Ethereum code editor Yoichi Hirai has resigned from his position following personal concerns that an Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) over a standardized format for lost fund recovery would potentially violate Japanese law.
“My blood pressure is higher since I found this draft. I don’t sleep well. My family accuses me of mental absence. I believe these are signs that my abilities are not ready for the task of the EIP editorship. I resign from the post of an EIP editor.”
Musiconomi developer Dan Phifer and two developers from startup TapTrust introduced said proposal, which seeks to create a solution method for a simpler way to amend the Ethereum blockchain that would allow to redistribute address balances in the case of lost funds.
A hack last June on the Parity Ethereum client caused Musiconomi to lose their ether raised by crowdfunding when Parity froze their multi-sig wallet. Phifer’s proposal would allow such lost funds on the Ethereum platform to be returned in the case of a similar future hack.
Hirai’s reportedly main problem with the proposal is what he sees as its conflict with a Japanese penal code on the “Unauthorized Creation of Electromagnetic Records.” He writes on Github that he doesn’t think that “anybody has the authority to make an irregular state change”, because he doesn’t believe that Ethereum users know about or authorize the EIP process, and thus doesn’t want the non-democratically chosen EIP leaders to make these kind of rules for Ethereum users.
Hirai adds that he thinks the proposal is “at odds with the Ethereum philosophy”, because Ethereum was made to avoid “single points of failure and the need of trust”. In a later comment, Hirai amended that he could ignore his understanding of the Ethereum philosophy, but that he can’t ignore violations of the penal code.
Software engineer Afri Schoedon, who also works in community management at