- Craig Wright claimed Bitcoin.org violated his copyright claim by continuing to host the Bitcoin whitepaper.
- Since then, in defiance, many websites have added the Bitcoin whitepaper.
- These are the five most secure ways to access the Bitcoin whitepaper today.
The Bitcoin whitepaper was published in 2008 under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto and later uploaded to a single website: Bitcoin.org. It was published under an MIT license, along with the rest of the code, making it freely available for all to distribute.
But this came under attack recently, when Coingeek chief scientist Craig Wright—who claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto but hasn’t signed a transaction with Nakamoto’s PGP key to prove it—issued legal demands to both Bitcoin.org to take down the whitepaper.
Bitcoin.org refused and in solidarity, Bitcoiners across the world have come together to upload the whitepaper in as many places as possible, and in the most secure places possible. Here are some of the best ways that the Bitcoin whitepaper is being secured around the world.
1.1.Governments hosting the Bitcoin whitepaper
“We are happy to preserve the original Bitcoin whitepaper here on our website as a source of inspiration for future innovators looking to understand how to use blockchain technology in support of facilitating cross-border business and other applications,” the Estonian government website reads.
Colombia’s Jehudi Castro, an advisor to President Ivan Duque Marquez, posted a link to the whitepaper via Twitter.
The United States government also publicly hosts the Bitcoin whitepaper, which can be found on the US Sentencing Commission’s website. In addition, Representative Patrick McHenrey of the House Financial Services Committee has hosted a copy of the whitepaper on his congressional website.
The Bitcoin whitepaper also appeared in the city of Miami’s municipal website, thanks to Mayor Francies Suarez, who is trying to make Miami into a global hub for crypto innovation.
2.2.Decentralized networks as ultimate backup
IPFS is a peer-to-peer network for storing and sharing data in a distributed file system. Each file is uniquely identified using specific content-addressing. (At the bottom of each Decrypt article, there’s an IPFS link to view the article on the network, and if you’re using Brave, you will be able to view it without running your own IPFS node.)
Ethereum Name Service also serves as an open naming system that’s built on the Ethereum blockchain and uses domain names. The platform maps human-readable names in place of long and hard to remember traditional, complex addresses. This makes it easier to send money to other ENS users.
On January 21, a Twitter user suggested ENS should host it. It took just two hours for Brantly Millegan, director of operations at ENS, to set up a page that hosts the Bitcoin whitepaper. You can view it here.
3.3.Companies hosting the Bitcoin whitepaper
“Nine pages, 3,641 words, 21,443 characters to reimagine finance,” said Jameson Lopp, co-founder and CTO of Casa, who also hosts the whitepaper on his own website.
Another major company that has begun hosting the Bitcoin whitepaper is Square, which bought $50 million worth of Bitcoin last October.
4.4.Accessing the Bitcoin whitepaper on the blockchain
Instead of visiting any one of these websites, the Bitcoin whitepaper can also be accessed in the Bitcoin blockchain itself. It’s held as a PDF but has to be pieced together.
“I’ve tested this and indeed it is in the whitepaper. Good to know it’s literally in the blockchain,” said Bitcoin author and developer Jimmy Song.
To do this, all you have to do is identify certain pieces of multi sig data and organize them into a single file to extract the whitepaper as a pdf. Simple, right?
If that’s too complicated, Song suggests, by using a program called bitcoind, any user can run a python script to access the whitepaper from the blockchain. At least that’s a bit easier.
5.5.Bringing the Bitcoin whitepaper to life
If visiting websites or searching the Bitcoin blockchain isn’t for you, you can get a copy of the Bitcoin whitepaper by printing out a 3D render of the document. Then it’s effectively in cold storage, protected from the whims of the Internet—and accessible even without WiFi.
“Check out this 3D render of the Bitcoin whitepaper,” said Twitter user Mike In Space, adding, “You’ll notice that the wall hanger is built right into the backing.”
This 3D render of the Bitcoin whitepaper is offered by Privacy Pros, a company dedicated to providing physical offline backup solutions for private keys.
But that’s not all. It’s also possible to keep a version of the Bitcoin whitepaper safe at home in physical form. Posters of the Bitcoin whitepaper are being sold on the Touch of Modern website.
“To some, Bitcoin may be as much of an enigma as the true identity of Satoshi Nakamoto. But to blockchain enthusiasts, it’s an important and groundbreaking work that heralds the next evolution in how we deal with and think of wealth,” the website says.
It looks like Wright has a lot of work on his hands.
Note: Thanks to Tomer Strolight for giving us permission to use his Bitcoin whitepaper image as the header image for this article.