Update (10-20-2016, 11:26 AM EST): This article was based on a tweet from ShapeShift that they had temporarily removed all Ethereum-based assets from their platform. That tweet has since been deleted, and the company’s blog post on the matter does not mention removing the assets, although they caution Ethereum-based token traders, telling them to expect transaction delays.
Update (10-20-2016, 11:42 PM EST): Ethereum-based assets have been up and running without issue since being returned to the site.
Technical problems and increasing transaction wait times on the Ethereum network have led popular cryptocurrency exchange ShapeShift to remove all Ethereum-based assets from their platform.
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ShapeShift Says Goodbye to Ethereum
As ShapeShift’s blog states:
“As some are aware, there have been ongoing malicious attacks on the Ethereum network over the past week or two. The attacks are changing and evolving, and as one vector is fixed, others are opened up. This struggle could continue for a while, unfortunately, though we’re confident Ethereum will emerge stronger. What this means for our users is this: Anyone doing an order with Ethereum (or Ethereum-based assets — Reputation REP, Digix DGD and SingularDTV SNGLS) should expect considerable delays in their order processing. Generally, Ethereum-based transactions are simply taking hours (or even a day or two) to get into their first block.”
Ethereum, perhaps, is having a difficult time adjusting to an increasing amount of transactions on its network. The cheap nature of “gas,” the internal cryptocurrency, has made for creative swarms of attackers to overload the system.
While hard forking is not necessarily good practice, some argue that it is the only way forward for Ethereum at this point.
Some stand to profit massively from the creation of a duplicate blockchain, which can double the coins in possession that one has and trade openly on two distinct markets. ShapeShift will not be a part of this, but look for them to re-join the Ethereum trading community in the future.
Dash, Monero, and Lightcoin remain as popular assets on the exchange, but the shift away from Ethereum has widened the spotlight on altcoins to an even wider buffet of choices.
It is not widely known whether or not ShapeShift deploys transactions directly on competing blockchains of altcoins, or if a solution is being used in-house to only interact with those blockchains at certain points. It will be interesting to see whether or not other cryptocurrency exchanges follow suit.
What do you think about ShapeShift’s decision to remove all Ethereum assets from its platform? Let us know in the comments below.
Images courtesy of ShapeShift, Crypto-Graphics.