The past May 5th the government of Venezuela announced that it has taken Petro, the national cryptocurrency, offline. The reason is to be found in the need for maintenance of the network.
At the end of the operations, the National Superintendency of Crypto Assets announced that it has made some improvements to the infrastructure. The operation should now be followed by updating the wallet, in order to continue to use the service by PetroApp users.
The doubts of the community
However, it should be emphasized that a part of the community has subsequently detected the analyst of the official block explorer of Petro, which May 5, 2020 is identified as the creation date of the genesis block. Since other black explorers in turn claim that the creation date of the block in question dates back to 13 October 2018, it can be deduced that at this moment there could be two chains of the same cryptocurrency. Or a hard fork would have occurred.
The first comment to emphasize on the sidelines of the story came from Anibal Garrido, cryptocurrency trader who works at the Universidad de Carabobo: "The first thing that comes to mind is that, unfortunately, the previous blockchain had a number of errors, and based on that, they decided to upgrade the chain following a hard fork “.
According to others, however, to confirm the fact that a hard fork has been made is the fact that a blockchain is not an infrastructure that can be interrupted at will. The changes must necessarily be subject to the consent of the nodes. Precisely this aspect has given rise to a mass of rumors.
Two conflicting interpretations
The most interesting positions, in the crowd of rumors that has been unleashed, are in particular two.
The first is that of those who point out that what happened, with the government of Caracas that practically did everything without anyone knowing anything about it, would go to disavow what President Nicholas Maduro said earlier, according to which it would be one totally decentralized network.
Something that according to analysts would not prove in favor of Petro and Maduro, but which, after all, would attest to the centralized nature of the Venezuelan cryptocurrency that many already suspected. It should be remembered that Petro initially had to turn up Ethereum, Then NEM and finally landed on a private blockchain.
The second is perhaps more interesting, as according to other observers, including Garrido, it would simply be the acknowledgment of some problems in the network and a series of updates aimed at improving some aspects. In practice it would be the practical acknowledgment that the old blockchain was not equipped in order to support the volume of transactions that would occur in a scenario of mass adoption. This acknowledgment would have resulted in the total redesign of the network.
The opinion of some economists
Finally, the affirmations made by William Luther, analyst at the American Institute for Economic Research. According to him, in fact, Petro actually has potential for an improvement in the Venezuelan economy, but at the price of one less privacy for citizens.
A thesis, however, opposed by Garrido, according to which a mechanism of this kind would not involve anything new compared to the way in which governments currently treat the problem of confidentiality.