(Updated November 28, 2017)
Dear Cryptocurrency Enthusiasts:
This is an open letter-blog and assessment of the Mr. John Carvalho and Roger Ver discussion.
Is this the beginning of the end of Bitcoin Cash?
It’s not every day you get to take a peek at the guys and gals – the movers and shakers – in the crypto-sphere. See them in a more human light. See them make mistakes, get angry and do dumb things.
There is no such thing as a Bitcoin Jesus or is there? Well, he is being demoted now.
If you have 45 minutes, you can watch the interview with Bitcoin Jesus, by a less than dignified fellow. It occurred on November 27, 2017.
If you prefer an interpretation, then scan the words below. I have pulled out some of the more interesting highlights.
This is my interpretation of today’s debate between John Carvalho and Bitcoin Jesus — no longer. He is now just plain old Roger Ver these days. And it really gives you a taste of crypto-current-events.
Events that are awash in…problems.
It’ll make you think twice about Bitcoin (BTC)…and Bitcoin Cash (BCH and BCC).
Ver, as many know, was an early supporter of bitcoin, but now supports Bitcoin Cash. That should tell you something. And anyone who thinks that Ver is just a money grubbing corporate type, might end up holding a worthless bag of BTC, but I hope not.
Carvalho, our alleged hero, has a YouTube site called Bitcoin Error Log. He is the CEO of Xotika.TV, which appears to be a porn site.
Carvalho has serious character issues…
You be the judge of John Carvarlo’s character, but I say the guy has near zero credibility. And like Ver advised, I also don’t care if you sell smut for a living, but it does define you. It tells the world what you really are.
(And be careful accessing the Xotika.TV site, it involves a high-risk country, according to Scamadviser.com. Scumbag issues.)
Why Ver agreed to the interview it is beyond me. Smut profiteer interviews self-made millionaire? Go figure.
The smut seller wins debate?
Carvalho of the Bitcoin Error Log (on YouTube) put Roger Ver on the spot today. It was a live debate, but more like a planned hit piece. It is hard to tell if Ver did not deserve it.
Ver was apparently speaking from a hotel room and Carvalho was in his safe-space. It looked like a setup. Carvalho obviously wanted to make Ver look bad. Please tell me if that was not the plan Mr. Carvalho.
Carvalho’s attitude was condescending and Ver seemed to hit back with straight forward answers. Polite most of the time. Until the end, where he lost his composure. (He is only human, but is that an excuse?)
Carvalho spiced his language. Cursed, laughed, derided, and made empty accusations. Again, what do we expect from his ilk.
And it worked. I began to have doubts about Bitcoin Cash and Ver.
Unfocused debate…more like a Witch Hunt
The debate, if that is what you would like to call it, was apparently supposed to focus, at least in part, on the block-size issues with bitcoin/bitcoin cash; however, the discussion appeared more accusatory and was derailed early on.
Carvalho was the accuser. Ver was on trial, trying to respond to unsubstantiated allegations. A Drumhead Trial from afar.
For starters, as Ver tried to answer questions, there was construction noise nearby and his audio often cut out. This, I’m certain, did not help Ver be heard. At that point I would have asked to debate later. But Ver soldiered on. A mistake.
It did help Carvalho. The beating of the drum…
Carvalho asked why Ver did not like the label “Bcash” for Bitcoin Cash.
Ver stood by his guns. He and the devs like the label Bitcoin Cash, Ver said. The label “Bcash” seems condescending in Ver’s opinion. (See here for how it all started.)
Carvalho wanted to know why he couldn’t call it what he wanted to call it.
Ver tried to explain that the term “Bcash” was obviously negative, so he and others, didn’t care for it.
Carvalho explained that he and others feel that they can label it “Bcash” because there is only one true bitcoin. That seemed to be the crux of it. Carvlaho wanted to give Bitcoin Cash a derogatory name and wouldn’t admit it.
Why not admit it? Sometimes button pushing works and when the pushee admits that, he’s lost the battle.
Ver explained that this was Bitcoin Cash, not “Bcash” and not bitcoin, but Carvalho ignored this. It’s Bcash, he stated repeatedly. A dog with a bone.
This bit of nonsense was repeated by Carvalho. Bcash. Bcash. Every chance he got.
