TL;DR: “After careful consideration I too am hereby resigning my BU membership,” independent member Tomislav Dugandzic posted 26 March 2019. He follows Antony Zegers and Amaury Séchet who also left Bitcoin Unlimited recently. The men (now three in nearly as many days) resigned over their concerns about BU leadership and governance as both relate to tacit support of a lawsuit against developers, a suit they believe to be frivolous. Séchet spoke with CoinSpice shortly after issuing his formal resignation.
Amaury Séchet Speaks After Third BU Member Resigns
Asked about the reaction to his announcement, Amaury Séchet explained, “I think people understand why I did it, but did not quite realise how bad the situation within BU is.” Séchet, lead developer for Bitcoin ABC, a full node implementation on the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network, was a rather less vocal figure just a few months back.
After careful consideration I too am hereby resigning my BU membership. Antony Zegers and Amaury Sechet have already resigned in protest and so am I. The current BU leadership's collaboration with the BSV community is unacceptable and I want no part in it.
— Tomislav Dugandzic (@todu77) March 26, 2019
Sure, he spoke and gave interviews, but the amount of both has skyrocketed since the 15 November 2018 scheduled BCH upgrade turned contentious hard fork and eventual chain split. As someone often credited with bringing BCH into existence Summer of 2017, Séchet was front and center during the so-called Hash War in November, and when criticism was levied it tended to fall on him. In a way, he was almost forced out into a more public role.
And then came the lawsuit. By nearly most outside accounts, it has been deemed frivolous at best and, if successful, a worrisome open-source dev killer at worst. And Séchet should know, he’s named as a principal, complete with a website’s running ticker next to when he was expected to be served. He told CoinSpice it is “a giant waste of resources on one hand. It’s also quite frustrating to have to tiptoe around certain subjects, and it feels like censorship. In that sense, regardless of the outcome of the lawsuit, they have won something.” It’s not only Séchet who is the suit’s target, however.
I Want No Part
For devs such as Antony Zegers and Séchet, resigning was largely a matter of principle. And so it is too, apparently, for now former BU member Tomislav Dugandzic. “Antony Zegers and Amaury Séchet have already resigned in protest and so am I,” he continued his tweet. “The current BU leadership’s collaboration with the BSV community is unacceptable and I want no part in it.” BSV is the split chain from the BCH November fork. Its heads have made numerous statements threatening lawsuits and jailing those with whom they disagree, and their ire has been especially focused upon the BCH development community. They deny having anything to do with the lawsuit.
What impact a growing number of defections from BU will have is something CoinSpice asked of Séchet. “There are many good people within BU,” he explained, “and I hope they’ll continue to contribute to BCH. BU as an organisation would not really cooperate but rather flip flop on many issues. The hash war theme was in fact started by Andrew Stone and Jimmy [Nguyen] in Tokyo when it became clear that op_group wasn’t getting as much traction as he’d hoped.”
But his separation from BU seems also to be more than just differences over how to respond to a lawsuit. “BU’s behavior was really bad leading to the fork and it contributed greatly to how bad the fork went,” Séchet claimed. “This comes after a series of bad moves I mention in my post. There does not seem to be an increase in awareness within BU, which pretty much ensures things will get worse.” CoinSpice Executive Editor, Hayden Otto, investigated the Bitcoin Unlimited governance model back in January, charting various votes by members. It appears to show ever-clearer lines of growing division.
Asked too about Zegers’ public show of support, Séchet noted, “Anthony is one of these people who has a deep understanding of Bitcoin’s game theory as well as group dynamics. He was one of the very first to join BU […] If he is leaving some project after being involved in it for so long, you should really stop and ask yourself why.”
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