Clarification about contracts

So after reading through the whitepaper, I want to clarify some things about how contracts work. My understanding is that the miners perform the operations for the contracts on their computers, and the contract issuer has to pay for these calculations. Does every block have to process every contract, or can miners choose to not include certain contracts in their block? If they can exclude certain contracts, then they could avoid any legal repercussions from helping any contracts that may violate their countries laws, such as gambling, and those contracts would then be carried on by miners in other countries. I'm not sure if any of this is right, but it's an interesting idea


  • HaposhiHaposhi Member Posts: 14
    It should be possible to blacklist certain addresses, so you don't include transactions to certain contracts. It might be difficult to keep up to date though.

    Although the miner chooses which transactions to include in a way, all users will have to perform the same calculations in order to verify them. I think miners and users would be like ISPs, who are not responsible for the content users upload or download. It's only the people who created contracts, or actively use them that could be accountable. Don't take my word for it though. The law might take a few years to catch up to this new technology.
  • phoenixphoenix Member Posts: 9
    Thanks for the ISP analogy, that makes a lot of sense. Since you have to pay for your contract to have more calculations and memory, I think there's a huge incentive to make the contracts as simple as possible, so they won't cost as much to run
  • DogCatDogCat Member Posts: 1
    What about a contract meta tag system with a few default contract types? Contract writers would list their contract type, then a miner could choose to exclude/include contracts with certain meta tags.
  • ctindallctindall Member Posts: 18
    I don't think any complex mechanisms to avoid "helping" contracts calculate "illegal" equations is ultimately of any help to anyone. Either governments will tolerate ETH or they won't. If they won't, it's going to be a losing battle convincing them that you technically didn't break the law because your rig only computes certain kinds of contracts. There isn't a judge, court, or jury anywhere that is sophisticated enough to make that distinction.
  • kurtosiskurtosis Palo Alto, CAMember Posts: 2
    Second ctindall. Also, miners will have to accept the blocks of other miners in different countries anyway as the blockchain grows, some of which will inevitably contain contracts that may be illegal in their country.

    Either that or they get stuck trying to continue an abandoned branch while the majority of the network leaves them behind on the main branch.

    If gambling is illegal in your country, you'll probably have to host your mining operation in country where it isn't, and optionally move there yourself.
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