Vitalik Buterin says Decentralization is a Luxury, Defends Zcash as a Privacy Coin

During a Twitter argument, Vitalik Buterin stood behind Zcash as a strong privacy coin, despite arguments citing its centralized nature.

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin, who is also an advisor for privacy coin Zcash, defended ZEC on Twitter, against criticism regarding its centralized nature.

Responding to a Tweet by WhalePanda, who said Vitalik should back a decentralized coin if privacy mattered to him, the Ethereum co-founder wrote:

“Why? If I was using cryptocurrency for a high-privacy-demanding usecase, I'd go for what seems more likely to protect confidentiality and not give a crap about luxuries like decentralization.”

He then went on to clarify his stance, saying that decentralization is important for a coin’s long-term survival, but not for its privacy features:

“...decentralization is important in ensuring a privacy coin survives in the long term. But if I have one transaction I really need to send privately *here and now*, then with the right cryptography centralized systems if available are totally sufficient.”

According to Vitalik, users who care about privacy, are focused on maintaining confidentiality rather than ensuring a coin’s survival, since the two are independent. By his reasoning, even if a coin dies off in the future due to lack of decentralization, the confidential transactions it was used for, will remain so.

“Zcash's confidentiality guarantees are stronger than its survival guarantees,” he wrote.

Zcash, or ZEC, was created in 2016, and saw major hype in the early days, taking its price over $4,000. However, it soon corrected and went under $100, while it is currently trading around $277.

Just yesterday, the Zcash foundation also issued a statement regarding the ongoing ASIC resistance debate, given how Bitmain is launching ASIC miners, which can further centralize the currency.

“The Foundation is developing ASIC resistance as an option while simultaneously researching ASIC resistance,” read the official post.