Since then, the organization has been beset by allegations of plagiarism. The white paper of TRON was widely accused of plagiarism. Researchers from Digital Asset Research (DAR) have discovered multiple instances of code copied from other projects in the Tron code base. It is also accused of violating the GNU Lesser General Public License v3.0 (LGPL) because the project does not mention that its client, Java-Tron, was derived from EthereumJ, which is one of the first Ethereum libraries. Such accusations were denied by the TRON Foundation, the organization behind the design of the system.
In 2018, TRON switched its protocol from a ERC-20 token on top of Ethereum to an independent peer-to-peer network. After that, marketed to rival Ethereum, TRON boomed in market capitalisation during the early part of 2018, becoming a top 10 cryptocurrency. On 25 July 2018, the TRON Foundation announced it had finished the acquisition of Bittorrent, the biggest peer-to-peer file sharing network. Upon this acquisition, in August 2018, BitTorrent Founder Bram Cohen also disclosed that he was leaving the company to found Chia, an alternative to bitcoin created to be a less energy-intensive cryptocurrency.
By January 2019, TRON had a total market cap of about $1.6 billion. Despite this market performance, some authors viewed TRON as a typical case of the complex and disordered nature of cryptocurrencies. In February 2019, after being acquired by Tron Foundation, BitTorrent started its own token sale based on the TRON network. The internet community responded in a polarized way, many industry analysts including former staff from Tron Foundation, believe, it unlikely that Tron could execute transactions at the rate needed to make a tokenized BitTorrent work.
In May, 2019, the cyber-security testing service HackerOne revealed that just one computer could have brought TRON’s entire blockchain to a halt. The revelation showed that a barrage of requests sent by a single PC could be used to squeeze the power of the blockchain’s CPU, overload the memory, and perform a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack. After cancellation of a dramatic charity lunch with Warren Buffett in July 2019, TRON’s fate started to become more obscure since the founder and the organization behind it suffered more public embarrassment.
The TRON protocol, maintained primarily by the TRON Foundation, distributes computing resources equally among TRX holders with internal pricing mechanisms such as bandwidth and energy. TRON provides a decentralized virtual machine, which can execute a program using an international network of public nodes. The network has zero transaction fees and conducts ~2000 transactions per second.
TRON defines a proof of stake architecture. The implementations of TRON foster minimal transaction fees to prevent malicious users to perform DDoS attacks for free. In this respect, EOS.IO and TRON are quite similar, due to the nonexistent fee, high transactions per second and high reliability, and regarded as new generation of blockchain system. Some researchers defined TRON as a Ethereum clone, with no fundamental differences. The transactions per second rate on Tron’s blockchain was questioned because it was far below its theoretical claim.
The TRON community votes for 27 Super Representatives, who then generate and validate blocks within a 3 second block time, through a decentralized autonomous organization. Super Representatives are re-elected every 6 hours. The 27 Super Representatives also govern the network by proposing and voting for TIP (TRON Improvement Proposal) in the TRON committee.