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Bitcoin IT Technology

Bitcoin 'Creator' Reneges On Promise To Provide More Proof, Says He's Sorry (bbc.com) 133

Craig Wright, the Australian computer scientist who claimed to be Satoshi Nakamoto -- the creator of bitcoin -- has backtracked on a pledge to provide more proof of his earlier claims. Wright says that he lacks the courage to face allegations. On May 1, Wright claimed that he was the creator of bitcoin, offering digital signature, signed using a private key that was thought to be held by Nakamoto. We later learned that the "proof" Wright offered was simply copied from an older transaction. At the time, Wright assured that he will be moving early bitcoins as "extraordinary evidence". On Thursday, Wright wrote in a blog post that he is "sorry," and that he cannot do this. He writes: I believed that I could do this. I believed that I could put the years of anonymity and hiding behind me. But, as the events of this week unfolded and I prepared to publish the proof of access to the earliest keys, I broke. I do not have the courage. I cannot. When the rumors began, my qualifications and character were attacked. When those allegations were proven false, new allegations have already begun. I know now that I am not strong enough for this. I know that this weakness will cause great damage to those that have supported me, and particularly to Jon Matonis and Gavin Andresen. I can only hope that their honour and credibility is not irreparably tainted by my actions. They were not deceived, but I know that the world will never believe that now. I can only say I'm sorry.
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Bitcoin 'Creator' Reneges On Promise To Provide More Proof, Says He's Sorry

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  • Classic (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Calavar ( 1587721 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:01AM (#52052157)

    Now that he's exposed, the scam artist tries to play the role of victim.

    • And he used the generic "I'm sorry," no less.

      Sorry for what? Because if you're not willing to say, then you're not really sorry, are you?

      The generic "I'm sorry" is almost as inauthentic as the patronizing "I'm sorry you misunderstood me."

      • There's no point in saying what he's sorry for because he can only be sorry for 1 of 2 things: 1) Deceiving everyone about being the creator; 2) Not being willing to expose himself as the creator. Claiming to be sorry for #2 (which I think he pretty clearly did) won't really make much difference to people who want to believe #1 anyway. If it did, it would kind of defeat the purpose of keeping the creator anonymous. He could outright apologize for #1, but if he is in fact the creator, then he'd be lying. It'
        • "I'm not strong enough for this"...for dealing with accusations of fraud. So he decides not to offer incontrovertible proof then stride around with a 10 foot cock of titanium.

          Riiiiiiiight.

        • ...1 of 2 things: 1) ... 2) Not being willing to expose himself as the creator.

          option #2 is no longer a possibility. And I did check the other alternate realities to confirm this.

      • Re:Classic (Score:4, Insightful)

        by ( 4475953 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:15PM (#52053807)

        I've read that it's the #1 indicator of guilt in police interrogations. An accused denies everything for hours, and just when he leaves the room turns around and says something like "I'm sorry I couldn't help you" to the officer.

        • But isn't that indistinguishable from an innocent who actually does wish he could help the officer?
    • Yes he's being attacked and torn down - I'm sure I wouldn't enjoy such scrutiny. Esp since I know the internet makes things up and offers personal attacks from hidden people.

      He could be the real deal. We may never know.

      • The experts think he's real though. Which means that others don't believe it and think it's a conspiracy. But of course it's Bitcoin, which means first that all sorts of non-conformists are involved, and second that it doesn't really matter anyway.

        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by KGIII ( 973947 )

          Normally, I think you're retarded. However, in this case, I'm not sure I understand why you were moderated down. You may have said something that someone doesn't like but that doesn't mean you're incorrect or trolling. There are many non-conformists involved and, at the end of the day, it really doesn't matter.

          You also said the experts think he's real and, from what I've read, they do seem to think he's being honest about that - if not much else. Yes, others have expressed their disbelief and I have seen th

  • by Pseudonymous Powers ( 4097097 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:03AM (#52052175)

    He didn't say he was sorry for lying about being Satoshi. He said he's sorry that everybody is being a bunch of dicks to him, by asking him to provide ordinary proof for his extraordinary claim.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      he didn't say sorry at all... he only said that he CAN say sorry.

    • by jdavidb ( 449077 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @11:06AM (#52052659) Homepage Journal

      Basically he said that because we didn't trust him, he is too hurt and emotional to do what Charlie Lee (creator of Litecoin) did the other day [twitter.com]. He can't do that and needs a therapist, or a good chocolate bar, or something.

      In other words, he was lying all along. This is what your spouse does when you catch them lying and in an affair: instead of stopping it and making it right and apologizing, they whine that they are too hurt and emotional because of your allegations. It's what children do when you catch them lying. It's what all liars do.

