Bitcoin Cash is Finally Free of “Faketoshi”! Great Days Lie Ahead.
On the surface, it appears that all hell has broken loose. The markets are a bloodbath. BTC is crashing. ETH is crashing. And BCH is especially crashing hard after a contentious hardfork has occured, with nChain/CoinGeek/Craig Wright splitting off into “BitcoinSV”.
But in the grand scheme of things, Craig S. Wright (CSW) leaving the Bitcoin Cash community is a wonderful thing. This self-described “tyrant” has been expunged, and now we can get back to our mission of bringing peer-to-peer electronic cash to the world.
The markets will rebound when they see the chaos is over, but regardless of the price, we will keep building. Nothing will stop the sound money movement.
Calling Out Bad Behavior
As Rick Falkvinge recently explained, there is a difference between small-minded gossiping about personalities and legitimately calling out bad behavior.
CSW’s bad behavior must be called out, because he has done tremendous damage to Bitcoin Cash (and possibly even the entire cryptocurrency sector).
The brief history is that he gained his reputation by claiming to be Bitcoin’s creator (Satoshi Nakamoto). He said he would provide “extraordinary proof” but he has never done so.
Supposedly, he did some “private signings” to a few people, and this allowed him to gain influence in the BCH community. The destruction he has been causing was not widely recognized until after a huge mess had been made.
Thanks to u/Contrarian__ for the following compliation of CSW’s misgivings:
Some background on Craig’s claim of being Satoshi, for the uninitiated:
- He faked blog posts
- He faked PGP keys
- He faked contracts and emails
- He faked threats
- He faked a public key signing
- He has a well-documented history of fabricating things bitcoin and non-bitcoin related
- He faked a bitcoin trust to get free money from the Australian government but was caught and fined over a million dollars.
And specifically concerning his claim to be Satoshi:
- He has provided no independently verifiable evidence
- He is not technically competent in the subject matter
- His writing style is nothing like Satoshi’s
- He called bitcoin “Bit Coin” in 2011 when Satoshi never used a space
- He actively bought and traded coins from Mt. Gox in 2013 and 2014
- He was paid millions for ‘coming out’ as Satoshi as part of the deal to sell his patents to nTrust — for those who claim he was ‘outed’ or had no motive
Caught Red Handed Plagiarizing
No respectable academic, scientist, or professional needs to stoop so low as to steal and take credit for the work of others — least of all Satoshi. Yet, CSW has already been caught at least 3 times plagiarizing.
- His paper on selfish mining has full sections copied almost verbatim from a paper written by Liu & Wang.
- His “Beyond Godel” paper which purports to claim that Bitcoin script is turing complete, is heavily plagiarized.
- A paper on block propagation was blatantly and intentionally plagiarized.
Can’t Even Steal Code Correctly
CSW was also caught attempting to plagiarize a “hello world” program (the simplest of all computer programs).
He apparently does not understand base58 or how Bitcoin address checksums work (both of these are common knowledge to experienced Bitcoiners), and has made other embarrasing errors.
So How Did Such an Obvious Fraud Gain So Much Power and Influence?
There are no easy answers here. It seems that as humans, we are very susceptible to manipulation and misinformation. The greatest weapon against sinister forces is a well-educated populace. This is something that can only improve over the long run.
The “Satoshi factor” is a powerful one and appeals to the glamorization of a mythical figure. Even people such as myself, who are technically astute, gave CSW all benefit of the doubt until the evidence staring us in the face could no longer be denied.
The seduction of the BCH community was also facilitated by CSW becoming a strong advocate for the on-chain/big-block scaling movement at a time when the community was dying to hear it. This message, delivered with a brazen, in-your-face style, was a sharp contrast to anything seen before.
In addition, CSW was able to find obscure topics (“2pda”), network topology, etc, that seemed to establish him as an expert with esoteric knowledge above and beyond anyone else. Basically, he was using technobabble, but it wasn’t immediately obvious except to very technical people… who were then attacked and discredited.
Eventually, as more and more of the community began to realize his technical claims were bogus, CSW banned those people from his twitter feed and slack channel, leaving only a group of untechnical “believers”, which the larger BCH community referred to as “the church” AKA the Cult-of-Craig.
