Freezing inactive accounts of the first miners
TON users and investors are awaiting the vote on whether to freeze wallets belonging to the first miners of the network for 48 months. These wallets contain a total of 1,081,425,847 TON coins. I first became aware of this from the testnet code of the official TON Blockchain repository, before it was later announced by the TON Core Dev team as a proposal that requires a vote.
What is the freeze for?
Investors who look into TON are immediately faced with the question – where is 96% of the TON coin supply? Who has it? There are no answers as of yet. When TON first appeared on CoinMarketCap, it only occupied the +250th place in market cap because this missing TON was not circulating. This ranking was based upon the actively circulating TON in the network which, at that time, was a small fraction of the total.
Today, TON is in the top 30 on CoinMarketCap on the understanding that 1,221,401,181 TON out of the total 5,047,558,528 TON issued are circulating amongst active wallets.
What does the freeze risk?
If the vote supports making changes to the TON mainnet, the introduction of these norms would create a bad precedent, particularly with respect to decentralization, the empowerment of the people, and the Web3 vision. Contrary to these tenets, a select group of people would be able to block any user.
Recently, Pavel Durov, in his address regarding the launch of the Fragment platform said that we should strive for decentralization and the transfer of power to the people through blockchain technology. But now we are planning to suspend some of the first miners, and it is unclear why. Huge Bitcoin wallets have been holding their reserves for 10 years now and no one is regulating them. How does simply putting the issue to a vote distinguish a decentralized blockchain from a centralized bank, especially given that voting will be done by major TON owners who also happen to be among the first miners?
The current group of active first miners could, with the amount of TON coin at their disposal, build a network of validators in 48 months and earn even more TON.
Voting is meaningless.
For a long time, voting has not been a decentralized solution in the TON network because of the large number of controlled validators.
Take, for example, the vote regarding DNS domains and the integration of .t.me domains. After the initial announcement, a ‘vote’ was confidently held among validators and the configuration of these domains was changed.
Based on this, it is highly likely that a validator vote will result in a decision to freeze the wallets, without any influence from the wider community, because it is beneficial for TON Foundation and large holders.
The freeze would set a precedent.
If we consider the consequences of the freeze, then the reduction in liquidity may attract new investors but, on the other hand, the centralized control of frozen addresses may scare off other investors because of the perception that their address could be frozen at any time.
This is a precedent that would undermine any future guarantees. If a mechanism for blocking addresses is added, it would make it much easier to use again in the future and no one would be immune from being blocked. Amongst the early miners, there may well be a real person who forgot about TON, will find his seed phrase in a year or two, and then find out that he has been blocked on the blockchain.
Vudi is the author of a channel about TON @investkingyru_en and an active participant in the TON ecosystem. He is also the founder of the blockchain collection kingyTON, based on the historical events of the TON project ton.org.in. If you find errors in this post, please let Vudi know on Telegram @kingyru.