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Last August, the big news in the realm of cryptocurrencies was the blockchain split within Bitcoin to form Bitcoin Cash. In a recent report for Fortune, Jen Wieczer provides some deeper insight into the current state of affairs concerning last year’s “Great Bitcoin Fork of 2017” as she described the split.
One of the most significant results of this split was a tremendous increase in value for each crypto at that time. Within one week of the division, the combined increase in worth was estimated to be over $15 billion. The main reason for the split was the differences between the two factions when it came to the processing time for transactions. The speed could be increased by expanding the size of the units on the blockchain. This process was favored by Bitcoin Cash according to this report.
The division between the two sides still exists, and Ms. Wieczer goes on to suggest there are signs that the groups may be drifting even farther apart. Also, this could have a far-reaching impact on the global Bitcoin community as each side of the dispute becomes further polarized.
In a visit to Tokyo in March of this year, the author talks about gathering information on the hacked Bitcoin exchange, Mt. Gox. The magazine feature she went on to write was entitled “Mt. Gox and the Surprising Redemption of Bitcoin’s Biggest Villain.” The trip and the research involved revealed that the split between the two groups had worked to alienate the once “tight-knit community.”
The divide between each side of the fork started over scaling regarding the speed and cost of transactions, but it has evolved from these technical issues to a much deeper split. Ideology issues such as ethics, censorship, transparency and even political affiliations are now at the heart of the matter according to this report.
An example of this issues at hand come from Council as a company that tracks the cryptocurrency industry for investors. It stated that Bitcoin Cash is “intentionally misleading newcomers to believe that it’s the ‘real’ Bitcoin, for example by misusing bitcoin.com and the @bitcoin Twitter handle.”
All this back-and-forth banter aside, the author goes on to add that this still does not answer the question at hand…” is Bitcoin Cash faster, cheaper or easier to use than Bitcoin”?
Tokyo is a huge market for cryptos, and Bitcoin Cash appears to be the dominant player in this discussion. Their supporters are more organized through meetups, participating retailers, and other means to promote their cause. The report goes on to quote Aaron Gutman as an organizer of the Tokyo Bitcoin Cash meetup as saying, “This is war,” he also talks about the “flipping,” when Bitcoin Cash will displace Bitcoin as the most valuable crypto in the digital currency industry.
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Turning to current market values mentioned in this report, Bitcoin Cash has risen 115 percent in value verse a more conservative 30 percent gain for Bitcoin. However, the value of Bitcoin Cash directly compared to Bitcoin is just below 16 percent, up slightly from 14 percent when the split took place.