The Ethereum Hard-Fork went as smoothly as possible. The event took place at Jul-20-2016 01:20:40 PM UTC and it was received quite well by the community, according to the price charts.
Ethereum kept rising hours before the Hard-Fork and it kept on doing so after. No bugs or complications were brought up and the hacker, whose identity is still unknown, has been left empty-handed… On the new side of the fork at least.
A small group within the Ethereum community has stayed on the old side of the fork with their own duplicate blockchain. This project is called Ethereum Classic and it promises to keep the ecosystem decentralized and free from censorship.
This is a contradictory view to some, in the sense that Ethereum Classic has kept their own set of rules despite the consensus of the community, which is the exact opposite of what decentralized and censorship-free means. The project gained traction, none the less, with two mining pools dedicated to classic miners.
Bitshares, a decentralized cryptocurrency exchange, has also added the ETHC coin for trading. This may be problematic and confusing to users, who may end up sending coins from the classic blockchain to a deposit address meant for the Ethereum chain.
Classic team members hope that the difficulty will drop within the next day bringing the blockchain to a sustainable level, and the block time back to a 14-second average. Many argue that this feat may not be accomplished due to the lack of miners on the classic blockchain.
Will exchanges add this “new ethereum”? Will developers build on it? Ethereum based cryptocurrencies like Shift, Expanse and Krypton can also be seen as an “alternative” to Ethereum as they provide the same features, they do not reward the DAO hacker (as ETHC does) when gaining value and they have different communities and different developers.
The Ethereum project is open source and anyone can clone it with the changes they deem necessary, without the need to subject unaware users to lose funds or to mine on the wrong blockchain by accident.
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