To claim an old used nickname for which all real and imaginary agencies on earth would be going after to sue / kill / interrogate / seize assets is so unreal, that most likely, it is a publicity stunt.
A man who claims to be the secret inventor of Bitcoin has failed in a legal bid to throw out a High Court lawsuit saying he's talking tosh – and will be accused of forging proof he is Satoshi Nakamoto. Craig Wright (for it is he) did not succeed in his attempt to have parts of the Crypto Open Patent Alliance (COPA)'s case …
1.1 million Bitcoins was a lot of money when they were first created, once they were up and running, whoever was first creating them could have probably brought a nice used car if we had believed that they would become more valuable - but initially nobody thought they were worth anything and so selling them was doing nothing serious initially.
LOL, I know someone who bought 100 bitcoins back then and I thought she was an idiot - that was my stupid mistake these days.
"I thought she was an idiot - that was my stupid mistake these days."
It wasn't a mistake, she was an idiot. Apparently a lucky idiot, but it's not wrong to e.g. tell someone they have a vanishingly small chance of winning the lottery, even if they subsequently get lucky and win.
No, it wasn't a pyramid scam as such, more what we who have connections with the horse racing and bookmaking industry call "A donkey with a wooden leg".
It is well known that every so often, one such complete donkey will win a race, but it is also very well known that this is a rare eventuality and not one to be relied upon for anything at all. By all means bet pennies on silly bets, but don't put your life savings onto it.
Also, disregard the various millionaires' tips on how to get rich. Mostly millionaires simply got lucky and were sharp enough to capitalise on their good fortune. About the only extremely rich individual who got to where he is by sheer slog would be Warren Buffet, who has dedicated his life to investing money.
About the only extremely rich individual who got to where he is by sheer slog would be Warren Buffet, who has dedicated his life to investing money.
Hmmmm, not so. In my opinion the world's greatest inside trader. Do major companies allow you to look through their books and deepest darkest cupboards at your behest before investing i.e. non-public information? No. Warren does though.
I agree it's almost certainly a publicity stunt, but I don't think anyone would do the things you claim.
"all real and imaginary agencies on earth would be going after to sue / kill / interrogate / seize assets"
Why? The only one I could see here is seize assets, just because they'd be worth a lot of money (temporarily). What would they sue about? Uses of Bitcoin are the responsibility of those who did them, and they're already being prosecuted all the time. What questions would they want answered? Bitcoin's workings are already public, well-understood, and controlled by others. And why would anyone be so motivated as to kill them? It takes time and resources to do any of those things. I'm not seeing a benefit.
If he was Satoshi he has $$$$Bn. So everybody is going to sue him because there will be a lawyer or jurisdiction somewhere wanting to try the odds. Just think of all the SEC / banking regulations he might have have broken times the number of countries with an SEC.
Somebody could be motivated to kill him after they had cut off sufficient fingers and toes to incentivize him to cough up the private keys.
1.1 million BTC is 46,200,000,000 at todays prices. 46.2 BILLION US Dollars.
You think people wouldn't try to sue him (government taxes), claim he violated their copyright (damages) or just try to kidnap him to steal the private key and nab the BTC itself (Russia/China/Switzerland/NK etc) ?
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No, I don't think they would do that. The tax issue is easy enough, as shown by existing governmental tax policy toward cryptocurrency. Whoever controlled that key hasn't sold any from that chunk, thus no gains to be taxed.
There's no copyright available to be claimed. The code wrote for Bitcoin was released a long time ago and is completely public. We know what it says. Anyone who was going to claim copyright would have made their allegations a while ago. They would almost certainly lose now even if they had written it, and they didn't.
As for a government kidnapping him to take the money, no, they won't do that. A criminal organization maybe, but even they would probably know how unlikely it is to work. If any Bitcoin is sold from this account, it will be immediately noticed and could trigger a collapse in the price because that's 5% of the supply right there. The United States can spend trillions of dollars whenever they want to, so they're not going to kidnap someone for fifty billion. North Korea might want to, but their thefts in real currencies already dwarf this one, so they have better targets.
