Jack Dorsey wrote a letter to employees on 29th Nov 2021 detailing his resignation from his role as Twitter CEO. He cited the importance of distancing companies from their founder’s influence or direction. Jack Dorsey and Twitter have announced that the founder is stepping down as CEO of the company, effective immediately. CTO Parag Agrawal, who has been with the company for more than a decade, has replaced him as CEO.
Days after Jack Dorsey resigned as chief executive of Twitter, his other company has changed its name. Square, the digital-payments company he owns and runs, will now go under the new corporate name of Block. Block focuses on technologies such as blockchain and expands beyond its original credit card-reader business.
In a statement, Dorsey said “Block is a new name, but our purpose of economic empowerment remains the same. No matter how we grow or change, we will continue to build tools to help increase access to the economy.” It’s now clear that Square is Dorsey’s favorite child and needs all of his attention to advance the role it could play in popularizing bitcoin, the best-known cryptocurrency.
Here are the top 6 things on which Jack Dorsey is working on for Bitcoin Adoption :
- Building a Hardware wallet for Bitcoin
Block (earlier Square) is working to make a hardware wallet for bitcoin, the company’s hardware lead, Jesse Dorogusker, announced on Twitter last year and said “We have decided to build a hardware wallet and service to make bitcoin custody more mainstream,” Dorogusker said. “We’ll continue to ask and answer questions in the open. The community’s response to our thread about this project has been awesome – encouraging, generous, collaborative, & inspiring.”
Because it is a hardware device, it has the advantage of being extremely secure in cyberspace. It also isolates your key or access from the rest of the Internet, reducing the likelihood of online attacks.
You merely plug in the device to a system (computer or laptop) and unlock it with your PIN code. Then you proceed with the transaction on the system. Once done, you have to confirm the same on the device’s screen. Without your unique digital signature stored, which is stored on that device, the blockchain cannot be accessed. With this secure piece of hardware, one can even perform wallet-to-wallet trades or transfers.
- BTrust 500 Bitcoin fund
Jack Dorsey on 12th Feb 2021 announced that he was giving BTC 500, along with American rapper Shawn Corey Carter, famously known as Jay-Z, to launch a new endowment called Btrust. It will be aimed at funding Bitcoin development, with an initial focus in Africa and India. The move by Dorsey comes at a time when the Indian government is looking for ways to regulate cryptocurrencies. Also, interest in funding Bitcoin development is on the rise amid the cryptocurrency’s all-time growth.
Dorsey announced the launch of his Bitcoin endowment Btrust. “It’ll be set up as a blind irrevocable trust, taking zero direction from us,” he said.
Alongside announcing the plans for the endowment, Dorsey noted the requirement of three board members to start the new development. He also provided a link to a Google Form for a board member application. The form also mentioned that the mission of Btrust is to “make Bitcoin the Internet’s currency.”
- Bitcoin legal fund
Jack Dorsey has announced the creation of a nonprofit group, the Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund, to help developers facing “legal headaches.”The fund will provide free legal advice and rely primarily on part-time and volunteer lawyers.
In an email sent to the developers’ mailing list on 13 Jan 2022, Mr. Dorsey wrote that “litigation and continued threats are having their intended effect; individual defendants have chosen to capitulate in the absence of legal support.” Board members, including Mr. Dorsey, will review cases and decide who gets the group’s help.
First up on the docket: Tulip Trading, a Seychelles-based firm run by Craig Wright, a litigious Australian computer scientist who claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonym of Bitcoin’s creator. He has sued core Bitcoin developers after losing a fortune in a hack, claiming breach of fiduciary duty, adding that a small team of people control the Bitcoin network and have a duty to protect users and help recover tokens lost to theft.
A loss for developers, in this case, could have a chilling effect on cryptocurrency, which is probably why Mr. Dorsey said the new fund would “take over coordination of the existing defense.” If developers are held liable for losses caused by hackers, the risks of contributing to the Bitcoin network could outweigh the rewards. The fund is not seeking contributions for now, and Dorsey did not disclose how much money it had.
- Bitcoin Tips on twitter
Twitter has released a feature for users to tip their most favored content creators using Bitcoin. Named Tips, the feature will allow Twitter influencers to earn money from anywhere in the world without any geographical restrictions. Twitter has partnered with Strike, a platform built on Bitcoin Lightning Network, which can execute instant international payments at virtually no cost. Twitter has added a tiny money icon, which if turned on, would appear on the creator’s profile, informing others that Bitcoin tips were being accepted.
Twitter does not take a cut of any money sent through its Tips feature.
- Working on an open Bitcoin Mining system
Block founder and CEO Jack Dorsey confirmed that the company plans to move forward with plans to build a bitcoin mining system.
