A website that played an instrumental role in the launch of Bitcoin has been ordered to take down the whitepaper for the cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin.org was originally registered and owned by Satoshi Nakamoto and Martti Malmi, the project’s first two developers.
But Craig Wright, an Australian entrepreneur who claims that he is Satoshi Nakamoto, has been accusing the site of copyright infringement for hosting a copy of “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” that was available in the U.K.
Wright won the case in London’s High Court because “Cøbra” — the pseudonymous person who now owns Bitcoin.org — opted not to mount a defense to protect their anonymity.
As well as taking down the whitepaper, they have been told to pay $48,000 to cover Wright’s legal costs and display a notice concerning the judge’s order for six months.
Simon Cohen, a lawyer who was part of Wright’s legal team, said:
“Dr Wright does not wish to restrict access to his whitepaper. However, he does not agree that it should be used by supporters and developers of alternative assets, such as Bitcoin Core, to promote or otherwise misrepresent those assets as being Bitcoin given that they do not support or align with the vision for Bitcoin as he set out in his whitepaper.”
Unsurprisingly, Cøbra reacted furiously to the ruling on Twitter, writing:
“All your fiat-based assets are ultimately secured by the same legal system that today made it illegal for me to host the Bitcoin whitepaper because a notorious liar swore before a judge that he's Satoshi. A system where 'justice' depends on who's got the bigger wallet.”
They added: “I don't think you could get a better advertisement of *why* Bitcoin is necessary than what happened today.”
Cøbra also offered to make a Bitcoin payment to the address associated with Block 9 of Bitcoin’s blockchain, which was mined by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009.
The crypto community is largely divided over Wright’s claims that he invented Bitcoin.