Vitalik Buterin, the creator of the ethereum blockchain project, has proposed increasing user fees on the network for the purposes of supporting developers with sustainable funding.
“I propose we consider supporting a community norm that client [and] wallet [developers] can [and] should charge a 1 gwei/gas fee for [transactions] sent through their wallet,” tweeted Buterin Friday.
Gas fees denominated in gwei are payments made by the user to compensate for the computational energy required to process and validate transactions on the ethereum blockchain.
Suggesting that a flat, “one-off” payment of 1 gwei ($0.01 is about 73,000 gwei) for transactions sent to ethereum wallets could collectively raise up to $2 million in a year, Buterin wrote:
Stressing that he wanted to encourage this fee as a norm – not a mandate – in the ethereum ecosystem, Buterin explained there’s already a high degree of trust between users and their ethereum wallets given that “a bad [wallet] could steal all your money.”
Community responses thus far to Buterin’s proposal have been mixed, with one user pointing out that bitcoin wallet MultiBit had tried and failed to implement such a fee.
“Users were not willing to pay for something that was previously free. No one would upgrade,” tweeted Ken Hodler. “Eventually, the fee was removed. Without a good way to pay for support and engineering, development on the wallet stopped.”
Ethereum logo via CoinDesk Archives
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, institutional digital assets exchange. Bullish group is majority owned by Block.one; both groups have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary, and an editorial committee, chaired by a former editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal, is being formed to support journalistic integrity.