Legal entity of ZCash Company vs Foundation


From Wired:
Wilcox maintains his stealthy digital cash startup isn’t intended to facilitate crime, but also notes that the company isn’t liable for any criminal applications for which Zcash is used. “The people who built the first cars weren’t held responsible for car accidents or bank robberies,” he says. “The people who use these tools for good or ill are held responsible for that.”

Honestly, good luck with that, i am not sure where your company will be based but this will eventually come for you. I am a big believer in privacy but certain things (up the chain) have to be set up for that 'privacy' to be untouchable !
a company on top as yours will be a target (if they want to or not) for governments and 3 letter agencies, that is why everybody else is running on a 'Foundation base' , that foundation supports the project but is not financially involved and so NOT legal accountable !

how will you protect your ZCash company ?
the wired statement above makes no sense, as what he is referring to (inventors of cars or the internet) are not Company based, compared to what ZCash will be !


I think this is currently being overlooked.

Assume the project is a success.
Assume it's adopted by darknetmarkets.
Assume it's adoption increases because of that.

We all know at the beginning, how gambling and darknetmarkets were important for Bitcoin.

Imagine a booming of that again thanks to this project. The company will sooner or later be placed under scrutiny and fire.

See Liberty Reserve. It was legal at first. From one day to another, laws were created and the next day owners got placed in jail.

These are a lot of "if"s but they are perfectly plausible in a scenario where this project is successful


I am more afraid of Zcash succeeding than I am of government stopping them. This is like nuclear energy all over again. Being able to monitor the flow of assets enables society to stop negative-sum games that occur in free markets. It's just a tool, but it's a dangerous tool because it allows us to divorce ourselves from society to a greater degree. A smart unabomber living in a shack would want this more than an air-head friendly socialite.


I disagree. I don't think darknets or gambling are necessary for Zcash to be successful at all.

Zcash has the potential to be even more useful than Bitcoin for legal, government and even bank transactions because of its anonymity and it's ability to provide selective transparency.

Think about if you decided you wanted to pay your Tax bill to the IRS with a crypto currency, what currency would you or the IRS be more likely to accept? Bitcoin which can be traced by anyone with the right blockchain analysis tool, or Zcash, which has the ability for both parties to show each other what is required ("Yes, I paid my taxes, here is the private key to see the transaction") and still not let anyone else looking at the blockchain know how much you make per year?
There are plenty of other scenarios that this could apply to as well; mortgages, paychecks, loans, water bill, etc..etc...

Just because a coin contains the ability for both transparency and anonymity does not mean its best use is for nefarious purposes.


You got me wrong. What I meant is, if Zcash is successful, it will most likely be used on the darkmarkets. And it will most likely be used there before it's used at banks or whatever. That, might be the issue.

Still, this is just an example. That doesn't need to happen. The general idea is a government can just shut the company down or even worse. Then what? Don't forget out of all places, they're placed in the US.


I see what you mean,

OK, say worst case scenario, people start using Zcash for bad things on the internet.

The Government/NSA steps in and arrests Zooko and team for being the leaders of Zcash. How exactly will the NSA prove they had any knowledge whatsoever of any of these transactions? It's actually literally impossible for them to have known about any of those transactions because of the way Zcash works. And in America you are innocent until proven guilty, the courts will have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt they did somehow have knowledge to convict.

Say that case gets mired in the courts forever, the case against Zooko and team is eventually dismissed due to lack of evidence and in the meantime they shut down Zcash Corp.

This still doesn't shut down the entire network of computers running Zcash located across the Globe. Did Etherium Classic cease to work or exist because the head guy stepped in and said "Hard Fork"? No, because people with computers decided it was worth supporting Classic and kept it going with hash power despite it no longer having a true figurehead or governing body.

I hope Zcash is never used by Illegal gamblers or darknets because it's better than that. It has far more useful opportunities in everyday peoples lives.


You have a point that people want and need anonymity, but I'll object to the example of paying taxes in BTC or ZEC: governments will not want to use bitcoin anymore than gold. The ability to demand tax in fiat and to then spend it for services gives government the power to print more fiat without it immediately losing market value. Not using BTC or gold enables governments to offer the future labor of its citizens (via taxes) as collateral for loans (T-Bills).


Maybe they'll just make it illegal to possess it. Then it really would be a criminal coin, and seeing that it's majority users are criminals, it would be harder to feel good about coding for it.


Splitting hairs on the IRS example, but I see your point.

If that was the case then they would have already made Bitcoin Illegal when Silk Road was discovered. Even the IRS acknowledges that Bitcoin is a possession, and yet not Illegal to own.


The thing is, the US can just create new laws and do whatever they want to do. There's no accountability. If they deem this as a threat they will find a way to attack the team behind it and there's nothing they can do to stop it.


Your argument is true of lots of countries not just the United States, remember China banning Bitcoin for awhile? Russia?

The fact is Zcash and Company are and will continue to be based in the United States. We will just have to wait and see if being in the United States helps or hurts a new crypto currency like Zcash.


Exactly, that's what worries me a bit. Not only that, but the complexity of the project. We already have a team of top notch cryptographers (even Zooko talked about one of his favourite articles on Zcash where the author was warning people it could be a scam because the team was too good to be true).

Even though it's an open source project and everyone can contribute:
1) It's still very vulnerable at the beggining
2) Worst case scenario... It will be extremely hard to find a team as good and knowledgable as this
3) Even if we find it, if the original founders were in trouble, who would risk working on this?

Those are my concerns.