Elon Musk Says ‘Not Your Keys, Not Your Wallet’ in Butchered Attempt at Bitcoin Mantra

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Elon Musk Says 'Not Your Keys, Not Your Wallet' in Butchered Attempt at Bitcoin Mantra


How do you do, fellow degens? 

In the latest stop on Elon Musk’s eternal, multi-billion dollar quest for validation, the world’s richest man botched an attempt to riff with Twitter and Block co-founder Jack Dorsey this week about the importance of self-custody for crypto assets.

“Not your keys, not your wallet, as they say,” Musk wrote Thursday in response to Dorsey’s announcement of Bitkey, a new self-custodial Bitcoin wallet from Block.

That is, in fact, not what they say. 

For years, crypto-holding privacy and decentralization advocates have expressed their fears about the dangers of centralized actors taking over the digital assets industry with a single mantra: not your keys, not your coins.

The adage makes sense: It argues that if a person does not personally hold the keys to their own crypto wallets, but instead trusts a third party to watch over those funds, that person cannot meaningfully claim they control their own coins.

Countless failures by third parties in crypto to protect users’ assets—most notably and recently, the criminal conduct at FTX that saw the exchange dip into customer deposits to fund a slew of illegal activity—have reinforced the belief among crypto natives that self-custody over assets is the only appropriate way to hold crypto. 

Many crypto advocates don’t just know the saying; they live by it. Musk, who has long played the part of an avid crypto enthusiast, apparently doesn’t know the phrase.

Twitter users immediately jumped on the error, relishing in Musk’s latest gaffe. 

“You know what they say,” Bitcoin enthusiast and Taproot Wizards co-founder Udi Wertheimer replied. “If you can’t bit them, coin them.”

Just last week Musk inadvertently found himself at the center of another crypto news cycle, when a public rant he went on—repeatedly admonishing advertisers who have left Twitter since the billionaire made an antisemitic post to “go fuck yourself”—inspired a meme coin with a remarkable $7.28 million market capitalization. Predictably, it went to zero.

Edited by Andrew Hayward

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