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We've all heard of hard forks happening in the past.
And we've all seen the word in the crypto news we read everyday(if we read crypto news,which we should).
So what exactly is a hard fork?
Well,simply put,a hard fork is a change in a networks protocol that makes valid blocks on the protocol invalid and vice versa.
Essentially, hard forks just mean a deviation from the rules and laws of a certain Cryptocurrency to create a new one that is still powered by the old one's blockchain,or still keeps the old one's mantra or reasons for existing.
When hard forks occur,the nodes of the newest version of a Blockchain no longer accept the newest version of the Blockchain. This creates a permanent divergence from the previous version of the Blockchain,essentially creating a new cryptocurrency. It's like putting old wine in a new bottle.
And just as a side note these hardforks can occur on ANY cryptocurrency,as long as it runs on blockchain technology.
Popular hardforks include Ethereum Classic, Litecoin,Bitcoin Cash,Bitcoin Gold and some others that aren't that much popular.
So why do these hard forks occur?
Well,they can occur for a number of reasons,ranging from correcting important security risks that could potentially ruin the cryptocurrency,to childish battles by a community over which new features should be added to a cryptocurrency's logo.
At times,a community may no longer believe in what a cryptocurrency stands for,and may decide that they want to change a few features.
They bid for changes,and when their demands are not met,they create a hard fork of the currency.
The cool thing about hard forks is that if you were holding the base currency at the time the fork occured, you'd have the forked currency as well,in the amount of the former one you had.
Which is pretty cool.
Now you know what hardforks are!
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