They say truth can be stranger than fiction, but nothing we’ve seen in the cryptocurrency Wild West is stranger than the story of David Kleiman vs. Dr. Craig S. Wright and the $11 billion dollar lawsuit between them.
Simply trying to assemble this story chronologically has proven to be a daunting task. There are suspicions of backdated messages out on the WWW, strange emails, allegedly fabricated facts that may or may not have happened before the famous Satoshi whitepaper was published and countless other twists and turns in a story that could either lead to billions of U$ being settled in court – or to be completely dismissed as a major hoax.
The whole story revolves around an email with subject line “Defamation and the difficulties of law on the Internet” which was supposedly sent by Dr. Craig S. Wright to David Kleiman on March 12, 2008. An image of the email in question can be viewed here: https://i.imgur.com/1O33fiz.png
(We chose not to hotlink or repost the image due to its unknown copyright status – we have no idea who created that image or the emails it shows. The watermark is claimed by Gizmodo.)
This email would allegedly prove that Dr. Craig S. Wright was indeed Satoshi Nakamoto or, at very least, was a crucial part of the birth of the Bitcoin technology itself by being the author of the famous whitepaper. But, as it turns out, we were unable to find any trace of evidence that could substantiate the legitimacy of this email. On the contrary, as expected the Reddit sleuths have dug deeper into the case and found that the domain name used in that message was not actually owned by Dr. Craig Wright at the time. This, of course, proves nothing, since you don’t need to own a domain to have an email under it. But the fact that Dr. Wright purchased this domain a couple years later after it went unregistered for a while, could indicate that he may not have been linked to the previous organization holding the domain (or he’d have renewed such a relevant domain name immediately – it’s only $10 after all).
If you search for the first email’s subject string verbatim (“Defamation and the difficulties of law on the Internet” within quotes), you’ll find an archive.is capture of the Google cache of a blogspot blog (gse-compliance.blogspot.com) that has now been taken down. Or as one Gizmodo piece put it, Dr. Craig S. Wright has “erased himself” from the Internet. This particular archive.is capture is from December 11, 2015 and the Google cache is timestamped November 3, 2015. Both the capture and the cache are dated 7+ years after the Wednesday, March 5 2008 timestamp on the blog post and from the March 12 timestamp on the alleged email which mentions the Bitcoin whitepaper.
Therefore neither the capture or the Google cache prove anything about the alleged email addressed from Wright to Kleiman which is now at the core of this multibillion dollar lawsuit. But the email subject string that was chosen may have been a very sophisticated way to correlate the mystery email to the March 2008 date.
Searching for this unique string leads directly to an archived blog post and other mailing list discussions which are confirmed timestamped 7 days before the “historic” email was sent.
When you search for the string “Defamation and the difficulties of law on the Internet”, the only results found are related to the Craig S. Wright exchanges with David Kleiman, either on security related mailing lists or on the archived captures of his previous blog on Blogspot. So this string works as a kind of footprint that you can use to find the Wright x Kleiman exchange from March 2008.
As you can see, a single result is returned when this string is searched for. The subject string chosen for the mysterious email is a GoogleWhack! It’s a unique fingerprint that pins this message exchange to the March 2008 epoch:
Since this string is seemingly unique, there is a clear link here which seems to suggest that whoever authored that Blogspot page is the same person who wrote the mystery email – because according to Google the string is not found related to any other subject at the time of this post.
Records of the discussion about online defamation can be found on security-related mailing lists using that unique string and that particular timestamp can be verified to be legitimately from March 2008 – except it is completely unrelated to Bitcoin and seems to have been deliberately chosen to pin the Bitcoin whitepaper claim to this particular date.
The alleged email from Dr. Craig S. Wright to David Kleiman uses the unique string as an attempt of trusted timestamping the message. Because it is a “fingerprint” that would pin that message to the date when the discussion containing that string happened. This would necessarily have to have been done by whoever intended that email screen capture to seem to have been created in March of 2008, months before the Satoshi Nakamoto paper was published.
By simply examining the subject string and the body of the email, one can see that there’s absolutely no relation between them. We will not quote private email messages for legal reasons, but one can easily find the email text and subject from the Reddit discussion.
As you can see, the uniqueness of the email subject string was chosen for the email at the center of this multibillion dollar lawsuit is the key to the intentions of whoever is trying to prove that Dr. Craig S. Wright is indeed Satoshi Nakamoto or, at very least, was the ideological father of the Bitcoin whitepaper.