Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin has felt the need to deny speculation that he’s moving away from developmental aspects of the blockchain project. His rebuttal follows an interview he gave to the MIT Technology Review and subsequent misunderstandings which have arisen from it.
Yesterday, the Review published a piece called, Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin says his creation can’t succeed unless he takes a step back, in which the Ethereum creator discussed his role within the project and his aspirations for the future. Buterin reiterated at numerous points that he intends for his leadership responsibilities to be minimal, and anyone who’s followed the boy-genius’ career will know that this is nothing new.
Despite being labelled a “dictator for life” by omni-crank Nouriel Roubini, Buterin has often, and fittingly, distanced himself from any centralised positions of authority within the loose organisation which has grown up around Ethereum. In April, the Ethereum creator told the FT that fame and fortune were, “more annoying than good” and that any inflated public perception of his influence over the blockchain he helped build came about because, “[It] just so happened that Ethereum evolved without, I guess, other figures quite as large as myself.”
However, none of this seems to have occurred to some commentators, who’ve taken the MIT piece and run with it, forcing Buterin to re-state his position. Rather than abandoning the project as has been suggested in some circles, Buterin intends to;
“focus on research but I’m less ‘in charge’ than ever. It’s about addition of other people’s work, not subtraction of my own.”
The last wave of tech superstars bought sports cars by the dozen, chased the poor from San Francisco’s property market and had business cards printed which read “I’m CEO, B*tch!” The Ethereum creator is of a more modest breed entirely and it’s possible that when he says that he’s on a mission to decentralise everything, he’s referring to himself as much as anything else.