Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, just days after talking with Joe Rogan about how Twitter on the blockchain might work, last night unleashed a flurry of tweets about cryptocurrency. The most important of several takeaways: Dorsey, also CEO of the payments company Square, appears to believe that bitcoin is the One Crypto To Rule Them All—and he’s doing more than talking about it.
It appears to have started when entrepreneur Matt Odell tweeted to Dorsey: “Yo @jack, You ready to carry the torch? Send me an invoice for 2860000 sats.” A ‘sat’ is a ‘satoshi,’ about 1/100 millionth of a bitcoin. (Note to Odell: use commas for accuracy in long numbers!)
— Matt Odell (@matt_odell) February 5, 2019
Odell, who’s also a host on the Tales from the Crypt podcast, was passing along the “Lightning Network Trust Chain,” a demonstration of the Lightning Network. Each recipient adds a few sats to the amount, and by late yesterday the growing sum (roughly $100 USD) had passed among dozens of Crypto Twitter luminaries, and according to Bitcoin Magazine, through 39 countries. Dorsey then passed the Torch along to Lightning Labs CEO Elizabeth Stark.
It’s a bit surprising that the CEO of Twitter was able to receive the funds on the spur of the moment, since Lightning payments require some setup—but more on that in a moment. Because as he was passing the torch, @Jack was also mixing it up with Crypto Twitter in a flurry of opinionated, off-the-cuff declarations reminiscent of Elon Musk’s milder tweetstorms.
Most importantly, Dorsey declared that “I only have bitcoin.”
I only have bitcoin https://t.co/C24xNJxuFB
— jack (@jack) February 5, 2019
In fact, he appears to be accumulating, confirming to one user that he has been buying bitcoin in the $3,000 price range.
Dorsey was also ready to do battle with competing cryptos. When one Twitter users encouraged him to “buy $ETH,” Dorsey replied simply “No”.
One user replied that “racecoin is the future,” apparently in reference to an obvious shitcoin supposedly leveraging cryptocurrency for…motorsports? Dorsey was happy to smear any and all comers, replying simply: “A race to the bottom”.
But, inevitably, bitcoin’s true opponent entered the Twitter arena. One user encouraged Dorsey to allow Square’s Cash app to receive bitcoin (it currently only allows purchasing and sending BTC) to “Help me get off Coinbase for good!!”. Dorsey’s brutal reply:
“You’ll need to keep coinbase to buy fakebitcoin.”
Working on it. But you’ll need to keep coinbase to buy fakebitcoin 😉
— jack (@jack) February 6, 2019
It’s pretty clear Dorsey was taking a savage swipe at Bitcoin Cash. The bitcoin fork was for a time strongly associated with Craig Wright, also known as “Faketoshi” for his unsubstantiated claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin.
Unsurprisingly, Dorsey starting catching flak from Bitcoin Cash partisans, including the account @bitcoin, which is controlled by BCH supporters. In a subsequent tweet, though, Dorsey clarified that he “Never said [Bitcoin] would be the only [crypto]. Said it’d probably be the native currency”.
Dorsey also offered a few more crypto-related comments, such as saying that he loved the idea of a bitcoin-based tip system for Twitter. But his strong commitment to bitcoin above the competition was the biggest takeaway from the episode.
And it’s no fleeting dalliance. Dorsey not only holds bitcoin, and tried to integrate bitcoin with Square in 2014, but is an investor in Lightning Labs, the developer of the Lightning protocol. It’s a relatively small investment, with Dorsey and four other angel investors making a $2.5 million seed round announced last March. That likely explains why Dorsey was already well-versed in how to use Lightning, and suggests his crypto moment on Twitter might have been a bit less spontaneous than it seems.
His casually ferocious dismissals of “fakebitcoin,” ether, and altcoins, though? They read like the heartfelt scorn of a true bitcoin maximalist. It suggests that Dorsey, and particularly Square’s Cash app, could push further into the blockchain sector, and drive future development and adoption. We’re likely to hear more in a podcast conversation between Dorsey and Elizabeth Stark scheduled for recording this Saturday . . . a plan hatched on Twitter at the end of Dorsey’s latest crypto adventure.