Bitcoin users raise $28,000 (almost £20,000) for the guy who isn't the Bitcoin guy

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bitcoin.pngSay what you will about the Bitcoin community, but at least their hearts are in the right place. Sure, some may claim that they’re all neckbearded libertarians putting their money into a quasi-legal currency that is backed purely by hype – but at least they know when someone is in need. At time of writing, they’ve raised nearly £20,000 to give to Satoshi Nakamoto.

Let’s be clear – they’re not giving the cash to the anonymous man who has dubbed himself ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’, who invented Bitcoin – but are instead interested in giving to Dorian Satoshi Nakamoto, who following a big story in the newly relaunched Newsweek was ‘outed’ as the Bitcoin guy… even though he strongly denies his involvement. As you might imagine, this led to a whole bunch of journalists camping outside of his house and bothering him. At one point last week it got to the point where journalists were livetweeting as they chased him down.

Earlier today Nakamoto (the real one) put out a statement once again denying his involvement – and has also revealed some difficult personal circumstances. Specifically, in the statement (which as far as I can tell was to Reuters journo Felix Salmon), he talks of difficulty finding a job, recovering from an operation, and having to cancel his internet provider because he can’t afford it.

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So Bitcoin to the rescue, right? One XBT user, Andreas M. Antonopoulos, took it upon himself to organise a collection. Here he explaining why:

I’m fundraising for Dorian Nakamoto, the person named in the newsweak article.

I have no idea if this person is Satoshi, though it seems increasingly unlikely. However, it doesn’t matter either way. If this person is Satoshi, then the funds are a small “thanks” and won’t make much of a difference.

However, if this person is not Satoshi, then these funds will serve as a “sorry for what happened to you”, help with medical bills his family is facing, any legal bills they may incur, or anything else. Most of all, it serves to soften the damage caused by irresponsible journalism and to demonstrate the generosity and empathy of the community, which I know is huge

Apparently if Dorian doesn’t want the cash, it will be directed to a charity of his choice – and if he won’t choose a charity, then it will instead go to the Electronic Frontiers Foundation.

At the time of writing, the fund is currently at 45.18239084 BTC – or around $28,000 or just under £20,000 in real money. Of course, being Bitcoin, tomorrow that could fall to being worth £1 or £1million. Apparently the BTC will be converted to US dollars at the end of the month.

If you’d like to donate you can do so here

James O’Malley