The antivirus visionary John McAfee, now famous for widespread controversy, dealings with the law, and a bet to eat something not-so-savoury on national television if bitcoin doesn’t reach $500k by 2020 – has now stated that he’s discovered the identity of the bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto, and wants to out him to the public.
McAfee previously told Bloomberg that he’d expose Nakamoto within a week, although the announcement has been delayed over fears that this doxxing would hurt his chances at fighting an extradition to the US.
Does Satoshi want people to believe they’re dead?
The pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto has been at the core of bitcoin’s creation and expansion, an infamous name that all within the industry want to know who’s hiding behind.
Up until now, many have believed that Nakamoto was dead. The fact is that their original bitcoin wallets are stocked full of 1 million bitcoins, which is around 5% of the total supply of the leading cryptocurrency.
It has been hypothesised that if indeed Nakamoto is alive, he would have touched that money by now.
However, someone smart enough to create a world-changing financial system, if they are in fact alive, would likely be smart enough to conceal their identity and try to convince the world they’re no longer around – for obvious security reasons.
Someone that smart would also have multiple wallets, perhaps even hundreds or thousands, and would be living off the millions in those accounts while indirectly showing the world that because their fortune of billions of dollars was untouched, that they can’t possibly be alive.
Is Craig Wright Satoshi Nakamoto?
The controversial public figure Craig Wright has been flogging the proverbial dead horse about himself being Satoshi Nakamoto for as long as time itself, and yet every effort he makes to convince the public that he is indeed the creator of bitcoin, is met with a lower public opinion.
This begs the question – does Wright know exactly what he’s doing?
Getting our tinfoil hats on for a good round of conspiracy theories, it could be argued that the best way of ‘defeating your enemy’ (the enemy in this case is being identified as Satoshi) is to make them believe they’ve won – in other words – to make the public believe that there’s no way on Earth that this person could be Satoshi.
If Craig Wright was indeed Satoshi, and wanted the world to believe that he was in fact someone else entirely, then one of the most effective ways of achieving this mission would be to hide in plain sight, in the public eye, and to create a persona so incredibly unbelievable, a story so false, with not a single shred of evidence, that the only conclusion the general public could come to would be that there’s no way that this person could be Satoshi.
In fact, if Wright had laid low and not said a single word to the public, the chances of them believing he was the creator of bitcoin would be far, far higher.
Do we believe McAfee?
McAfee has had a long history of controversy in the public eye. From having sex with whales (which he later retracted), to eating his penis on live television if bitcoin doesn’t reach $500,000 USD by 2020, it’s clear that he enjoys the persona of controversy. Is this just another stunt to increase his popularity, or do we believe him?
McAfee has a whole life of tracking down hackers and finding ways of beating the system. If anyone could find Nakamoto, it would be him.
However – the truth will be in the unveiling. If Mcafee delays the announcement more, and a reason comes to light as to why he can’t reveal the identity permanently, then the chances of this being a false story will be much higher.
On this, only time will tell.
Should he reveal Satoshi’s identity?
The most pressing question in this whole scenario is that if McAfee knows who Satoshi is, should he reveal that information to the world?
With a history of protecting individuals from people wishing to steal their personal information – with his massive advancements in the field of personal technological protection – it’s highly out of character for McAfee to want to shun the privacy and empowerment cryptocurrency lends individuals, and to out someone who should be respected for creating this very system that will bring that same privacy and empowerment to the masses.
If McAfee does reveal Satoshi’s identity, then it’s highly likely that the majority of the cryptocurrency community will be up in arms, and McAfee’s path will stray from empowerment and controversy, to a line of violating boundaries which, when crossed, may be hard to return from.
Can 1 million bitcoin destabilise the future economy?
However, the fact remains that Satoshi’s wallets currently hold around 5% of the world’s supply of bitcoin. If the futurists are correct and cryptocurrency becomes the world’s core financial model, and if bitcoin does indeed lead the way in that arena, then one single individual holding 5% of the world’s entire money will pose a deep threat to the economy and stability of the entire globe.
Therefore pushing for Satoshi’s identity to be revealed could work to encourage them to put their bitcoins back into circulation now to avoid any future instability. But of course this is reliant on the fact that Satoshi wants stability. Is completely destabilising the world’s economy the end game, to create some sort of political and governmental system that we can’t envisage right now?
It’s safe to say that if Satoshi’s identity is revealed, this will be the single largest social event in bitcoin’s history to date. All eyes are on McAfee right now – and if he doesn’t deliver – then those eyes may not look look back to him much more in the future.