write up AP for FC++

Tim May tcmay at got.net
Mon Aug 18 12:37:24 PDT 1997

At 9:32 AM -0700 8/18/97, Zooko Journeyman wrote:
>Um, as soon as you broaden AP from libertarian fantasy into
>rigorous hypothesis, it turns out that it _isn't_ _anything_
>but Idea Futures/insurance/ABPs/(payee-anonymous) contract
>markets plus the murderous daydream junk.
>That is to say, from the rigorous (technical) point of view,
>AP _IS_ Idea Futures _IS_ ABPs _IS_ contract markets _IS_


>TCMay has mentioned before that AP is nothing new...

Yes. And I've just about given up saying this. If Bell wants to believe he
invented anonymous payments, betting markets, idea futures, etc., let him.
(Note that I'm not saying I invented these things, either. However, I've
posted many articles, and included much material in my 1994
"Cyphernomicon," about markets for contract murder, the implications of
untraceability, etc. Adding the "betting on a date that J. Random Fed dies"
is just an obfuscation of the underlying notions.)

David Chaum was well aware of these implications when I talked to him in
1988 about my then-new ideas; several of us have surmised that he has
chosen to downplay such notions, and their implications, for various
reasons. Denning, too, has discussed these ideas, partly in response to a
paper I did for a conference in Monte Carlo (and reprinted in the Internet
Journal, possibly still available on the New someplace under the exact
title "Crypto Anarchy and Virtual Communities").

It was Hal Finney who encountered Bell in a Usenet group, talking about
arranging betting pools on the death dates of people. Bell at that time was
unaware, by his own admission, of blinded cash, anonymous payment systems,
etc. Finney suggested to Bell that he read some of my stuff and that he get
on the Cypherpunks list (or something similar to this...I think Hal sent me
one of Bell's posts, etc., back in the early fall of 1995 or so).

I'm now mildly amused that Bell is being seen as the inventor of anonymous
and untraceable murder markets, with clueless journalists seeking
information on his discovery. But, hey, better he rot in jail than me.

--Tim May

There's something wrong when I'm a felon under an increasing number of laws.
Only one response to the key grabbers is warranted: "Death to Tyrants!"
Timothy C. May              | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,
tcmay at got.net  408-728-0152 | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
W.A.S.T.E.: Corralitos, CA  | knowledge, reputations, information markets,
Higher Power: 2^1398269     | black markets, collapse of governments.
"National borders aren't even speed bumps on the information superhighway."

More information about the cypherpunks-legacy mailing list