By Jamie Redman
At the Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami, attendees listened to the first phone interview with the Silk Road’s Ross Ulbricht from the depths of the maximum-security prison in Tucson, Arizona. During the interview, Ulbricht spoke about bitcoin and how the decentralized crypto asset is “transforming the global economy.” Following the phone call, Ulbricht was placed in the hole according to the official Free Ross Twitter account.
Ross Ulbricht Speaks About Bitcoin in His First Interview from Prison
Ross Ulbricht’s voice was heard by the attendees who went to the Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami this year. The recent interview was recorded by Bitcoin Magazine and is the first recorded phone conversation with Ulbricht after his arrest. Ulbricht touched upon the loss of his freedom and noted that from his confinement he’s “spent the last eight years watching Bitcoin grow up from in here.”
During the phone call, Ulbricht noted that he was around during the Bitcoin network’s nascent days and at that time there were not many altcoins and forks. Ulbricht said with all that aside he looked at the crypto ecosystem as one big “family.” Through his lens in prison, Ulbricht detailed that he’s seen the cryptocurrency space invoke lots of innovation since his departure. Ulbricht stated:
I’ve seen incredible innovation. I’ve seen inspiring courage. We didn’t know how things would turn out for Bitcoin back in the beginning, but over the years, I’ve been continually impressed with what you’ve accomplished— We are transforming the global economy. We have brought a taste of freedom and equality to far corners of the world. I know we can transform criminal justice, too.
Ulbricht: ‘Bitcoin Is Strong. Bitcoin Is Powerful. Our Work Is Not Over’
Ross Ulbricht’s case has been called a “miscarriage of justice” and more than 250 organizations, eminent individuals and global leaders have shown support for Ulbricht. The creator of the Silk Road marketplace has one of the largest Change.org petitions in the U.S. as the petition has been signed by 433,845 individuals to date. The petition is seeking clemency for Ulbricht as his offenses were non-violent and his “investigation, trial and sentencing were rife with abuse.” Ulbricht spoke about the Silk Road during his phone call with Bitcoin Magazine and said:
I thought with Bitcoin, I could try and do something that actually makes a difference— Back then, I was impatient. I rushed ahead with my first idea, which was Silk Road… That’s a 26-year-old who thinks he has to save the world before someone beats him to it. I had no idea Silk Road would work, but now we all know it caught on. It was used to sell drugs, and now I’m in prison.
Ulbricht also said that it was ironic that he created the Silk Road because he wanted to further “freedom, privacy, [and] equality.” But what happened was he “wound up in a place where those things don’t exist.” Meanwhile, he sees a lot of potential with bitcoin and the crypto participants, in general, because he believes “Bitcoin is strong.”
“Bitcoin is powerful. We are powerful. And our work is not over,” Ulbricht stressed. Following the phone call interview, the Free Ross Twitter account detailed that Ulbricht was recently put in the hole. “Ross has been put in the SHU (aka ‘the hole’) after a recorded interview he did over the phone with [Bitcoin Magazine] was broadcasted at the [Bitcoin 2021 conference] this weekend. Please keep Ross in your thoughts & prayers,” the account tweeted on June 8.
What do you think about Ross Ulbricht’s recent phone interview and his reflections on the Silk Road and the Bitcoin network’s innovations? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.