AntPool & Bitmain Acting as 'a Pool of Pools' - Report

"AntPool/Bitmain is essentially a pool of pools. This is causing mining centralization," reports 0xB10C.

AntPool & Bitmain Acting as 'a Pool of Pools' - Report
  • "Looking at the merkle branches that mining pools send to miners as part of stratum jobs, it's clear that the BTCcom pool, Binance pool, Poolin, EMCD, Rawpool, and possibly Braiins* have exactly the same template and custom transaction prioritization as AntPool," analyst 0xB10C recently shared in a post.
  • "Stratum v1 jobs include (parts of) the coinbase transaction and the merkle branches a miner needs to compute the merkle root. If all branches are equal across pools, the block template is exactly the same," he explained.
"I've heard speculation about this all being liked to an FPPS partnership with AntPool/Bitmain. Bitmain insures against bad pool luck but you have to use Bitmains templates/transaction prioritization and pay the mining reward to the insurer for later distribution. Essentially a pool of pools and a lot of mining centralization," added the analyst.
  • "I can confirm these findings, and further note that I've observed both UltimusPool and Braiins frequently sending jobs with identical merkle branches to AntPool," added @mononautical.
  • "When pools are just acting as proxies for other pools without being upfront about it, bitcoiners need to take note. The time to demand StratumV2 is now," commented developer Matt Corallo.

Full Post / Archive
Mononaut's Post
MinerMag Article / Archive
Thread on 'Pool Cross-Pollination' / Archive Discussion