OpenAI Bot Writes a Blog, Wows BitcoinTalk With ‘Intelligent’ Posts

OpenAI Bot Writes a Blog, Wows BitcoinTalk With ‘Intelligent’ Posts

OpenAI’s third-generation language prediction model wrote a 750-word review of itself, fooling many readers.

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Developer Manuel Araoz has played a practical joke online to demonstrate the potential of  artificial intelligence bots — by having a bot write an article about itself.

According to a July 18 post on Araoz’s blog, AI development company OpenAI released GPT-3, the third generation of its language prediction model capable of creating “random-ish sentences of approximately the same length and grammatical structure as those in a given body of text.” 

The blog entry provides practical information regarding how the technology could be used to impersonate well-known figures by simulating their writing styles — for example, Araoz used it to create a fake interview with Albert Einstein. He predicted that the GPT-3 could potentially replace journalists, political speech writers, and advertising copywriters. 

The bot’s predicted sentences were used for posts on the bitcointalk.org forum in recent days, leading to ‘positive’ feedback concluding “the system must have been intelligent.”

The blog said:

“There are lots of posts for GPT-3 to study and learn from. The forum also has many people I don’t like. I expect them to be disproportionately excited by the possibility of having a new poster that appears to be intelligent and relevant.”

Surprise, surprise

Except, Araoz wasn’t the one writing the blog. He hasn’t posted anything on bitcointalk.org’s forums for years —  and has nothing against its users. It was GPT-3 the whole time, he said:

“This article was fully written by GPT-3. Were you able to recognize it? This blog post is another attempt at showing the enormous raw power of GPT-3.”

According to the developer, simply providing a short bio with his information, the desired blog title, and a few tags was enough for the bot to create the original 750-word piece. 

“I generated different results a couple (less than 10) times until I felt the writing style somewhat matched my own, and published it,” said Araoz. “I do believe GPT-3 is one of the major technological advancements I’ve seen so far, and I look forward to playing with it a lot more.”

AI makes blockchain predictions

In the days before and following Araoz’s blog post, he has been posting the results of his experiments with the technology on Twitter. The bot gave out its views on blockchain, stating it would, “replace tech startups before it replaces banks.” Araoz was even able to get CPT-3 to explain proof-of-work for Bitcoin (BTC) reasonably well:

Not replacing humans yet

Araoz’s online enthusiasm for the technology had many clamoring for a test run. “I would love to try something like this out training it on my own writings and see what it would spit out,” said Twitter user Einar Petersen. But others reacted with fear or shock at being fooled. “I’m suitably disturbed,” said Ben Royce.

However, as advanced and entertaining as the language prediction model may be, the developer doesn’t see it completely replacing human writers anytime soon. 

“A text-only model trained on the Internet (like GPT-3) can’t achieve human-level intelligence,” said Araoz. “It lacks visual understanding (e.g. non-verbal communication), complex motor skills or physical expertise, and a survival instinct.”


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OpenAI’s third-generation language prediction model wrote a 750-word review of itself, fooling many readers.

Winklevoss Biographer Writes Newest, BTC-Heavy Episode of ‚Billions‘

Winklevoss Biographer Writes Newest, BTC-Heavy Episode of ‚Billions‘

Another episode of the fifth season of “Billions” focused on crypto mining

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The world of cryptocurrencies figured prominently in the newest episode of Showtime series “Billions,” broadcast on May 17. The story revolved around a crypto-mining scheme in a preparatory school. 

Notably, the episode was written by Ben Mezrich, the author of Bitcoin Billionaires. The book tells the story of the Winklevoss twins. Mezrich teased his participation via Twitter:

“Billions this Sunday night … I’m not sayin’ there’s definitely gonna be some Bitcoin… I’m just saying I did happen to write the episode … I mean, just sayin’…”

Mining farm inside the dorm of a school 

The plot told the story of Gordie Axelrod, the son of billionaire hedge fund manager Bobby Axelrod, who was operating a Bitcoin mining farm in the dorm of his prep school. The principal accused him of damaging the electrical supply to his school.

As for the infrastructure Gordie set up inside his bedroom, the mining farm generated almost 24 kilowatts per hour. However, Axelrod’s son claimed that a surge knocked out the power, rather than the mining farm.

Cryptos featured throughout the series’ new season

It is not the first time that cryptocurrencies are featured in the new season of “Billions.”