      • "You're clearly lying."

        "HOW DARE YOU! HOW. DARE. YOU. I am HURT and HUMILATED!"

        "So you are, indeed, a liar."

        THAT'S BESIDE THE POINT!"

        Yeah. This seems familiar.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by arth1 ( 260657 )

      I'm more worried about his writing the note much like a suicide letter, even ending it with "Goobye".

      Any aussie friends of his here that can check up on him and make sure he's okay?

  • by Junta ( 36770 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:03AM (#52052177)

    He is saying he is *capable* but unwilling to do that because he can't leave the anonymity behind?

    If he couldn't leave the anonymity behind, we would have backtracked on his whole claim. Instead he doubles down that he is truthful, but won't prove it to keep anonymity...... I'm truly baffled at who he thinks he's fooling.

    • by neilo_1701D ( 2765337 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:32AM (#52052369)

      I'm truly baffled at who he thinks he's fooling.

      Himself.

      As others have pointed out, he's crying "victim" because he doesn't want to back up an extraordinary claim with some seemingly simple evidence.

      Rather than own his issue, he is crying "victim" and blaming it on everyone else. Reasonably typical behavior of a narcissistic braggart.

    • It actually all makes perfect sense. Celebrity impostors used to be fairly common, especially back before our DNA, photos, and records followed us everywhere.

      They're not even all con artists. They're often nobodies who see a chance to become a somebody by impersonating someone who lots of people have heard about but have never actually seen or met. So some nobody Polish factory worker becomes Anastasia Romonov and gets to be a somebody for a while. A bunch of forgotten old men become competing Billy the Kid

      • by TheCarp ( 96830 )

        Wow, you almost made my heart bleed.

        My wife and I were just chatting on this and she brought up an excellent point.... she said she thought he was tired of people asking him if he was Satoshi so, maybe he decided to go with it since he keeps getting asked.

        I mean, if I was constnatly being asked if I was someone, I would probably start fucking with the occasional person who asked..... tho, public statements does seem a bit beyond the pale.

    • He knows he's not fooling people like you, he only needs to fool the media.

  • The Missing Post (Score:5, Informative)

    by eldavojohn ( 898314 ) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:05AM (#52052195) Journal
    He posted a blog post yesterday and it's currently cached [googleusercontent.com] but essentially he promises to move BTC from early blocks to do the final verification. This was up yesterday before his stupid wah wah redirect went up. I'm reposting it here in case it's ever removed from google cache (I hate scammers):

    Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Proof
    May 3, 2016
    ExtraordinaryClaims

    Yesterday, Andreas Antonopoulos posted a fantastic piece on Reddit.

    Andreas said something critically important and it bears repeating: “I think the identity of Satoshi Nakamoto does not matter”.

    He’s absolutely right.

    It doesn’t – and shouldn’t – matter to the Bitcoin community.

    I cannot deny that my interest in bringing the origins of Bitcoin into the light is ultimately and undeniably a selfish one – the only person to whom this should matter is me. In the wake of the articles last December in which I was ‘outed’, I still believed that I could remain silent. I still believed that I could retreat into anonymity, sever contact, go quiet, and that the storm would eventually pass and life would return to normal. I was right and wrong. The story did eventually retreat, but not before it ‘turned’ and the allegations of fraud and hoax (not to mention personal threats and slurs against me and my family) clung to me.

    I now know that I can never go back.

    So, I must go through to go forward.

    Mr. Antonopoulos’ post also notes that if Satoshi wants to prove identity, “they don’t need an “authority” to do so. They can do it in a public, open manner.” This is absolutely true, but not necessarily complete. I can prove access to the early keys and I can and will do so by moving bitcoin, but this should be a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for such an extraordinary claim.

    And this is why I wanted to speak with Gavin weeks ago. Gavin was in a unique position as we dealt with each other directly while we nurtured Bitcoin to life in 2010. I knew that Gavin would remember the content of those messages and discussions, and would recall our arguments and early interactions. I wanted to speak with Gavin first, not to appeal to his authority, but because I wanted him to know. I owed him that. It was important to me that we could re-establish our relationship. Simply signing messages or moving bitcoin would never be enough for Gavin.

    And it should not be enough for anyone else.

    So, over the coming days, I will be posting a series of pieces that will lay the foundations for this extraordinary claim, which will include posting independently-verifiable documents and evidence addressing some of the false allegations that have been levelled, and transferring bitcoin from an early block.

    For some there is no burden of proof high enough, no evidence that cannot be dismissed as fabrication or manipulation. This is the nature of belief and swimming against this current would be futile.