“We’re officially building an open bitcoin mining system,” Dorsey tweeted on 14th Jan 2022. The company first announced that it was considering the project in October last year. The project’s goal is to make mining bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market value, “more distributed and efficient,” tweeted Thomas Templeton, the company’s general manager for hardware.
Bitcoin operates on a proof-of-work (PoW) model, where miners must compete to solve complex puzzles in order to validate transactions. The process isn’t easy: It requires a lot of energy and computer power, which isn’t cheap. The computers themselves, along with other equipment, can also be very expensive. Templeton mentioned that there are a number of “customer pain points” and “technical challenges” in the mining community that Block hopes to address, including mining rig availability, high prices, reliability, and power consumption.
- Launching BTC decentralized exchange
Block (earlier Square) released the whitepaper of its decentralized Bitcoin exchange proposal— tbDEX on 19th Nov 2021. This project was first announced by Square and ex-Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey in August last year.
The project aims to make Bitcoin the native currency for the Internet. “In order to achieve this, the nature of financial institutions needs to evolve. We can either embrace this change by investing in this future as a public good, by rethinking our business models and ways to create value, or we can let this future happen to us,” the company wrote in a blog post.
Explaining the project, the company notes that “people receive wages and pay for goods and services in fiat currency. They must pay taxes in fiat currency. So how do we unleash the potential of bitcoin and decentralized financial infrastructure, when most of us still live in a world of fiat? To do so, we need to build bridges between the fiat and cryptocurrency worlds.”
The project highlights how the upcoming tbDEX would merge the existing gap between fiat currency and Bitcoin. tbDEX is proposed to offer a direct way for people to convert their fiat into Bitcoin without having to go through multiple platforms. “We propose a solution that does not rely on a federation to control permission or access to the network; nor does it dictate the level of trust required between counterparties,” the statement read. “There is no governance token. Instead, the tbDEX protocol allows participants to negotiate trust directly with each other or mutually and voluntarily rely on trusted third parties to vouch for the counterparty.”
The abstract available on the tbDEX website points out the need for such a platform and adds “that the economy should be inclusive. We need to build on-ramps to this future where everyone can access and participate in the economy.”
Clarifying the transaction fees on tbDex, the abstract explained that it would be determined by the free market, based on the amount of information each participant is willing to disclose. This means that complete anonymity would cost more than full disclosure of personal information. “The tbDEX protocol also facilitates the secure exchange of the minimum necessary identity information acceptable to counterparties in order to satisfy requirements, be they legal, regulatory, or related to any other consideration of risk.”
Meanwhile, Mike Brock, head of strategic development at Square, had earlier tweeted that “this is the problem we’re going to solve: make it easy to fund a non-custodial wallet anywhere in the world through a platform (tbDEX) to build on- and off-ramps into bitcoin. You can think about this as a decentralized exchange for fiat.”
Jack Dorsey’s tbDEX is proposed to offer a direct way for people to convert their fiat into Bitcoin without having to go through multiple platforms.
- Integrates lightning on cash app
Block, formerly known as Square, is integrating the Lightning Network into its popular Cash App, a move first promised in 2019. Cash App customers will also be able to send bitcoin to any compatible wallet that accepts Lightning Network payments, without being charged fees.
The integration of the network will allow Cash app customers in the U.S. to send bitcoin for free within seconds to anybody in the world. The Lightning integration is made possible by the Lightning Development Kit created by Spiral, which is funded by Block. Almost three years ago, Block CEO Jack Dorsey, who’s also an investor in Lightning Labs, said there were plans underway to integrate the scaling technology with Square’s Cash App.
Since then, the Lightning Network has progressed significantly, with developers working to make the technology more usable for more people. The network received a boost from the November activation of Taproot, the biggest change to Bitcoin in four years, which allowed new privacy improvements to be made to Lightning.
Jack Dorsey’s departure from Twitter gives him more time to focus on his passion for bitcoin, from the integration of bitcoin to Twitter’s tip, hardware wallet, decentralized exchange, and open Bitcoin mining system Jack is making bitcoin more mainstream. Attributing his “passion” for the world’s biggest cryptocurrency to its function as “a foundational internet technology that is not controlled or influenced by any single individual or entity.”
Dorsey is following the same footsteps at Block as Mark Zuckerberg and Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin did at their respective companies: channel money from their parent companies’ core businesses to fund building next-generation technologies that can change the world.
At Block, Dorsey appears ready to build out a portfolio of companies focused on cryptocurrencies. It’s a personal obsession: “Bitcoin changes absolutely everything,” Dorsey said at a bitcoin conference in Miami. “I don’t think there is anything more important in my life to work on.” Square holds nearly 8,027 Bitcoins, acquired at an aggregate purchase price of $220 million and an average price per Bitcoin of $27,407, inclusive of fees and expenses. Now, at Block, Dorsey finally has the revenue base and the corporate model he’ll need to build out the crypto conglomerate of his dreams.