Ethereum Developer Resigns as Code Editor Citing Legal Concerns - EIP 867

Ethereum Developer Resigns as Code Editor Citing Legal Concerns

Ethereum developer Yoichi Hirai has resigned as one of the platform’s code editors, citing concerns that a contentious proposal may be in violation of penal law.

Named EIP 867, the proposal defines a method to better facilitate the return of lost funds on the platform.

Speaking on GitHub, the developer wrote:

“Some EIP editors look nonchalant about legal consequences of this draft, but I have warned them, and I have no capacities to do anything more than warn them … I resign from the post of an EIP editor.”

Writing his comments yesterday, Hirai said that the EIP may be in violation of a Japanese law named the “Unauthorized Creation of Electromagnetic Records,” stating “I have a doubt that, if the proposal is followed in practice, the process might constitute a crime.”

The law in question deals with cases of computer-based fraud, in particular the unlawful creation of data “with the intent to bring about improper administration of the matters of another person,” a legal document states.

Last week, Hirai blocked the proposal due to its failure to align with the “ethereum philosophy,” a requirement based on the code acceptance process, as detailed in EIP-1. The developer has since retracted those statements, writing: “I was able to ignore my interpretation of ‘the ethereum philosophy’ but I cannot ignore the penal code.”

As previously detailed by CoinDesk, the proposal is led by developer Dan Philfer from Musiconomi, an ICO issuer that saw 16,475 ether lost in the Parity fund freeze last year.

Philfer’s proposal has sparked controversy among developers, with some urging the public to get involved with the debate. The proposal is also said to have accelerated efforts to improve the platform’s process for accepting code changes.

Prior to his resignation, Hirai was one of six ethereum developers with the rights to accept software changes onto the platform.

According to data on GitHub, Hirai was prolific in this role, with 5,219 contributions in the last year - a figure that tops the sum of all other editor contributions combined.





Silent No More: Ethereum Users Spurn Recovery Code

The ethereum community has broken its silence over a move to better facilitate the return of funds lost on the platform.

In wake of the departure of ethereum developer Yoichi Hirai, who resigned from his role supervising the software’s changes Thursday, community members have stormed Github in resounding rejection of the controversial proposal over which he left his post.

In the last 24 hours, over 80 comments have been posted to the blockchain network’s official GitHub, with most stating they “do not support” or are “strongly opposed” to ethereum improvement proposal (EIP) 867, which details a method to standardize the use of system-wide software upgrades to return funds lost on the platform.

Often occurring as a result of faulty code, fund recovery is a sensitive topic for the platform, having previously led to the development of a rival cryptocurrency named ethereum classic.

The heated response, in which many are coming forward to express support for the developer, marks a sharp contrast to the silence earlier in the week, with some even writing that the proposal is a “complete disgrace to the ethereum community.”

Speaking on the thread, developer William Entriken warned about the potential consequences of normalizing lost fund recovery in comments that showcased the emerging sentiment.

“Here’s the unintended consequence of having a readily available, well documented, and standardized tool like this available,” he wrote.

Others dismissed the proposal as “very damaging” as well as “scary, and an absolute joke,” while another wrote that it “goes against everything I thought this movement was for.”

The outrage also mirrors reaction observed in a core developer meeting last week, where ethereum developer Vlad Zamfir spoke of the necessity for community feedback on the matter, stating that EIP 867 was perhaps too important to undergo the usual EIP process.

Adding to the issue is that confusion has emerged over the status of the proposal, which was formally entered into GitHub, first as an “issue” (or an early-stage sketch), and later as a “pull request,” a formal software outline that code become merged with the platform’s live code.

James Levy from Tap Trust, one of the three developers leading the proposal, closed the Github issue in the midst of the activity last night, sparking confusion that EIP 867 is no longer active.

However, to date, the corresponding pull request remains open, and at press time, continues to generate feedback.


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