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Fire drill: Chaos Unicorn Day, April 1

Fire drill: Chaos Unicorn Day, April 1

On April 1, 2019 0900 UTC we are going to shut down our cluster* and all access to centralized services for 24h. This will likely be highly disruptive, and things will break for our real world users. But we will uncover issues and help push us in the direction towards true decentralization. The ultimate dogfooding 24 hours session. You have been warned.


The goal of decentralization and censorship is wildly shared in the Ethereum/Web3 community, at least in theory. In practice however, too many projects, Status included, rely on centralized services and take shortcuts to get a working product or service. We want to change that.

This allows us to set the terms ourselves, as opposed to the terms being set for us. We are ultimately doing this to learn from this and uncover issues so we can fix them. You don't know what you don't know.

What are you going to do exactly?

For 24h we are going to shut down or deliberately hamper our access to:

  • Our cluster (including bootnodes, Whisper nodes, mailserver)
  • Infura and other web2 centralized gateways (Etherscan, etc)

For more specifics, see our umbrella issue.

Why now? Won't things just break?

We are still not officially launched on the App Store, and our core user base understands and believes in what we are doing.

This is a perfect opportunity while we are still small and in beta. We don’t want to be “too big - and fragile - to fail”. This allows us to set the terms, as opposed to the terms being set for us in the future.

What will happen during the day?

We'll find out! This day will be dedicated to scramble to get things working. This might mean things such as setting up our own custom bootnodes, mailservers and full nodes; sharing these over Discuss/Twitter/Github/Reddit. Grab some popcorn, and if you are easily frustrated snooze till Tuesday!

Looking into the future

In the future, this might be a difficulty bomb in the Status app that is periodically activated. This ensures we stay honest to ourselves and the Status Network stakeholders, and build what we promised. As time goes on - if we build things right - events such as these should be non-events.

How to participate

Are you up for the challenge? If you are a part of a team who share our goals around decentralization, censorship-resistance and continuance, please let us know in this Discuss thread. Also see the official mini-site here.

If you are an individual who love this crazy idea and want to help us build the future and fix things, please see how to contribute here. You can also join the conversation in our Discuss forum and log issues on Github.


Cluster: Infrastructure to run Whisper, i.e. bootnodes to connect to the network, Whisper nodes for relaying messages, and mailservers to retrieve offline messages. This doesn't include e.g., nor CI servers, etc.

Header picture: By USFWS - Pacific Region - Resilient Landscapes, Public Domain,

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