Back To Basics: Vitalik Buterin Calls For A Return To Ethereum's Original Spirit

Ethereum (CRYPTO: ETH) co-founder, Vitalik Buterin has published a blog post emphasizing the need to realign the Ethereum ecosystem with its original values of being permissionless, decentralized, censorship-resistant, and open-source.

Buterin's reflections are a call to action for the Ethereum community to revisit the foundational principles that initially inspired the creation of the blockchain platform.

Buterin's Nostalgic Recollections And Vision

In the blog published Thursday, Buterin reminisces about his experiences in Berlin's Bitcoin Kiez and the libertarian gathering PorcFest in New Hampshire, where Bitcoin's political and social implications were deeply intertwined with its use.

These memories serve as a backdrop to his vision of crypto not just as isolated tools but as part of a holistic movement towards a freer society.

The Early Vision Of Web3

Buterin recalls the early concept of "Web3," a term coined by Ethereum co-founder Gavin Wood.

This vision encompassed a broader perspective of Ethereum, seeing it as more than just "Bitcoin plus smart contracts," but as a foundational layer for a more open internet stack.

Buterin laments that since 2017, this vision has somewhat faded, with a shift towards financialization and less emphasis on consumer crypto payments and non-financial applications.

Challenges And Opportunities In The Current Landscape

Buterin identifies the rise in transaction fees as a primary factor that shifted the focus towards financial applications, sidelining the original ethos of Ethereum.

However, he notes positive developments in 2023, including the emergence of rollups, second-generation privacy solutions, account abstraction, and advancements in zero-knowledge proofs.

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Reiterating Ethereum's Core Values

Buterin outlines several core values of the Ethereum ecosystem, emphasizing open global participation, decentralization, censorship resistance, auditability, credible neutrality, a cooperative mindset, and the focus on building tools rather than empires.

He warns against deviating from these values, which could lead to a loss of the unique value of the crypto ecosystem.

The Role Of Ethereum In A Broader Technological Vision

Buterin discusses Ethereum's role in a suite of decentralized technologies, including decentralized messaging (Waku) and storage (Swarm and IPFS).

He highlights the potential of these technologies in decentralized social media and the importance of zero-knowledge proofs for privacy and authentication.

The Importance of the Social Layer in Ethereum's Ecosystem

Buterin stresses the need for a strong social layer in Ethereum's community to enforce its values where pure incentives fall short.

He advocates for a balance between valuing incentives and not being consumed by them, emphasizing the importance of neutrality, open source, and censorship resistance.

Buterin's blog post serves as a reminder of Ethereum's original goals and values.

It calls for a recommitment to these principles to ensure that Ethereum and the broader crypto ecosystem continue to evolve in a way that aligns with the vision of a more open, decentralized, and equitable digital future.

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