Finally, if some believed that CSW possesed Satoshis’s stash of 1M BTC, then they may have been gnawing to get a piece of it. But it may turn out that these are the coins that never were.
If this article so far seems like an “attack piece” on CSW, remember it is important to get all the facts out in the open. We’ll get to the silver lining and bright future in a moment… but let’s continue here to “get it all out”.
One of the biggest ways that CSW has damaged the community is to make an endless series of broken promises. This caused others to wait, to waste time on his unproven ideas and solutions, and to postpone or drop their own ideas and initiatives.
- He said he was building a mining pool to “stop SegWit”
- He said he was bringing big companies to use the BCH chain
- He said that he was providing a fungibility solution based on blind threshold signatures
- He said he was providing novel technology based on oblivious transfers
- He said he was providing a method where people could do atomic swaps without using timelocks
- He said he was going to show everyone how we can do bilinear pairings using secp256k1
- He said he was going to release source code for nakasendo
- He said he was releasing some information that would “kill the lightning network”
- He said he was going to show everyone how the selfish mining theory is wrong
- He said he was going to show everyone how we can tokenize everything in the universe squared
- He said a few times “big things are coming in 2 months”
How CSW Has Damaged the BCH Community
In addition to the broken promises, the BCH community was wounded due to:
- The division of the community (with classic divide and conquer tactics)
- Loss of focus. Huge amounts of drama and distraction from building and adoption
- Investor confidence has been shaken due to uncertainty and chaos.
- BCH is a laughing stock to outsiders due to CSW’s antics
- Gemini deployment of BCH and other rollouts paused
- Loss of developer talent due to toxic and abrasive personality
- Various patent and legal threats
The Hash War Event and Split into BitcoinSV
Every 6 months, BCH has a scheduled network upgrade. This is technically a “hard fork” but a non-contentious fork does not result in a split of the chain — it is simply new network rules being activated.
Bitcoin Cash has multiple independent developer groups including Bitcoin ABC, Bitcoin Unlimited, Bitcoin XT, Bitprim, BCHD, bcash, parity, Flowee, and others.
The nChain group, led by CSW, introduced an alternate set of changes a week before the agreed cut-off date, intentionally causing a huge controversey. These changes were incompatible with the changes being discussed between the other groups.
nChain objected to the changes being proposed (cannonical transaction ordering) despite specifically agreeing to it almost a year earlier. The last minute objections were in my opinion, an attempt at sabotage.
An emergency meeting was held in Bangkok to attempt to resolve the differences between the nChain group and the rest of the community. Not only did CSW refuse to listen to the other presentations, he walked out of the meeting after his own speech had been given. The other nChain people refused to discuss the technical issues.
After this, nChain built their own software (“BitcoinSV”) to attempt to compete for the Bitcoin Cash network. But rather than split off to follow their own set of rules, they threatened to attack Bitcoin Cash.
The CSW sycophants adopted a strange interpretation of the Bitcoin whitepaper and proselytized the idea that if nChain could “out hash” everyone else, the market should be obliged to follow them.
This faulty thinking was eloquently debunked by u/CatatonicAdenosine.
As it turns out, nChain was unable in any case to win at their own game.
But Here’s the Obviously Good News…
CSW is gone. It’s over.
He can do whatever he wants on the BitcoinSV chain. He will never be allowed to influence Bitcoin Cash again. And all the negative things and negative people that were a consequence of his involvement in Bitcoin Cash are gone with him.
As a community, we will redouble our efforts and get back to our mission of peer-to-peer electronic cash. We will learn to work together better than ever, and we will learn to detect and punish bad behavior sooner.
The attempted attacks with hashpower also sparked innovation and a focus on the problem of how to stop such attacks in the future. This is only making Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and the entire class of Proof-of-Work coins stronger.
Nothing will stop us.
The reason why millions of dollars were spent to attack and also to defend Bitcoin Cash is because it’s something truly worth fighting over.
It’s sound money.
It’s what Satoshi Nakamoto wrote about in 2008. It’s Bitcoin, a Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System.