[One might think Ver was being interviewed by a child, but that was the game, was it not, Mr. Carvalho?]
Carvalho asserted that there is only one true bitcoin. He interrupted Ver, as it was explained that Bitcoin Cash was in line with Satoshi Nakamoto’s Whitepaper. These interruptions were obviously designed to keep Ver off balance.
And this is how it went. Ver, trying to be cordial and Carvalho interrupting with “Bcash” and snide remarks. And like I said, it worked.
Carvalho indicated that said bitcoin Whitepaper was not the “bible.” That “we” (meaning the Carvalho porno-gang?) can “agree” that the original bitcoin is the one true bitcoin and the Whitepaper (the original design) is essentially not bitcoin. In other words, if bitcoin’s code changes and the devs diverge from the original vision, it’s still bitcoin original — according to Carvalho.
Certainly, this is a tenuous argument. But Carvalho wouldn’t let go.
And Ver didn’t dislodge that sentiment. It was Ver, big bad corporate man, against bitcoin, a bunch on innocent devs (earning a bit of money on the side from Blockstream and others) working hard — coding.
These repeated assertions by Carvalho seemed to say that old bitcoin is always new bitcoin, even if it’s not in line with Satoshi Nakamoto’s vision. If the devs are still there, no matter if they are new devs, if the undefined community still exists, if the repository is still there, it’s bitcoin.
Appeal to emotions. A point for Carvalho.
What Ver attempted to explain, but Carvalho refused to acknowledge, was that Bitcoin Cash was closer to Satoshi Nakamoto’s original vision than bitcoin is now. That bitcoin has diverged and is heading down the wrong path. A path with higher fees, slower service and lost transactions.
It fell flat. Ver was a copycat and it stuck.
Carvalho continued his attack.
Carvalho repeated that the repository is “bitcoin” no matter how the code is edited by the core devs or contributed to, by the undefined community.
Ver indicated that not just anyone in the community can contribute to bitcoin. [So this is a false statement, Ver implied.]
Bitcoin is NOT open to the community.
Ver cited Gavin Andresen’s revocation. Andresen is no longer allowed to contribute – meaning bitcoin is NOT open to the community.
Carvalho stated that Satoshi Nakamoto did not hand bitcoin over to Gavin Andresen in the first place. That Andresen somehow obtained control over bitcoin after he went to the CIA. [Vague accusation – never explained. FUD?]
Ver stated that Carvalho was incorrect. That, not only did Nakamoto share access to bitcoin development, but Andresen then shared it with others. These others then revoked Andresen’s access, without his consent. Andresen can no longer approve code to be included into bitcoin.
Andresen a risk?
Ver also stated that the new core devs alleged that Gavin Andresen’s bitcoin dev account had been hacked and that was the reason his access had been revoked…permanently. Oddly, this, on its face, appears very suspicious and thus far this author is not aware of any evidence that Andresen’s bitcoin Github access was ever hacked. On the other hand, concerns over Andresen’s original indications that he had found the one true Satoshi Nakamoto (Craig Wright) may have played into the issue.
Carvalho stated that the new core team, which Gavin Andresen gave permission to help develop bitcoin, had been asking him to voluntarily revoke his own access, before they locked him out, because he was no longer “contributing” to the bitcoin project. That allowing Andresen continued access was a security risk.
Carvalho also stated that Andresen contributed to his own downfall by focusing on “antagonistic” things. [In other words, Andresen did not agree with the new core team members…and was unceremoniously booted out? That appears to be the implication.]
Okay. Enough. Andresen being booted out does not make bitcoin a closed community.
Point to Carvalho.
Back on focus…
Ver then tried to have Carvalho focus on the block-size debate issues, which was apparently supposed to be the focus of the interview.
Carvalho said that Ver had originally supported the Bitcoin SegWit2x fork.
Ver replied that this was true, but after the last-minute cancellation by others he went with Bitcoin Cash – and he had indicated this would happen if SegWitx2 failed. And it failed.
The accusations continued to fly from Carvalho.
Carvalho indicated that Ver recently received flak for the newest Bitcoin.com wallet (Ver owns or has interest in Bitcoin.com). That the new wallet defaulted to Bitcoin Cash.
