap of the coin. It really needs to be expensive to prevent a takeover.


There could be other scenarios as well - do remove the witness voting rights of the steemit account's but allow them to delegate to some account, that will rather use that power to prosper the blockchain. For example, their power can be delegated to lot of curation accounts. And in parallel, Justin put up a marketing plan ( which he is pretty good at), which will help steem's value go up. And then once we are at a sizable growth, percentage of his stake allowed to be withdrawn - which he can sell or do whatever.

A WIN - WIN for everyone.

I don't think that the witnesses will allow steemit to vote on witnesses. That is the whole point of this soft fork.

Yes, that is what I also meant, edited. Remove their witness voting, but allow their stake to be used for a better usage.

What if Justin Sun (or anyone else for that matter) purchased his stake on the open market

He would have to pay maybe 10× of the current market price then.
At the same time it would be plain foolish to pay more then 1/10 of the market price while signing this deal with Steemit inc.

I have to agree

Sun could just fork, remove all witnesses and their stake for being malicious (in his view), and take 80% of the userbase via with him.

I hope our witnesses are aware of this, because they started this war

Signaling an intent to deprecate Steem is what initiated this process. Blockchains are not supposed to be under unilateral control. The action that the witnesses took was to enforce decentralization to preserve the blockchain.

As far as I know Steemit, inc does not own 66% (correct me if I'm wrong) of the supply to have unliteral control. In this plutocracy holders are responsible for taking care of desired decentralization - or do nothing and be in consent.

The Steemit Inc. ninja-mined stake consists of approximately 74M STEEM tokens, some liquid and most powered up in @steem, @steemit, and @misterdelegation.

At the current rate of ~509.95 STEEM per MVEST, that is approximately 145.1 gigaVEST of witness voting power. If you look at the current list of witnesses, you will see the top witness has about 89 GV of approval. If used, the Steemit Inc. ninja-mined stake can put the top witness into the 31st position.

if the approval rate is the only thing you're measuring, then I have to say the non-voting stake would mean they are not approving the current witnesses. as long as Steemit does not hold the absolute majority of supply, I see zero reason to do anything.

This is more and more becoming the EOS route, only a matter of time until cartels build. If Sun doesn't fork, that is.

Majority or minority of stake isn't a relevant point.

Can a single entity control the blockchain consensus? The answer is (was) a clear and present yes.

Should the blockchain witnesses have done something about this before? Yes, but the can was kicked down the road because the incentive structure for the owner of that stake and their promises were enough to not establish a consensus. The new owner does not have those incentives and did not make those promises. Furthermore they have communicated an intention to deprecate Steem.

Is that all of it, or is there millions more in sock puppets so that it will be a long time before ned stops profiting from selling steem?

When does the community stop voting rewards to weak hands?
Seems we got to do that, if we want the price to rise.

They own about 30%+ of the vested steem and ~20% of the supply. In theory not enough for unilateral control but more than enough in practice due to voter apathy. I think that Vitalik Buterin was the first to point out this weakness of DPOS.

That is certainly a posibility, although I disagree that the witnesses started this war. As far as I am concerned the signal that the Tron foundation sent on their official cummunications of their intent to turn steem into a tron token was the first shot.

Now, the posibility of a fork always exists but only Steemit Inc has enough clout in the public's eye to claim that they represent steem, especially from the side of the exchanges. I don't think that anyone outside of our own little world knows of the existence of the Steem Foundation (they haven't exactly made an effort to let the outside world know that they exist).

Not really. If he forks he loses exchanges and Steemit without the Steem blockchain is worthless.
I dont think he would get 1% of the userbase, let alone 80%

Owning the steemit brand is enough to start a fork. It then becomes a battle of public opinion over which is the "true" steem. Given the perception that steemit = steem I am not entirely sure that he would not have some success.

Anyone can start a fork... There is a big difference between starting a fork and remaining on the original chain for us.
If the community forked we would have a problem with exchanges since his chain would be the original one. With the soft fork we dont.
Now if he forks the general sentiment would be:

Well Justin bought some Steem and the community froze it, now hes starting his own chain.

Let him. The exchanges wouldnt budge much in that case.

Of course he would have to convince exchanges to list his coin in that hypothetical case but I would not underestimate the potential to just simply buy his way (he has a deep enough pocket to do it). But I agree that it would be much more difficult.

I think in his position, I'd probably pull a mad flex; buy a huge amount of steem off the market; push the price up to $5-$10, power it up. Push out the current supermajority for a few blocks, but leave the soft fork in place, then stop voting witnesses entirely; let it all snap back to what it was 10 seconds earlier, and never vote for witnesses again.

I guess it depends on what his real intentions are. If his objective is to deprecate or takeover the chain uncontested it would be much more expensive now since it's not the same to get a deal OTC than to purchase on the open market. On the other hand if he is smart enough he would see that from a cost/benefit analysis that it's probably more advantageous to colaborate with the current power structure of steem...we will see soon enough.

I agree with you on the situation being much more fraught with peril than a lot of people think. I think no agreement will be reached which is when the impasse will continue to the foreseeable future or a hard fork will indeed take place, at which point STEEM will lose at least 90% of its monetary value. We are going to have to start from scratch. But the bright side is that the SMT code is almost done and being tested. All the critical pieces of the puzzle are in place. It will take many years to get where we are now, at best.

Any plans on making an updated post after the "town hall meetings?"

It depends on how it goes. If someone else analizes the situation in a similar way and makes a post first I won't do it.

I have a feeling a chain split will occur.

I am sure some sort of an agreement will happen but I am not positive that it will be enough to prevent a split sometime in the future. From the looks of it Justin Sun doesn't have much support within the steem community to just let him dictate the terms so he just might decide that it's not worth the hasle.

On the other hand if his ego gets in the way of his business sense then he's already planning a coup d'etat on the witnesses...I hope he is smarter than that.