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Steem successfully forks to Hive blockchain

6 Apr 2020, 00:00, ,

In what Vitalik Buterin has termed a potential 'watershed moment' for blockchain governance, Justin Sun's Steemit acquisition was evaded by a community hard fork.

On the new Hive blockchain, Sun has been completely removed from the picture. He has no control of the original development fund tokens that granted him voting rights on the Steemit platform purchased from founder Ned Scott on Valentine’s Day.

Meanwhile, the original Steem blockchain is left with little more than ‘some good branding and goodwill’, and has "nearly zero value now”, according to leading Steem validator Dan Notestein.

‘A watershed moment’

The Steemit saga has captured the minds of the crypto community as a classic story of centralization vs decentralization, with the Steem community on one side, and Tron founder Justin Sun on the other.

Since the deal was inked on February 14th, this opposition has played out over a series of community votes involving collusion with exchanges and platform downtime.

Under the leadership of lead validator Dan Notestein—going by the moniker BlockTrades— the Steemit community argued Sun’s proposal to shift Steem tokens to the Tron blockchain was undemocratic, and that he was responsible for colluding with exchanges to subvert the will of the people.

Sun on the other hand said his proposals would benefit Steem, and that efforts to take away his control of the development fund represented a violation of the ‘sanctity of private property’.

"The beauty of crypto is that no one can take them from you. The sanctity of private property is guaranteed by the math and code behind it. Freezing people’s funds violates the basic foundation of cryptocurrency”, tweeted Sun.

With a hard fork, the matter is now settled. Justin’s coins are excluded from the new chain, and changes to the governance protocol remove his influence entirely. All Steem accounts have been shifted to the Hive network—which was named by a community vote—and all Steemit content including blog posts, social content and funds has been transferred.

This outcome is said by Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin to be a ‘watershed moment’ in the history of blockchain governance. And, as many others including John McAfee have noted, ‘a strong demonstration that the community is in charge and cannot be bought.’

But, it remains to be seen if the Hive blockchain will be enough to give Steemit a new lease of life and reverse its long-term decline. The number of weekly posts on the platform peaked in the altcoin mania of early 2018, and has been falling ever since.


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