Will ETH’s Merge allow Ethereum Classic to realize its potential?

Sahana Kiran
Source – Unsplash

The Ethereum [ETH] network seemed to be creating a divide in the crypto-verse. ETH miners have been rebelling against the Merge as it would negate the significance of mining the asset. Therefore, the idea of a hard fork that would divide the network into ETHPoW and ETHPoS began surfacing. Chandler Guo, a prominent Chinese miner was leading this movement. While several miners have shown support, a few others have disregarded the possibility of a hard fork. Ethereum Classic [ETC] was part of the latter. It should be noted that ETC is a hard fork of the ETH network.

The Ethereum Classic network’s ETC Cooperative penned an open letter to Guo about their stance on the hard fork. Bob Summerwill, the Executive Director of the platform suggested that the PoW fork wouldn’t work and would be rather an “awfully hard thing even to do.”

While several were inclined towards the narrative ‘people wouldn’t choose ETHW since ETC already exists’, Summerwill decided to put forth the real hassle of the hard fork. Since Guo has been comparing the potential hard fork to the Ethereum Classic event, Summerwill said,

“This time you will need to fork Geth (and probably also Erigon, Besu, and Nethermind). Each of those codebases will need to have the POS transition logic removed, to have the difficulty bomb disabled, and also to update the Chain ID to provide replay protection. A mining software will likely have to be forked/updated as well, to provide support for that different Chain ID and maybe more.”

It should be noted that Guo intends to write an “open letter soon.”

No blog post, no tutorials, or other documentation in place yet

Summerwill called out Guo for putting out no major information about the Ethereum hard fork. He notes how there has been no information about where the client and software development has been occurring. In addition to this, he pointed out that the Merge was only weeks away and there wasn’t coordination that was required.

The network needs to garner the support of exchanges, clients as well as node operators. But, with nothing out in the open, Summerwill was dubious about how Guo would build trust. Summerwill, however, added,

“Even if you do manage to get client software released, and get at least a handful of mining pools and exchanges into a position where the fork will actually happen, and be a reality rather than just the IOUs currently trading, you will still have all the issues with how broken that chain will be.”

Furthermore, the DeFi and NFT industry has been thriving on the Ethereum blockchain. He suggested that prominent projects would simply shut down their smart contracts on the new chain. This would mostly take place to negate any form of confusion or loss to their end users.

Due to all the aforementioned reasons and more, Summerwill believes that the hard fork is least likely to thrive.

Will Ethereum Classic shelter ETH miners?

The Ethereum Classic network has been maintaining a rather low profile over the years. The emergence of new crypto projects sidelined the network. The series of 51% hacks further added to this.


As seen in the above chart, the social strength of the Ethereum Classic was quite low. However, the asset managed to garner attention in July and continued through August mostly due to the Merge.

While condemning the potential hard fork, several have been noting the existence of a PoW Ethereum network [ETC]. If the hard fork fails, as put forth by Summerwill, miners and several other PoW proponents are likely to shift to Ethereum Classic.