The currently known Ethereum blockchain is actually a 2016 fork of the original ledger.
Since 2016, Ethereum Classic is the name of the continuation of the original Ethereum blockchain - the classic version preserving untampered history; free from external interference and rollbacks of transactions.
What does Ethereum Classic bring to the table?
On the official website,
ethereumclassic.org, the developers state that ETC is one of the purest and most decentralized blochchains out there.
Ethereum Classic provides a decentralized Turing-complete virtual machine, the Ethereum Virtual Machine (or "EVM"). This is the same feature as ETH has.
- The Ethereum virtual machine can execute complex scripts known as “smart contracts” using an international network of public nodes.
- The EVM also allows for peer-to-peer value exchange and permits users to create any type of application on top of it: financial derivatives, voting systems, auctions, lotteries, etc.
The success, as well as failure points in its history, are discussed below:
2016: The Ether Fork
In July 2016, the original ETH blockchain went through the demise of the first ever DAO. Because some people believed that the DAO was not programmed correctly and had too many vulnerabilities, an attacker exploited one of these vulnerabilities and took 3.6 million ether from the DAO (at the time, around $50 million).
While some members of the Ethereum community argued for a hard fork in order to return the stolen funds to their owners, others believed that this would violate the core principles of Ethereum - the immutability of blockchain.
This group went with what is now known as Ethereum Classic (ETC). After a brief time of uncertainty, ETC emerged as the minor cryptocurrency and an alt coin, while the forked chain that removed the DAO hack from history went on to be accepted as ETH.
ETC developers maintain a different view of the DAO hack
The developers who carried on to form around Ethereum Classic argued that the DAO hack was not due to a flaw in the Ethereum code, but rather a general weakness in smart contract coding.
In their view, any hard fork due to a smart contract hack would have set a bad precedent and could compromise the future of the cryptocurrency.
In their opinion, it will always be easy for a skilful hacker to steal funds from smart contracts and Dapps in general. Therefore it makes sense not to set the precedent of rolling back the whole ledger as people will come to require that again in the future and it undermines the decentralized nature of cryptocurrency.
Ethereum Classic nowadays
Ethereum Classic continues to be led by its original development team and is intended to be a platform for smart contracts and decentralized applications (Dapps).
Since going independent, Ethereum Classic has faced a few challenges.
For one, because it is a continuation of the original blockchain, it does not have the same level of support from exchanges and wallets as Ethereum.
Secondly, its mining difficulty has increased significantly, making it more difficult to mint new ETC.
Finally, its price has been much more volatile than Ethereum.
ETC benefited from rising ETH fees
Despite these challenges, Ethereum Classic is still actively traded and used. ETC has been added to a number of exchanges, including the major ones like Binance and Coinbase.
There are now over 100 Dapps built on the platform, and its use cases do not stop there.
Now there are even online casinos which let you play online casino games using Ethereum classic, which makes it easier and safer for the casino player. Casinos online are online games of chance, and online casinos on ethereum classic are no different, except that take bets with cryptocurrencies like Ethereum Classic (ETC).
Some NFT art creators have likewise started creating digital art on Ethereum Classic, leveraging the fact that NFTs on ETC are still rare which makes it easier to stand out.
This development speaks about the popularity of ETC that, at least for a time, benefited from the 2021 exorbitant transaction fees on the ETH chain.
Some Platforms Adopted Ethereum Classic for Lower-Fee Payments
A recent example from another industry - the music industry - is VOISE, a decentralized music platform that allows artists to release their music and receive payments in Ethereum Classic.
The platform uses the blockchain to streamline the music industry and cut out the middleman. Artists can use VOISE to upload their music, set prices, and receive payments directly from fans.
The VOISE platform is just one example of how Ethereum Classic can be used to revolutionize various industries. As the platform continues to grow and develop, more and more businesses will adopt it as their preferred blockchain solution. For those looking for a secure and censorship-resistant option, Ethereum Classic is well worth considering.
Ethereum Classic continues to be a viable alternative to Ethereum and in 2021 has continued to grow in popularity.
- For those who believe in the original principles of Ethereum, it is a more secure and censorship-resistant option.
- For those who are comfortable using Ethereum but less so with its transaction fees, ETC likewise presents a good option.
It is also still in development, meaning that its features and capabilities are constantly evolving. For these reasons, Ethereum Classic is worth keeping an eye on.
The future of Ethereum Classic is yet to be determined. While it has made significant headway and continues to add Dapps and features, it still faces challenges related to adoption and volatility.
This positive support is also growing in some business models which start to use Ethereum Classic for payments or deposits.