Man Pegged By Newsweek As Bitcoin Creator Denies Involvement

Anonymous FigureA brief primer if you’re not already up to date on things:

This morning, Newsweek published a report claiming they found the Satoshi Nakamoto — the mysterious figure who created the bitcoin digital currency — in Temple City, California.

In that piece, he was quoted as saying:

“I am no longer involved in [bitcoin] and I cannot discuss it.”

“It’s been turned over to other people. They are in charge of it now. I no longer have any connection.”

Hours later, we began hearing first reports of denial. As it were, the man’s name is Satoshi Nakamoto (Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto, in fact), but he insists he’s not the Nakamoto who created bitcoin.

“I got nothing to do with it,” he told the Associated Press this afternoon, in a series of events that included free lunch and a chase on the I-10 freeway.

Nakamoto does acknowledge that some facts in the Newsweek piece are accurate, such as previously working as a defense contractor. But as far as bitcoin goes, he says he first heard of it when Leah McGrath Goodman contacted his brother for the piece several weeks ago.

But this still doesn’t explain his quote in which he said he was no longer involved (see above). Nakamoto, 64 years of age, says he was misunderstood.

“I’m saying I’m no longer in engineering. That’s it,” he told the AP journalist. “And even if I was, when we get hired, you have to sign this document, contract saying you will not reveal anything we divulge during and after employment. So that’s what I implied.”

“It sounded like I was involved before with Bitcoin and looked like I’m not involved now. That’s not what I meant. I want to clarify that,” he added.

Meanwhile, Goodman stands by her piece, as does Newsweek. At the time of this writing, the story still covers most of the publication’s homepage.

When newsBTC attempted to contact Goodman, we did not receive a response. In a statement to AP, however, she said: “I stand completely by my exchange with Mr. Nakamoto. There was no confusion whatsoever about the context of our conversation — and his acknowledgment of his involvement in Bitcoin.”

Goodman and Newsweek have been taking tremendous amounts of flak for the publication of the piece, which included a posting of a picture of Nakamoto and his place of residence.

Members of the bitcoin community have criticized the author and the publication for breaching the privacy of an elderly man with no concrete proof he’s actually who they say he is.

It’s likely this isn’t the last we hear on this. More information as it becomes available. [source: Associated Press]