TL;DR: I’m a proud double-spender. I think double-spending proof of work-based shitcoins is the most effective action I can take action to help save the planet and make Greta grin again. Allow me to explain why.
Make Greta Grin Again
Let’s take a random shitcoin. I’m choosing Grin, a favorite shitcoin among Bitcoin maximalists. We can calculate roughly how much electricity the Grin network consumes, assuming the miners are not mining at a loss, in which case the figure would be even higher.
Sixty grin are produced per minute through mining. This means we have 3,600 grin per hour. One Grin is worth 1.38 dollars, which means 4,968 dollars worth of Grin are produced per hour. How much money are you willing to spend, to earn one dollar worth of Grin?
Assuming the market participants are rational, they’d be willing to spend one dollar. Again, since cryptonerds are not rational market participants, but often just teenage boys wasting their parents’ electricity, the actual amount of money they’re willing to spend might be even bigger.
Ending This Whole Sorry Episode
So, we’re going with 4,968 dollars worth of electricity that is spent to sustain the Grin network per hour. Assuming the price for one Kwh is five cents, the network would be consuming 99,360 Kwh. You can assume about 500 grams of CO2 emitted per Kwh. This means Grin emits 49,680 kilo of CO2, per hour. That’s about 25 transatlantic flights per hour worth of CO2.
Now the thing you have to consider is that anything that halves the value of Grin should halve the amount of money people are willing to spend on mining Grin, thus halving the carbon footprint too. What happens if the value of one Grin goes down by 50%? On an annualized basis, that would be 110,000 transatlantic flights worth of CO2 that is no longer emitted into the atmosphere. The reason that figure is so ridiculous is of course because the current price of Grin is ridiculous, but because any dumb fool could pump the price, people don’t bother short-selling it.
With a sufficiently large double-spend attack, it’s possible to halve the value of Grin. In the process, you’re not just preventing a small town worth of CO2 emissions, you’re earning yourself large amounts of money that you could reinvest in attacks against bigger cryptocurrencies.
So, my suggestion is simple: Make Greta smile again, double-spend a shitcoin. And if you’re sufficiently patient and end up wealthy from your endeavor, you can eventually tackle the biggest shitcoin of them all, thereby hopefully ending this whole sorry episode.
For 99% of shitcoins, the first and most difficult step is getting a pool up and running that allows you to mine them, tied to a daemon of the particular shitcoin. The pool of these cryptonerds have 323422352523 dependencies, and then you still have to manually configure all sorts of stuff inside the pool settings to use whatever exotic new algorithm they’re using. This is the biggest stumbling block. It’s a lot of work to get a pool functional, particularly if they’re using a rare algorithm.
After that, it’s relatively simple. What you do is as following:
You take your daemon and cut it off the network. Generally in my experience the daemons refuse to function if they’re not connected to any nodes at all, so you set up another node and force it to only connect to the node on your pool.
Now you rent a significant amount of hashpower. The easiest place to rent the hashpower for an attack like this is miningrigrentals.com. You then aim your hashpower at your pool.
On the mainnet, you send a transaction to an exchange, so make sure to have a wallet connected to the mainnet, with the same private keys as your own mining daemon that’s not connected to the mainnet.
As you’re mining, you make another conflicting transaction, sending coins to yourself.
Once your deposit on the exchange is confirmed, you dump your shitcoins and withdraw bitcoin.
Now you’re hopefully ahead of the rest of the network with your private chain. You can connect your daemon to the rest of the network; the rest of the network will accept your chain as valid.
You sold your coins for bitcoin, but on the new chain, you still have your shitcoins! In addition, you have all the coins that you mined, while the rest of the network mined worthless blocks!
If you do this on a regular basis, what ends up happening is that the exchanges either delist the shitcoin (price crash guaranteed), or they end up demanding a ridiculous number of confirmations (price crash likely).
Defrauding an Exchange?
What generally happens is that the exchange is bailed out by the developers of the shitcoin, because any halfway decent shitcoin has a “developer’s reward.”
If the exchange is not bailed out then, yes, you’re essentially defrauding the exchange. I don’t mourn that, because the exchange makes the choice to offer people these climate annihilating unregulated pyramid schemes. There hasn’t been a lawsuit yet in regards to whether you’re allowed to do this, and, as far as I’m aware, you’re technically simply acting within the rules of the protocol of a system that pretends to be a form of money.
The exchange could theoretically come after you, so you use a throwaway email to register and a no-logs VPN. I’ve never even so much as received an email saying “please send back the coins you still owe us,” so I guess everyone just sees it as part of the rules of the game.
There are coins being double-spent on a regular basis. The <10 million ones don’t even really hit the news I think. It’s embarrassing for everyone involved, so they generally keep it quiet.
Originally published as Save the planet, double-spend a shitcoin by u/baibaiguis.
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