The Bitcoin White Paper: Voicepaper Project

The Bitcoin White Paper Voicepaper Project

What is the Bitcoin white paper? How did it turn into a Voicepaper? We dive into all that and more below!

We all know that a single Bitcoiner can make magic happen all on his or her own. So, what happens when ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY-NINE Bitcoiners get together? Laser focused magic, that’s what. In this case, that magic turned into a spoken word version of the Bitcoin white paper, conveniently called the Bitcoin Voicepaper! The project, lead by Dim Zayan, was released on March 1st and featured a powerhouse lineup of Bitcoin OG’s and Plebs that would make any gold bug melt away.   

Take a few minutes to watch the Voicepaper in all its glory. Then, keep reading to learn more about what the Bitcoin white paper is and the origin of the Voicepaper project. It’s our hope that the combination of the Voicepaper video and Bitcoin white paper Q&A can act as a one stop shop as people around the world dive down the Bitcoin rabbit hole for the first time.

We are all Satoshi.

What is the Bitcoin white paper?

The Bitcoin white paper is the first document to outline the mission, principals and technical aspects of Bitcoin. From proof of work to difficulty adjustments and halvings, the white paper covers the A to Z of Bitcoin. It lays the foundation for all of the amazing things that have been created due to the launch of the Bitcoin network over a decade ago.

Who wrote it and when?

The Bitcoin white paper was written by pseudonymous Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto and was released in 2008. The best part? It was released under an MIT public license for all to learn from, share and enjoy. This makes the barrier to entry for people to learn about Bitcoin almost zero, as it should be!

Where is Satoshi today?

If we had a Bitcoin for every time that question was asked! After working to launch the Bitcoin network on January 3, 2009, Satoshi felt it was time to fade into the sunset. So, on April 23, 2011, Satoshi signed off on an email saying,

“I’ve moved onto other things. It’s in good hands with Gavin and everyone.”

Satoshi Nakamoto

While there have been many attempts to track Satoshi down over the past ten years, the mystery remains intact.

Has the Bitcoin white paper ever been updated?

Nope! That’s part of the white paper’s beauty. It was written as if Satoshi was from the future, being able to account and prepare Bitcoin for technical advancements and world events that would have been unthinkable, and laughable to most, in 2008.   

Where can I read the Bitcoin white paper?

That’s the beauty of the way Satoshi released the Bitcoin white paper. Since 2008, it has been spread far and wide due to the MIT public license it was released under. Just like Bitcoin itself, the white paper is for EVERYONE. So, whether you want to grab a copy at Bitcoin.org, or from more recent Bitcoin supporters such as the City of Miami or Square, download yourself a copy and dive into the genius writing from Satoshi.

Do Bitcoin developers still follow the white paper?

Yup! There are a group of people known as Bitcoin core developers. These are the men and women working day and night to make sure Satoshi’s vision lives on in the way it was intended. Changes to the Bitcoin protocol are controlled by Bitcoin Improvement Proposals, or more commonly known as BIP’s. But even as BIP’s are released, the Bitcoin white paper remains untouched.

What is a Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) and how do they get implemented?

A BIP instance is essentially a document that proposes changes to the core bitcoin technology. Anyone can submit a BIP, but it must be approved by an editor and voted in with 95% confidence from the miners. The final step is having the Bitcoin community upgrade to the new version of software.

Why was the Voicepaper created?

For this one, we will let the creator, Dim, answer in his own words:

The Voicepaper is part of a series of work that explores the symbolic and emotional connection to Bitcoin. This particular piece’s focus was on showcasing the broad diversity and unity that exists in the community. A fact that is often obfuscated by too much attention on narratives such as the VP attacks on the whitepaper. Despite the many paths that were taken, the whitepaper represents the root of everyone’s journey. I was just not prepared to see such an amazing response and will to contribute. In a way, this proves that there was an untold need to voice that unity.

Dim Zayan, Voicepaper Creator

What did it mean to be a part of the Voicepaper project?

The reason for jumping onboard the Voicepaper project varies for all 159 people. But we would be willing to bet that the common theme would be that the group has a deep passion for Bitcoin and wants to make sure that as many people as possible have the ability to learn about its beauty without any barriers to entry. After all, Bitcoin is for the people of the ENTIRE world.

Here are the specific thoughts from a few people who were part of the project:

For me, it was amazing to see how many plebs and “big” names came together in an instant. Dim’s project went from “we can read a page each,” to “we can read a paragraph each,” to “shit, we can only read a line each and still be oversubscribed!” That happened overnight.

Daniel Prince, Host of the Once BITten Podcast

It was a shame to see the legal action being taken against Bitcoin.org for hosting the Whitepaper, and the attacks on Bitcoin developers in general. Bitcoin is supposed to be a free and open-source project. It belongs to everyone, and the white paper is the foundational document.

I saw a video of Dim Zayan reciting the white paper from memory and thought it was a great statement. We can all ‘host’ the Whitepaper in our own brains! No one can stop us from doing that. When Dim decided to bring the community together to read the Whitepaper on video, I was thrilled to be able to contribute. It was an honor to read a line alongside some of the most influential people in Bitcoin. While I was editing the video, I was struck by the diversity of the people involved and the intensity with which everyone stands behind the Bitcoin project and the values it embodies.

Richard James, Voicepaper Editor and Creater of Hard Money Film

So there you have it! All you have ever wanted to know about the Bitcoin white paper and the amazing Voicepaper that was just launched. It was an honor for the SHAmory team to be a part of it. Be sure to share both the Bitcoin white paper and the Voicepaper with friends and family as they start their journey of stacking sats!

What is SHAmory?

Shamory is a STEM Authenticated Bitcoin card game for kids and adults. Recently selected as Best in STEM 2021 by Newsweek magazine and STEM.org, it is the perfect mixture of fun and education for anyone interested in learning about Bitcoin. Learn the basics of how mining works while earning Bitcoin rewards for each block you mine. 

SHAmory players will not only have a blast while playing, they will also be exposed to key features that have kept the Bitcoin network secure over the past decade. This simple exposure will help individuals become more comfortable with Bitcoin and create the next generation of Bitcoin HODLers. So grab a friend or two and start playing today! Use promo code Voicepaper10 for 10% off your order!

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