    You should be sceptical. You should question. I would.

    I will present what I believe to be “extraordinary proof” and ask only that it be independently validated.

    Ultimately, I can do no more than that.

  • by OzPeter ( 195038 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:06AM (#52052199)

    Big foot has left the grassy knoll, and didn't leave a forwarding address with the illuminati. Perhaps he was kidnapped by the greys?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:06AM (#52052203)

    He sounds just like the free energy people who claims they have a magic working device. But, they keep coming up with lame excuses why they just can't provide the proof of it despite how easy it would be to do so.

    • It's like cold fusion all over again...

    • by ledow ( 319597 )

      Yeah, I haven't seen anything of the "ecat" for ages.

      Thank god for the Wiki though or I'd have missed this:

      "In April 2016, Rossi filed a lawsuit in the USA against Industrial Heat, alleging that he was not paid an $89 million licensing fee due after a one year test period of an E-cat unit. Industrial Heat's comment on the lawsuit was that after three years of effort they were unable to reproduce Rossi's E-cat test results"

  • Errr... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:10AM (#52052233)

    It would be easier and less stressful to provide proof then writing that post and running away...

    He's either mentally ill or a fraudster. Or both.

  • by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:10AM (#52052235) Homepage Journal

    If he's not Satoshi Nakamoto then logically he must be Spartacus.

  • by lazarus ( 2879 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:27AM (#52052335) Homepage Journal

    It must be interesting for the actual bitcoin creator to watch all of the drama around it unfold and wonder if you should say something or just continue to stay in the darkness. Do you laugh? Shake your head? Do you even care? Fun times.

    • Most likely he hasn't even noticed, what with his head being likely stuck in a recursive integral he's been head-refining since last week.

    • by ( 4475953 )

      I think Dorian Nakamoto is more scared than amused of all of this.

    • It must be interesting for the actual bitcoin creator to watch all of the drama around it unfold and wonder if you should say something or just continue to stay in the darkness. Do you laugh? Shake your head? Do you even care? Fun times.

      Well ... I devised the bitcoin actually as a weapon to bring chaos and destruction to you mortals and it's true I expected to see some good laughs seeing wall street go into a tailspin, but things got a bit out of control.

  • by JoeyRox ( 2711699 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:40AM (#52052441)
    In the scene where the judge ordered Walter and Margaret Keane to both paint something to prove they are the artist behind the big-eye paintings. Halfway through the hour allotted to him and with nothing on his canvas Walter turns to the judge and pretends he threw out his shoulder trying to lift the tiny paintbrush.
  • by Sneftel ( 15416 )

    If one were Satoshi and found at this stage that he was "not strong enough to out himself", the logical course of action would be to backpedal and call the whole thing a hoax. After all, if the thing you were not strong enough to do was reveal your identity, continuing to assert that identity -- regardless of willingness to provide proof -- would be pretty silly.

    This isn't the "not strong enough to do the right thing" move. It's the "got called on his BS and looking for a way to save face" move.

    • by TheCarp ( 96830 )

      This. But it doesn't even pass the stink test far enough to question.

      I honestly think the whole thing is summarized by two things.

      1. He is claiming to be a person who MUST have intimate knowledge of how to use a hash properly
      2. He attempted to prove his identity without providing the full document he claimed to sign.

      I don't care if the signature was the same....its highly unlikely to be a real collision but, real collisions are possible. No, what I care about is that he even tried to not release the whole d

      • There is no way I believe the real Satoshi Nakamoto makes that particular mistake.

        The mistake itself could be harmless, but it would be expected that the real person would be very embarrassed by it and would correct the technical part of the mistake right away and with excessive apologies and embarrassment. It would be totally normal for a smart recluse to screw up what he's best at when making a rare foray into the public light. It would be abnormal to be casual about the same mistake, or leave it uncorrected.

        • by TheCarp ( 96830 )

          Mechanically yes. I agree anyone can corrupt a file, or send the wrong file. Technically though, no. Not when its pointed out that the file was truncated. I do not believe anyone with his level of knowledge would ever knowingly release a truncated file along with a signature for a full file.

          Now, if that was the end of the story..... he made a mistake and then thought better of it....ok fine. However, the signatures match. Thats a very unlikely coincidence, and when you combine the two..... it looks terribly

  • by golgotha007 ( 62687 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @10:43AM (#52052453)

    We can all brain storm and dream up cool tech, but it's the folks that actually create it that should be credited. It's clear that CW had nothing to do with the development of the initial release, but it's likely that he knew the folks that did.
    If he had come out publicly with an honest statement to that effect, he would have been received much differently. Instead, he chose to be dishonest and misleading, and there is no forgiveness for that.