Ver stated that this was also untrue and held up his cell phone and showed Carvalho. The screen on the phone clearly showed two wallets. One for Bitcoin and another for Bitcoin Cash.
(Photo Source: YouTube)
Carvalho stated that this would confuse people and implied that the names (Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash) were too similar. That “newcomers” might not know the difference.
And I’d have to say that Carvalho is right on this point. Ver’s cell phone shows a confusing set of choices. If you don’t know the difference between BTC and BCH, then you might become confused.
Carvalho then asserted that it was fraudulent to use the bitcoin name in Bitcoin Cash. Carvalho did not explain this accusation.
Fraudulent is something obtained, done by, or involving deception, especially criminal deception.
Ver stated that he did not think the labels were that confusing [or fraudulent].
[Side Note: If you can’t tell the difference between crypto-wallets with separate labels, you should probably not be using cryptocurrency.]
Carvalho then asserted that the Bitcoin.com wallet would confuse people, implying that the name of the website was also misleading.
Ver stated that the Bitcoin.com wallet clearly states that is supports Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin Cash.
Carvalho then changed the subject. He stated that “we’re” concerned for the “noobs” due the Ver’s marketing power. That they will be confused.
Even score here. Both have valid points.
Ver countered. He asked why Carvalho was not concerned that newcomers would pay more in transaction fees ($20.00 fees) with old bitcoin?
Carvalho ignores high old bitcoin fees.
Carvalho said he wanted to talk about fees “separately.” That he was more interested in “education.”
[In other words noobs losing money in old bitcoin was not considered educational to Carvalho.]
Ver gets a point.
Once again, Ver stated that Bitcoin Cash more closely resembled the original Bitcoin.org Whitepaper.
Carvalho asked how Ver could “…make that leap” since there was “…no mention of Bitcoin Cash,” in the Whitepaper and is not any more peer to peer, than is bitcoin. [Carvalho had indicated that bitcoin was ‘node to node’ these days.]
Ver gets another point. Carvalho’s answers are too vague.
Ver explained that the fees were lower with Bitcoin Cash — again. That nobody can stop the transactions.
“…Bitcoin Cash can be stopped…”
Carvalho stated that Bitcoin Cash can be stopped since it’s a smaller network. That the only reason that transactions are cheaper, is because nobody is “spamming” Bitcoin Cash yet.
Ver asserted that this was not true. That bitcoin is now slow and expensive due to full blocks and the user experience is suffering.
Ver is on the money. Bitcoin is very slow.
Carvalho cited bitcoin’s higher market cap, but Ver stated that bitcoin has failed. That the slow transaction speed is the tell.
Bitcoin has not yet failed.
“…the Lightning Network…”
Carvalho stated that the “Lightning Network” would increase transaction speeds.
Ver responded that the transition from Bitcoin Core the Bitcoin Core assisted by the “Lightning Network” is much more difficult than to simply switch to a better coin.
Ver asked Carvalho if he had ever completed a single Lightning Network transaction and received a negative response.
Ver gets a point. There are SegWit2x problems. It’s an unproven system.
Bitcoin is bleeding out…
Ver stated that Bitcoin used to have a near 99% market share. That it is now “bleeding” into other altcoins and stands at about 53% of market share.
Carvalho disagreed and indicated that this does not mean that bitcoin is losing ground due to its value per coin.
Nobody wins this round.
Ver said that Bitcoin Core has “intentionally” destroyed bitcoin’s usability by capping the block-size. It’s too expensive to use, less reliable; and therefore, investors are seeking out alternatives.
Carvalho stated that Satoshi Nakamoto designed the small block-size in the first place.
Ver stated that Nakamoto was convinced by others to do this later, as a temporary measure, to stop others from “flooding” the network.
Carvalho tried to change the subject again, but Ver asked him to finish each subject before moving on.
Ver then advised that Nakamoto’s original intent was to allow the block-sizes to be as big as they needed to be, to accommodate the network.
Carvalho then stated that the bitcoin block-size was in fact limited from the beginning.
Ver did not answer this question clearly. Ver stated that the block-size (what was stored in each block) grew as time passed [until it apparently hit the actual preset limit].
Even score again. Nobody wins this point.
Why does Carvalho like old bitcoin?
