One of the most popular cryptocurrencies for privacy protection, monero, celebrated five years of existence this week.
Launched in April 2014, monero has, since its inception, been entirely crowdfunded. And in tune with this decentralized, grassroots structure, monero is almost entirely developed by volunteers.
“Monero is very committed to its decentralized, grassroots structure meaning we took no premine. We don’t take a percentage of the block rewards. There was no [initial coin offering,]” monero contributor Diego Salazar told CoinDesk. Salazar estimated that “depending on people’s time and availability” there is anywhere from 100 to 200 volunteers working on the monero project.
Additionally, the project itself, according Salazar, isn’t just about building a blockchain protocol. It’s about re-defining and bolstering a global movement centered around digital privacy.
Salazar told CoinDesk:
“We’re not just trying to make global internet money. We’re trying to teach people the importance of things like privacy…It’s a very powerful tool and I think it’s a very necessary tool in our day and age.”
To this, Italian developer and Monero contributor “SerHack” released a free PDF version of the book “Mastering Monero” in commemoration of the coin’s fifth anniversary. Originally published in late 2018, the book was fully funded by the monero community and teaches non-crypto users the importance of “private and censorship-resistant transactions.” The project’s online community further commemorated the anniversary with events and, in one instance, a celebratory puzzle.
While monero is not the only blockchain to boast private on-chain transactions, it is the largest among its kind by market capitalization boasting a $1 billion valuation, according to data from CoinMarketCap.