Cryptocurrency Community Honors Hal Finney with Bitcoin Fund for ALS Research

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by Polina Chernykh · 2 min read

New campaign to raise bitcoin funds for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis research was launched following the death of bitcoin developer Hal Finney.

Some bitcoin entrepreneurs cooperated for new campaign to raise funds for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) research. The move was followed by the recent news about the death of Hal Finney, one of the prominent bitcoin users and developers. 58-year old Finney died of complications caused by ALS.

Coinapult co-founder Erik Voorhees, founder of Sean’s Outpost Jason King, bitcoin evangelist and Angel investor Roger Ver, payment processor BitPay and the Bitcoin Foundation partnered to donate bitcoin for research into ALS.

Gavin Andresen, chief scientist at the lobbying group the Bitcoin Foundation, created the video to start the campaign called the Hal Finney Bitcoin Fund for ALS Research.

Money could be sent to the donation address through November 27th, the Thanksgiving holiday in the US. The payment will be realized on December 2nd.

Although the ALS Association still not accept donations in virtual currency, the Hal Finney Bitcoin Fund will accept nominations for ALS companies that will be responsible for ALS research. The members of the bitcoin community will then decide which organization will receive the money and carry out the research.

BitPay will handle the donations and will ensure that 100% of funds will be sent to the chosen research organization. The company will not charge any transaction fees for non-profit organizations.

The first company that donated 100$ to the Hal Finney Bitcoin Fund and contributed to the bitcoin project was the Bitcoin Foundation.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or “Lou Gehrig’s Disease”, is a rapidly progressive neurodegenerative disorder affecting nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.

The disease leads to muscle weakness and atrophy in the body because of the degeneration of the upper and lower motor neurons. People then lose the ability to control all voluntary movement, although bladder and bowel function and the muscles responses for eye movements until the final phase of the disorder.

The diagnosis was made in 2009, not long after Finney helped Satoshi Nakamoto to get bitcoin off the ground. He then had to retire in 2011 because of the disease.

ALS research became the target of the social media campaign in which people dump iced water over their heads and nominate peers to do the same if they don’t send money to the ALS Association.

The campaign attracted attention of the most influential and powerful people in the world, among others George W. Bush, former US president, and American business magnate Bill Gates.

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Polina Chernykh

Polina is an undergraduate student at Belarusian State Economic University (BSEU) where she is studying at the faculty of International Business Communication for a degree specializing in Intercultural Communication. In her spare time she enjoys drawing, music and travelling.