A recent letter published to the Bitcoin developers mailing list written by Square founder Jack Dorsey indicates that a legal defense fund has been created for open source developers in order to protect them “from lawsuits regarding their activities in the Bitcoin ecosystem.” Dorsey’s letter is also signed by Alex Morcos of Chaincode Labs and Martin White, the co-founder of Hudson River Trading.
Jack Dorsey’s Open Letter to the Bitcoin Developers Mailing List Reveals Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund
According to an open letter from Jack Dorsey, Alex Morcos, and Martin White, “the Bitcoin community is currently the subject of multi-front litigation.” While the letter does not specifically detail any of the legal cases developers are dealing with, it mentions that “individual defendants have chosen to capitulate in the absence of legal support.”
However, the letter does hint at the Tulip Trading lawsuit, which involves Craig Wright, the Australian who claims he is Satoshi Nakamoto and the inventor of Bitcoin. “The Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund is a nonprofit entity that aims to minimize legal headaches that discourage software developers from actively developing Bitcoin and related projects such as the Lightning Network, Bitcoin privacy protocols, and the like,” the letter from Dorsey, White, and Morcos states. The open letter continues:
The fund’s first activities will be to take over coordination of the existing defense of the Tulip Trading lawsuit against certain developers alleging breach of fiduciary duty and provide the source of funding for outside counsel. At this time, the fund is not seeking to raise additional money for its operations but will do so at the direction of the board if needed for further legal action or to pay for staff.
Bitcoin Community Appreciates Legal Defense Fund Effort
The letter explains that interested people with questions or concerns can email the fund’s team and the email domain “bitcoindefensefund.org” is mentioned. The website seems to be under construction at the moment, as a message from the domain host Namebright notes the site is “coming soon.” Of course, the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund became a trending topic on social media after the open letter was published.
Open source developer Bryan Bishop tweeted that he was “very grateful to see Jack’s support on the Bitcoin Developer Legal Defense Fund.” Bitcoiner Marty Bent wrote: “Shoutout to Jack, Alex Morcos, and Martin White for stepping up to protect Bitcoin developers from getting bogged down by lawsuits so they can focus on what they do best. Really cool to see come through the bitcoin-dev mailing list this evening,” Bent added.