According to published findings by Bitcoin Market Journal, more than 400 Blockchain conferences held last year despite the bear market.
Bitcoin No Longer Influencing Attendance?
When Bitcoin began about a decade ago, it was hard to visualize the practical world of blockchain technology, and the effect it would have on our society today. While many found the decentralized underlying technology to a rising alternative currency exciting and suited to their needs, only a few imagined groundbreaking applications of blockchain in different unrelated fields such as health, agriculture and shipments. Blockchain has gone a long way since then, and has gone far to win the hearts of even the most conservative of finance experts.
As of early 2013, Bitcoin was yet to be major discussions in presses and the media. Not a lot of people thought of much, and a larger percentage of people had never even heard the word ‘Bitcoin’. Rui Ma, a venture partner at 500 Startups, famously put out a call for people who wanted to talk about Bitcoin over dinner, but could not get more than a response.
Fast-forward to December, when the price of Bitcoin finally crossed over the $1000 mark, people’s veiled inattention seemingly pinched along with it, and finally, the whole world paid attention. The bitcoin community has certainly grown since then, and so has the rate of blockchain enthusiasts. Many startups have impressively tapped into the promising field of the blockchain, and are still reaping the rewards of an ever-increasing sector.
The period between 2015 and 2016, dubbed the ‘Bitcoin winter’, would however witness another trying period for Bitcoin which consequently saw a significant decline of attendees in blockchain gatherings.
In Hong Kong for example, following the collapse Bitcoin exchange Mt Gox in 2014, attendance for blockchain meetups in Hong Kong drastically decreased. The strong and ardent believers did not lose faith though, and were the ones to show up in the hard times consistently. It is no surprise that is those names that have now become popular and influential in the crypto world, men such as Binance’s Changpeng Zhao, BitMEX’s Arthur Hayes, and Circle’s Jack C. Liu.
Blockchain Communities are Essential
In the early days, enthusiasts often joked that the best real-world application of blockchain technology was its community; however, a lot of things have become more real since then: say Japan’s authorization of Bitcoin or Ripple’s gradual entry into the SWIFT banking world. The impressive 411 tally of blockchain conferences in 2018 only goes to show that blockchain communities are important; especially when there is no central authority to order things around. The future is therefore safe in the faith and togetherness of its decentralized community.