Like many good people out there I’m on a journey, as mentioned in earlier articles I was pretty late to the game and had a lot of catch up to do. Unfortunately there’s a lot of elitism in the Bitcoin community, and there are a lot of trolls, so many OGs and thought leaders just don’t respond to you, immediately discount you, and it makes it quite hard for n00bs to graduate to n00b+1.
When I got into Bitcoin it was around the Segwit2X time, and I knew so little I just saw the massive price swing when it failed, I learned I needed to learn fast. I teetered between BTC and BCH like the wind, I very quickly realized transaction fees for BTC were rediculous (when I was playing around moving money from wallet to wallet, fees started at 10USD and eventually were over 30USD…) so I much preferred the BCH user experience, but also accepted statements by guys like Richard Heart who put it simply: “It’s because no one is using it!”. Anyway, so I teetered and I tottered and as time went on I was hated by both BTC maximalists (because I didn’t scorn BCH) and also by many in BCH (because I still believed in trying to achieve consensus within BTC). It reminded me of US politics where you have to align with one party and disavow the other entirely, which is horseshit IMO. At this point I have to highlite that for all of the accusations of paid trolls, I swear there were paid trolls on both sides (blockstream? Jihan? Roger? Calvin? Craig?) — both on twitter and reddit. There are far too many brand new accounts who have far too opinionated opinions, and are far too aggressive to just be people debating or touting their coin…the only reason I say this will be made clear later.
So with that backstory let’s fast forward to around this time last year (June/July), when Cøbra tweeted that Bitcoin Cash was heading for a split, spread between 2 factions (Bitcoin ABC) and nChain both proposing incompatible changes to Bitcoin Cash which will fork into 2 chains, and recommended that the community try to achieve consensus, put off changes and not fork in November — he proposed #UANF (User Activated No Fork), was going to create a safe replay protected BitcoinCash with neither change. I may have been his only follower to put that in my name, because I agreed with the principal that we already had a fractured ecosystem with BTC and another split was just silly so soon. I debated with CraigWright who seemed like be was becoming more and more aggressive to those who disagreed with him, more and more “bye troll!” comments, and would never explain why:
1. 128MB was needed NOW
2. nChain had blessed the Bitcoin Cash roadmap only to turn cloak 7 months later
3. CTOR was bad
4. His arguments against DSV were inconsistent.
I recall him touting privacy and anonymity a year ago but then his tweets started turning strangely statist. He was getting a lot of things wrong (burn addresses, tx sigs, hello world plagiarism), he was becoming more closed minded to anyone who tried to discuss with him, and increasingly hostile. I completely understand the governance argument against Bitcoin ABC. I, like @Adrian_Xt had issues with what appeared like very centralized governance and just wanted them to slow down a bit, perhaps put those changes in testnet, make them optional/non-consensus…something to keep the community together. With those brakes you’d think I would be a BSV fan right? Craig became more statist, started threatening to double spend exchanges, create reorgs, sue people, destroy people with patents. He became so polarizing that the debate between BitcoinABC/BitcoinSV was no longer about governance but whether you wanted to support someone like that. Then there was the Bangkok meeting, which he shunned everyone there — it truely became about control “my way or the highway” and I couldn’t figure out why….perhaps there’s something in his patents that would all become useless with DSV? IDK — but something really changed in that guy to bring out the new Craig that we see today.
With the lead up to the fork, certain figures like Calvin and RyanXCharles all said they’d support the longest chain — RyanXCharles provided some form of unified chain (only accept transactions that were valid on both chains). Then the exciting day of the fork came, I took a day off work, bought some popcorn and watched. What did I observe that day and what followed?
1. BitcoinSV was an attacking force, they were hostile and wanted to destroy a chain, steal money from exchanges, and “no one trades for 10 years”. They were threatening the entire ecosystem, and the entire ecosystem plummeted 50%+ in price because of this FUD.
2. Bitcoin.com redirected hash to protect Bitcoin ABC. This was completely expected, and this was defensive. Had there been no threats of shadow mining/deep reorgs, there would have been no need to do this, and they wouldn’t have done it.
3. BitcoinSV was cleary planning an attack (shadow mining)
4. BitcoinABC had implemented checkpointing to avoid deep reorgs 10 blocks deep. I do not like this — it creates an attack vector — Andreas Antonopolous said it well: “The creation of 10 foot fences serves only the purpose of incentivizing the creation of 11 foot ladders”. But I understood it, it helps keep market confidence — given it’s the first time in crypto history that there was an openly hostile actor.
5. BitcoinABC clearly won, there was a chain split just as everyone knew there would be. For all of Craig’s many threats: no one was bankrupted, people kept trading, it was really a weak display of force by nChain/CoinGeek illustrating they don’t have nearly the power nor the resources to do what they threatened…all bark and no bite.