    If CW could cryptographically prove himself, then he wouldn't be attacked and/or chased away. I mean, without proof, what did he expect was going to happen?

  • ...while I get my hip boots on.

  • ....but seriously, who gives a shit who conceptualized it?

    I have absolutely no idea if he is who he claimed to be or not. Nor do I even faintly care. I'm curious why other people care so much?

    • I can't answer that, but to ask why do people care about the Karcrashians? People care about lots of things that seem irrelevant to me.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    But maybe someone made a recent sell off of bitcoins since the nose-dive turn around in April after all this started to get cycled around the rumor mill?

    One of the strong drivers of bitcoin's price is the news media...

  • There is no fading back to obscurity and re-anonymizing after making such extraordinary claims. You cannot unmake the claims.
  • is that he isn't the real Satoshi but a smoke screen to hide the fact that bitcoin was in fact a CIA/Central Banks project.
    There has been a Mr. Nakamoto who first 'admitted' that he was part of the project, but then later retracted that.
    I think he was true, and that the project was to get a 'bottom up' financial semi-revolution going in order to enable a worldwide acceptance of virtual but perfectly traceable money, so that eventually, when we have been led into the 'cashless society', all our transaction
  • I'm suspecting he realized he would be outed with the info he was about to provide for several major bit coin sales. Which probably went untaxed in Panama or some other remote haven for money laundering.
    Lets see, Fame or prison... hmm.
  • What a cumb dunt this guy is.
  • What exactly are you sorry for son?

  • by ledow ( 319597 )

    People who are genuinely sorry attempt to fix the situation, where possible.

    Given that fixing the situation would consist of exactly what he promised (loading up an old Bitcoin wallet and moving a fraction of a coin out of it to anywhere else), that would seem to indicate that he's NOT sorry and/or he's lying (i.e. he's lost the wallet or he has no such power and never did).

  • A puzzle unsolved is far more interesting than a puzzle solved.

    I always think of the JFK assassination in these cases. The fact that Lee Harvey Oswald appears to have done it, yet we have numerous things that don't quite seem to add up, e.g. "the magic bullet," "the grassy knoll," etc., makes it far more interesting than the Lincoln assassination, where all the basic facts are pretty cut-and-dried.

    Regardless of whether Wright is a con man or the real deal, he's clearly toying with us: his most recent statem

  • He misspelled *private keys.* But he probably just typed that from a mobile device.

  • The ONLY reason the real creator of bitcoin would want to reveal himself at this point is to capitalize on the notoriety. I mean, the technology is out there, it's not like he's going to ask for it all back. What possible reason would anyone have for proving he was the creator other than to put it on his resume and/or establish some credibility for a new enterprise. If that's what he wanted it for, he should have thought of that a long time ago and never gone stealth about it in the first place. So
  • by SkyLeach ( 188871 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:40PM (#52054021) Homepage

    I'm more interested in WHY he's lying than IF he's lying, mainly because I think the IS lying.

    Everyone seems to think that lying shows him as a fraud, but this is may be assumptive.

    What if he is backing out, but for a completely different reason than he's willing to say. What if that's the lie, not the claim of authorship.

    Any monetary system, even a secure one like bitcoin, can be exploited through the distribution of wealth in the corrupt economy. What I find more interesting is the fact that bitcoin is outside of the normal channels of bank tracing and manipulation. The banks can't trace where the money is going without extensive outside help from governments or the involvement of their own accounts in transactions. People often forget that the banks share a great deal of information with both the government and between each other. The flow of wealth is far more important to them than the actual dollar amounts.

    I tend to think that bitcoin is a huge threat to them because it represents a critical information hole.

    I also tend to think that they are not above extortion to 'prove' fraud and corruption to destroy bitcoin. Personally I'd be far more afraid of providing proof of my identity (and presumedly my integrity) to the public than of being e-bullied by trolls if the result could be the ire of the true power in the world.

  • But ever since I said I could levitate, everyone doubted me. They attacked me by saying "Well if you can levitate, prove it by levitating". I was going to levitate, but I just can't bear any more of these attacks on my character. If I proved I could levitate, people would just attack me even more by saying things like "Wow! You've proven you can actually levitate, you asshole. I hate you!" So I've decided I won't be levitating (even though I can). I'm so sorry that you'll never believe me now (because

  • "Honey, have you seen the blue thumb drive?? The one with the genesis block keys? I can't find it ANYWHERE!"

An adequate bootstrap is a contradiction in terms.

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