Last year, Newsweek magazine retired the print edition. As with most publishers, it is very difficult to fight the Internet. Not only have eyeballs moved to tablets and smartphones, but web sites are quicker to publish. Even if the audience exists, there are no dollars to pay reporters, editors and layout staff. That’s because advertisers have shifted their budgets to online venues such as the wildly profitable Google Adwords.
Unmasked? Not so fast!
But today, Newsweek made the decision to relaunch their print edition with a jaw-dropping exclusive. Investigative reporter Leah McGrath Goodman and forensic analyst, Sharon Sergeant, claim that they have identified the mythical creator of Bitcoin. Even more peculiar, Goodman says that he is a 64 year old Californian whose real name has always been Satoshi Nakomoto. (Whaaht?!)
According to Newsweek this is a coup of epic proportion. But Wild Ducks reserve judgement for a future update… Newsweek has been a great American institution for almost 100 years. But I am confident that this story is just beginning to unfold and the facts as presented bu Ms. Goodman have an odd finish.
March 7 update: I did not create Bitcoin
In an exclusive, two-hour interview with Associated Press, a very private programmer, Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto, 64, denied he had anything to do with Bitcoin. In fact, he claims that he never heard of Bitcoin prior to the Newsweek investigation.. For Wild Ducks, The jury is out, but this is certainly one very interesting interview!
- Mr. Nakamoto claims that he had never heard of Bitcoin until his son was contacted by reporters three weeks ago.
- Researching the cover story, Newsweek writer, Leah McGrath Goodman, had an exchange with Mr. Nakamoto on his doorstep, in front of two police officers. When questioned about Bitcoin involvement, she claims that Nakamoto said “I am no longer involved in that and I cannot discuss it.” But, in a two hour interview with The Associated Press, Nakamoto states that he was misunderstood—that the words “no longer involved” referred to a past career in programming and not to Bitcoin.
- Today, The Wall Street Journal reports that the email account and credentials of the original Satoshi was revived to issue a single statement. The real Bitcoin creator also denies being the Californian fingered by Newsweek.
In the 24 hours since the story broke, you might think that a community of crypto currency enthusiasts is combing the web for every salacious detail of the possible unveiling. But, you would be wrong!
Most Bitcoin enthusiasts (including the editor of AWildDuck) are also privacy pundits. We have no problem if the identity of the elusive Satoshi Nakamoto remains a mystery. As an active member of several Bitcoin forums, I sense that most participants don’t want this man to be harassed—and don’t really care if he is or is not the brains behind Bitcoin.
Moreover, the person being sought did not commit a crime and clearly wants to remain anonymous. Therefore, serious attempts to uncover his identity using methods of forensics, pattern analysis or even chasing down every clue amount to invasion of privacy.
From the Wild Duck Archives…