Bitcoin.org Denounces Segwit2x

Bitcoin.org posted a dramatic update this past week. In that update, they publicly denounced Segwit2x supporters like Coinbase, Xapo, and BitPay.

The new Bitcoin.org blog post is titled, “Beware of Bitcoin’s possibility incompatibility with some major services.” The post describes the upcoming hard fork as “a backwards incompatible change to the bitcoin network” that “is not supported by the majority of bitcoin users and developers and is therefore a contentious hard fork.”

Although the blog post seems like a sudden attack on SegWit2x supporters, Bitcoin.org is just following through on a threat. Last Thursday, Bitcoin.org published a blog post threatening to publicly denounce 50 prominent SegWit2x supporters unless they revoked their support for the controversial scaling proposal, or unless they agreed to treat the SegWit2x blockchain as an altcoin (as opposed to treating it like the original bitcoin).

Obviously, some of the signatories did not revoke their support, which is how we got to this place today. Bitcoin.org followed through on their promise. They even added a large red “warning” label to the top of their website, telling users to “Beware of Bitcoin’s possible incompatibility with some major services.”

Bitcoin.org has some sway in the community. They’re the top Google search result for bitcoin. The website functions as an open source repository for bitcoin resources and information.

Why Does Bitcoin.org Have a Problem with SegWit2x?

Bitcoin.org’s blog post condemning SegWit2x supporters mentions many of the same reasons other people have an issue with SegWit2x. The post describes the update as a “rushed and hasty upgrade which has only minority community support and has been thoroughly rejected by users and the technical community.”

Bitcoin.org has pledged that it won’t recommend wallets, exchanges, or other services that have “exited the bitcoin ecosystem in a contentious manner”:

“As this new altcoin is not Bitcoin, Bitcoin.org will not list wallets and services that present this altcoin as “Bitcoin” or “BTC” to their users after the hard fork. These services have exited the Bitcoin system in a contentious manner and therefore are no longer useful to our visitors.”

The bottom of the blog post lists the names of 48 wallets, platforms, and exchanges that support SegWit2x. Bitcoin.org recommends avoiding these companies.

The list includes prominent names like BitPay, ShapeShift, Coinbase, and Xapo.

Most major names called out last week did not revoke their support. However, some smaller entities did revoke their support for SegWit2x following pressure from Bitcoin.org – including Chile-based bitcoin exchange SurBTC.

SurBTC was not called out in Bitcoin.org’s latest bitcoin warning.

On Twitter, ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees called the move “highly political”. Many others have criticized Bitcoin.org for using their prominent space to promote a specific angle.

Of course, SegWit2x supporters are responding by saying that this issue became political long before Bitcoin.org became involved.

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