Re: OK something I've never understood in this case
Let's suppose for a moment that the ruling is enforceable, possibly because at some not too distant time it seems likely that more than half the mining in the world will be done in the United States (because China threw them out and Kazakhstan has shockingly turned out to be too politically unstable).
It will be difficult enough to convince a court to order software engineers who did nothing wrong, were not party to this lawsuit, and have no contractual obligation to maintain the blockchain software to actively do engineering work to change that software. They wouldn't have any trouble finding lawyers of their own to challenge that ruling or have it declared a taking which in turn would obligate the government (but the government wasn't a party either!) to pay them for their labour. Moreover, forced labour as a taking has never been allowed in the United States except as criminal punishment, which means that both the engineers and the government itself would have grounds to appeal. To describe the entire premise as legally dubious seems an understatement. But suppose they somehow managed to win not only the original case and all the decade-long appeals, and the engineers were in fact forced to write this code. Then what?
He'd then need to sue every miner (or at least enough miners) to compel them to *use* the new code. That is, he would need to find a court to order millions of people to run *this* software and not *that* software on computers that *they own*. In our hypothetical scenario, it sure is good that he and his lawyers now have a lot of practice because they're really going to need it now! In principle it might be just barely possible to win this if and only if there were a strong and well-tested legal and regulatory framework in place for, say, cryptocurrencies that can be traded on public exchanges that accept the local fiat currency (in our already hopeful example, the US dollar). If such a framework existed, it might be that the only way for "Bitcoin" (or "Bitcoin SV", or whatever) to remain tradeable on such an exchange or even legal to exchange for US dollars would be to adopt a verification algorithm approved by the court. In other words, the court still wouldn't be able to force anyone to write or run software that gives Mr Wright a bunch of money he did nothing to earn, but it might be possible that they could conclude it's in their interests to do so. Naturally this entire chain of events, which implies 10-20 years worth of legislative and judicial work that shows no sign of happening, would fork the blockchain and leave the Americans with the far less valuable branch. That in turn would lead to yet another miner exodus to fairer shores abroad.
So I can come up with ways, decades hence, that such a court order might be effective if not actually enforceable, but the actual effect would be to leave one country with near-worthless forks of popular blockchains and practically no miners (that might not be a bad thing for that country, but it doesn't help Mr Wright very much). In the current legal regime, it would be nearly unthinkable that a court would issue such an order, practically impossible that it would survive an appeal, and entirely impossible that it would have Mr Wright's intended outcome even if it did because there is no possible way to force anyone to use the software Mr Wright would like written. This lawsuit is self-defeating, which is exactly what one would expect from someone who has absolutely no understanding of the blockchains he falsely claims to have invented. I'm hopeful he'll soon be found guilty of perjury or at least named a vexatious litigant. The whole point of cryptographically strong ledgers is that it relies on ownership of private keys. If you don't have the keys, you don't have the asset. If you don't like that, WHY DID YOU INVENT IT? Oh right, you didn't. We're done here.