The week in review: 50 BTC moved for first time since 2009
Mysterious Bitcoin transfers, a #FreeRoss billboard in Times Square, and France’s remarks on a successful digital euro test have left us dizzy this fine Friday. Check out what went down this week in the crypto world.
Satoshi, that you? 50 BTC moved for the first time since 2009
On Wednesday, crypto Twitter went into a frenzy over the transfer of 50 Bitcoin mined on 9 February 2009. Whale Alert, a Twitter bot known for tracking on-chain transactions for multiple blockchains tweeted that 40 BTC was transferred from a “possible Satoshi owned wallet”. The BTC price dipped as the tweet went viral.
??? 40 #BTC (391,055 USD) transferred from possible #Satoshi owned wallet (dormant since 2009) to unknown wallet
ℹ️ The coins in this transaction were mined in the first month of Bitcoin’s existence.
— Whale Alert (@whale_alert) May 20, 2020
Blockchayne clarified that there was in fact 50 BTC in the wallet and that 40 (~ $391,055) of them went to another wallet where they still remain, and that the other 9.99 BTC was sent to another address before being distributed to 30 other addresses.
There were 50 BTC in that wallet. 40 of them went to one wallet where they still remain.
The other 9.99 BTC were sent to this address and then distributed to 30 other addresses. pic.twitter.com/J3RqmOd6z7
— ΞBlockchayne™️ (@Blockchayne) May 20, 2020
The coins were mined on block 3654 and according to Antoine Le Calvez, lead data engineer at Coin Metrics, this marks the first time since August 2017 that an account has moved coins from 2009.
Then came a flurry of speculation, with some asserting the transfer came from a wallet owned by the pseudonymous Bitcoin creator(s), Satoshi Nakamoto. However, the coins are unlikely to be theirs according to past research. The only links possibly connecting the coins to Satoshi is that they were mined in 2009 and were inactive up until Wednesday. As the Twitter sleuths have shown, this is insubstantial evidence for such a bold claim.
A more elaborate analysis casts doubt on Satoshi’s connection to the coins. An analysis of the habits of a single, early miner has been used to develop what’s known as the “Patoshi pattern”, which is believed to indicate which blocks Nakamoto most likely mined and those he didn’t.
Here’s a visualization of the Patoshi pattern with the block that was just spent. The blocks believed to be Satoshi have a specific pattern in the nonce, which this block does not have pic.twitter.com/E86eEs6MZf
— nic carter (@nic__carter) May 20, 2020
The address of the previously dormant wallet appears on Craig Wright’s filing of claimed wallet addresses relating to his Kleiman estate case. Wright has claimed he is, in fact, the legendary Satoshi, but there’s substantial doubt that this is true. Calvin Ayre, a friend of Craig Wright, commented on a tweet analysing the wallet, saying: “I think you will find this to not be Craigs, or at least not Craig doing it…who owns this is for the courts maybe”.
Early Bitcoin developer, Marti Malmi explained on Twitter that the transfer wasn’t from him either.
Nope. Bitcoin was announced on the cryptography mailing list in January 2009 and many people could have tested it. I found Bitcoin around April. @Cointelegraph pic.twitter.com/2he7HhSmhT
— Martti Malmi (@marttimalmi) May 20, 2020
Crypto Twitter isn’t known to shy away from wild theories, but it appears the nature of this transfer isn’t as juicy as some may have initially thought.
What do you make of it? Let us know on Twitter.
Banking on Africa: The Bitcoin Revolution is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video
Follow Bitcoin pioneers from across Africa as they fight to bring this revolutionary new technology to the masses and transform the continent’s financial systems. Supported by Luno and produced by award-winning production studio, Documinute, Banking on Africa: The Bitcoin Revolution is now available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video. Check out the trailer below.
Watch now on Amazon Prime.
“Free Ross”: Billboard in Times Square calls for Silk Road founder’s release
A photo of a billboard in Times Square calling for the release of Silk Road creator, Ross Ulbricht, was posted on Twitter yesterday. According to the “ClemencyForRoss” Twitter account, the billboard, which features the website calling for Ulricht’s release – freeross.org – will remain in Times Square for several months.
