Coinbase to Add Ethereum Classic (ETC) – But Why?
- The Official Coinbase blog has announced that Coinbase will list Ethereum Classic alongside Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, and Bitcoin Cash
- Coinbase will publish an official date for the launch of Ethereum Classic on September 5th
- Ethereum Classic prices have spiked 25% in response to news of the coming Coinbase listing
For over a year, rumors have circulated that Ripple XRP is in talks with Coinbase. Specifically, regarding plans to have the currency listed alongside other top market cap coins at some point. However, Coinbase has just taken the cryptocurrency market by complete surprise. Namely, by announcing plans to support not Ripple XRP, but relative cryptocurrency market outsider, Ethereum Classic.
What is Ethereum Classic? – ETC Explained
To say that some confusion is surrounding the recent Coinbase decision to list Ethereum Classic is an understatement.
Popular belief has it that Ethereum Classic is merely the old ‘hacked’ version of Ethereum the world knows today. In reality, though, the Ethereum Vs. Ethereum Classic debate is a little more complicated.
The History of Ethereum Classic in Brief
In the beginning, Ethereum Classic was the original Ethereum.
Created in 2013 by Russian programmer Vitalik Buterin, ETC is capable of everything that Ethereum is. From smart contracts to decentralized apps built on Ethereum Classic’s virtual machine, the two cryptocurrencies are mostly identical in all but name.
The Etherum Classic to Ethereum Hard Fork
Problems for the original Ethereum started in 2015 and 2016. Using the then Ethereum blockchain to create a decentralized venture capital platform (DAO) for decentralized apps, the DAO Ethereum smart contract was hacked. This subsequently led to $50 million being stolen from investment funds which the Ethereum DAO platform had managed to raise up until that point.
Needless to say, DOA investors weren’t happy. Worse, with news of the hack, Ethereum prices plummeted. To restore investor confidence, a majority group of Ethereum developers (including Vitalik Buterin) subsequently decided to fork Ethereum.
Going back in time to just before the Ethereum DAO hack, a copy of the Ethereum blockchain was made and branched off to become the standalone cryptocurrency which we know today as ETH. Much more importantly, because on the new Ethereum blockchain, the DAO hack hadn’t yet taken place, the new ETH was able to fully compensate investors.
Code is Law
Understanding that no significant coding changes were made to the Ethereum which branched from Ethereum Classic, is vitally important. In fact, some in the original Ehereum community felt that simply rolling back the blockchain to what was essentially a system restore point, set a dangerous precedent for cryptocurrency. Because of this, these developers decided to continue maintaining Ethereum Classic under the premise that ‘Code is Law.’
Ethereum Classic Today – Why is ETC Still Relevant?
Since the 2016 Ethereum hard fork, Ethereum Classic has been forced to evolve very differently to its top market cap counterpart Ethereum.
Struggling at one point with just 8 developers, Ethereum classic had first to mop up the aftermath of the original DAO hack. Much more importantly, though, ETC has since developed differently to Ethereuum, by laying the groundwork for dedicated sidechain support.
Ethereum Classic Benefits:
- Because as high traffic volumes do not burden Ethereum Classic like they do the Ethereum blockchain, ETC is much faster than ETH
- Unlike Ethereum which is still struggling to scale to meet increasing consumer demand, ETC’s side chain support means that future scaling shouldn’t be an issue for the digital currency
- Ethereum Classic development has also focused in Internet of Things integration, which helps equip the currency with a more diverse use case than that of Ethereum
Why Has Coinbase Decided to Add Ethereum Classic?
The official motive behind the Coinbase decision to list Ethereum Classic is still unclear. It is possible, however, that because of improvements to the Ethereum Classic blockchain, ETC could eventually mirror Ethereum’s growth rate at some point in the future. This being the case, investing in and trading Ethereum Classic, could be about to become hugely profitable. All that remains to be seen is how well ETC can perform when pitched against newer VM platforms like Dan Larimer’s EOS.