If I were him, I'd be looking to turn some of those Bitcoin billions into proper money simply because there are lots and lots and lots of people in this world who will not hesitate to use torture to acquire billions, and also subsequently use the concrete overshoe method of disposing of the superfluous bodies.
I am not one of them, BTW, nor am I rich nor a cryptocurrency investor.
I also invented email, HTML, computers, electricity, breathable oxygen, and the Primordial Soup.
As soon as folks start paying me royalties like they're supposed to, I'll be rich, RICH I tell you!
*Head thrown back, hands clasping jiggling belly, Doctor Evil style maniacal laughter*
*Inserts the sarcasm tag for those with an insufficiently developed sense of sarcasm*
Yeah, many years ago, where I worked, we had a very basic network using RS232C and I wrote a "messaging system" very like what we now call email. At the time, there was little or no public internet so I can, with clear conscience, say I'd never heard of email before then and so can claim to have independently invented it :-)
Actually, on reflection, it was more like Instant Messaging. Client was a TSR in MS-DOS, server was a PC with 16 serial ports, one for each client, which collected the messages and pushed them out to the relevant person or person.
Except its not debatable at all. There is clear and precise history about the invention and first uses of email.
The lying sack o' crap that pretends he's the inventor of email was about 5yrs old when email was first used. And he claims email simply "didn't exist" at that time, and he made it appear like magic about 10years later!
It's like the religious nutballs that claim dinosaur bones just don't exist and those that are on display are just really REALLY big cow bones assembled incorrectly.
What's the man actually alleged to have done which is wrong? Claiming to be Elvis Presley or Jesus Christ is normally regarded as evidence of mental disturbance, not crime.
So why is claiming to be the inventor of Bitcoin any different? How have the people persueing this legal action lost anything?
I just don't understand this.
Interesting point - a patent must contain the legal name and address of the human inventor, there is no system for allowing anonymous inventors (except where the whole patent is classified for national security). There was even a ruling stopping AIs being listed as inventors.
The nearest you could do was not name the assignee = the company behind the patent. We got to know the commuter towns nearest to various Japanese corporation R&D labs so we could search for patents they were trying to hide by only listing a "Mr Ito + a Tokyo zip code"
"there is no system for allowing anonymous inventors (except where the whole patent is classified for national security)"
The null hypothesis is that Bitcoin (and tor, etc) were created by the NSA. So the national security thing is hardly a problem.
I kinda think if he was Nakamoto, he'd slowly realise his Bitcoin assets and go live on a nice private island. Given that this looks like a power grab for IP, and terefore a source of income, makes the claim look unlikely.
I mean,seriously, what would someone do if they were a paper Billionaire? Liquidise and become a real millionaire, then go enjoy life.
If he's just a single person:
I would hazard a guess that rather than having a publicly-known and well-advertised Bitcoin wallet, so everyone in the world was watching what you spend it on and where it goes, that someone like Nakamoto would have instead created a far more anonymous and private wallet at some later point (probably the point that Bitcoin looked like it was about to take off, rather than the day-one test of the software when they made Block 0 or whatever), been mining to that wallet for a long time as well, and would have been living off that since 2011 when they realised it was more than enough to live off for the rest of their life.
2011 is, oddly, when Bitcoin was worth exactly $1. How many wallets had, say, 100,000 BTC in them by 2011? You could live a few years off $100,000, especially if you kept mining and then stayed living like that until the price went insane you become a millionaire anyway. I don't know how many large wallets there would have been at that point but I would reckon it would be far easier to be lost in the noise by then, and just transfer funds from some earlier wallets, say, to a new anonymised one and spend as required without the world watching what you're doing.
At least, if he is a person, and had any sense, that's what I would have done.
And if you're already a multi-millionaire, basically retired and able to do whatever you like, and you know you have "emergency" access to billions upon billions if you ever desperately needed it... I can see why you wouldn't want it to be well known, why you wouldn't want to be tapping away at developing software any more, wouldn't want to be in the public eye, and wouldn't really care about having to access those billions unless you absolutely need to.
