• The Blocksize War

  • The Battle for Control Over Bitcoin’s Protocol Rules
  • By: Jonathan Bier
  • Narrated by: Guy Swann
  • Length: 7 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (165 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

This book covers bitcoin’s blocksize war, which was waged from August 2015 to November 2017. On the surface, the battle was about the amount of data allowed in each bitcoin block, however it exposed much deeper issues, such as who controls bitcoin’s protocol rules. It is not possible to cover every twist and turn in the labyrinthine conflict or all the arguments, but I have provided a chronology of the most significant events. This book explores some of the major characters in the conflict and includes coverage, from both the front lines and behind the scenes, during some of the most acute phases of the struggle. The account in this book includes discussions with the key players from both sides during the war, exploring their motivations, strategy and thought processes as the exhausting campaign progressed and developed.

©2021 Jonathan Bier (P)2021 Jonathan Bier

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What listeners say about The Blocksize War

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A Pleasure to Learn About

I admit I was looking forward to this book, but based on the kinda-lame cover art, I was expecting a so-so history at a "self-published" level of quality. I was extremely happy to be wrong.

Jonathan Bier is clearly a very smart guy -- not an author by trade, but this is a well-written book that would do any author proud. And he manages to do lots of things, each of which is difficult: 1) Keep track of lots of characters who appear/disappear over a number of years, 2) Make a deeply technical topic readable for a layperson, 3) Present a balanced perspective on the "war," rather than tilting the playing field in favor of the winners, and 4) Fitting the book into 21 chapters, a nice little hat-tip to Bitcoin's 21 million supply cap.

As someone who wasn't a bitcoiner during the time written about here, it was amazing to learn about the fairly epic struggles that took place just a few short years ago. It also redoubled my conviction about the intellectual depth of the Bitcoin ecosystem.

Even non-Bitcoin people will find this book a valuable complement to corporate strategy reading like "The Art of War" and its many business-as-war spin-offs.

Lastly, Guy Swann's narration is excellent as always.

2 people found this helpful

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Important and well written history

Information heretofore unknown to the general (new) Bitcoiner. This work clarifies many aspects of the hardest money ever. Guy Swann does a nice job of presenting Biers work. Now go stack some sats.

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Very dense but a good account

Some knowledge of the internal workings of blockchains, Bitcoin and the issues are a must. The book is dense with details, but is thorough and well done.

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Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it

Because I only participated in the last year of the war, I was very interested to find out more about what happened before I joined. Not only did the book satisfied this interest of mine, but the author also managed to provide good insights about the events that I witnessed in 2017. I enjoyed remembering those battles, this time without the intense emotions I was feeling back then, when I was fearing that Bitcoin might fail and I was ready to risk it all for the UASF faction.

I only hope peace will last.

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Great listen!

A wonderful content (thanks Jonathan) backed with amazing, smooth delivery (thanks Guy)! This is a must listen to any Bitcoin enthusiast.

Understanding the historical events of blocksize wars provides a deeper appreciation for the importance of decentralization in establishing consensus.

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Amazing. Buy it.

Great read/listen. Very informative and good story teller. I greatly enjoyed the unbiased (as much as a human can be) representation of facts.

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The history of time tested coin

If you want to understand what Bitcoin has been through during the 2015-2017 block size war between large block supporters and small block supporters, this book covers from beginning to end of that war. In spite of knowing end of the story, it still manages to give thrill and goosebumps in some of those moments. There’s tons of detailed information about the events that I hadn’t read/heard from any other sources. Author has done fantastic job to keep it more factual and without any biases and personal opinions. Guy does fantastic job as usual on narration. I have both paper book and audible and I can’t recommend Audio version over paper for this book.

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  • WT
  • 06-23-21

where there is money there is greed

The book helps fill in the drama and historical gaps that the internet may have but in a cohesive delivery.

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Perfect

Easy to understand even if you aren’t super technical.
Just make sure you understand what block size means before you start

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super interesting! some of it was hard to follow.

I loved hearing the story of how things played out from 2015 - 2017 for Bitcoin. THIS book is an absolute necessity for anyone who wants to have an opinion on Bitcoin.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-05-21

5 Stars: The book highly exceeded my expectations!

The book was written in such a compelling way that I simply couldn't stop listening.

I had to listen the whole book immediately.

It was really informative and interesting.

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  • mr m d bradley
  • 10-11-21

As significant a war as any fought on a batlefield

The profound impact of bitcoins decentralisation excludes the most vested, the biggest hodlers, the biggest corporates and most prominent developers from manipulating it for any reason, nefarious or well intentioned.

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  • Nelson Carreras
  • 08-17-21

Fascinating and entertaining!

I found this audiobook to be a fascinating, entertaining, balanced and well-narrated story. The war framing is engaging and does not compromise the accuracy of the historical facts. I really enjoyed it.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-10-21

A great story very well explained

Very interesting!

The book is technical so you need a love and knowledge of bitcoin to enjoy this book.

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  • DaveBradley
  • 09-29-21

Interesting for bitcoin nerds (like me)

Definitely an interesting story in terms of how close bitcoin came to submitting to the interests of big players like exchanges, pool miners, influencers in the crypto space… but was “saved” by the patient and coordinated efforts of the “small-blockers”, and in essence the nodes/users of bitcoin.
The performance by Guy Swann of bitcoin audible was great as usual.
A fair bit of the language and concepts are hard to follow if you’re not used to computer science, but I am not and I powered through and lived to tell the tale. A worthy read :)

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  • Mark
  • 07-21-21

Learning from history

The Blocksize War is a very comprehensive and enjoyable recount of one of the most important phases in the history of bitcoin, written by someone who was at the centre of the action. Highly recommended!

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  • Aleksandar
  • 06-19-21

Amazing!!

This is the kind of bitcoin history I love to read.
Well written. Well read.
What a story.
What a time to be alive.
Get this. Listen to it. And thank your lucky stars that Bitcoiners are the intolerant minority who did not back down.

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  • Thetims
  • 06-10-21

awesome recap of history.

An amazing recap of historyas someone that was in the space at the time it's great to have some gaps filled in and to hear a recount that can be shared for new people entering the space. it's also a great educational piece on bitcoin scaling.