KEY POINTS

  • John McAfee's Ghost Coin can now be used to buy products in over 60 vending machines in Hong Kong
  • Ghost Coin is the subject of controversy when it was revealed portions of its white paper were copied from PIVX's
  • McAfee plans to sue PIVX for defamation

John McAffe’s Ghost Coin can now be used in over 60 vending machines in Hong Kong. This was made possible by a partnership with ivendPay, which allows Ghost Coin to be used in such machines -- even those inside Hong Kong Disneyland. 

Ghost Coin, a privacy-focused cryptocurrency, went live along with Ghost Distributed Exchange last week. Ghost is a Proof-of-Stake privacy coin for transactions to be anonymous. The mainnet launched on June 22. 

The Ghost-ivendPay partnership allows customers to buy in over 60 vending machines, in contrast to a similar announcement where Bitcoin can finally be used in Coca-Cola vending machines in Australia and New Zealand. Due to a partnership between Coca-Cola Amatil and Centrapay, customers can buy using Bitcoin in around 1,200 vending machines in the two countries. Through a QR code, the cryptocurrency will be converted to fiat before the vending machine dispenses the product.

Ghost Coin is the subject of controversy when it was revealed portions of its white paper were copied from PIVX, an open-source privacy coin. Ghost representatives said their code based is forked from PIVX and has since made a lot of improvements. 

When asked if  Ghost "copy-pasted" portions of PIVX’s white paper, McAfee admitted they did. PIVX, itself a fork from DASH, said Ghost’s fault is the blatant masking of the fact that it copied PIVX’s work.  PIVX argued its white paper is copyrighted.

“Even if the whitepaper was open source (which it is not) you are required to credit and attribute the sources as clearly stated under the MIT license,” PIVX said on Twitter, arguing that attribution is a common and ethical practice in the open-source community. 

McAfee warned he will sue PIVX for defamation. 

PIVX brushed off the threatening legal action, suggesting it might be impossible for McAfee to push through with it as he’s in exile. Additionally, the PIVX team warned Ghost aligned its specs with the Zercoin Protocol, which they claimed to be flawed and easily exploitable.

John McAfee, Miami Beach, Florida, Dec. 13, 2012 John McAfee told the Russian government-funded television network Russia Today it would take just 30 minutes to unlock an Apple iPhone. Above, McAfee addresses media representatives in Miami Beach, Florida, Dec. 13, 2012. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images