A clear sign that digital currency is truly going global is apparent in the increasing number of bitcoin conferences taking place in different parts of the world this year, most particularly in Asia and Australia.
There are several significant events upcoming in the greater region, where attendees can catch presentations and panels featuring some of digital currency’s top leaders and thinkers.
Conference organizers like Mediabistro have already proven their ability to organize successful events, such as the Inside Bitcoins conference series in places like New York, Berlin and Las Vegas. In addition to the events below, the company will also hold bitcoin conferences in Seoul in December and Singapore in January 2015.
Then there are new starters in the field, such as Australia’s Informa and other independent conferences, proving that competition in the digital currency event space is almost as healthy as that among digital currencies themselves.
So why not get out the diary, reserve one of those ridiculously cheap Asian low-cost airline seats, and start researching local bitcoin-accepting businesses to visit while attending the following bitcoin events?
Inside Bitcoins Hong Kong
This event, to be held on 24th-25th June, bills itself as “Asia’s Largest Bitcoin Conference”, with 45 speakers and 20 seminary sessions, including heavyweights Bobby Lee (BTC China), Leon Li (Huobi), and Brock Pierce of the Bitcoin Foundation.
The event also features speakers from all areas of the Asian digital currency ecosystem, including Rui Ma of 500 Startups, Antony Lewis of itBit, Zennon Kapron of Kapronasia, mining ASIC maker Rock Xie, and Dave Chapman of ANX.
Inside Bitcoins Melbourne
Despite a healthy bitcoin economy, Australia hasn’t featured so prominently on the conference circuit so far – but it’s about to make up for it with two conferences within the same month.
The action starts with Inside Bitcoins Melbourne, from 9th-10th July. Speakers include Asher Tan of CoinJar, investors Domenic Carosa and Niki Scevak and numerous others from Australia’s startup scene, plus international guests Edan Yago of Epiphyte and Josh Zerlan of Butterfly Labs.
Cryptocon’s two events, both in the last week of July, share several of the same speakers on an agenda that highlights the economic connections between Singapore and Australia.
The inaugural conference will take place in Sydney from 24th-25th July. International invitees include Emmanuel Abiodun of Cloudhashing, Elizabeth Ploshay of the Bitcoin Foundation, and Safello’s Frank Schuil.
As well as international invitees Jonathan Levin of Coinometrics, Jackson Warren of Bitcoiniacs and ‘Bitcoin Jesus’ Roger Ver, the 28th-29th July conference features local entrepreneurs Anson Zeall of CoinPip and Tembusu ATM founders Jarrod Luo and Peter Peh.
Cryptocon’s organizer, Jonny Peters, says his events move on from debate over security and whether bitcoin is a currency or commodity, and onto the more interesting opportunities presented by block chain technology itself.
“Through its tag line ‘The Internet of Money has Arrived’, the event makes a big statement and encourages the discussion to move towards something way bigger,” he said, explaining:
“The blockchain is a solution that solves the inherent problems of the Internet – credit card fraud, inefficient and cumbersome payment systems, and personal privacy issues. These three factors create a consumer distrust of the Internet. The billionaires of the next decade will be those who take advantage of this solution – this is where Cryptocon positions itself.”
BitcoinExpo China 2014, Shanghai
Promoting itself as “The Largest of All Bitcoin Conferences”, Shanghai’s BitcoinExpo will also be mainland China’s second major bitcoin event for the year – not bad for a country often inaccurately accused of ‘banning bitcoin’.
Final dates and a speaker list are yet to be finalized, but the event will cover three days in September this year. Organizers have also issued invitations for sponsors and exhibitors.