Ver then asked why Carvalho liked bitcoin and he responded with the standard line. No inflation, private, decentralized, store of value etc.
Ver then indicated that Carvalho’s answers defined many altcoins in general.
Then Ver advised he was trying to replace all forms of money with a form of permission-less money and make it impossible for governments to control money and free trade.
Carvalho hit on the decentralization aspect again, but Ver stated the this is a tool of censorship resistance, not necessarily a goal in and of itself. That censorship does take place in bitcoin when your transaction is too small, and it drops from the “mempool.”
Carvalho cited blockchain rollbacks by miners with more power. This “power” centralization has effectively censored transactions.
Ver countered that the small bitcoin block-sizes incentivizes investors to use large “bitcoin” banks like Coinbase. Such a concentration of bitcoin is akin to “centralizing.” If the block-size is larger, the system is easier to use and keep in investors’ hands.
Carvalho tried to state that the altcoin exchanges are a centralization risk, but Ver reminded him that it was a matter of choice to trade on exchanges.
Mix and match. Nobody wins these points.
Carvalho then advised that his company (Xotika.TV) now uses SegWit2x.
Ver implied that it is an untested tech and that there does not have to be a block-size limit anyway.
Ver wins this point.
Carvalho moves onto theory. There is “infinite demand for block-space.”
Ver disagreed. He said it depends upon the demand that the miner’s set for the block-space.
Then Carvalho played the “what if” game.
What if the blocks were infinite?
[Yet another seemingly ridiculous argument. Carvalho is not apparently grounded in economic reality, but mired in some infinite theoretical worry. At this point Carvalho becomes defensive as it has become obvious he is losing the debate. Accusations begin to fly. Ver doesn’t actually know what he says, etc.]
Ver stated that nobody knows what the perfect block-size is.
Carvalho: not knowing then [the optimum block-size], what is the best approach? A conservative one or a risky one?
Carvalho’s lack of knowledge shows…
Ver stated that the market should decide. Then he asked Carvalho to name any other altcoin that has full blocks [like bitcoin].
Carvalho didn’t know.
Ver stated that it has never happened.
Ver wins point on technicality.
Carvalho indicated that everybody wants to use bitcoin. [Yet another wild assertion. Bad form.]
Ver related that bitcoin having full blocks and high fees – and being experimented upon – is VERY risky. That the experiments should be done on a separate altcoin, not bitcoin. [Really good point.]
Ver wins two-points.
Carvalho’s do nothing approach
Carvalho stated that “inaction” on bitcoin is “conservative.” That leaving it alone is not risky. That Ver should not paint it this way.
Ver stated that action is needed on bitcoin.
Ver wins point again.
Carvalho repeated that bitcoin had a coded-in block size limit originally, but Ver explained that this was not generally true. That the one-megabyte limit was not reached until recently, since there was no “infinite” demand for block-space. At that point any responsible core team should have fixed it. Such a failure, in the real world of business, would have resulted in an employee’s termination, according to Ver.
Ver’s explanation agains fall flat. Minus a point.
Ver stated that many well-known exchanges are busily integrating Bitcoin Cash, but if people still wished to use bitcoin, that is fine. On the other hand, if you want reliability, faster transactions, something like the way bitcoin was supposed to work, then Bitcoin Cash is the answer – and it will save you money.
This comes off as smug. You are losing the crowd here, Ver.
Carvalho asserted that Bitcoin Cash was unreliable. He asked why Bitcoin Cash created more coins and raised the specter of inflation?
Ver stated that Bitcoin Cash has the same coin number as bitcoin, but for a time, many miners switched to Bitcoin Cash and they got ahead.
Point for Ver.
Carvalho then supplied a list of Bitcoin Cash complaints all at once. He continued to interrupt Ver.
Carvalho indicated that Bitcoin Cash changed their mining algorithm to make it easier to mine.
Point for Carvalho. Ver never counters.
That ASIC Boost can also be used.
Point for Carvalho. Ver ignores or forgets?
That there is almost a 1% inflation rate in Bitcoin Cash.
[This inflation assertion is disingenuous. Inflation implies a constantly growing money supply. Bitcoin Cash, like bitcoin, has an upper hard limit. Carvalho’s argument is that since Bitcoin Cash mines faster it causes temporary inflation of coins – but this does not necessarily translate into a lower coin value, which is the result of inflation in a controlled, single-source and mandated money supply. Bitcoin Cash is not “legal tender.”]
