BTC Developer Causes Controversy Suggesting 300kb New Block Size Fork for Lightning Network
Luke Dash Jr. is a Bitcoin Core (BTC) developer and he seems to constantly be in the middle of some kind of controversy. One of his most recent comments to get some attention is regarding the block size on the BTC chain, which he suggested reducing down to 300kb.
Dash Jr. has brought up the idea before, but there’s been support voiced from the community this time, since this could be a solution that pushes towards the adoption of the Lightning Network.
The developer originally proposed an improvement upon Bitcoin in January 2017, asking that block size be decreased to 300kb each. There was a debate over the scalability of the market, and there were many concerns that fees would rise, so the proposal was ultimately brushed aside.
A few months later, network fees increased to anywhere between $30 and $50 per transaction, and the transaction queue became backed up quickly. Now, Dash Jr. is bringing up the same idea with the same block size. Explaining on Twitter, he said,
“This patch would enforce a very simple soft fork, reducing Bitcoin block sizes to ~300kb between Aug 1 and Dec 31 — It demonstrates how one can make a truly temporary soft fork. Do not run this in production even if you support UASF.”
The developer wrote a separate post, saying,
“There is never any guarantee. We need to reduce the block size just to have a *realistic hope* of it remaining feasible and *becoming practical again*. The blockchain is *already* bigger than most people are willing to tolerate, and the situation is getting worse and worse.”
John Carvalho of Bitrefill commented on this situation to his own followers, supporting the developer’s stance. He said,
“I agree with Luke Dash Jr that the block size should be smaller. I feel more confident to say it now that we have Lightning Network making strides — I’ll run the soft fork.”
Carvalho also said that the smaller blocks would elicit higher network fees. He added,
“I could imagine a few To increase fees (doesn’t even have to be malicious, could be for survival). To move transactions to Lightning Network (maybe miners realize they can make easier money by increasing fees on L2, under the right conditions). To reduce costs (new network/web conditions).”
Vinny Lingham, a crypto entrepreneur, responded to the tweets, saying that he also agrees with the plan and has agreed since the beginning. He said,
“1mb is an arbitrary number and if Bitcoin is going to rely on L2 to scale, then it makes no sense to keep it at 1mb. — Reducing it to 350k as per the research from Luke Dash Jr is practical and can help move transactions to layer 2.”
However, there were some users that believed that Lingham was pointing fun at the idea, rather than taking it seriously.
Just as there were supporters of Dash Jr.’s idea, there were also pessimists. One user said the whole idea did not make sense from a logical standpoint. However, the user was quickly dismissed by supporters after calling Lightning Network “centralized, bloated, and overcomplicated.”
For whatever reason, the idea of reducing the block size has seen more popularity this time around. Cobra, the pseudonym for the mysterious owner of Bitcoin.org, just wants the whole discussion to stop.
He said, “A soft fork to ‘reduce the block size’ is a hard fork in all but name and this will split off from the established consensus, cause massive drama, and damage trust in Bitcoin.”