Ethereum classic, just like Ethereum, is a virtual currency that runs on smart contracts. It is essentially a continuation of the Ehtereum blockchain and it promises untampered history and freedom from any current or future interference with the transactions on the blockchain. ETC is a product of a hard-fork on the original Ethereum blockchain and both coins are identical up to block 1,920,000. This implies that all the transactions on the Ethereum blockchain until the hard-fork are also valid on the Ethereum Classic blockchain. Following the 2016 hard-fork, the users that were not in support of the fork decided to stick with the original chain and name it Ethereum Classic.
In addition to the identical blocks, other similarities between Ethereum and Ethereum Classic exist. Some of them include the creation and deployment of smart contracts and mining characteristics such as block time, block size and block rewards.
The argument for ETC
When the unfortunate hack of the DAO built on Ethereum in 2016, about one-third of the funds invested in the DAO was lost and there was a huge debate about how to proceed from the attack. A part of the Ethereum community wanted a soft-fork that would roll back the blockchain and allow the stolen money to be recovered. Another part, however, believed that ‘code is law’ and the soft-fork could open up the system to even more attacks. The people on this side of the divide believed that the immutability of the blockchain should not be tampered with, as doing that is against the fundamental principles behind the blockchain technology.
At the end of the day, a hard-fork was adopted and many major players including Ehtereum founders Buterin and Gavin Wood moved to the hard-forked version. Those that chose to stay behind named the continuation chain Ethereum Classic.
Supply and Sustainability
Although mining rewards are similar with ETH, the method of mining of ETC is expected to differ with time. This is due to a built-in difficulty bomb that makes the process of mining with proof of work more complex as mining goes on. The only solution to this is for miners to switch o mining with proof of stake. But it appears that ETC intends to stick with the former. So, there are plans to pause the built-in bomb.
The total supply of ETC is expected to be capped at 210 million coins by the year 2025. The team doesn’t have any plans to increase the supply as they believe the limited supply would make ETC more appealing to investors. The reason behind this is that the value would be increased by the limited supply, unlike some other coins with infinite supplies whose values are expected to decrease over time.
Ethereum Classic remains one of the established Altcoins as it consistently ranks among the top 20 coins on Coinmarketcap.com. The coin is currently priced at $18 but it already spiked above $30 following a new monetary policy.
Although ETC may never be as popular as the original Ethereum, it is quite relevant in executing smart contracts and it also has the support of a dedicated community. Overall, it represents a coin with a recognizable use case and that translates to a lot of potential.