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repentance
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October 25, 2011, 11:40:18 PM
 #41

if an organization like this pays the developers what kind of trouble could we get into?

That was my first thought.

It seems to me that in order to avoid attack or attempts at control, the rules need to explicitly enforce that the foundation has no influence over developer decisions or which developers get paid for which features etc.
There would surely need to be some transparent external voting mechanism donators use, so that the foundation is more or less just a conduit/pool for the funds.
(simply managing the operational aspects of the voting and distribution)


If a not for profit is going to pay salaries to people or even pay them as contractors, it has to exert influence over their work, otherwise it's essentially giving people gifts to use as they please and the auditors will go apeshit. 


All I can say is that this is Bitcoin. I don't believe it until I see six confirmations.
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October 25, 2011, 11:46:21 PM
 #42

I have some office space in San Francisco (SOMA) that I would be willing to donate for an office / meeting place. If it grows in to something larger and is used like a co-working space for Bitcoin I could help out there as well.

We all feel the same about the decentralized benefits of Bitcoin. At the same time I've been throwing a lot of money at lawyers, I'd assume Mark is and probably a few others. The regulation around Bitcoin will have the biggest impact on the exchanges initially but everyone is concerned. There are plenty of other reasons to form this foundation as well

We would have to make very clear that this is not a decision making body for the Bitcoin community as a whole.

Jered

To be honest, I've been wondering whether the exchanges have considered joining together to fight these legal battles.  It's not an uncommon thing to do when there's a specific legal problem in an industry and it not only reduces the costs per organisation but it also helps develop a cohesive legal strategy.  genjix has also mentioned having spent thousands on legal issues with the banks, so putting together a joint legal fighting fund might be an idea worth considering if you can all agree on which battles need to be fought first, which jurisdictions should be your first priority, and who to use as people representatives.

 Imho the foundation should gather all the good will people, developpers, businesses, users, associations, people helping on IRC or on stackexchange . . .
 For sure, pools, exchanges, wallet providers . . . everyone believing in bitcoin should gather and support the foundation.
 Bitcoin have powerful ennemies, lets unite and be stronger !


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October 26, 2011, 02:09:31 AM
 #43

I fully support the creation of a Bitcoin Foundation.

Bitcoin is revolutionary for many reasons. Its most interesting feature is it removes the control of money from government, and gives it to the people. If Bitcoin becomes a success, there will be a big incentive for governments to take control of it. Then it would only be as good as fiat. To that end, the Bitcoin Foundation should promote a truly diverse mining pool, and avoid direct control.

Suggestions :
-   Produce an ASIC miner so people can continue to support Bitcoin by mining cheaply at home
-   The Bitcoin Foundation Committee should accept petitions to discuss / vote on governance issues. 1 BTC one vote, like one share one vote.
-   Coordinate donations to support Bitcoin development & PR.
    o   To avoid conflict of interest, maybe only publicise suggested payment amounts & addresses for the core developers
-   Add a regular payment feature to the Bitcoin client, to support these donations/subscriptions
-   Support legal cases, produce patents & trademarks
-   Promote technological financial innovation
-   Organise a Job List so Bitcoin Foundation volunteers can help with the work
-   Collect & distribute regular trusted statistics on the Bitcoin economy, similar to government economic data releases (https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=35908.msg442674#msg442674)

Thanks for all your hard work!
repentance
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October 26, 2011, 02:25:09 AM
 #44


-   The Bitcoin Foundation Committee should accept petitions to discuss / vote on governance issues. 1 BTC one vote, like one share one vote.


You almost certainly couldn't do this legally under a not-for-profit structure, and I don't think it's desirable anyway.  It would mean that the biggest donor/s could effectively control the foundation in the same way that shareholders in a company do.

All I can say is that this is Bitcoin. I don't believe it until I see six confirmations.
theymos
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October 26, 2011, 02:52:49 AM
 #45

I don't like that idea at all.

