Bitcoin will crash and burn, developer declares - should you sell up now?


Bitcoin is a failure, according to an expert and major supporter of the cryptocurrency.

Mike Hearn, who has been cited as a Bitcoin expert and indeed was a developer for five years - he left a post as a senior software engineer at Google to work on the virtual currency - has turned his back on Bitcoin, declared it a failure, and sold all his coins.

He detailed his reasons for doing so in a blog post spotted by Fortune, but the long and short of it is that it's to do with infighting, politics and agendas - because of which he's lost confidence in Bitcoin and believes its fundamentals are broken. He notes that nothing bad might happen in the near future, but in the longer-term picture, seemingly the only way is down.

Hearn says the responsibility for the failure lies with the community itself, which has turned what was supposed to be a decentralised currency into a "system completely controlled by just a handful of people".

And he reckons that besides this, the system is close to a "technical collapse" because the "mechanisms that should have prevented this outcome have broken down".

No future...

He explains that the major issue revolves around adjusting the Bitcoin network to allow for more capacity and thus transactions, and there's a split between those for this move, and those against. Hearn believes this must be done, but has become frustrated at trying to make progress with his arguments.

Check out the blog post for his full and lengthy argument, but he concludes: "Bitcoin has no future whilst it's controlled by fewer than 10 people. And there's no solution in sight for this problem: nobody even has any suggestions. For a community that has always worried about the block chain being taken over by an oppressive government, it is a rich irony."

Bitcoin has always had its marked ups and downs, but the future sounds very shaky indeed now...

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).