Foul Play Alleged at Bitcoin.org by the Site’s Long-Time Overseer

Will Binns, one of Bitcoin.org’s overseers, said he has lost access to the site, claiming a breach may have occurred. 

“Bitcoin.org, where many people also download the latest version of Bitcoin Core software, is now in danger of becoming compromised, if it hasn’t just happened,” Binns said in a June 24 Github post.

Bitcoin.org has been in transition

Bitcoin.org, a focal point for Bitcoin (BTC) and blockchain education thought to be an original product of Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto, has changed hands several times over the last decade since the creator’s exit.  

Nakamoto reportedly handed off the site’s management to a group of entities. A controversial anonymous character named Cobra has overseen the project for the past several years. He recently stated plans for the project’s progressive hand-off throughout this year as he fades out of engagement.   

Cobra takes out Binns

Cobra “has removed my access and seized control of the site and accompanying code repositories,” Binns said in his June 24 post. “I do not believe Cobra is the sole and lawful owner, nor does he have any right to do these things without just cause.”

Cobra removed Binns from the operation due to stated inadequate work, Binns wrote, claiming that the accusations are false. “This has been taken out of context in an attempt to manipulate public opinion and infringe upon my rights, along with the rights of others,” Binns said. “I believe he is looking to illegally transfer ownership of the site without due process, and this may only be the beginning.”

Binns’ post seeks to garner support from the community around the recent developments in an effort for legal action, he said, adding that capital associated with the project has been safely delegated, although the website itself still reportely remains at risk.  

Greg Maxwell chimes in

Greg Maxwell, a long-time Bitcoin developer and crypto community participant, commented on Binns’ post. “Your position appears to be a misplaced and inappropriate response to cobra-bitcoin suggesting that he was considering not handing you unilateral control of Bitcoin.org,” Maxwell said. 

Maxwell added:

“In particular, no urgent handling is required because fundamentally nothing has change: Cobra currently retains actual control over the domain, as he has for years since long before your involvement, a fact which you have raised no complaint about until now.”

Maxwell said Cobra contacted him on June 24, essentially clarifying that Binns is not Bitcoin.org’s owner. Cobra also reportedly said he feared Binns presented himself as an owner and capable seller of the website, in part or in whole. 

At first glance, Maxwell said he saw the claims as a tad dramatic. Binns’ response, however, changed Maxwell’s tune as he now agrees with Cobra’s fears. 

Maxwell said:

“I still think that it’s likely mostly a misunderstanding fuelled by high emotions (and Cobra’s sparkling bedside manner)… but publicly soliciting funding for a legal attack is essentially validating the least chartable interpretation of your actions.”

The Bitcoin developer concluded by asking Binns to revisit the situation with a clearer head after some time and thought. 

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