Bitcon’s failure to change in the face of a divided community is its greatest strength

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First, you should understand that both sides of the scaling debate have the exact same goals in mind. They just don't agree on the best way, at a technical level, to achieve it.

One side believes that scaling bitcoin to support exponentially more users and transactions should happen on secondary layers; keeping the base blockchain as thin and secure as possible.

The other side believes that scaling bitcoin, exponentially or linearly, should happen on-chain; at least in the short term if not the long term.

The point to remember here is that everyone wants the same thing, they just don't agree on the best technical solution to get there.

By design, if the community cannot agree as a whole what direction the bitcoin software should take, then nothing changes.

This is the state we find ourselves in now, and that's just fine. This is simply bitcoin acting, as it is designed to act, when there is no overwhelming consensus.

So, there is no point in name calling. There is no point in personal attacks. There is no benefit in getting angry or upset about it. This is just how bitcoin is designed to function.

If it were easy to shove through changes to the software in the face of extreme disagreement in the community, that would put bitcoin at a major risk of being destroyed.

This current state that bitcoin is in is not a sign of failure, but rather a sign of it's greatest strength.

For now, we are in a stalemate. Neither side has enough consensus to enable any change. Everyone has heard the same debates and arguments so many times, it seems doubtful many people are going to change their minds or that a true majority consensus is going to be reached any time soon.

We must realize that this is not bitcoin 'failing', this is bitcoin succeeding. Bitcoin must be extremely resistant to political change. Only overwhelming consensus within the community as a whole should produce a new version of the software.

We do not have that consensus today. It is a likely scenario we will never have that consensus. And, if that happens, then that's ok. Bitcoin will continue to function. It will continue to process transactions. It will continue to be traded on exchanges. People will continue to use it when and where it best makes sense for them. Off-chain solutions, be they centralized or not, will still occur; though perhaps not as elegantly as would be possible if certain features were deployed.

At this point there doesn't appear to be much each side can do to convince the other. At a recent conference of bitcoin thought leaders, more than 90% raised their hand when asked if they supported getting segwit activated as soon as possible. Meanwhile, a minority group continues to lobby actively against segwit, even though the feature provides significant on-scaling scaling in the immediate short term.

We may well stay in a stalemate for a very long time, years, if not permanently. While segwit certainly makes some layer-2 technologies easier to implement, layer-2 solutions will still be developed and deployed even without it.

Maybe, eventually, segwit will be activated and deployed. Perhaps the reference client will switch development teams and deploy on-chain scaling solutions. Either of these things are possible, but neither will occur unless the community converges to an agreement on one solution. In the meantime, the fact that it isn't changing in the face of a split community is not something to get upset about, it's something to celebrate.

submitted by /u/jratcliff63367
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