Following controversial election of Brock Pierce, Bitcoin Foundation members resign

Home » Following controversial election of Brock Pierce, Bitcoin Foundation members resign
Bitcoin Foundation logo.

Bitcoin Foundation logo.

Last week, the Bitcoin Foundation finalized the results of the second round of elections to fill two vacant seats on its board of directors. The winners, BTC China’s Bobby Lee and “serial entrepreneur” Brock Pierce, were chosen over Gyft CEO Vinny Lingham. Almost immediately after the announcement, however, several members of the Bitcoin Foundation began voicing concerns about Pierce’s history and reputation.

In addition to his work as a venture capitalist and co-founder of GoCoin, ExpressCoin,, and Robocoin Asia, Pierce also has a history of being tied to some questionable companies. A former executive VP of the long-defunct Digital Entertainment Network, Pierce was arrested following that company’s highly publicized implosion involving claims of drug use, child porn and pedophilia. Although Pierce has long protested his innocence, clearly there are those who think he’s not a suitable face for bitcoin.

Posting on the Bitcoin Foundation forum, member Patrick Alexander decided complaining simply wasn’t a strong enough action. Effective immediately, Alexander terminated his membership. Shortly thereafter, nine others also resigned, including several lifetime members. The foundation is relatively small, with a little over 500 members. Only 71 “industrial” members were able to cast votes in the second round of the Foundation’s election.

Noting ongoing issues with questionable board members such as Charlie Shrem and Mark Karpeles, Alexander explained his issues with Pierce holding such a highly visible position the bitcoin community.

The foundation members need to emulate very high moral values and ethics in business and in personal dealings, especially as it involves money. So far, the track record of prominent Bitcoin Foundation members has been abysmal. I know that most foundation members are probably swell people and are not like this. However, the actions of a few have overshadowed us all unfortunately.”

The election results and the subsequent resignations have launched a lively discussion on Reddit, as well as adding fuel to the ongoing debate about the Bitcoin Foundation’s relevance.

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