Times Square says FREE ROSS! #FreeRoss2020 pic.twitter.com/lbeRvakH2c
— Free_Ross (@Free_Ross) May 20, 2020
Ulbricht was arrested and imprisoned in 2013 for setting up Silk Road, a marketplace on the darknet that allowed users to buy and sell drugs, fake documents, and a variety of other illicit goods and services, using Bitcoin.
The website was live from 2011 to 2013 and made a reported $214 million in sales before it was shut down by the FBI.
Ulbricht is currently serving a double life sentence without parole in New York after being convicted for drug trafficking, criminal enterprise, aiding and abetting the distribution of drugs over the internet, computer hacking and money laundering.
According to the freeross.org Twitter account, the billboard was courtesy of a “generous supporter” and that “no #FreeRoss funds were spent on it”.
The case has been the source of serious controversy and a number of high-profile figures in the crypto world have called for his release. A clemency petition was launched soon after Ulbricht’s imprisonment, proclaiming that his sentencing was “rife with abuse”. The petition will be sent to Donald Trump requesting for Ulbricht’s sentence to be reduced when it reaches 300,000 signatures.
At the time of writing, the petition has 291,384 signatures.
Samsung Galaxy phones pre-installed with crypto enabled esports streaming
Theta.tv, a gaming and esports streaming video platform powered by the Theta blockchain will be available to tens of millions of Samsung Galaxy phone owners via an alliance with Samsung.
Streams from the service will be embedded within the Samsung Daily interface that comes pre-installed on all new Samsung Galaxy S20 smartphones in the United States. The update will also be pushed to all Galaxy S10, S9, Note 10 and Note 9 devices globally, for a total installed base of more than 75 million devices.
Viewers can earn Theta tokens (TFUEL) by watching and sharing streams. Users can also donate to TFUEL to streamers or it can be swapped on a crypto exchange.
Samsung Daily is a rebrand of its predecessor, the Bixby Home interface on Galaxy phones, which provides a stream of news, videos and other related content. Users will be able to directly access Theta.tv streams via the Samsung Daily embed.
The Samsung NEXT fund invested in Theta Labs in 2017 and the two companies have been collaborating ever since. “We believe this commercial product launch is a critical inflection point in the adoption of the Theta Network globally,” said Theta Labs co-founder and CEO Mitch Liu, in a blog post. “Our groundbreaking approach to streaming is a perfect fit for Samsung’s worldwide user base. It’s a huge step toward our goal of making Theta a global infrastructure for video content and data delivery”.
Theta.tv also broadcasts World Poker Tour tournaments, as well as blockchain conferences like Consensus and Crypto Asia Summit. In February, Theta Labs announced a turnkey live embed tool for website and blog owners, allowing them to earn TFUEL by hosting streams on their sites. The tool used smart contracts to split TFUEL rewards three ways between the hosting website, the streamer being featured, and viewers with registered Theta.tv accounts.
Banque de France “successfully” tests blockchain-based digital euro
The central bank of France has “successfully” completed the first test of its blockchain-based digital currency.
The Banque de France announced the news on Wednesday, saying it ran the experiment with investment banking giant, Société Générale, which issued bonds as security tokens and then settled them in digital euros.
Société Générale issued €40 million worth of covered bonds as security tokens on 14 May before they were settled in the central bank’s blockchain-based digital euros.
According to Société Générale: “This experimentation was performed end-to-end using blockchain infrastructures…It demonstrates the feasibility of financial securities being digitally settled and delivered in Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) for interbank settlements”.
In April 2018, the investment bank issued bonds worth €100 million as security tokens, but those were settled in fiat euros. The bank said the latest test transaction, conducted in digital euro “is a new step in Société Générale scaling up in its transformation, using the most innovative technologies, with the aim of better serving its clients”.
France’s central bank now plans to conduct more tests with other players “in the next few weeks” as part of its ongoing digital euro experiments.
“The results of these experiments will be an important element of the Banque de France’s contribution to the more global reflection led by the Eurosystem on the interest of [a CBDC],” said the central bank.
Banque de France launched its digital euro experimental program in April, and at the time said it aims to explore the potential of digital currency in clearing and settling tokens financial assets.
On Wednesday, the central bank reiterated its stance focusing on wholesale CBDC use cases.