This post introduces the concept of a majority (51%) attack and gives a short account of the role that Decred’s voters play in defending against these. I will briefly describe how majority attacks against Proof of Work (PoW) currencies work first, then explain how the additional Proof of Stake (PoS) component changes the dynamic in Decred’s case.
Performing a double spend attack means having the power to reorg (reorganize, or rewrite) the blockchain.
The launch of Politeia marks a significant step in Decred’s development, expanding stakeholder governance beyond its core function of adopting or rejecting changes to the consensus rules, and equipping stakeholders with a means of making other kinds of decisions.
These decisions can be as fundamental as extending or refining the project’s very purpose. Ticket-voting stakeholders are about to assume full control of the project’s direction. Some sort of amendment to the Decred constitution is highly likely, and proposals for a number of other high-level policies have been discussed.
This article gives my perspective on the governance of blockchains and cryptocurrencies. I didn’t take much interest in the blockchain space until summer of 2017, when the Bitcoin Cash fork and the underlying reasons for it caught my attention. I started looking into this and discovered an interest in how these decentralized networks/projects/currencies make decisions about how they should evolve. On the one hand these are (mostly) open source software projects, but on the other hand the software is being used to run networks that hold hundreds of millions of dollars in value.
Governance of the Decred project subsidy through Politeia I’ve recently taken an interest in cryptocurrency projects that are attempting to decentralize various aspects of their governance. Decred is interesting in this regard because it aims to decentralize decision-making about both:
the adoption of consensus changes that require hard forks the spending of a project subsidy (10% of the block reward) Decred Governance Basics Decred combines Proof of Work (PoW, 60% of block reward) with Proof of Stake (PoS: 30% of block reward) to secure the network, with the remaining 10% of the block reward going into a project subsidy wallet to fund development of the project.