Right now if the development group goes crazy, the links on bitcoin.org, IRC, etc. will be changed to point to some other developers and anyone sponsoring development will stop paying. If bitcoin.org is hijacked, the development group can issue a network alert about it and someone can set up a new site. Ownership of resources is decentralized among groups that are more or less independent.

If a foundation combines ownership of any resources that are currently owned by different organizations, then the Bitcoin ecosystem will be less robust.

Tor is not the greatest example, since Tor is inherently centralized. The network can't function without authoritative directory servers, and someone controlling most authoritative directory servers can break Tor's security.

I would support:
- Strengthening organizations that already exist while keeping them independent
- Breaking large organizations into independent smaller ones and creating new ones to handle new problems. (Create an independent unofficial development organization, and let someone else create a PR organization.)
- Improving communication between the organizations

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October 26, 2011, 03:05:51 AM
 #46

I don't like that idea at all.

Right now if the development group goes crazy, the links on bitcoin.org, IRC, etc. will be changed to point to some other developers and anyone sponsoring development will stop paying. If bitcoin.org is hijacked, the development group can issue a network alert about it and someone can set up a new site. Ownership of resources is decentralized among groups that are more or less independent.

If a foundation combines ownership of any resources that are currently owned by different organizations, then the Bitcoin ecosystem will be less robust.

Tor is not the greatest example, since Tor is inherently centralized. The network can't function without authoritative directory servers, and someone controlling most authoritative directory servers can break Tor's security.

I would support:
- Strengthening organizations that already exist while keeping them independent
- Breaking large organizations into independent smaller ones and creating new ones to handle new problems. (Create an independent unofficial development organization, and let someone else create a PR organization.)
- Improving communication between the organizations

theymos has some good points here.  There has been already one "attempt" at a Bitcoin Foundation and it is called the "Bitcoin Consultancy" headed by genjix.  In fact, what theymos says is completely true and genjix is, in fact, trying to create his own bitcoin library.  If there were a foundation there would have to be rules so one group does not have an advantage over the other.

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finway
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October 26, 2011, 05:24:54 AM
 #47

The Idea of Bitcoin is like a bomb,
now or then, here or there, this or that
will sucess.

Centralizing is a bad idea, how to divide the power ?

EhVedadoOAnonimato
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October 26, 2011, 07:36:22 AM
 #48

  • Interact with the legal system, where a centralized entity is needed: for example, to hold the Bitcoin trademark, own/control the bitcoin.org domain name, etc.
  • Act as a central library for accurate information about Bitcoin, so journalists and policymakers have an 'official' place to learn about Bitcoin.
  • Collect donations to fund infrastructure necessary for Bitcoin's growth (organize regular developers' conferences or get-togethers maybe? pay for development of cross-implementation testing tools? pay core developers' salaries? create a certification/testing program for Bitcoin implementations? create a central clearinghouse for information about legal issues surrounding Bitcoin across the world?)

Only the last item on this list seems good. Collecting (bitcoin!) donations to fund infrastructure is a good idea. The other two items don't please me. There should be no "official face" for bitcoin. If you want to create a support group like Bitcoin Consultancy for example, and make this group non-profit, that's fine. But don't call it "Official Bitcoin Foundation". People should understand that bitcoin has no "owner", no official face.

It would be particularly important that this group is not referenced by the main project's page, bitcoin.org. The same way bitcoin.org link to these forums was cut, no link from bitcoin.org to any bitcoin foundation should be made, at least not as if it was the only one. It should be made explicit that multiple foundations can/should exist.
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October 26, 2011, 07:42:20 AM
 #49

Evoorhees and theymos managed to say what I wanted to say in a better way, thank you both.
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October 26, 2011, 10:45:18 AM
 #50

Other not-for-profit organizations that could be emulated:
.
.
.
The Apache Software Foundation
I've been actively promoting this for many months on this forum. I'm glad that core developers are finally beginning to see the reasoning behind.

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October 26, 2011, 11:49:29 AM
 #51

I think the Problem is: Right now Bitcoin is mainly this Forum, plus a few scattered irc channels.
I don't think the Forum will generate enough interest by the public to keep the bitcoin economy growing.