Carvalho’s inflation allegation falls flat. Minus a point.
Carvalho also alleged that “old work” can be used to obtain more Bitcoin Cash coins in some cases. No other explanation was given.
Ver does not counter. Carvalho wins point by default.
Ver claimed that given the current bitcoin environment, bitcoin will lose out to Bitcoin Cash.
Carvalho indicated that Ver stated these things because he thinks that Bitcoin Cash is doing something new.
Ver said that Bitcoin Cash has a larger user base that litecoin, for example. That anyone can check Coinmarketcap.com to see this.
Carvalho responded that using trading volumes, where there are no fees, for example, does not give an accurate picture. But he failed to describe what did give an accurate picture.
Nobody wins a point.
Carvalho plays dirty…
Carvalho then accused Ver of over-tweeting, getting socks (sock puppets) to up-vote and downvote etc.
Carvalho loses credibility all at once. Dumps all his points. Irrational statements. No verification offered.
Ver stated that these were lies. And backs his statements up with examples.
Ver is awarded five points.
Carvalho offered zero evidence of these accusations or any others, up to this point. And yet he presses on.
Minus another point for Carvalho, who is now sinking.
Carvalho then launched into more insult-like behavior, called Bitcoin Cash, “Bcash” and Ver became irritated. He advised Carvalho to discontinue this line or he would discontinue the interview.
Since Carvalho senses he’s lost the high ground, he starts to sling.
Minus more points.
Carvalho continued to press Ver’s buttons, stating that Ver only wanted the bitcoin name to “…coopt the brand.”
Ver stated that it was essentially more legitimate than bitcoin, although the name is Bitcoin Cash. But it is the true “bitcoin.” Read his lips, Ver stated.
The discussion is off track now.
Ver began to cite the growth of Bitcoin Cash over bitcoin, pointing out that it will soon overtake bitcoin.
Carvalho’s belief — higher bitcoins fees are better?
Carvalho stated that the higher fees associated with bitcoin makes it more valuable. [Seriously.] That for Ver to continue to hold bitcoin at all “…makes no sense.”
Ver reminded Carvalho not to place all his eggs in one basket and that bitcoin still retains a “network effect.”
Ver creams Carvalho again.
Carvalho continued with his “Bcash” insults and Ver reminded him it’s Bitcoin Cash. Ver also indicated that he does not need to speak to “someone on the internet” who does not necessarily run a successful business.
This makes Ver look bad. Loses emotional high-ground here. Big bad Bitcoin Cash entrepreneur bad mouths porn king, just trying to make a smut-buck. We’re in the ditch now.
Carvalho asked why it mattered that Ver was a millionaire.
[Why? Because it shows a person who can run a successful business.]
Carvalho reminded Ver that bitcoin is not a business.
Ten points for Carvalho. He’s above water again.
Carvalho insisted repeatedly that he could call Bitcoin cash, “Bcash” and Ver reminded him that that label was started in a derogatory manner on the internet and that he didn’t like it.
Moot point. Does not help discussion. It just pushes Ver over the edge.
Carvalho’s last stab…
Carvalho stated that he thought only Ver, “Jihan” and Ver’s sock puppets, didn’t like the “Bcash” label.
Ver then discontinued the interview after flipping Carvalho off.
Bad form. Ver loses debate in seconds — on emotional grounds, but not substance. Makes him appear easy to enrage.
I’ll have to say, of all the interviews I’ve seen Ver do, this one was the most interesting. Showed his human side. His inabilities.
And if Ver is right, it will be an “I told you so moment” when (and if) bitcoin begins to falter. Whether Bitcoin Cash will pick up the slack, is another matter.
Do you still trust Bitcoin Cash?
Carvalho’s interview only served to point out bitcoin’s weaknesses, show that Ver is human and make people realize that they might want to reconsider holding onto BTC or BCH.
On the other hand, Carvalho made some valid points, even if most of it was mud-slinging.
Put your eggs in different baskets.
Ver issued his apology here. Too late now.
…I am now rethinking my Bitcoin Cash holdings.