Cointelegraph wrote on an earlier episode surrounding a group of cryptocurrency miners operating an illegal Bitcoin farm.


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Another episode of the fifth season of “Billions” focused on crypto mining

Antonopoulos Writes to Judge Vouching for Law Team Suing Bitfinex for BTC Manipulation

Antonopoulos Writes to Judge Vouching for Law Team Suing Bitfinex for BTC Manipulation

Andreas Antonopoulos files an affidavit of support for lawyer suing Bitfinex for manipulating Bitcoin’s price in 2017 as three firms jockey to lead the case

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One of the biggest names in crypto has joined in an ongoing argument about who will lead the class-action suit against Bitfinex and its affiliates over alleged market manipulation leading to Bitcoin’s 2017 bull run. 

Antonopoulos’s affidavit

Amid a flurry of filings seeking to lead the class, Andreas Antonopoulos has come out in support of the legal team of Liebowitz, filing an affidavit on Jan. 27 vouching for the expertise of the team — which Antonopoulos has seen in action on the Kleiman v. Wright case

Liebowitz’s representation includes a laundry list of attorneys from three separate firms, but Antonopoulos specifically commended Kyle Roche of Roche Cyrulnik Freedman as the reason the firm should lead the proceedings. Before calling the firm “uniquely qualified to represent members of the class,” Antonopoulos wrote: 

“In the Kleiman matter, Mr. Roche has repeatedly demonstrated an understanding of the technical and functional properties of bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, blockchain, and their underlying cryptographic principles superior to many other attorneys.”

The fight to lead the class

Antonopoulos’ opinion on the matter is just one of a host of filings in recent weeks as three separate firms seek to lead the class i.e. run the legal proceedings. 

In recent months, Bitfinex alongside related companies Tether and iFinex have seen four separate class-action complaints filed against them, all alleging market manipulation and all identifying the class as anyone in the United States who transacted in Bitcoin since mid-2017, or possibly earlier — potentially a huge demographic. 

The first of the four plaintiffs was Liebowitz in October, followed by Young in November and Ebanks and Faubus earlier in January. Earlier this week, the presiding judge ordered those four cases to consolidate. However, the question of leadership has remained.

Karen Lerner, lead attorney for Young, argued for leadership by law firms Radice and Kirby McInerny, telling Cointelegraph that their complaint stood out based on “significant investment of resources that resulted from our rigorous market analysis.” 

In turn, Kyle Roche told Cointelegraph that “Our firm brings unparalleled experience and expertise in cryptocurrency litigation,” while also promoting the complaint brought by Roche Cyrulnik Freedman on behalf of Liebowitz as “the most legally sound and well-researched.” 

Regarding the stakes of the case, Lerner explained that the case seeks to give money back to those who bought Bitcoin in recent years:

“This class action seeks to compensate investors in Bitcoin and Bitcoin futures for damages from paying an artificial price compared to what they should have paid if the price had not been manipulated by the Defendants.”

The firms will have until Feb. 7 to file oppositions to each other’s motions, per a Jan. 28 order from the presiding Judge Failla. Likely this is in order to allow the firms who filed their initial complaints only in January time to respond to the flurry of filings in the past several days.

Origins of the allegations

Research by John Griffin and Amin Shams initially published in June 2018 initially spread the theory that a single whale trading USDT on Bitfinex successfully manipulated the Bitcoin market. The researchers updated their work near the end of 2019 to specify Bitfinex as the likely culprit. 

As Cointelegraph reported, Bitfinex and Tether have publically dismissed the single-whale theory as well as the subsequent lawsuits, which they called “mercenary and baseless.”


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Andreas Antonopoulos files an affidavit of support for lawyer suing Bitfinex for manipulating Bitcoin’s price in 2017 as three firms jockey to lead the case

Telegram Writes Investors to Counter FUD Before Feb. SEC Hearings

Telegram Writes Investors to Counter FUD Before Feb. SEC Hearings

In letter to investors, Telegram calls February hearings “a positive step” in process of determining that Gram tokens are not securities

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In a letter to investors, Telegram encouraged investors to view the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) hearing recently rescheduled for February as “a positive step.”

Cause for optimism

The letter, sent on Oct. 19, briefly reassures investors that the recent rescheduling of hearings until Feb. 18-19 is good news while maintaining that the company will not be distributing Gram tokens until that time. In their own words: 

“Telegram views this development as a positive step towards resolving this matter through the court system in an expeditious manner, and we and our advisers will be using the time to ensure that Telegram’s position is presented and supported as strongly as possible at the February hearing.”

