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Ethereum miners on proposal to reduce block rewards by 75%

August 21, 2020

A new proposal to improve Ethereum (EIP) has been heavily criticized by minersThis suggests that those behind the proposal are less interested in network security and more focused on the interests of investors.

EIP-2878 suggests reducing the block rewards by 75%, from 2 ETH per block to 0.5 ETH. The reason for this is to bring Ethereum’s inflation rate closer to Bitcoin (BTC) and preserve ETH’s purchasing power.

Proposed on August 11 by the general manager of ConsenSys, John Lilicand the global leader of customer success for Ledger, Jerome from Tycheywas presented along with a detailed explanation on the Ethereum Magicians forum, where both developers and miners could discuss its validity.

Ethereum miners on proposal to reduce block rewards by 75%Ethereum miners on proposal to reduce block rewards by 75%

Miners, especially those who use GPUs, were quick to criticize the EIPsince the decrease in the reward per block It was more than double the network’s previous reduction percentageand they said that a 51% attack was a possible outcome.

The PegaSys product manager Time Beiko believes “this is too dramatic a change as we went from 5 to 3 (-40%), then from 3 to 2 (-33%), now from 2 to 0.5 (-75%)”.

“In my opinion, network security should be the biggest consideration (i.e. how can we ensure that the 51% chance of an attack remains low, how can we keep a large number of miners on the network, etc.)”.

Another user responded to the suggestion by saying: “ASICs are very inexpensive compared to GPUs. Any reduction in the rewards per block without changing the algorithm removes the rest of the GPUs from the network, leaving the ASICs in complete control of the network.”

The CEO and co-founder of Bit Capital Group, Jimmy ThommesExplains that Ethereum shouldn’t try to mimic Bitcoin’s rate of inflation as it is an older network trying to accomplish various things. Not to mention the suggestion made the miners feel like they were going to use it:

“It feels really bad to be treated as a necessary evil and paid as little as possible to encourage us to keep the lights on long enough for the transition to 2.0 to work.”

Most were fundamentally not against a block reward reduction, as Ethereum does not have a built-in halving mechanism like Bitcoin and therefore relies on EIPs to control inflation with suggestions for reward reduction.. However, most felt that a drop to 1.5 or 1 ETH would be more reasonable. A Reddit user said that although miners made a lot in 2017, it shouldn’t affect current earnings:

“Did you let the miners make too much money in 2017 and 2018? I think so. Does that make it okay to starve them now? I think not.”

Another user added that the proposal is premature as the transition from Tether to OMG “will drastically reduce the fees paid to miners”.

The proposal is still relatively new and has little support from the community, according to the Ethereum promoter Hudson Jamesonwho suggested considering the proposal in the light of EIP-1559.

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