If it weren’t for strong cryptocurrency communities, we wouldn’t be where we are today.
There would be no debates on whether Bitcoin is better than Bitcoin Cash. Telegram wouldn’t have raised $1.7 billion in its token sale, EOS probably still wouldn’t have launched its mainnet, and, well, it’s hard to tell for sure if crypto would even exist as we know it.
Block Explorer identified the strongest crypto communities and figured out why they were so important for the blockchain universe.
The Strongest Crypto Community #1: Bitcoin
Bitcoin began as a small community of cryptography geeks and cypherpunks. They shared ideas on obscure forums and mailing lists years before it gained mainstream attention.
Satoshi Nakamoto was the one who created and envisioned bitcoin, but it gained traction because a dedicated community worked together on the development. (Note: you can read the very first community thread about bitcoin here)
In the ten years since, the bitcoin community has grown across the world. Bitcoin has suffered some huge price drops and dips in popularity, but every time, it comes back stronger. After bitcoin reached almost $1,200 in December 2013, it went down to $400 in just three months and did not grow back till the beginning of 2017.
But even in spite of all the roller coasters and bad publicity, bitcoin is still alive and thriving due to the large community of believers around. At the moment of writing, the Bitcoin Core client is the product of almost 19,000 unique code contributions from almost 600 individual developers.
Its public Github repository also tracks so-called “forks” of the code, the copies that can be modified for any specific purpose. To this date, the developers have forked Bitcoin Core reference client over 21,000 times. That’s a massive amount of people involved.
No, bitcoin most likely won’t be disappearing any time soon.
The Strongest Crypto Community #2: Ethereum
If it wasn’t for the strong community, we can’t even imagine where Ethereum would be right now.
Let’s recap some disasters. Remember 2016 and the imperfections of the DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization)? At that time more than $50 million worth of ether was stolen from the infamous DAO and transferred into its smaller version called “child DAO.”
DAO explained: A DAO is an organization or business without a central authority. Instead, it makes decisions using digital “smart contracts” and voting mechanisms on the Ethereum blockchain.
Forking the blockchain was the only way to fix it. That meant a change to Ethereum’s code that split the currency into two versions. Users had to choose between by either updating their software or not.
It was risky. However, the fork was successful with 85% of users moving over to the new version.
Want to know more about this hack? Read our beginner’s guide to Ethereum.
In 2017, another hack breached a vulnerable Ethereum wallet, but the community quickly stepped in to re-route the funds and prevent a further theft. And, well, Ethereum is still around.
The Strongest Crypto Community #3: EOS
EOS was developed by Block.one, as a faster, cheaper alternative to Ethereum. EOS begins with one of the most respected minds in the industry, Dan Larimer, who also created Bitshares and co-founded Steemit.
He has been described as a visionary and was very articulate about the need to eliminate fees in decentralized applications long before EOS appeared.
On top of the fees elimination, EOS intends to help fix the scaling problem in Ethereum. EOS implemented an alternative network that could, one day, manage millions of transactions per second and introduced a developer-friendly sandbox for creating new, fast decentralized applications (dapps).
Also, it has a great appeal for new blockchain entrepreneurs since it suggests a simple alternative for fundraising – switching from initial coin offering (ICO) to airdrops and airgrabs.
So, it’s not surprising that in a year-long ICO, EOS raised $4 billion for its blockchain and smart contracts platform.
However, even though the project is in its early stages, it has already experienced significant shakedowns. At one point hackers managed to gain control of Block.one’s Zendesk account and used it to send persuasive phishing emails.
Hackers could have got away with millions of dollars if it weren’t for the community to spread the word about the incident.
Less than a week away from the EOS mainnet launch, an internet security firm from China, called Qihoo360, reported that it found several vulnerabilities in the EOS system. The holes would allow hackers to gain remote control of EOS nodes and even access private keys.
Then, the much anticipated mainnet launch event was a disaster by itself. It was scheduled on the 2nd of June, 2018. But almost a week later the blockchain was not yet live because it required EOS token holders to vote.
And the voting process itself was very confusing and not very friendly to a non-techy audience. But that case only demonstrated the power of the project’s community. At the time, dozens of brilliant and helpful members of the EOS ecosystem developed a bunch of handy tools for voting along with the sets of instructions and guidelines. That promptly enabled the ability of token holders to vote for the mainnet launch and the network was successfully started on the 14th of June, 2018.
The Strongest Crypto Community #4: Monero
Monero’s community is united around a core group of principals: privacy, security, and decentralization.
Recently, the Monero community rallied together to fund a deep audit of its new bullet-proofs technology. The audit ultimately turned up a vulnerability that could have lead to a 51% attack.
It would have been easy to ignore a security audit, but the Monero community felt strongly enough about security to fund it themselves.
Further, the Monero community actively fights against the use of mass-market mining tools (ASICs) to protect its decentralized nature. A community that puts its core principals ahead of economic gain is one worth keeping an eye on.
What’s your favorite story about the strongest crypto communities? Go ahead and share it in the comment section below.
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