Today, well-known NFT trader and crypto figure Jeffrey Huang, who goes by the Web3 pseudonym Machi Big Brother, announced he had filed a lawsuit against on-chain internet sleuth ZachXBT. Huang accused the latter of “publishing and maliciously promoting an article that falsely presented [Huang] as a criminal that had embezzled millions of dollars of cryptocurrency and manipulated markets” and refusing to take down the post and associated tweet when asked.
The article Huang is referring to in the lawsuit is entitled “22,000 ETH Embezzled and Over Ten Projects Failed: The Story of Machi Big Brother (Jeff Huang)” and was published exactly a year ago, on June 16, 2022. In it, ZachXBT argued that Huang, a Taiwanese-American entrepreneur and former musician, embezzled 22,000 ETH ($37 million) from the treasury management platform Formosa Financial in 2018, as well as taking part in several failed crypto and NFT projects in the time since.
ZachXBT and Machi Big Brother go public
A year ago, @zachxbt published a Medium article about me that damaged my reputation.
Today, I have filed a defamation lawsuit against him in the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas.
— Machi Big Brother (@machibigbrother) June 16, 2023
“I have consistently maintained that the allegations in his article are false,” Huang wrote on Twitter while announcing the lawsuit to his followers. “I look forward to proving through the lawsuit that @ZachXBT unlawfully defamed me.”
ZachXBT is well-regarded in the NFT space for documenting Web3 scams and the subsequent movements and flow of money across various blockchains and wallets. He has called attention to some of the biggest failed projects and scams in recent crypto art memory, including Pixelmon, Pixel Penguins, Friendsies, and more.
2/ This is a classic David & Goliath story. My understanding is that Machi is very wealthy. I am not. He is using his money to try silence me. I’m asking for your help so this doesn’t happen & the truth survives.
— ZachXBT (@zachxbt) June 16, 2023
“It’s unfortunate I have to make this thread but I am being sued by MachiBigBrother for an article I published in June 2022,” ZachXBT wrote today while revealing the details of the lawsuit. “Today Machi filed the defamation lawsuit. The lawsuit is baseless and an attempt to chill free speech. I intend to fight back & defend free speech.”
Donations pour in
Huang is a known NFT pro trader, being one of the Blur marketplace’s biggest driving forces in recent months, and has been accused of wielding so much financial sway in the crypto art market as to be able to cause its manipulation.
As such, ZachXBT called on his followers for help with raising money for legal fees for the upcoming court battle, which he believes Huang will attempt to win by playing a game of financial attrition. He encouraged supporters to donate ETH to an address he provided, and in less than an hour, he received notable financial help from the crypto community.
One of the larger donations to the cause came from Memeland, the Web3 venture studio from internet meme mainstay 9GAG. The project donated 6.9 ETH (around $12,000) to the cause. At the time of writing, the wallet address that ZachXBT provided had accumulated nearly $100,000 in donations.
Editor’s note: This story was developing and has been updated.
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