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Mircea Popescu, believed to be one of the biggest Bitcoin holders, was born at 41. reported dead

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Where should I start with Mircea Popescu?

Popescu is a Romanian by residence, provocateur by profession and proclaimed the “greatest erotic writer in the world”. So let’s start with what we think we know.

Popescu, who is rumored to be one of the largest single Bitcoin holders – he has claimed to hold 1 million coins, although more conservative estimates put his holdings in the tens of thousands – is said to have died at the age of 41, according to one story for the first time in surfaced in a Costa Rican news report this week.

Though inconclusive on its own – the article only mentions his name – the news has since been confirmed by three different women with whom he is known to have long-term, allegedly consensual master-slave relationships. (More on that later).

But if much of the early Twitter rumblings were focused on the size of its alleged holdings (and whether or not they are for sale), the rest of this article will focus on Popescu’s controversial legacy in Bitcoin.

One of the earliest and most ambitious entrepreneurs in technology, Popescu is known for launching MPEx, a self-proclaimed “Bitcoin exchange”. Founded in 2012, the website was once an early breeding ground for early Bitcoin IPOs, a practice that earned him the wrath of the Securities and Exchange Commission, an agency whose power he was happy to openly undermine.

From then on, Popescu rose to fame as one of the first to fight fraud in public, and emerged as a vocal critic of Ripple (the company that launched XRP) and Bitcoin Savings & Trust, which later turned out to be a pyramid scheme .

The behaviors, which were novelty at the time, would gain him an early following and set the tone for what would become Popescu’s signature – an aggressive type of unmistakable bitcoin evangelism that has persisted its influence despite documented cases of sexism, bigotry, and anti-Semitism made.

His blog – – contains all of this. Indeed, there are those who believe Popescu should get no credit at all for his long and demonstrated use of hateful language.

For others, however, its influence on the Bitcoin conversation is – and has been – undeniable.

As an avid antagonist of Bitcoin coders, he would go a long way in undermining claims made by early lead developer Gavin Andresen regarding any connection or ancestry to Satoshi Nakamoto, and collectively referred to the developers of the day in blog posts attempting to portray their attempts as “The Power Rangers”. to upgrade the code as ego-driven, misguided and generally infantile.

“The self-proclaimed ‘developers’ are, by and large, a bunch of retarded kids looking for ‘sexy projects’ and who knows, maybe as they hit the streets more, they’ll become spunk rock stars and somewhere fat tosses them their bra “, He wrote in a passage that demonstrates his stark and atmospheric writing style.

While it’s hard to pinpoint exactly where in his sprawling anthology (it was common for him to publish between 70 and 100 blog posts per month), in it he made some of the earliest and most passionate arguments why the description “Bitcoin- User “must be limited to only those who run nodes (and who own a copy of the blockchain).

“Popescu used the metaphor of peasantry and aristocracy to illustrate this distinction. People who don’t have their own hubs are farmers, and that’s the reality. He phrased it in such a way that everyone can understand, ”said Akin Fernandez, founder of Azteko.

Sometimes he even successfully combined his unconventional sexual lifestyle with his Bitcoin reflections in posts advocating the freedom and ecstasy that could result from submission to the rules of the software.

However, all of this could be buried under blogs that could be demeaning to others if they weren’t downright violent and offensive. His most memorable act remains spending a bounty on the death of Bitcoin developer Pieter Wuille, although the blog post itself can be read as a multi-faceted technical argument about transaction validation.

Equally powerful was his argument that the software had to remain backwards compatible, without hard forks, in which he (loosely) linked the dense technical concept with the claim that Bitcoin had to be defined by the software choice of the end user, not by any developer group.

Was Mircea a flawed character? No doubt. But only software mattered in his worldview, and at a time when Bitcoin was still in its infancy (and still in danger of losing its essential properties), he proved to be one of his bravest defenders.

“Bitcoin is not here for you to comment. Bitcoin is here to change your life profoundly and often painfully, ”he wrote. “Whether you agree or not, whether you give permission or not, whether you think it’s ‘acceptable’ or ‘appropriate’ or whatever. Nobody asked you.”

A selection of some of his more memorable quotes can be found here, although this is by no means an exhaustive overview of his extensive writings.

The author intends to explore Popescu’s canon further in the coming months, he can be reached here.

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