[bitcoin-dev] Block solving slowdown question/poll

LORD HIS EXCELLENCY JAMES HRMH willtech at live.com.au
Sun Mar 22 11:58:33 UTC 2020

There seems to be the real possibility that miners are simply trying to optimise mining profit by limiting the average hash rate during the retargeting, saving some electricity but poorly considering the overall situation where they give opportunity to other miners probably raising the hashrate for the next period. It is far more profitable for the ecosystem considering the whole to hold a lottery for minig as has been discussed elsewhere some time ago.


From: bitcoin-dev <bitcoin-dev-bounces at lists.linuxfoundation.org> on behalf of David A. Harding via bitcoin-dev <bitcoin-dev at lists.linuxfoundation.org>
Sent: Sunday, 22 March 2020 6:54 PM
To: Dave Scotese <dscotese at litmocracy.com>; Bitcoin Protocol Discussion <bitcoin-dev at lists.linuxfoundation.org>
Subject: Re: [bitcoin-dev] Block solving slowdown question/poll

On Sat, Mar 21, 2020 at 11:40:24AM -0700, Dave Scotese via bitcoin-dev wrote:
> [Imagine] we also see mining power dropping off at a rate that
> suggests the few days [until retarget] might become a few weeks, and
> then, possibly, a few months or even the unthinkable, a few eons.  I'm
> curious to know if anyone has ideas on how this might be handled

There are only two practical solutions I'm aware of:

1. Do nothing
2. Hard fork a difficulty reduction

If bitcoins retain even a small fraction of their value compared to the
previous retarget period and if most mining equipment is still available
for operation, then doing nothing is probably the best choice---as block
space becomes scarcer, transaction feerates will increase and miners
will be incentivized to increase their block production rate.

If the bitcoin price has plummeted more than, say, 99% in two weeks
with no hope of short-term recovery or if a large fraction of mining
equipment has become unusable (again, say, 99% in two weeks with no
hope of short-term recovery), then it's probably worth Bitcoin users
discussing a hard fork to reduce difficulty to a currently sustainable

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