Ethermine will now proceed to distribute its $2.6 million bonanza from a series of bizarre ethereum transactions last week after the fund’s owner failed to make a valid claim.
On June 11, the miner, a unit of Bitfly, received the record fee in a transaction involving just 350 ether (ETH), or $86,000. It was the second such fee paid by the same person to transfer a small amount of ETH in as many days.
After freezing payment for some days, Ethermine has exhausted its patience. The mining pool will now share the $2.6 million among the different miners under its wing as a reward for processing the transaction.
“As the sender of the transaction … has not contacted us after four days [we] have made the final decision to distribute the tx fee to the miners of our pool,” Bitfly tweeted on June 15. “Given the amount involved we believe four days is sufficient time for the sender to get in touch with us,” it added.
Several pretenders have come forward to claim ownership of the transaction, but none fit the bill. They all failed “to produce a valid signature of the sending account,” said the company.
According to Bitfly, the money will be distributed as per a miner’s hashrate “snapshot we took at the time block 10241999 was mined by our Ethermine pool.” Miners can expect to receive up to five days of fees from just this one $2.6 million transaction.
On Twitter, some people protested that four days was too short a period to wait, encouraging a longer timeframe, perhaps a month, to give the owner sufficient time to make a claim. But the ethereum miner dug its heels in, declaring never to repeat such favors in future. Bitfly thundered:
We are a mining pool and not an arbiter of the ETH network. In order to avoid such discussions in the future, we will be immediately distributing any block reward independent of its size.
Sparkpool received the first $2.6 million on a $134 transfer. The mining pool stated at the time of the transaction that it was investigating the matter, promising “a solution in the end.” It is not yet clear if a “solution” has been found, or that, like Ethermine, Sparkpool will also pocket the fees.
The Chinese miner has, however, previously repaid a user half of the 2,100 ETH accidentally paid as fees in a 0.1 ether transfer.
Information emerged late last week that the two record-fee transactions may have been the work of hackers blackmailing an exchange.