Lightning Network Does Not Solve All Bitcoin Problems | CoinDesk JAPAN | Coin Desk Japan


The “Lightning Network” of the Bitcoin Layer 2 protocol is aptly named. Because when it works well, it really works like lightning. The Lightning Network is hugely popular.

Lightning Network with hopes

Popularity is understandable. Despite its problems and shortcomings, the potential is huge and it will likely help solve Bitcoin’s scaling problems. However, because expectations are high, it has been appealed to solve everything.

Transaction fees too high? We have the Lightning Network.

Block too small? We have the Lightning Network.

Blocking too slow? We have the Lightning Network.

Is your government censoring your transactions? We have the Lightning Network.

The soup is too hot, the soup is too cold, there is no spoon, and so on.

Bitcoin transaction fees are skyrocketing in response to the boom in Ordinals and BRC-20, but at the same time, at the conference “Bitcoin 2023” held in Miami, Florida, multiple problems with Bitcoin were discussed. The same problem was repeatedly pointed out not only in the discussion but also on social media.

The answer, of course, is the Lightning Network.

experimental technology

But not everyone thinks the Lightning Network will be a panacea for all Bitcoin problems. Some even question whether it can solve the problems it should solve in the first place.

So, simply put, the Lightning Network may not be the way to enable fast, cheap, routine peer-to-peer Bitcoin transactions.

Some like it, some don’t, and some believe that the base layer should be fixed and not changeable. Such disagreements aside for now, there is a growing realist view that the Lightning Network will probably work for certain types of payments, not all types.

It’s not that either position is completely correct, but it doesn’t seem to be dominated by collective and uniform thinking. The Lightning Network may not solve everything, but that’s okay. You should keep trying though.

The Lightning Network was and still is an experimental technology. Advocates have consistently urged caution when offering their hard-earned Bitcoins to the Lightning Network, as inexperienced people can easily lose their wealth. I warned you.

Especially popular lightning-enabled wallets such as “Wallet of Satoshi” work extremely well because they are custodians.

Versatility, not panacea

Lightning Network has spawned a number of promising Bitcoin startups including THNDR Games, Voltage, CashApp, Strike, River, Amboss, Zebedee and IBEX. Many Lightning supporters see the Lightning Network as the way to make Bitcoin accessible to billions of people.

The idea may be correct. In the future, when more people use Bitcoin, it will theoretically be cheaper to use the Lightning Network for everyday transactions. There are large differences in income between countries, so lower prices are naturally more accessible.

But the idea of ​​Bitcoin reaching billions of people is not taken for granted these days. Some consider it a wild dream. As more people use bitcoin, unforeseen problems may arise.

Anyway, there is no panacea. Neither the Lightning Network, nor Stratum V2, nor your favorite Bitcoin-related protocol will solve everything.

It’s good that the days of putting all our hopes and dreams in one technology are over. Worshiping the wrong god will never work.

Bitcoin is decentralized and requires a decentralized and diverse mindset. Feel free to endorse your favorites like Lightning Network, Liquid or Ark. Because Bitcoin is open source, new projects are constantly emerging. That’s good.

|Translation and editing: Akiko Yamaguchi, Takayuki Masuda
|Image: Shutterstock
|Original: The Lightning Network Doesn’t Fix Everything Wrong With Bitcoin

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