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Ripple’s David Schwartz claims aim behind informal governance is not to avoid forks



Decentralization means every peer on the network has a say in the decision-making process, but the reality of various crypto-blockchain is far from it. Different blockchain networks have their own way of implementing blockchain governance. While some use on-chain democratic voting, many others prefer private decision making.

Each of these governance methods has its trade-off in the form of developmental speeds and participation that affect users in the ecosystem, even those who are not a part of the decision making process. For a distributed network, its very important that all of its node work is in the same state, and this is the reason why a majoritarian agreement over the state of the ledger is necessary.

Formal Governance vs Informal governance

David Schwartz, CTO of Ripple, spoke about the importance of blockchain governance and its effect on different blockchain networks. He said that formal governance on a blockchain network often works in sync with the original protocol or code embedded in the network. These provide a roadmap in the decision-making process on important matters, while also avoiding accidental forks. Schwartz cited the example of the XRP ledger, where the base protocol does not allow anyone to implement a software change in the ledger unless, “80% of

the network signals support for the change.”

The formal form of governance can help in matters like avoiding accidental forks. However, in order to keep up with changing times and technologies, dynamic or informal governance is necessary. And, it is quite evident from the case of Bitcoin and Ethereum.

Schwartz added that the aim behind informal governance is not to avoid forks, as forks in themselves are not bad. According to Schwartz,

“Forks are not inherently bad. Let’s say some people on the network absolutely want private transactions, and some say no we have regulatory clients we can’t have private transactions. If they fork, it could be that the resulting two networks have more value separately”

Schwartz also addressed queries about XRP being centralized and Ripple having a say in the decision-making for XRP. He explained,

“Ripple has no formal authority despite having a significant portion of the systems economic value. Validators can technically run whatever software they want. If someone wanted to propose a change taking away 20 Billion XRP from Ripple because they are worried it’s in danger of becoming a security, there’s no legal lever preventing them from doing so”

Thus, it is evident that blockchain networks need to find a balance between hard-coded protocol-led formal governance and dynamic decision making, as per the situation through informal governance.

.Source: ambcrypto


Twitter Blocks XRP Payments Platform Amid Rumors of Bitcoin (BTC) Integration



Twitter has blocked the popular XRP Tip Bot, which allows users to send XRP to one another by tweeting a string of commands. The platform is designed to give users an easy way to reward one another and support content creators.

The social media giant says @xrptipbot violated Twitter’s rules. When the account holder asked for clarity on the citation, Twitter responded that the account will not be restored.

“Hello, It has come to our attention that your Twitter account is in violation of the Twitter Rules, specifically the policy on Impersonation. Impersonation is pretending to be another entity in order to deceive, and is strictly prohibited. This account has been suspended and will not be restored.”

The XRP Tip Bot launched in October of

2018 and is owned by Wietse Wind, the founder of Ripple-backed XRPL Labs. According to a real-time tracker, a total of 861,315 payments totaling 2,177,155 XRP have been sent through the platform since its inception.

Twitter’s decision to ban the account comes amid reports that the tech company may implement a tipping platform of its own as well as rumors that it will integrate Bitcoin.

In February of last year, Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey said he “loves the idea” of giving users on Twitter the ability to tip with BTC.

Square Crypto, a subsidiary of the payments company Square, recently announced the release of a software development kit for Lightning – a Bitcoin scaling solution designed to increase the speed and lower the cost of sending BTC.

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Ripple CEO Hints at IPO, Says More Crypto Firms Will Go Public in 2020



Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse predicts that initial public offerings (IPOs) will become more prevalent in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space in 2020.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos yesterday, Jan. 23, Garlinghouse reportedly hinted that Ripple would itself be one of those firms to seek a public flotation:

“In the next 12 months, you’ll see IPOs in the crypto/blockchain space. We’re not going to be the first and we’re not going to be the last, but I expect us to be on the leading side… it’s a natural evolution for our company.”

“Natural evolution”

An IPO refers to the process of offering the shares of a private corporation to the public in a new stock issuance. For this reason, it is sometimes referred to as “going public,” or as “floating” corporate shares to the wider market.

The cryptocurrency industry has to date focused its energies on initial coin offerings (ICO), which evolved as an alternative issuance model for still-young, innovative firms

that spared them many of the cumbersome legal and regulatory processes involved in a traditional IPO.

Yet as the space matures — and arguably, in the wake of the post-boom ICO rout, which saw many offerings exposed as either outright fraudulent or simply unsuccessful — some firms are now seeking to build confidence with mainstream investors by way of public listings on traditional stock exchanges, with all of the red tape and financial disclosures that implies.

This is a trend that Garlinghouse appears to believe will consolidate itself in the near future, even as some of the industry’s largest players have thus far struggled to meet the stringent requirements of an IPO. 

As an alternative to adopting a traditional flotation model, major crypto firms such as Blockstack have instead chosen to pursue compliant token sales, with the approval of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

Silvergate Bank — a California-based commercial bank focused on digital currency businesses — went public with an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange in Nov. 2019.

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Ripple Reports Selling Just $13M of XRP Last Quarter



Ripple’s XRP sales fell dramatically in the last quarter of 2019 – at least partly due to change in how the company sells its store of the third-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, the company said Wednesday.

XRP sales in Q4 dropped 80 percent from the $66.24 million sold in Q3 to just over $13 million, according to Ripple’s XRP Markets Report. The drop is at least partly attributable to a total suspension in programmatic sales, which accounted for $16.1 million the previous quarter. Over-the-counter (OTC) trades also dropped 74 percent quarter on quarter (QoQ).

“In Q3 2019, Ripple further reduced XRP sales and paused programmatic sales. Ripple maintained this approach throughout the entirety of Q4,” the market report reads. Ripple said OTC trades had remained focused in providing liquidity and utility to partners in “strategic regions,” which included Asia, Europe,

the Middle East and Africa.

Ripple announced in June it would adopt a more “conservative approach” to quarterly XRP sales to address concerns of misreported volumes from cryptocurrency exchanges. This came into effect soon after the company sold $251 million worth of XRP tokens in Q3.

Programmatic sales were made directly to exchanges and used to make up the majority of XRP sales figures, accounting for $144.6 million in Q2 2019.

Ripple also said in Wednesday’s report its On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) tool, which uses XRP as a bridge currency for cross-border payments, had proven to be successful with clients. The dollar value of XRP transacted through ODL increased 650 percent between Q3 and Q4, with transaction volumes increasing 390 percent QoQ.

Excluding the billion tokens released at the beginning of January, the company’s escrow accounts currently hold approximately 48.9 billion XRP tokens.

UPDATE (Jan. 24, 09:03 UTC): A previous version of this article said quarterly XRP sales had dropped by 75 percent. This has since been corrected.

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