A conclusive decision?

Telegram’s argument has largely been that its Gram tokens do not qualify as securities and thus do not fall under the purview of the SEC. In the letter, the Telegram team anticipated the February hearings resolving this matter more satisfactorily than the originally scheduled Oct. 24th hearing, writing:

“The February hearing is different from the one previously scheduled for October 24, because in the February hearing Telegram anticipates asking the court to rule on the core argument that Grams are not securities. The October 24 hearing, in contrast, was only to consider whether a delay should have been mandated, without conclusively resolving the core argument.”

The SEC and Telegram

This letter is just the latest in an extensive back-and-forth between the SEC and Telegram surrounding the launch of the latter’s Telegram Open Network and its associated Gram tokens, the distribution of which was the subject of an SEC emergency action on Oct. 11. 

By deeming Gram tokens securities, the SEC labeled their sale in the U.S. — which netted roughly $1.7 billion — an unregistered security offering and thus illegal. Telegram responded with a filing on Oct. 16, refuting the “emergency” nature of the SEC’s complaint and countering by criticizing the commission’s lack of action in the preceding 18 months during which they were aware of the coming launch of TON.


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In letter to investors, Telegram calls February hearings “a positive step” in process of determining that Gram tokens are not securities

Pariahs of Silicon Valley: How Ben Mezrich Writes About the Winklevoss Twins

Pariahs of Silicon Valley: How Ben Mezrich Writes About the Winklevoss Twins

Ben Mezrich’s new book into the lives of the Winklevoss twins casts Mark Zuckerberg as the villian and the Winklevii as the heroes, but is it that simple?

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Molly Jane Zuckerman is the head of news at Cointelegraph. The views expressed here are her own and do not necessarily represent the views of Cointelegraph. This article contains spoilers.

The irony of a book about the Winklevoss twins’ journey into cryptocurrency — which stresses over and over again how important it has been to their legacy to eclipse their past dealings with Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg — getting published less than a month before Facebook’s secretive cryptocurrency project was unveiled to the world is almost too obvious a way to begin this book review.

“Bitcoin Billionaires: A True Story of Genius, Betrayal, and Redemption” is the latest book in a series of flashy exposés of some of the world’s biggest financial success stories from writer Ben Mezrich. Most well-known as the man that penned the book behind “The Social Network,” a movie that brought the Winklevii into the millennial zeitgeist as two tall, overly handsome, not-so-lovable Men of Harvard, Mezrich’s latest book explores the beginning of Facebook from the perspective of these mirror twins all the way through the making of their own billions in crypto.

However, the story behind the all-hail Mark Zuckerberg movie, “The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook, A Tale of Sex, Money, Genius, and Betrayal,” shares a lot more than just a title full of billionaires, genius and betrayal — it now shares cryptocurrency.

Going back to the start, before this week when Facebook’s Libra project blew up both crypto and mainstream media, the Winklevoss twins were (and still are) arguably two of the biggest names in cryptocurrency. As a managing editor of a crypto publication, I’d been trained to look out whenever either of the twins said or did anything, as even a tweet of 120 characters from a Winklevii could get a story a high number of views.

Mezrich’s story gave me a new perspective on this Winklevoss celebrité: Apparently, before they became two of the kings of crypto, they were the black sheep of Silicon Valley. After the drawn-out court case between the twins and Zuckerberg over their right to a small part of Facebook due to their arguably initial idea that inspired Zuckerberg to create the global social network, Silicon Valley apparently cut the twins loose.

They sued Facebook and won. Now what?

The way Mezrich writes it, these two newfound millionaires (who had insisted on taking part of their settlement in Facebook stock, an idea that is portrayed as over-exaggeratedly opposed by their lawyers at the time) just could not give their money away. Their pariah status comes to a head in a well-known-ish diner in the valley, when a visibly nervous potential startup founder rejects their money after a previous acceptance, appears scared to be seen with them (although this attitude begs the question, why had he agreed to meet the two very tall, large investors in such a public place?), and explains to them in much overwrought, sweaty detail why their money will never be welcome in Zuckerberg’s Silicon Valley.

While this particular conversation with this degree of specificity may or may not have taken place, Mezrich’s point is clear: The Winklevii were not welcome in Silicon Valley.

