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Money lawsuit, like Seriously?

There has been a really weird lawsuit going around recently and I think it's useful to talk about this all.


First let's analyze the sitation without the big context to see why some may see this as entirely legit.

We have one person who basically lost his credentials to his banking network account due to a hack of his home net and the bank denies him his rightfully owned money, that at first glance sounds entirely reasonable, however, let's bring in a bit of context.

This is the Lawsuit.

The banking network is in fact Bitcoin (BTC, also referred to as "Bitcoin Core" in the Article) and also 3 forks, BSV ("Bitcoin Satoshi's Vision") BCH ("Bitcoin Cash"), as well as ABC ("Bitcoin Cash ABC") and more precisely speaking the lawsuit is against a total of 16 developers of those networks.
The person suing is Craig Wright, one of the people actually claiming to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the literal inventor of bitcoin itself.

Also as a side note while I like the idea of cryptocoins I can totally understand the legal (moeney laundering, tax fraud etc) and even practical (energy consumption, fees, transaction confirmation time or performance in general) issues and Bitcoin of all the things seems like one of the worst offenders, but all that aside, this lawsuit is literally one of the dumbest ones I have ever read if put in the proper context.


Preface and side notes aside, let's dissect this pile of garbage that calls itself a lawsuit.

For starters the suing person, Craig Wright, claiming to be Satoshi himself. This claim is heavily disputed, and well while in 2016 he allegedly proved his involvement with BTC's Block 70, and therefore with Hal Finney, who is mentioned as "The earliest clearly identifiable person to be involved in Bitcoin", to some news agencies.

However the article (medium "member-only") that wrote this also states "[...] to mine the first ten coins from block 70" which at least when looking at the block in an explorer does not seem to add up as the rewards is 50 BTC and all sent to one address. there are no "first coins" in a block as far as I am aware.

Also a quote from Wright in 2016 spoken to BBC, said that "other people" helped him. note the plural, if this statement has even a fragment of truth this means that there were more people than Wright and Finney behind the scenes at the start. meaning even more people may have keys to the ominous Block 70 (or more specifically the "coinbase transaction" aka the target adress of the new BTC mined), at the very least Finney has it. This means that the key serves as no actual proof of being Nakamoto and there are likely way more conclusive ways of proving that like proving access to the e-mail address on the whitepaper, or what I think is even more conclusive is that it is highly likely that there are public keys that are linked only to him, and by making a signature that fits the public key he proves he has the private key.


Putting all the identity proving aside there are far more clear reasons that I believe that Wright cannot be Nakamoto. Most notably is a cntradiction so fucking obvious it frankly hurts: Nakamoto makes a system that is literally supposed to be trustless and NOT involve a third party, which is part of the introduction, hell even the ABSTRACT, and then that same Nakamoto would sue the devs who while making his solution a reality, still being third parties, into intervening with said system. This, if successful would not only be super ironic but likely crush bitcoin's reputation and likely value, especially if Wright turns out to truly be Nakamoto, he would likely be seen as a traitor, if he isnt seen as that already, due to alledged proof of working with bitcoin basically from the start.

On the side of consequences there's even more. One thing that might obviously be a problem is that this decision could act as a precedent to other coins and damage the entire system, also there's the obvious question of how to even do this. Bitcoin is by definition decentralized and open source. even if said devs would make commits that allowed for such a redistribution, it would have to be adopted by miners and nodes alike, which very likely will not happen, so basically even if the lawsuit succeeds, and the devs did implement such a solution Wright would not get his coins back, in fact if the devs did those commits I would see it as likely that the core is just forked and those changes reverted, worst case another fork could happen.

But I think it's highly unlikely for the lawsuit to succeed in the first place. Bitcoin does not bind to people but to keys, so even if he could prove he actually is nakamoto, who says that the keys with the coins actually belonged to nakamoto and for example werent sent to a relative or whatever instead. also even if he could prove that the keys belonged originally to him, that's not how ownership works in bitcoin. there's a clear barrier between the identity and the key, even on the Whitepaper. Meaning it's not any given person who owns the bitcoin, but rather "whoever has access to the key to sign a transaction". This means it's in no way the fault or responsibility of the devs because this shows the system working as it is supposed to be. "Not your keys, not your coins" as Cryptocurrency people usually say.

If anything he could try and find out who the hacker was and sue that person for damages or giving back the key, but other than that? Nothing I as a rational person would expect to be possible.

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