$325K In “Gifts” From The Human Rights Foundation, Who In Bitcoin Received Them?

The Human Rights Foundation announced its round of “gifts” for Q3, 2022. Sadly, they’re not denominated in sats and BTC like on previous occasions. To compensate, they’re the biggest donations yet in fiat terms. How did The Human Rights Foundation distribute the $325K  from its Bitcoin Development Fund? What projects and developers received much-needed funding to keep fighting the good fight?

This time, the projects selected by The Human Rights Foundation focus “on censorship-resistant donations, core development, open-source self-custody, chaumian e-cash, and global education.” A list similar and also very different from previous ones. “Over the past two years HRF has allocated more than $1.5 million in BTC and USD to more than 40 developers and educators across the world,” the press release says. 

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Let’s see who got the HTF’s seal of approval this time around.

The Human Rights Foundation’s Bigger Gifts
  • The first and biggest went to, “$100,000 to BTCPay, a free and open source Bitcoin payment processor.” What does it have to do with The Human Rights Foundation, though? Well, “BTCPay enables activists and dissidents to accept uncensorable, unfreezable global payments in a relatively private manner using Bitcoin.” The HRF can’t take full credit here, “this gift is made in partnership with Strike’s affiliated nonprofit.”

  • A huge one went to, “$50,000 to Jon Atack, a Bitcoin Core developer.” According to his GitHub, Jon “began contributing to Bitcoin Core development in March 2019.” He’s “currently #10 of the Bitcoin Core contributors with 621 commits merged into Bitcoin Core and a primary focus on code review.” Previously, Atack has received grants for Spiral, Strike, and Compass Mining.

  • Another behemoth of a donation, “$50,000 to Josh Kitman for his work on Fedimint, a Chaumian e-cash solution aiming to bring “Signal to Bitcoin.” Did this person also win the HRF and Stike’s bounty for the first person to develop a Lightning Network-based e-cash solution? Time will tell. The Human Rights Foundation covers him with praises, though. “Signal Messenger brought open-source p2p encryption to hundreds of millions of people by making certain tradeoffs: Fedimint aims to do the same by bringing increased Bitcoin privacy and scalability to the masses.”

BTC price chart for 09/07/2022 on Coinbase | Source: BTC/USD on TradingView.com The Human Rights Foundation’s Smaller Gifts
  • Here we go. To start the relatively smaller recipients, “$25,000 to Robosats, an open-source and private peer to peer Lightning exchange.” By using Tor, Bitcoin, and the Lightning Network, “Robosats allows anyone to privately buy and sell Bitcoin.” Is this project inspired by the already recognized LNp2pbot? Apparently so, but Robosats takes another approach and makes different trade-offs.

  • Another quarter goes to, “$25,000 to Leigh Cuen for her work on a Bitcoin donation guide to nonprofits. Leigh’s guide will cover how NGOs, state institutions, and activists can use Bitcoin.” That sounds interesting. The guide in question was produced in partnership with HRF and the Bitcoin Policy Institute.
  • This one’s political, “$25,000 to Novaya Gazeta, one of Russia’s leading independent news outlets. Novaya Gazeta is renowned for their investigative coverage of Russian politics and society.” There are no comments on our part on this one. 
  • A fourth quarter went to, “$25,000 to Keith Mukai, the full-time lead dev working on SeedSigner. SeedSigner allows you to build your own offline, air gapped, Bitcoin hardware wallet.” Learn more about the project, including how to make your own device here
  • The last quarter went to a project Bitcoinist announced. “$25,000 to the Vinteum initiative, a non-profit Bitcoin research and development center dedicated to supporting Bitcoin developers in Brazil and wider Latin America.” In our article, we quoted Lucas Ferreira, who explained the project’s reason-to-be is to bring “more geographic diversity to this talent pool, people who will understand the needs of their regions and will keep that in mind when developing Bitcoin.”

That’s right, bitcoin development is in great hands and those hands are well funded.

Who will The Human Rights Foundation grant “gifts” in “Q4? Stay tuned to Bitcoinist to find out. 

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