The Bitcoin Cash community has been discussing about merchants accepting zero confirmation BCH transactions. Indeed, several merchants have been accepting zero confirmations lately, which opens the discussion about that topic again.
Zero Confirmation Transactions
It is important to understand what zero confirmation transactions are all about. These are transactions that are broadcasted to the network but have but been etched into the blockchain. This allows consumers and merchants to move money in a fast way, but leaving open a discussion on whether to accept them or not.
The main problem here is that some individuals believe that it can be risky not to wait for more confirmations. Some users have been reporting on occasions of double spend in both the BTC and BCH networks. Some people think that zero confirmation increases the chances of accepting virtual currencies, while others support the idea of solving the problem of double spendings.
Back in July 2010, Satoshi Nakamoto itself talked about zero confirmation acceptance. About that he commented:
“When you broadcast a transaction, if someone else broadcasts a double-spend at the same time, it’s a race to propagate to the most nodes first. If one has a slight head start, it’ll geometrically spread through the network faster and get most of the nodes.”
Several BCH merchants have been working with zero confirmation transactions for some time. Bitcoin developers have opened discussions about making zero confirmations even safer on the network, using different signaling methods.
Indeed, the Bitcoin Developers Mike Hearn wrote a paper called ‘Double spending in Bitcoin and how to make it harder.’ On it, he discusses double spendings in BTC.
There have been others that worked with other methods. Researchers at the Department of Information Engineering and Communications at the Autonomous University of Barcelona, proposed a mechanism to construct special transaction outputs, known as ‘Double-spending Prevention for Bitcoin Zero-Confirmation Transactions.’
Many Bitcoin Cash supporters are in favour of the idea of preventing and alerting participants of future double spendings. Satoshi itself said that with cryptocurrencies, the risk of double spend are far less than the fraud that takes places with credit cards.