Bitcoin, Who's Your Daddy? What We Know About Satoshi Nakamoto

Bitcoin, Who’s Your Daddy? What We Know About Satoshi Nakamoto

Background and update about bitcoin’s founder Satoshi Nakamoto

Bitcoin’s emergence as a monumental disruption in the finance realm sparked cryptocurrency’s rise, revolutionizing how we perceive and transact with digital assets. Anyone following Bitcoin’s story knows it has been filled with incredible ups and downs. If crypto had a drama queen, it would be BTC.

Or should we say drama king? It turns out that even Bitcoin’s origin story is rooted in enigma, further proving the point that truth is stranger than fiction. Or, it would be if we could get at the truth.

Who is Satoshi Nakamoto, the alleged inventor of blockchain, the Bitcoin concept and cryptocurrency BTC? Incredibly, in these days of social media and eroding online privacy, no one really knows for sure.

Let’s look at what we know (and don’t know) about Satoshi, as well as some of the shenanigans sparked by the mystery.

What We Know About Bitcoin Founder Satoshi Nakamoto

The story of Bitcoin’s inception is intertwined with the pseudonymous identity of Satoshi Nakamoto. In October 2008, Satoshi published the renowned whitepaper “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System,” laying the foundation for a revolutionary digital currency.

However, Satoshi’s true identity remains a mystery, as he has yet to reveal his face or provide concrete personal information. In the absence of concrete info, some investigators have looked to his writings and communications for clues to his character.

His mastery of cryptography, computer science, and economics helped him create the underlying principles of Bitcoin. Additionally, researchers have noted Satoshi’s impeccable coding skills in the original Bitcoin software.

In a nod to the founder, the lowest unit of bitcoin is the satoshi. The standard ratio is one bitcoin to 100 million satoshis, as in 1 bitcoin (BTC) = 100,000,000 satoshis.

People Who Have Claimed to Be Satoshi Nakamoto

Over the years, several individuals have come forward claiming to be the elusive Satoshi Nakamoto. The early adopter crypto community includes some of the smartest, most analytical people on the planet. Each time they have reacted with intense speculation, scrutiny, and skepticism.

In 2014, Newsweek “outed” Dorian Nakamoto, a Japanese-American man living in California, claiming he was the founder of Bitcoin. A media storm ensued, and the magazine published a photo of his home, further violating his privacy. Dorian denied involvement with Bitcoin and insisted that the name “Satoshi Nakamoto” held no significance in his life.

In contrast to Dorian Nakamoto, Craig Wright, an Australian entrepreneur and computer scientist, sought center stage in 2016 by claiming that he was Satoshi Nakamoto and presenting technical proof to support his claim. The crypto community widely criticized and debunked his evidence, leading many to dismiss his assertion as a mere publicity stunt.

Finally, some speculate that Satoshi Nakamoto is none other than Nick Szabo, a computer scientist known for his work on digital currency and the inventor of smart contracts. Szabo’s notable contributions, coupled with linguistic and coding similarities between his work and Bitcoin’s whitepaper, fuel speculation that he may be the true genius behind Bitcoin.

Other Bitcoin Founder Conspiracy Theories

Apart from the claims made by individuals, various conspiracy theories have emerged surrounding the true identity of Satoshi Nakamoto. Some theories speculate that Satoshi is not a single person but a collective effort by a group of individuals, theorizing that founding Bitcoin involved complexity that could be beyond the capabilities of a lone programmer.

Others believe he is a high-profile figure, such as a government agency or a renowned cryptographer, who deliberately chose to remain anonymous. But why? Let’s look at one possible reason for all the secrecy.

Does Satoshi Own Bitcoin?

Why yes, Satoshi (or the person or persons he represents) does own BTC. Quite a lot, actually. In 2014, Sergio Demain Lerner, the Chief Scientist for RSK Labs, published a report about a pattern he detected in some wallets from the early days of BTC mining. These wallets are believed to be associated with Satoshi.

Does Satoshi Own Bitcoin?
Source: River Financial

As the owner of between 75,000 and 1.1 million BTC, Satoshi holds the most BTC of anyone on the planet, which may be one reason he prefers to remain anonymous.

In November 2021, Bitcoin hit its still-highest value of US $68,000. Satoshi’s net worth reached US $73 B, making him the 15th-richest person in the world at the time.

Of course, in the recent market correction, BTC’s value dropped as well. Satoshi’s 2022 net worth hovered around $43B.

If and when BTC recovers to reach or surpass its previous high and eventually take its place alongside traditional fiat currencies in world markets, Satoshi could one day be one of the richest, most influential people on the planet. Talk about hodl.

More About Satoshi Nakamoto

With such a high-profile ongoing mystery, it’s no wonder a few investigative journalists and authors have tried to solve it. Below are a few of the most well-known books about Satoshi.

  1. “The Book of Satoshi: The Collected Writings of Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto” by Phil Champagne who compiled the original writings of Satoshi Nakamoto, including the Bitcoin whitepaper and various forum posts and emails. He provides insights into Satoshi’s thoughts, motivations, and the early development of Bitcoin.
  2. “Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money” by Nathaniel Popper provides a comprehensive account of Bitcoin’s origins and evolution. He highlights the stories of the key individuals involved in its development, including Satoshi Nakamoto, and the challenges the cryptocurrency faced in its early stages.
  3. “Finding Satoshi: The Real Story Behind Mysterious Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto” was written by Ian McLemore, a former long-time executive editor of The Houston Post. He claims to follow a trail of clues leading to the real Satoshi Nakamoto.
  4. “The Satoshi Nakamoto Trilogy” by E.C. Harwood: For fans of trilogies, fiction, and authors who go by initials only, Harwood’s books offer a fictionalized account of the search for Satoshi Nakamoto and explore the implications of Bitcoin on society. The titles are “Bitcoin: The Future of Money?” “Bitcoin: The Hunt for Satoshi Nakamoto,” and “Bitcoin: The Greatest Technological Advancement Since the Internet.”

Whether you’re interested in delving into the writings attributed to Satoshi or exploring the broader impact of cryptocurrencies, these books provide valuable insights into the fascinating world of Bitcoin and its enigmatic founder.

Moving Ahead

The mystery surrounding Satoshi Nakamoto’s true identity continues to intrigue and captivate the cryptocurrency community. However, Bitcoin’s success does not hinge on unmasking Satoshi.

Bitcoin sparked a cryptocurrency movement that has taken on a life (and market cap) of its own, disrupting traditional finance in ways we haven’t seen since the invention of coins and paper currency. The fight for a more inclusive, decentralized financial system is arguably the real story these days.

If you trade cryptocurrencies or tokens, ZenLedger can help you keep everything organized for tax time, from your satoshis to BTC and beyond. Get started for free today!

The above is for general info purposes only and should not be interpreted as professional advice. Please seek independent legal, financial, tax or other advice specific to your particular situation.