The rest of the book flies by their introduction to Bitcoin for the first time (in a club in Ibiza) —

“‘Cryptocurrency,’ Cameron repeated, from his daybed. ‘It sounds criminal. Is it legal?’”

— to their fateful first meetings with Charlie Shrem

“Cameron couldn’t help feel the nervous energy bleeding out of the kid — Charlie was actually trembling — or smell the hint of marijuana seeping from his plaid short-sleeve shirt and distressed khaki pants.”

— the mutual intense dislike between them and “Bitcoin Jesus” Roger Ver

“As far as Ver was concerned, the Winklevoss twins, celluloid ‘Men of Harvard,’ were the Establishment’s wet dream.”

— and the eventual investment in both Shrem’s now-defunct BitInstant and bitcoin (BTC) itself, leaving the twins with 1% of the crypto’s entire supply.

Charlie Shrem enters the stage

Shrem, at this point, has become a major, manic character in both the book and the twins’ life. The book describes their relationship as being on friendly grounds for the majority of their connection to each other, although each time Charlie is introduced, his adjectives become more childlike and a bit more dismissive, up to the point that he is sometimes alluded to as the CEO of his favorite nightclub rather than of BitInstant.

By the time that Shrem is jailed, which coincides with the New York State Department of Financial Services’ infamous cryptocurrency hearings with the now-hated Ben Lawsky (the anti-crypto-legislator-turned-entrepreneur who advises New York crypto firms on how to follow the confusing laws he himself created), the twins have written Shrem off as a bad investment.

It would be interesting to see how Shrem has reacted to his characterization here, but he’s left me unread on Telegram since November 2018, when I texted him for comments about the Winklevoss’ now-settled lawsuit against him for theft of 5,000 bitcoin around this same time (which, for some reason, was not covered in Mezrich’s book).

Roger Ver: The antihero

Bitcoin Jesus Roger Ver is brought in by Mezrich in the role of Charlie’s best friend, mentor and antithesis to the Winklevoss twins. The Winklevii hate him, Mezrich makes that abundantly clear — to the extent that they will never meet with him in-person throughout most of the book.

This seems to be a rather extreme reaction as investors in a common project that has a relatively incomptentant CEO that they both know well, but Mezrich paints over their strange inability to even have a normal business conversation with Ver by portraying this Jesus character as what your mom would call a “very bad influence that you shouldn’t play with.” And thus, the Winklevii will not play with him.

Taking Bitcoin mainstream

The move from the Winklevoss twins owning bitcoin to starting a cryptocurrency exchange is explained very quickly, but the point behind the idea has been hammered into the reader’s head the entire book: The Winklevoss twins really, truly love regulation. And what better way is there to ensure regulation in the crypto space than to create an exchange, base the business in New York (the state with the most stringent crypto laws) and then make sure people regulate it?

And this is what the Winklevii have done. They started Gemini Capital, received the BitLicense for Genesis Global Trading, and they were the first to get the SEC rolling on whether or not to accept a bitcoin exchange-traded fund.

Back to the book, up to almost the present day, the ending trails off with an almost-unidentified man (surprise! it’s Mark Zuckerberg!) penning a ridiculous letter in January 2018 about his marathoning, Mandarin skills and newfound interest in cryptocurrency.

But this book’s author could not have predicted that more than a year later, when the book came out, Zuckerberg’s over-the-top Christmas missive would lead to a media frenzy surrounding the Libra Association, libra stablecoin, Libra Investor Token, and the list goes on.

All of this makes the similar titles of Mezrich’s books a bittersweet joke, especially when juxtaposed with the scene in the book in which the Winklevii are pleased that crypto-focused New York Times journalist Nathaniel Popper doesn’t use the word “Facebook” in the headline of his second article about the twins and crypto. Zuckerberg has definitely caught up to them in the crypto space célébrité, even though his project has been met with a significant amount of scorn over its decentralization — or lack thereof.

And to add insult to injury — depending on your opinion of Zuckerberg’s pettiness (mine was amplified by a very early scene in the book wherein the Facebook mogul insisted on only meeting with one twin during a mediation due to an apparent fear of being punched) — libra stablecoin, gemini dollar… can anyone here read a horoscope?


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Ben Mezrich’s new book into the lives of the Winklevoss twins casts Mark Zuckerberg as the villian and the Winklevii as the heroes, but is it that simple?