Vitalik Buterin — the Ethereum founder — just gave away 1,000 ETH (~$100k) to three separate projects on Twitter following a thread where Preston Van Loon of Prysmatic Labs commented that Ethereum devs are having trouble balancing full-time workloads with second jobs.
Vitalik promptly responded, “Just sent 1000 ETH. Yolo.” He also provided the Etherscan transaction details, confirming he had sent 1,000 ETH to the project.
Paul Hauner of Lighthouse Sigma Prime — an Ethereum Serenity client — then reached out in the comments below, and Vitalik promptly sent his project another 1,000 ETH along with the Etherscan confirmation.
Finally, Vitalik donated another 1,000 ETH to Mikerah of ChainSafe systems towards the end of the thread, completing a $300k live social media donation spree over a couple of hours.
Vitalik’s donation of ETH through Twitter is ironic, considering how during the bull market at the end of 2017 he was forced to put “not giving away ETH” in his Twitter handle to combat constant fraudulent efforts to swindle unsuspecting users out of donations. This time, however, the gifts were real and were far more lucrative than any previous attempts to impersonate him with fake accounts.
All of the fake accounts that were impersonating him seemed to have disappeared throughout the bear market too, with none showing up on the thread where he doled out ETH.
Ethereum Struggling to Maintain Its Position
There has been a noticeable surge in the cryptocurrency markets over the last 24 hours, with Ethereum surpassing $100 after falling below it for more than a week. The fall of Ethereum’s price has been quite spectacular from its all-time high, however. The platform continues to grapple with scaling problems and is struggling to retain its title as the dominant smart contracts platform.
The conversation that spurred Vitalik’s giveaway on Twitter was focusing on precisely Ethereum’s developer problem and how the platform is not growing sufficiently and is lacking operational leadership.
Ethereum’s scaling solutions cannot come fast enough, as currently, no dapps on the platform have more than 1,000 daily active users, signaling an exceedingly poor level of practical use. Ethereum devs are promising that the next-generation network enhancements are actively under research and development, but time seems to be running out on the attraction of the platform to outsiders.
Time will tell if Ethereum can adequately scale before the industry attention shifts towards upcoming next-generation platforms or even Bitcoin sidechains like Rootstock. For now, Vitalik’s $300k injection into some promising Ethereum startups has provided a spectacle for some much-needed stimulation in the community.