Internet Computer (ICP) and DFINITY founder Dominic Williams came up with a bizarre plan to hasten the end of the Russian invasion of Ukraine with smart contracts and a $250 million cryptocurrency reward.
The DFINITY Internet Computer was launched in May 2021 and is a public blockchain and protocol that attempts to decentralize the Internet.
Williams’ March 16 proposal aims to counter the propaganda and educate the Russian population – who he says are generally “completely clueless” – about the reality of what is really going on in Ukraine, which will then in turn spur them to put pressure on government to end the conflict.
“We should not place too high hopes that sanctions alone will turn the population of Russia against their leaders for the simple reason that they control their media, which in good faith spread carefully crafted propaganda and false information,” Williams wrote.
The proposal suggests that blockchain technology and smart contracts could serve as a way to get a large number of verified citizens of Russia to watch “information media” about the war together at virtual reality parties dubbed “people’s parties”:
“Each participant who proves their identity through the people’s party system is then identified by smart contracts as an individual human being. The system prevents fraud so that a person can only be present once per run.”
“In this proposal, smart contracts will open a new cryptocurrency account for each successful participant, which they will be able to access and control with an internet identity,” the post reads.
To incentivize citizens, Williams proposes to use cryptocurrency rewards in assets such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH). Every Russian citizen will have to watch the video until the end, as the pin codes linked to their accounts will not be unlocked until all the content has been used up.
“The streaming video will tell the truth about the war in Ukraine and ask the Russians to put pressure on their government to stop fighting. How best to construct such a video should be left to talented filmmakers. A non-watermarked version should be available for download, allowing the recipient to show the video to others,” Williams wrote.
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The $250 million proposed by Williams is based on his recommendation to pay each participant $50 per video watched, in hopes of attracting 5 million Russians to watch informative videos.
The plan is based on many contingencies, the most important of which is that the Internet will remain online without interference from the Russian government to carry out such a grandiose plan. The Twitter responses indicated that Moscow officials were reportedly considering cutting the country off from cyberspace.
“Moscow is ready to disconnect the country from cyberspace. While authorities officially deny the initiative, leaked reports suggest she will begin posting the strategy on government websites this Friday. I wonder how anyone will see the video – Nicolas.icp(@ICbicycle) March 15, 2022
Other Twitter users weren’t impressed with the idea, like “Omega.ic3” who called the move a PR stunt:
“This idea has no real chance of influencing public opinion in Russia. So it looks like a cheap PR stunt, ultimately trying to capitalize on the situation by jumping on the public opinion bandwagon and building awareness.”