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7 December 2023
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Vitalik Buterin and Solana’s Anatoly Yakovenko Clash With Each Other

Solana’s cofounder Anatoly Yakovenko recently took to social media to criticize Ethereum, describing it as a “novel spectacle of bourgeois upheaval” rather than a genuine revolution. He argued that Ethereum perpetuates a form of digital tyranny, pressing upon the “toiling masses” with a different but equally oppressive boot.

Yakovenko emphasized the need for a truly stateless digital realm, where the cost of state creation is negligible, to emancipate people from capitalist intermediaries and state surveillance.

Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko criticized “Ethereum presents itself not as a harbinger of genuine revolution, but merely as a novel spectacle of bourgeois upheaval”, “forever pressing upon the countenance of the toiling masses with a boot”.

Vitalik had earlier said that…— Wu Blockchain (@WuBlockchain) October 3, 2023

In response, Vitalik Buterin had earlier noted that “smart people” have told him Solana has an “earnest” developer community. This seemed like a subtle nod of approval toward Solana, but it also left room for interpretation.

It is somewhat self-righteous for Yakovenko to criticize Ethereum for not being a true revolution for the “toiling masses” when Solana itself has been propelled to the top of the cryptocurrency market with significant financial backing from VCs. This backing has arguably made Solana more of a “VC’s blockchain” than a “people’s blockchain.”

On the other hand, Buterin’s comment about Solana’s “earnest” developer community is a more diplomatic approach. It acknowledges Solana’s contributions without necessarily agreeing or disagreeing with its philosophy. However, it also subtly implies that while Solana may have an earnest community, that does not necessarily make it revolutionary or superior to Ethereum.

Both leaders raise compelling points. Yakovenko questions the social impact of blockchain technology, urging the community to aim for true decentralization and accessibility. Buterin, meanwhile, seems to focus on the practical aspects, implicitly suggesting that an “earnest” community can indeed bring about meaningful changes, even if it does not fully align with everyone’s ideological expectations.


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