NEO FUD – keeping the facts straight


EDIT: as of a few hours ago, NEO’s blockchain experienced another outage, this time with a 14 minute block time, followed by a 2 minute block time. Correct block time is 30 seconds.

As many of you know, there’s a huge amount of FUD with NEO recently. Here’s what happened.


The FUD started when the Store of Value blog released an article titled “NEO Is A Multi-Billion Dollar Disaster”. The blog post accused NEO of having poor performance, much worse than the advertised 1000 transactions/second. The primary pieces of evidence the author gave was huge block time differences during ICOs (high traffic periods). During the RPX ICO, NEO had a 5 minute block when the typical block time is around 30s. During the Trinity ICO, NEO had a 25 minute block and a 12 minute block. The author stated that a blockchain with 1000 transactions/second shouldn’t be choking with a single ICO on the platform. During the Bridge Protocol ICO, users had trouble contributing and a Bridge Protocol admin claimed that it was because “NEO is running into issues with consensus currently”.


The article also highlighted several developer comments on NEO’s smart contract ecosystem. These developers claimed that the system was poorly coded and lacked a lot of features. For example, multi-language support is poor even though this was a widely advertised property for NEO’s smart contract 2.0 system.


I double checked NEO’s blockchain explorers and can confirm that these unusually long blocks do exist, and they did occur during NEO ICOs. There has been no official explanation for these issues so far.


It’s important to note that the Store of Value blog’s author is invested in Ethereum and QTUM, both competitors to NEO. The author is infamous among the NEO community for spreading FUD, primarily around NEO’s centralization.


A few days later, NEO has a 2 hour block without an ongoing ICO. Soon after, published an article titled “NEO Is Either a Raging Success or a Total Disaster”. The article questioned NEO’s technical foundations, citing the Store of Value blog and also the recent 2 hour outage.


Soon after the article came out, a NEO team member gave an explanation for the 2 hour block. Apparently a single node went down causing a deadlock in the consensus process. He stated that a patch was being developed and will be deployed soon.


After the article, a article and blockchain engineer, Eric Wall, authored a 16 tweet-long tweet thread calling out NEO’s consensus problems. He says that single-node-failures are the most fundamental faults a fault tolerant algorithm needs to solve and the fact that NEO still has bugs causing single-node-failures is a huge red flag. He has calls out NEO’s lack of smart contracts on the system (23) and how expensive it is to actually deploy one.


Eric’s tweet thread became viral with more than 3.9k likes and 1.7k retweets.


Many prominent cryptocurrency leaders noticed, including:


  • Charlie Lee retweeted:
  • Emin Gun Sirer retweet:
  • Jared Tate retweeted: (retweeted the whole thread)
  • Xinxi Wang retweeted: (deleted his tweet)
  • Vlad Zamfir retweeted:


These tweets caused a huge reaction from NEO’s community. Many called it FUD and a coordinated attack. NEO quickly followed up with several responses to try to remedy the situation.


Erik Zhang, the lead dev for NEO, released a statement explaining the bug and gave a timeline of when the fix will be deployed:


Malcolm Lerider wrote a Medium blog post giving more details about the bug:


Fabio Canesin, founder of the City of Zion, provided a video demonstration of NEO continuing to run in a private net even with one node taken down:


Hopefully this clears up the whole situation and answers any questions for those that don’t have the time to keep track of all the events.

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Written by /u/bitconnectscrub @ March 6, 2018 /u/bitconnectscrub

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