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On this day… (goodbye Satoshi)


Bitcoin’s shadowy creator communicated his last message eight years ago today. The identity of Satoshi is still unknown.

The name Satoshi Nakamoto has been back in the news recently, thanks to Craig Wright’s legal action against @hodlonaut and bitcoin podcaster Peter McCormack. While most of the crypto community are extremely skeptical of Wright’s claims, today marks eight years since the anonymous developer’s last known communication – after which he simply disappeared.

Back on 23 April 2011, the crypto space was very different but it was moving fast, even then.

A few months earlier, Satoshi had voiced his concern on the public Bitcointalk forum, about an article about Bitcoin on PC World. WikiLeaks had started accepting bitcoin payments shortly before.

‘It would have been nice to get this attention in any other context. WikiLeaks has kicked the hornet’s nest, and the swarm is headed towards us.’

His next message, a development update posted the following day, 12 December 2010, was his last on Bitcointalk. He continued to correspond by email occasionally with Bitcoin developers.

The Last Message

By Q2 2011, Bitcoin was starting to take off. On 23 April 2011, BTC passed parity with the euro and pound Sterling, with the market cap of Bitcoin passing $10 million. This day was also the last known message we have from Satoshi. In an email reply to developer Mike Hearn, he famously wrote:

‘I’ve moved on to other things. It’s in good hands with Gavin and everyone.’

‘I do hope your BitcoinJ continues to be developed into an alternative client. It gives Java devs something to work on, and it’s easier with a simpler foundation that doesn’t have to do everything. It’ll get critical mass when impatient new users can get started using it while the other one is still downloading the block chain.’

Nakamoto’s identity remains a secret, although it is almost certainly known by a few in the community. John McAfee recently said he had kept that secret himself, but would start leaking details until Nakamoto outed himself, to put an end to the bad publicity brought to the space by ‘Imposters’.

It’s just possible that, 8 years on, we might be about to find out more about the man – or men and women – who launched Bitcoin. But for now, it remains crypto’s #1 mystery.


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