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‘A Fraud’: Ethereum Founder Buterin Calls Out ‘Satoshi’ Craig Wright

Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:06 PM
P. H. Madore
Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:06 PM

A video of Vitalik Buterin calling out Craig Wright at the two-day Deconomy 2018 conference in Seoul is sure to be going viral in the community.

Buterin has the floor for questions after a talk given by Craig Wright titled “A Visual Depiction of Bitcoin Scaling and Enterprise Growth.” Buterin appears to take issue with a claim made by Wright during the speech.

Noting that he was in a “confrontational mood,” Buterin said that Wright had made a “blatantly false” claim regarding the difficulty of a certain cryptographic task and making the Lightning Network work. But what really bothered Buterin was Wright’s claim regarding “selfish miner” theory. Wright had apparently said that “in the context of selfish mining, gamma  can be less than zero.”

Buterin took the floor, stating:

It’s an absolutely nonsensical claim. It makes no sense because gamma is the percentage of the network which is colluding with the miners, which, by definition, is between 0 and 1. So given that he makes so many nonsensical mistakes, why is he – why is this fraud allowed to speak at this conference?

Samson Mow, CSO at Blockstream, quickly seconded the question to audible applause and laughter.

Wright Rebuttal

Selfish mining is an attack vector of Bitcoin . Wright clarified that his meaning was that “honest miners” would be rewarded as opposed to selfish miners. Wright has written on the subject  previously, saying:

Again, and again we see technocrats, academics and demagogues oversimplifying, downplaying profit and seeking to apply the physics of rocks to human interactions. Unfortunately for them, none of these holds in the real world. Human interactions are always conducted at a level far too complex to be modelled using simple state tables. That aside, flawed pseudoscience such as the selfish mining cancer are incredibly simple to debunk. Once you get past the ad hominem attacks and typical troll tactics, even my grandmother can understand how asinine such a quack level theory really is.

In the fray, Joseph Poon, co-creator of the Lightning Network, stood up to say that as a Lightning Network developer and the author of its whitepaper, he did not understand Wright’s presentation at all and that he felt most others there were in the same boat.

The real world episode ended when the emcee called a stop to it, but, of course, it continued on Twitter.

Into the late night Buterin wrote a 62-tweet article discussing the great Bitcoin Scaling debate, and concluded with the following:

Featured image from Flickrr.