BIP-119 has not received a proper study on a technical basis. The covenants hide various risks that sometimes go unnoticed.

The Bitcoin Improvement Proposal 119 or BIP-119 is a foundation of the developer Jeremy Rubin, who desires to implement advanced parameters for Bitcoin operations. For example, various bitcoins can only get sent to a specific address and not to others.

But, in addition, it can also condition the spending of those assets in the future so that once they get sent to an initial address, from there, they can only get sent to other specified addresses.

These types of restrictions got called covenants and were implemented under the OP_CTV command, which in its two primary use cases, it allows the creation of some vault. With this instruction, funds from a cold or hardware wallet could only get issued to another address under the control of the fund owner.

In addition, BIP 119 could allow batch transactions to happen with regularity or rhythm in a more balanced way. It would be possible that when a certain amount of bitcoins gets housed in a wallet, other payments get applied from it to different addresses.

Thus, the owner or manager of a business could deposit the number of bitcoins necessary to pay their employees. The payments would happen in an automated way to each of the workers’ wallets or purses from this wallet.

These batch transactions can also get scheduled to run with other parameters when network fees average less than four satoshis per byte (vbyte, the data weight of these transactions).

OP_CTV Might Experience a Safe Development

Discussion about OP_CTV, the feature introduced by BIP-119, continues through the Bitcoin developer mail. From a technical point of view, these are some of the recent opinions of some of these programmers.

First of all, developer Anthony Towns considered that, according to his analysis, most of CTV’s test transactions appear to get developed with Sapio, a language created by Jeremy Rubin with the sole intention of making smart contracts in Bitcoin. Towns think that CTV hasn’t had much public scrutiny yet for this reason.

He believes that introducing BIP-119 can create risks for all Bitcoin users, even those who do not desire to use its functionalities, due to the changes that must happen in the consensus procedure.

On the other hand, Russell O’Connor, a developer, highlighted that there is not enough compatibility of the OP_CTV script or command with other Bitcoin scripts such as base58check, bech32 (SegWit), or bech32m (Taproot).

There would be a need for wallets to develop tools that allow the use of BIP-119 without coordination problems between the wallet addresses used.

David Harding expressed his concern that CTV may be a type of agreement or covenant not widely used in the long term, either due to low demand from users or because other types of better-designed covenants emerge.

This series of opinions is the most relevant on a technical level, unlike the political views covered in previous reports, and tend to be seen more often on social networks. Bitcoin Core developers are still unsure about the necessity and feasibility of BIP-119.

By: Jenson Nuñez


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