More than 500,000 ethers are still frozen in wallets of the Berlin startup Parity. A rescuing source code change has now been rejected by the crypto community.
Sometimes the blockchain is relentless. This is also the case in the case of the German-British startup Parity, which has its headquarters in Berlin and London. Protocol 999 is the technical-sounding name of a proposal that Parity recently submitted to the crypto scene. The question was whether hundreds of thousands of ethers frozen in the startup’s wallets could be freed.
Parity had lost control of some 500,000 ethers at a present value of over € 285 million due to a software bug. All coins are still in the digital purses, but can no longer be transferred and thus not spent. Basically, a bank would have lost the key to a locker.
To reopen this locker requires a change in the Ethereum Blockchain. Whether it may be changed, decides the community. Now the result is: 300 voters voted for a change, 330 against, nine abstained. Thus, 55 percent of voters voted against voting rights, voting for parity by changing the rules of the game. However, the turnout was less than five percent.
500000 ETH = 345,721,001.00 USD (28.04.2018)
Only a few days before the end of the vote, the majority had temporarily voted for an acceptance of the 999 minutes, but then the mood was down. The arguments against the protocol changes are not new. In 2016, after the infamous DAO hack, Community had split over a protocol changes. At that time there had been a technical split. Since then there are Ethereum and Ethereum Classic, because the parties could not agree on a form of the source code. The fear was that after a rejection of his problems, Parity would get rid of the Ethereum currency and generate a coin according to its own rules.
However, Parity disagreed with the statement shortly after the end of the vote: “Let us make clear: we have no intention to split the Ethereum chain,” writes CEO Jutta Steiner on the website of Parity Technologies, it is “deeply sorry” for all those who have lost their money, but have no interest in damaging the Ethereum ecosystem, which you have built yourself. The chances of a coin according to parity rules would probably have found little supporters anyway.
Nevertheless, this decision drastically limits the likelihood that the confiscated money might someday be released. It is unlikely that Parity can convince the community with a new proposal after this strategy failed on the first try.