Wikipedia Considers To Stop Accepting Crypto Donations Because Of The ESG FUD

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Even Wikipedia fell for the environmental FUD surrounding Proof of Work mining. The proposal to “stop accepting cryptocurrency donations” is currently under discussion. It starts with the same subtle arguments that the entire mainstream media use irresponsibly. However, it becomes better and more interesting. In general, it is surprising to see both sides of the argument unfold. Although there may be some information suppression going on.

Related reading | The Human Rights Foundation accepts fully open source Bitcoin donations

Well, we do our best to summarize the whole thing, but people who are interested in the topic should take the time to read it completely. It is full of twists and turns. The most amazing thing about the document is that real people wrote it. Wikipedia editors are not a sample of the world’s population, but they are heterogeneous enough to make the discussion interesting.

Wikipedia falls for environmental FUD

The original proposal posed three issues with receiving cryptocurrency donations, but in fact, we can summarize them all in the ESG FUD category. The three points are:

  • “Acceptance of Crypto Signals Endorsing the Cryptocurrency Space.”

  • “Cryptocurrencies may not comply with the Wikimedia Foundation’s commitment to environmental sustainability.”

  • “We risk damaging our reputation by participating in this.”

It is a shame that the original author, to try to prove their point, used a dubious source and a source discredited.

“Bitcoin and Ethereum are the two most used cryptocurrencies, and both are proof-of-work, using a massive amount of energy. You can read more about Bitcoin’s environmental impact from Columbia or a Digiconomist.”

Counterpoint: This data has been hacked

Although widely cited, an “employee of the Dutch central bank” pretends to be a neutral journalist run by a Digiconomist. This fact alone makes it ineligible as a reliable source. However, his data is also in question because “the indicator of digital Bitcoin electricity consumption is not driven by real-world metrics and profitability as stated in the methodology.” So, we are dealing with an intellectually dishonest person who supposedly got paid to attack the Bitcoin network.

For more information about this suspicious character, go to the “The world of numbers is misinformation” section.

The Columbia report is more recent, but cites outdated data and fake studies. Like the funny guy who doesn’t understand how to measure the size of a Proof of Work, or even how it works, and irresponsibly claims that crypto mining can raise the Earth’s temperature by two degrees. However, the primary source for Columbia University is “Cambridge University Analysis”. The same organization said literally that “there is currently little evidence to suggest that Bitcoin is directly contributing to climate change.”

However, they suspiciously erased this part of the FAQ. They changed the wording and now it just contains a “radical thought experiment” where “all this energy comes exclusively from coal”. Even under those extreme conditions, far from reality, energy use will be marginal. “In this worst-case scenario, the bitcoin network would be responsible for about 111 million metric tons of CO2 emissions, which is about 0.35% of the world’s total annual emissions.”

ETH price chart for 01/13/2022 on Poloniex | Source: ETH/USD on
Process protection or information suppression?

Under the whole topic, there is a section called “Discussion moved from suggestion section”. It contains many arguments in favor of pent-up cryptocurrencies. The reason is that the accounts that made them “have no other edit records”. What do the people who suggest removing these views argue about? They “risk manipulating the vote and manipulating the discussion to deliver biased and fake news about Bitcoin.”

Coincidentally, it is these low-editing accounts that provide the information on how fake the original poster’s sources are. Someone should have said it and they did. Officials have removed it from the main topic. Is that really what Wikipedia is about?

Fortunately, other Wikipedia contributors were able to say that “Bitcoin is thus a catalyst for green energy, in line with the Wikimedia Foundation’s commitment to environmental sustainability.” Another user “urged everyone to understand more about Bitcoin as a whole package beyond its energy impact (negligible). When compared to the cost of oil and the war to support the US dollar) as well as the continued exponential progress that has been made in making Bitcoin greener and greener.” Another said that “Bitcoin Core is a FLOSS project trying to advance monetary freedom.”

However, critics of cryptocurrency who are trying to manipulate the vote may have a point. Except for the ridiculous “Bitcoin” news claim. The discussion title says, “This is not a majority vote, this is a discussion among Wikimedia contributors.” The official tells them that they cannot remove opinions or votes. However, an “optimal RfC scenario will not silence you.” Any votes actively, but will allow community members to inform each other of participants who are not members of the community, and who may have alternative interests.” That’s fair.

What about the sounds? Does Wikipedia Ban Cryptocurrency Donations?

Voting doesn’t sound good for crypto donations, but that doesn’t mean Wikipedia will ban it. At the time of writing, the votes for “support” were almost twice as many as for “opposition”. Nearly 150 people voted from Wikipedia. Does this mean that ESG FUD worked and cast a shadow over the entire crypto space which would be hard to get rid of? It certainly does.

Related reading | A new competitor emerges despite Cardano’s Wikipedia list begging

It also means that people want to believe. Nor are they willing to accept the compelling evidence that Proof of Work mining is a net positive for the environment.

Fortunately, Bitcoin does not care. Tuk-tuk, next block.

Featured image by James on Unsplash | Charts by TradingView

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