Bitcoin transaction fees decline over 800% in one week

While developers and crypto influencers are arguing over Ordinals and BRC-20, Bitcoin transaction fees are dropping.

a frog with gold coins
Memecoin frenzy subsides, while PEPE price drops significantly

After hitting $3.76 yesterday, Bitcoin transaction fees are returning to their normal levels from their 2023 record high of nearly $31 on May 8.

According to the latest on-chain data from Web3 analyst James Tolan, memecoin trading volume has dropped nearly 30% in the past week, from almost $2.672 billion to $1.927 billion between May 1 and May 8. It is still unclear whether the decline will continue or whether it is a temporary correction. However, it is evident that the recent price fluctuations of PEPE, the memecoin that uses the famous cartoon character Pepe the Frog, affect the situation on the market.

After reaching its all-time high of nearly $0.0000042 on May 5, the coin's price fell to $0.0000012 on May 12. At press time, PEPE is trading at about $0.00000172. Interestingly, the recent low price of PEPE on May 12 coincides with the decline in the number of Bitcoin transactions on the same day, which was 411,310. This was a drop of almost 60%. Even though the number of transactions registered yesterday has risen again to 631,503, Bitcoin transaction fees have already declined significantly, which is a big change for regular Bitcoin users who rely on the network for money transfers instead of issuing tokens or minting Ordinals NFTs.

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The significant increase in transaction costs prompted some Bitcoin developers, including Luke Dashjr, to call for radical changes to the network, such as filtering the blockchain from "spam." The core Bitcoin developer is opposed to the idea of using the network for purposes other than money transfers, which was the original purpose of Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto.

Read also: Bitcoin core developer wants to kill Ordinals

At the same time, many crypto-influencers have not supported this approach because they believe it is inconsistent with the concept of freedom and decentralization. Paolo Ardoino, CTO of Bitfinex and Tether, also expressed his opinion in an interview with Cointelegraph during Blockchain Week Rome 2023.

Ardoino believes that Bitcoin has great potential, not only as a financial instrument but also as a perfect system for communication between people, as it is "decentralized, unstoppable, and secure." At the same time, he claims that "the concept of BRC and Ordinals does not affect from the point of view of safety."

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"From my point of view, however, we cannot control the use of Bitcoin or set ourselves up as guarantors of what is taste or wrong. If a feature exists, then it is the right of users to use it," Ardoino says.