The Bitcoin mempool, which collects unconfirmed transactions, has been clogged with a slew of one-satoshi transactions. The number of unconfirmed transactions has risen by a staggering 87,000 percent.
As a result, the mempool size reached 88 megabytes, its highest level since January 2018 when Bitcoin was in the middle of its biggest speculative bubble to date.
Someone started spamming the #Bitcoin #mempool with 1 sat/B transactions about 2 hours ago. Looks really messed up. The mempool is almost a 100Mb -- this has never happened before as far as I remember. https://t.co/ihxwkHzK3N $BTC pic.twitter.com/0PlftpPFma— TSS (@SandorReport) November 15, 2019
It is worth noting that this unusual mempool activity didn't affect the network's given that all spam transactions were minuscule. Larger transactions were able to pass without any hassle.
Back in December 2017, average Bitcoin network fees reached $55 after hordes of people rushed to buy Bitcoin during the previous bull run peak. Miners are incentivized to confirm transactions with higher fees much faster.
The BTC price skyrocketed from $6,000 to $20,000 in a matter of one month. On Jan. 11, 2018, the size of the mempool reached its highest level ever, surpassing 300 megabytes.
This time around, there is no apparent reason for this mempool activity (apart from the spam transactions). The king of crypto is sitting at the $8,600 level at the time of writing.