Blockchain Educator Antonopoulos Says There are 5 Trusted PGP Keys for Bitcoin


In a recently held Q&A session, Andreas M Antonopoulos. One of the biggest influencers in the crypto market spoke about the maintainers of Bitcoin Core.

There were questions raised about the privileges that a maintainer has on the network. Antonopoulos started out by differentiating between the terms of contributors, committers and maintainers.

After explaining the traditional roles of contributors, Andreas moved on to maintainers, who are the people responsible for gathering change requests. A maintainer’s job is to schedule a release and manage them. He says:

“Changes must have broad consensus and acceptability to be included into the next release. [after a discussion about] how to sequence them, when to package them, and what each release should include. Even [those] decisions are heavily influenced by the collaborative communication between contributors, who are commenting on the pull-requests and [fostering] open discussions about [development timelines].”

He goes on to talk about PGP keys. He says that currently there are 5 trusted PGP keys that belong to Wladimir van der Laan, Pieter Wuille, Jonas Schnelli, Marco Falke, and Samuel Dobson who are lead developers. These developers have the ability to sign commits into the repository, however, they are not the ones making the commits.

Pretty Good Privacy or PGP is a popular program used to encrypt and decrypt email over the Internet, as well as authenticate messages with digital signatures and encrypted stored files.

It is an encryption program that provides cryptographic privacy and authentication for data communication. PGP is used for signing, encrypting, and decrypting texts, e-mails, files, directories, and whole disk partitions and to increase the security of e-mail communications. Andreas added:

“Wladimir simply reflects, and does administrative work for, decisions which have already been made… by the community. In fact, he exercises very little authority over what goes into a [Bitcoin Core] release. He reflects decisions that have already been made in a very collaborative and open manner, through discussions on the pull-requests and project notes [around] the code.”

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