[Bitcoin-development] Proposal: Requiring a miner's signature in the block header

Natanael natanael.l at gmail.com
Wed Feb 11 09:25:27 UTC 2015

Den 11 feb 2015 09:55 skrev "Hector Chu" <hectorchu at gmail.com>:
> A proposal for stemming the tide of mining centralisation -- Requiring a
> miner's signature in the block header (the whole of which is hashed), and
> paying out coinbase to the miner's public key.
> Please comment on whether this idea is feasible, has been thought of
> etc., etc. Thank you.
> Motivation
> ----------
> Mining is centralising to a handful of pool operators. This is bad for a
> number of political reasons, which we won't go into right now. But I have
> always believed that some years down the line, they could hold the users
> hostage and change the rules to suit themselves. For instance by
> the halving of the block reward.


> I propose that we require each miner to sign the block header prior to
> hashing. The signature will be included in the data that is hashed.
> the coinbase for the block must only pay out to the public key
counterpart of
> the private key used to sign the block header.


> This will make it difficult to form a cooperating pool of miners who may
> trust each other, as the block rewards will be controlled by disparate
> and not by the pool operator. Only a tight clique of trusted miners would
> able to form their own private pool in such an environment.

People already trust things like cloud mining, so your solution with
increasing technical trust requirements won't help. But you will however
break P2Pool instead.

Also, note that threshold signatures (group signatures) could probably be
used by an actual distrusting pool's miners. There are already a proof of
concept for this implemented with secp256k1 that works with Bitcoin clients
silently. This wouldn't prevent such a pool from working.
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