[bitcoin-dev] Bravo Charlie One: Branding Bech32

nullius nullius at nym.zone
Mon Dec 25 21:21:57 UTC 2017

I here record for the devs a thought I had a few days ago on the Bitcoin 
Forum about BIP 173 Bech32 addresses.  I’ve heard Greg Maxwell say that 
“Bech32 is designed for human use and basically nothing else”; so I hope 
I be not untoward in considering the following human-friendliness 
enhancement to entwine with the technical ambit of this list.  This MAY 
be suitable for mention in an informative specification, or informative 
section thereof.

To help gain user familiarity with and acceptance of the 
error-correcting, case-insensitive Bitcoin addresses of the future, I 
propose a need for what I think marketers call “branding”.  The best 
branding is that which derives naturally from some intrinsic quality of 
a thing; wherefore I look to what may perhaps be a bit of serendipity in 
the specification.

I expect that in practical use, one of the great advantages of Bech32 
addresses will be the relative ease of communicating them 
aloud—especially over the phone.  In similar circumstances, when trying 
to convey unusual names or pseudorandom strings, I’ve found radio 
alphabets to work well at their intended purpose.  And when reading 
Bech32 Bitcoin addresses in the most popular radio alphabet, they will 
always start with a catchy phrase:  “Bravo Charlie One”.

That’s memorable, $SEARCH-able, and yet also one of those unique, 
otherwise meaningless phrases which gets marketers excited.  Keeping to 
a word triplet, I hereby submit for consideration as the official 
nickname for Bech32 Bitcoin use:  “Bravo Charlie Addresses”.  These are 
the Bitcoin addresses with the magic words, suitable for a motto:  
“Bravo Charlie One means money.”  Add a logo à la Segwit’s, and raise 
user awareness of this exciting new technology!

Beyond the branding issue, recommendations for Bitcoin spelling-alphabet 
use in English and other languages may perhaps be a suitable matter for 
such standardization as would facilitate coherent user documentation.  I 
invite discussion.

Of course, this branding only applies directly to Bitcoin Bech32 
addresses.  The BIP 173 authors were gracious to make the standard 
generally adaptable; and it has already seen some uptake amongst 
altcoins.  I myself am now contemplating how Bech32 would be a superior 
human-facing format for key fingerprints for PGP, SSH, and even TLS, 
with HRPs of “pgp”, “ssh”, “tls”, etc. and some appropriate means of 
embedding the key type just as “bc” embeds the witness version.  There 
is an urgent general need for a specification which reduces the inherent 
pain of wetware in handling pseudorandom strings; and I do think that 
anything which familiarizes users with Bech32 in a specific use will be 
beneficial to Bech32 adoption generally.

To celebrate, as seen in my sig, I created for myself a new Bravo 
Charlie Address which expresses that I am pleased:  Now, I have an 
error-correcting, case-insensitive address which can receive only 
genuine Bitcoin cash money.  Because “Bravo Charlie One means money.”

Here’s to the Bitcoin address format of the future!

nullius at nym.zone | PGP ECC: 0xC2E91CD74A4C57A105F6C21B5A00591B2F307E0C
Bitcoin: bc1qcash96s5jqppzsp8hy8swkggf7f6agex98an7h | (Segwit nested:
“‘If you’re not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to hide.’
No!  Because I do nothing wrong, I have nothing to show.” — nullius
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