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Full Version: We Beamed the Communist Manifesto to Space Using Bitcoin
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On Wednesday at approximately 10:20 AM Eastern, the final paragraph of The Communist Manifesto beamed down from a satellite array covering most of the world, and anyone with the right software and dish setup could receive it.

I sent the passage—the part that says, “The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains”—to space, and then back down to Earth, using Bitcoin. My reasoning for doing this was… Well, why the hell not? We live in a world where this is possible, my friends.

To do this, I used a satellite service from blockchain technology company Blockstream. In 2017, Blockstream launched a service that beams the Bitcoin blockchain down from satellites covering North and South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. This could, for example, be used as a backup link for Bitcoin businesses in case the internet goes down. In January, Blockstream released an API that added the ability to broadcast messages using the satellite service and the “testnet” version of the experimental Lightning payment network for Bitcoin.

“Testnet” means “free,” and it helps that, as Coindesk noted, a Twitter user going by “MediumSqueeze” created a website ( that makes sending messages very simple. All you have to do is enter some text, click “send message to space,” generate a testnet Lightning wallet using the link on the page (which gives you some free testnet Bitcoin), and then paste the generated Lightning invoice into the wallet. At some point, the service is supposed to move to the main network and will cost money.

To confirm that my class consciousness-raising message had made it to space, I reached out to Blockstream community manager Dan Williams, who goes by “grubles” online. WIlliams helped me configure my own satellite-dish-Linux-Frankenstein rig in 2017 and has recently been monitoring for messages from space. He received my message, he told me, and it’s far from the only one.
Too many idiots, not enough ammo........