Checking through links that have directed people to this blog, I came across an peculiar and unexpected entry titled "dafuq has the nerve for this!" In the linked post they express disbelief that the brilliant unicorn of a venture they represent could be subjected to mockery, and they wonder "WhoÂ the hell is bingoboingo." I largely address the issue of who the fuck has the never for this here, but I feel it is necessary to answer the unasked question "Why the fuck would anyone do this?" Going forward I will proceed in an instructional nature rather than a mocking one.
The "this" in question refers to some chatting from the #bitcoin-assets logs concerning a venture that refers to itself as The Solar Wind Mining Company. That venture's nature is seems indeterminate at this moment. I happened to visit IRC weekday drunk1 to check in and their venture happened to seem a convenient one to discuss at the time. That I happen to be a notorious drunk online and IRL is the simple answer. There is a better an more important answer to the "Why the fuck would anyone do this?" question that needs to be addressed. The more important answer addresses a major problem in "Bitcoin commerce" as many people presently attempt to carry out such a thing.
This is a summary of everything I can discover about Solar Wind Mining. On August 1st, a blog appears. The blog proceeds for a while being no better or worse than any given replacement blog. On September 12th the user account SolarWindMining company makes its first post. They have this habit of editing their posts so putting together a timeline of when and what was said is difficult. At some point they designate blog guy as a representative, and blog guy's most recent post is about starting a mining farm. Forum account does a giveaway for shares in their business to drum up support and create an audience of people to fill their threads with crap. They also put up bounties redeemable in shares of this venture in a thread and are unfailingly polite towards people who object to being paid in shares of the venture.
Let's compare this to the LabCoin scam, which Trilema covered in August. In the months after Trilema covered LabCoin "AMAZING COMPANY" became something of a meme, and then recently it comes out that not only was LabCoin a scam it could be connected to the BitDayTrade scammers from an earlier epoch in Bitcoin. If you are a representative of Solar Wind Mining reading this, be aware that I'm not calling you a scam. I'm saying that your potentially legitimate venture doesn't even look as good as some scams, and this situation was entirely preventable.
There's this fairly useful guide for starting a Bitcoin business on the BitcoinTalk forum, that place where you announced your venture. The steps in that guide, especially those involving the Web of Trust are essential to creating reputation for the people involved and solidifying identities. Since you are seeking outside investment from strangers, going further and offering your real life identities would be a tremendous plus. All of this makes the cost of you going scam more expensive, and it allows people to make more informed decisions on how much you should be trusted. Some forum account named SolarWindMiningCompany can only build so much trust through polite assurances. There are several Bradley Ploofs in the United States, clarification on which one is promoting this venture could save the others a lot of Butthurt should this venture go scam. I'm not blogging with the IRL name yet though some people in Bitcoin know it, but then again I'm also not seeking outside investment and promising returns.
Further damage was done by the revision to the payment structure. It shows a lack of research into this whole mining business. Mining is one of the easiest things for a new bitcoiner to do, but one of the hardest to do profitably. Even most mining ventures that aren't scams fail to make return on investment that exceeds what could have been realized by simply buying Bitcoin with dollars. Even if you have the best intentions a failure of knowledge of the mining market shakes the confidence, doesn't it? It makes identifying yourselves as something other than newcomers even more imperative.
Even more the constant revision of forum posts is worrisome. Start making some GPG signed contracts that people who want to gamble on your venture can retain and produce later should you fail to realize the returns you are promising. If you don't know what kind of advantages GPG signed contracts offer, you aren't really ready for bitcoin as a consumer, much less as a "business."
P.S. Given the history of Pirate related nomenclature in Bitcoin, maybe the Pirate language variant wasn't the best choice for the SolarWindMining.com home page. You know that one where there forum on which "dafuq has the nerve for this" was posted.
- as opposed to the very different weekend drunk where I have the good sense to keep offline [↩]