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Ethereum’s Headache: Lowest Daily Block Rewards Ever, Top Dev Quits

The Ethereum network recorded its lowest daily block rewards on Feb 17 since its launch in 2015. It was the first time for the reward to drop to 12,989.34375 ETH as the total supply reaches ETH 104.93 mln.

The chart shows that the drop from between ETH20K to ETH30K a day has been declining with time. The drop reflecting on the hashrate too indicates there’re fewer miners securing the network which could expose it to vulnerabilities. eToro’s Mati Greenspan attributes the drop in the daily Ether rewards to the delay of Constantinople fork – which was earlier scheduled for Jan. 16.

Core dev quits
In what seems like another blow to the network, a top Ethereum developer has suddenly announced that he’s leaving the team about a week to the fork slated for Feb. 28. Afri tweeted that he will no longer coordinate hard-forks, building testnets or making any contribution to the second largest cryptocurrency by market cap.

Circumstances surrounding the departure of Afri who has been contributing to the network since 2015 have been hotly debated within the community. Some say he quit because he was criticised persistently on the internet including with memes.

He is better known for his work on the Parity Ethereum client. One of Parity Ethereum’s major achievements is the recent work with World Food Programme (WFP). It created a private blockchain network for WFP to process cash transfers without a third-party thus reducing bank fees and other administrative costs. Over 100,000 refugees get served monthly by WFP’s millions of dollars through blockchain and it saves the UN more than $40,000 every month in bank transfer costs.

Several members of the community have eulogized Afri for the work he has done for the network while others want him to reconsider his decision. Aside being a dev, he is also a moderator for the Ethereum Reddit page. There have been calls for his status to the forum to be looked into.

Going forward
The ensuing episode has raised a governance failure question in the community especially with regards to the Ethereum Foundation’s structure and its role in the entire ecosystem. People like venture capitalist, Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures, had once criticised the EF for being ineffective and called on Vitalik Buterin and his team to consider improving the people side of Ethereum. At MultiCoin 2018 in December, Wilson says Ethereum needs to improve on its product management and be run like a business citing that a lesson should be learnt from EOS.

These issues are probably going to be discussed at the network’s mid-year EthCC conference coming up in about two weeks in Paris. It is definitely a crucial period in Ethereum’s history.


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