6. Day after there’s this emotional video by Jimmy Nguyen saying things like “You really need to think about the ramifications of what you did!”, trying to gain sympathy like I need to feel bad about ‘shunning this 3eH of sustained dedicated benevolent hash’. This has been a theme that bugged me. For all of the hatred for Blockstream, why are we to trust these other 2 big corporations (CoinGeek, nChain) who want to fully control Bitcoin. There is irony that those guys spread FUD about Blockstream controlling BTC when they outrightly, unabashedly control BSV….somehow we are to believe they are benevolent good guys?
7. MoneyButton and RyanXCharles makes the weird as fuck decision to not follow the longest chain but to follow BSV instead. That made zero sense, and it flat out countered his earlier statement — there can only be two explanations and that’s either being threatened or paid. I don’t care which one, it was weird.
8. Complaints about checkpointing, renting hash was typical sore loser stuff and I have no patience for sore losers. nChain/CG were an attacking force, Bitcoin.com defended BCH from that attacking force and then nChain/CG cry about it — what whimps. If I have a city, I see a band of marauders come to destroy my city and I pay a militia to help me defend my city — how the fuck are the marauders supposed to get any sympathy?
9. CSW/CG sue a bunch of developers, Bitcoin.com through a shell company and even “require rollback to the chain at split”. Idiots.
10. Firstly there will be no split. Then there’s a split but there will be no replay protection and BSV wants to keep BCH. Then they propose no one keeps BCH. Then they propose BCH implement replay protection, then they say they will — which they don’t because they don’t know how…..these guys lost everywhere, they suck.
So after all of the Craig cleary lost his battle for a hostile takeover of the BitcoinCash chain. It became clear through this entire war that it was an attack for power, it had nothing to do with centralized governance. BSV plummeted and with good reason, it has no ecosystem and what’s worse it had a sociopath at the helm.
After the dust settled I found there was a new phenomena in social media. I was still getting attacked by BTC trolls, but now there were BSV trolls and BTC trolls…it seemed like the trolls all left BCH. I have like 10 followers but if I post about BSV I get responses, every fucking time. I’m a nobody. To me that’s clear proof people are getting paid. Kevin Pham — a very militant BTC troll, who attacked BCH based on its bigger blocks and centralization swaps to…BSV? More and more stuff just didn’t seem organic and I can’t rationalize outside of Calvin paying people off.
As time moved on the BitcoinSV community became more and more defined by their belief that Craig is Satoshi and I genuinely believe that it now much acts like a cult. Ryan Charles made a youtube video about crying in front of a church and emailing Craig to ask if he’s Jesus for Christ’s sake. What confirms it’s a cult is that the members can’t accept that CSW is a fraud, no matter what he does or says, no matter how many times he’s wrong, or lies…it doesn’t matter. There is this phenomena that when a cult leader makes a prediction, say the world will end — and then it turns out to be false (no world ending) not only do they retain their believers but they add to their numbers. It’s quite fascinating. So though I debate with BSV guys sometimes, I know that there is nothing in this world that anyone including Craig can say or do to convince them….the very hallmark of a cult.
Then a little later Craig makes his big reveal about Metanet. What a crock of shit. The entire internet on the Bitcoin Blockchain….ya right. All enterprise data on the bitcoin blockchain? ya right. He’s literally suggesting that you can create some server that has an infinite amount of storage (I’m sure there’s at least a Shilentnobyte of data out there), that doesn’t implement sharding by the way, and that it will be able to replicate itself all over the world, in an infinitismally short amount of time, and that this exists now. And further — the worlds most brilliant minds, across every discipline, just don’t get it…but his followers do.
This is where I lost all respect for Craig, for his followers, and for that community. He’s not just a sociopath, he’s a complete idiot. I don’t know what his end game is, but this is the stupidest thing I’ve heard of since getting into bitcoin. My background is embedded systems, I’ve built massive architectures that handle millions of TPS, that are designed to scale infinitely horizontally. We’re getting into my wheelhouse here. I’ve worked with the largest telecom providers of the world, and with the largest enterprises. I understand how they build their clouds, their databases — the network that was build in order to stream video to your home. Blockchain — not exactly my expertise. Massive scale? that’s completely in my wheelhouse. I recall reading about Bitcoin and found it was quite a novel way to solve distribute consensus, I loved censorship resistance, but outside of those 2 it struck me as a very very inefficient database. Bitcoin is good for censorship resistance, trustlessness, it’s shit for streaming cat videos, and anyone thinking that’s a good idea is not a big thinker, they just have no clue.
Final thought: So I’ve completely lost respect for those guys. I’ve looked at the source code for quite a few BSV projects and it’s always pretty ho hum, most especially the actual BSV code itself. Craig is a serial fraud and his followers are one of:
1. In on the fraud / paid off
2. Too dumb and head in the sand to see the obvious