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Julian Assange: I Told Google’s Eric Schmidt to Embrace Bitcoin

Julian Assange: I Told Google’s Eric Schmidt to Embrace Bitcoin

Julian Assange, the embattled leader of non-profit activist media agency WikiLeaks, noted during a recent reddit Ask Me Anything discussion that while bitcoin is just coming to the attention of many of the tech industry’s elite, he was personally responsible for raising awareness about the digital currency to tech giant Google, in 2011.

Had he listened, Assange claimed, Google would “own the planet by now”.

While this may sound like a bold statement from the controversial figure, Assange in fact had an early conversation with Google executive chairman and then-CEO Eric Schmidt.

The discussion was later profiled by Schmidt while the Google chief was working on “The New Digital World”, a book published in 2013 and co-written with Jared Cohen, a former US State Department advisor to Hillary Clinton.

The complete, unedited transcript of the interview, which can be found on Wikileaks, details Assange’s early enthusiasm for bitcoin, providing a curious window into technology history. For example, Schmidt expressed curiosity about bitcoin, but ultimately seemed to pass on the then-nascent digital currency.

At the time, Assange tried to convince him otherwise, telling Schmidt:

“You should be an early adopter. Because your bitcoins are going to be worth a lot of money one day.”

 

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This entry was posted on June 20, 2014 by and tagged .

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