According to local media reports in Costa Rica, a 41-year-old foreign man drowned at Hermo Beach in the province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica, and died after paramedics arrived on the scene. The man was identified as Mircea Popescu, of Polish descent, according to the local Bureau of Judicial Investigation.
Members of the crypto community may have known him, as Mircea Popescu was one of the individuals with the largest holdings of bitcoin in the world. According to some members of the crypto community, Popescu may have held more than 1 million bitcoins, but the figures are unavailable.
And while receiving the news of his death sparked shock in the cryptocurrency community, more talk within the community was concerned that the billionaire’s bitcoin holdings might just disappear without a trace, never to be recovered.
His close friends had conservatively estimated that Popescu’s bitcoin holdings were worth close to $2 billion when bitcoin reached an all-time high of about $65,000 in mid-April, and they are still worth more than $1 billion.
But no one is born perfect, not even a young billionaire like him. A lifelong believer in cryptocurrencies, he has been branded as ” the father of toxic bitcoin” and ” erotic writer” by members of the crypto community for his overly aggressive comments, sexism.
In the author’s eyes, however, he is one of the strongest believers in Bitcoin, who cannot tolerate any half-hearted denigration from others, and who has contributed more than a star and a half to Bitcoin and even the cryptocurrency industry.
Today, the Whitezer Institute takes you inside the legendary story of this bitcoin mogul. In the following article, Popescu’s name will be directly pronounced as Popescu.
An ambitious entrepreneur in the early crypto community
Popescu grew up in Cluj Napoca, Transylvania, and graduated from Avramyanku University. He has lived in several countries, including the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica and Egypt.
Probably the biggest brand Popescu has built is his private blog, Trilema, which was first created and started writing in 2008, and as early members of the crypto community recall, Popescu could even write 70-100 blogs per month at that time. The blog has as many as 30+ topics, such as activism, health care, the NSA, giant lizards, cryptography, etc. What makes the author blink is that there are also very many articles involving sexism, which readers are advised not to read, for the sake of their physical and mental health.
He was officially introduced to Bitcoin in 2011 and started writing articles about Bitcoin in 2012 on his blogging platform, dedicated to keeping Bitcoin intact and the security of the network.
Popescu is really known by the cryptocurrency community, but also mentions the cryptocurrency exchange he founded in 2012, MPEx.
To this day, we can still find all the minutes of MPEx exchange meetings from its inception to its demise in his blog.
MPEx was created in 2012 and was early positioned by Popescu as a ” Bitcoin stock exchange” where bitcoin could be used to trade early equity tokens and some futures contracts such as the NASDAQ 100, S&P 500, gold, silver, soybeans, wheat, and more. It was also a hotbed of early bitcoin IPOs, such as SatoshiDICE (Satoshi Nakamoto Dice), a famous early betting site in the cryptocurrency community, which was offered within MPEx.
According to blogs, as early as December 2012, the total market value of tokens and futures listed on the MPEx exchange had exceeded 1 million bitcoins, or $34.5 billion if converted at that point in time to bitcoin prices.
But to trade on MPEx you need to pay to open an account using Bitcoin, the first account required 20 Bitcoins, later changed to 30, and at the current price of Bitcoin to convert, it costs $1 million to open an account.
Just a little joke, of course, this is not how to calculate, after all, the bitcoin at that time can be said to be ” cabbage price “, the value is minimal.
However, probably due to the constant pressure from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the exchange offered to list and trade securities that were not approved by the regulator, and MPEx eventually ceased operations in 2016.
Defending Bitcoin Sovereignty, Calling the SEC’s Bluff
It was reported that SatoshiDICE ended up trading over 125,000 BTC at the time of the MPEx sale, worth over $11 million at the time, which also drew the interest of the U.S. SEC.
In February 2014, Popescu received an email from the US Securities Commission (SEC) attorney asking for a list of investors in SatoshiDICE listed on MPEx, requiring investors’ names, addresses and bitcoin addresses for investigation.
Sure enough it was the same SEC we are familiar with, with a very tough attitude, but they underestimated Popescu.
Popescu was even more forceful and stated bluntly to the SEC that
You have to give me your information, first.
- the legal basis for the SEC’s investigation of bitcoin businesses
- the SEC must give me the authority to provide personally identifiable information, which necessarily includes a solid foundation of Romanian and EU law
- the authority you personally have in this matter, or an order instrument must be issued
and ultimately did not provide the relevant user information to the SEC.
In his recollection blog, Popescu writes: ” Bitcoin is a sovereign. Accept this fact so you can play the game! “
Defending Bitcoin’s Name and Exposing Bitcoin Financial Scams
Popescu rose to fame in the crypto community for his public fight against bitcoin financial scams, having exposed scams such as Pirate and Labcoin, and becoming a critic of Ripple (the company that launched XRP) and Bitcoin Savings and Trust, which was later defined as a pyramid scheme.
All of the scam exposés were documented in the form of articles within the blog.
Popescu has said ” I will fight all bitcoin-based scams, because thieves are not only ruining their own reputation, they are hindering the great future of bitcoin”.
This shows Popescu’s ambition for the future of Bitcoin.
The Bitcoin Network’s Conservative, Both a Pioneer and a “Toxic Godfather”
Popescu is reviled by some members of the crypto community because of some of his bitcoin rhetoric and insistence, such as his opposition to most of bitcoin’s developments and feature upgrades. During the initial bitcoin block size debate, core developer Pieter Wuille suggested that blocks automatically increase by 17% every four years. Popescu, on the other hand, strongly opposed any changes to the 1MB block size and threatened to sell off 1 million bitcoins himself if there would be any changes to the block. For this reason, he also put a bounty on Pieter Wuille’s death at 1BTC ……
Of course he also denigrated lead developer Gavin Andresen’s claims of any connection or affiliation with Satoshi Nakamoto, and called the then-developer a nickname in a sarcastic blog post, among other things. He started preaching because he loved Bitcoin and was righteous enough to start preaching, and at this point, there is nothing wrong with some calling him a Bitcoin pioneer. But paranoidly sticking to his ideas while refusing to make more developments and functional changes to Bitcoin, at this point, some would not be wrong to call him the father of toxic Bitcoin.
According to i.am.nomad, an anonymous market maker and prominent member of the cryptocurrency community, Popescu is a “sleeping giant” because his positions can instantly reduce the value of bitcoin to zero.
The “sleeping giant” is truly asleep, but his spirit lives on.
Cryptocurrency investor and best-selling author of “Bitcoin Reformation” Tuur Demeester retweeted about Popescu’s drowning, to the condolences of his followers.
Meanwhile, a related obituary appeared on the Bitcoin-themed website The Whet, paying tribute to him.
Pete Rizzo, editor of BitcoinMagazine, tweeted out a special compilation of classic quotes from his life.
John Carvalho, host of the Bitcoin Podcast, even tweeted, “If he passes, it could mean a lot of bitcoins are lost, or go to market, forever.”
No matter how many bitcoins Popescu actually held during his lifetime, no matter where those bitcoins will eventually go, and no matter whether you agree or disagree with his past, we all have to accept the passing of a legend.
As in the poem he once wrote ” Goodbye, nothing but the time of death. “
Posted by:CoinYuppie，Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/tribute-to-sleeping-giant-popescu-remembers-the-wild-life-of-legendary-millionaire-bitcoin-magnate/
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