If something is done about that good, if not I too will one day abandon Bitcoin.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they keep laughing, then they start choking on their laughter, and then they go and catch their breath. Then they start laughing even more.
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October 26, 2011, 11:54:25 AM
 #52

Why a foundation? Why risk getting your funds blocked like Wikileaks? Solution is here: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=49854.0

Smooth and simple and cannot be taken down that easily if at all.

<helo> funny that this proposal grows the maximum block size to 8GB, and is seen as a compromise
<helo> oh, you don't like a 20x increase? well how about 8192x increase?
<JackH> lmao
becoin
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October 26, 2011, 12:03:36 PM
 #53

Why a foundation? Why risk getting your funds blocked like Wikileaks?
I don't see the link between your questions. How bitcoin funds can be blocked by blocking/dissolving/outlawing a bitcoin-related foundation?

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October 26, 2011, 02:01:33 PM
 #54

we founded http://bitcoin-austria.at/ some weeks ago.

this is a non-profit association (a registered legal entity) that has similar goals - but focused on europe/austria.

if there was some sort of umbrella organisation a cooperation would be a possiblity.
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October 26, 2011, 02:14:22 PM
 #55

The idea of a Bitcoin Association is a very good one.  I would prefer more of an "Association" with members, than an official Foundation, but the verbage is always debatable. 

- Companies and people can pay a modest fee to be an annual member
- Members vote on the leadership and any pooled/collective bitcoin marketing.

Think like your local Chamber of Commerce.  You pay an annual fee and the Chamber's job is to promote the community as a whole.  The key is getting the best ideas to rise to the top and be executed, which can happen with a simple membership and voting structure.

We will absolutely support this.

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repentance
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October 26, 2011, 03:08:34 PM
 #56

Why a foundation? Why risk getting your funds blocked like Wikileaks?
I don't see the link between your questions. How bitcoin funds can be blocked by blocking/dissolving/outlawing a bitcoin-related foundation?

WTF?  Do you even understand what is being proposed?

All I can say is that this is Bitcoin. I don't believe it until I see six confirmations.
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October 26, 2011, 03:27:12 PM
 #57

WTF?  Do you even understand what is being proposed?
I do. You apparently don't. This is why I'll quote it for you:

To get the conversation started, here are some functions I think a Bitcoin Foundation could perform:

  • Interact with the legal system, where a centralized entity is needed: for example, to hold the Bitcoin trademark, own/control the bitcoin.org domain name, etc.
  • Act as a central library for accurate information about Bitcoin, so journalists and policymakers have an 'official' place to learn about Bitcoin.
  • Collect donations to fund infrastructure necessary for Bitcoin's growth (organize regular developers' conferences or get-togethers maybe? pay for development of cross-implementation testing tools? pay core developers' salaries? create a certification/testing program for Bitcoin implementations? create a central clearinghouse for information about legal issues surrounding Bitcoin across the world?)
I agree with all listed functions of such a not-for-profit foundation. Go guys, do it!

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Brian DeLoach
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October 26, 2011, 08:05:07 PM
 #58

However, over the last six months or so it has become obvious to me that the rest of the world isn't set up to interact with a radically decentralized system like Bitcoin...

What in particular made you think that?

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October 26, 2011, 08:12:08 PM
 #59

The bitcoin police are a form of bitcoin foundation but organised over irc mostly.

I put forward that it exists merely as a wiki to keep track of decisions and its members have an irc channel to organise things etc. Developers can get paid in bounties so they can be claimed by anyone not one particular dev.

There exists other such things like the p2p foundation.




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October 26, 2011, 08:22:15 PM
 #60

I would support this and think it's good for Bitcoin's future.  To me, Bitcoin is a child and needs protection and support.  In time, Bitcoin will mature to adulthood and, provided it was raised properly, there should be nothing any one person or organisation can do to control it.

I would suggest that such an organisation should have a constitution which undergoes public scrutiny before being established.
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