Chances are he quietly cashed out and retired in 2011, having literally years worth of head-start on every other Bitcoin miner that existed, and the cash to buy hardware to literally become one of the largest casual miners for over a decade, undetected.
Are there any patent rights? Unless there's a patent submitted prior to the bitcoin white paper, one for bitcoin cannot be granted now. I'm not aware of the details of the case (and the register doesn't really outline them), but looking at the judgement, "The applications are made in the context of a claim for (amongst other things) a declaration that the defendant is not the author of, and is not the owner of the copyright in, a document which has been called the Bitcoin White Paper, published in October 2008 under the name (agreed to be a pseudonym) of Satoshi Nakamoto." So it seems since Wright has claimed to be the author (and would therefore have copyright on the white paper, but that wouldn't give control of bitcoin, only a chance to go after people reproducing the paper and code from it), COPA are seeking a declaration that he isn't. I didn't realise this was a thing you could do, proactively seek to disprove authorship, rather than wait for them to try to enforce copyright against you.
Do wonder what he has to gain from trying to claim bitcoin authorship though. If he was actually the author then he'd be extremely wealthy anyway, but I can't see how this makes him money, even in SCO v IBM you can see there is a prize if they ever did win. Here's a thought, maybe he really is the author, but like many early adopters he's lost the keys and those million bitcoin are now forever beyond his reach.
Real Nakamoto is probably enjoying solving his next math theorem.
Wikipedia: Hours after Wired published their allegations, Wright's home in Gordon, New South Wales and associated business premises in Ryde, New South Wales were raided by the Australian Federal Police.
Not the kind of publicity a sane person would seek.
It's not totally inconceivable that the original Nakamoto lost the key a very long time ago, long before it would have been valuable enough to protect more carefully, diversify into multiple wallets (or asset classes, duh), etc. But Mr Wright has claimed he still had the key in 2016, and if he did there's no way he would have allowed it to be lost since then. Asking the court to believe he allowed something that valuable to be lost to negligence or chance events like a disk failure is not a viable defense strategy; it's simply not credible. So this is an open and shut case: either transfer some trivial fraction of a BTC somewhere else (to yourself, that's fine) or concede. There isn't room for anything else; he could claim that he really is Nakamoto but lied about having the key in 2016 because he actually lost it long before that, but that would be equivalent to admitting he forged these documents. At this point I really see no possibility of winning this case unless he can prove he has the key, and I don't think anyone seriously believes he does. This case will mark the end of a long and pointless charade.
Asking the court to believe he allowed something that valuable to be lost to negligence or chance events like a disk failure
Disk failures usually aren't. What fails is not the stored information, but the motor on the arm in the HDD, which leaves the data trivially recoverable by any number of companies with labs equipped to do the job using their own arm to recover the data from the drive.
And yep, I agree with you on the defence being to transfer some BTC in that original block.
If I were sitting on a million BitCoin, I wouldn't be shouting about it or claiming anything, much less suing people for calling me a liar.
I'd be retired, quietly selling a coin every now and then and living a comfortable, quiet life.
The last thing I would want is everyone knowing I had a million BitCoin.
Well, you could not even sell it in little portions. The wallet addresses are exactly known to the world and every tiny movement of that full 1.1 million Bitcoin would trigger an immediate deep Internet investigation and you would be found out.
That big pot of 1.1 million Bitcoin gold is there, at the end of the rainbow, never to be touched and lost forever probably.
LOL, yeah, something like that... :) Seriously, that amount is quite an incentive for everyone with a bit of knowledge to hunt for the person(s) m/f behind that Nakamoto hoard and find out who touched it.
It might be some teenager from Cameroon who finds out first, who knows... \_o_/
He is Satoshi, still has the key, but realises that any attempt to sell will trigger an investigation that will lead to him. So, he very publicly looses this case. Later, when he sells some, the investigation leads to him, and everyone says, "Nah, he's the idiot who couldn't prove he was Satoshi in 2022, someone's set us up, keep looking".