Saturday, 21 December 2013

Stewart Quealy: "Berlin is the perfect location for a Bitcoin conference"

Interview with Stewart Quealy from MediaBistro about the Inside Bitcoins conference that will take place in Berlin in February 2014

What exactly is Mediabistro's business and how did it develop over the years?

The Mediabistro brand is well-known worldwide for its leading job boards, courses, editorial content, and trade shows for media, technology, and business professionals. Our mission is to help people succeed and grow in their careers as we provide them with cutting-edge opportunities to acquire new positions, knowledge, skills, and connections. Over the years, Mediabistro has grown to provide more diverse research and coverage on a wide variety of popular topics such as mobile apps, 3D printing and Bitcoins.

Why did you choose Bitcoin as a conference topic?

As the world's first decentralized digital currency, Bitcoin is an intriguing topic that lends itself to spirited discussion and debate which is ideal fodder for a conference environment. At Mediabistro, we take a progressive approach toward content and tend to gravitate toward dynamic topics that represent next generation trends and opportunities. It’s been said that “Bitcoin is for money what TCP/IP is to the Information Age” and I’m inclined to agree.


How are your experiences with Bitcoin conferences so far?

Our initial Inside Bitcoins event in NYC last July exceeded our expectations and our December event in Vegas grew exponentially. It’s still early in the game but Bitcoin is perfectly poised to become a major means of payment for e-commerce and a popular alternative to traditional money. Mediabistro also accepts Bitcoins as payment for our conference registrations so we are bullish on its future.

You will organize a Bitcoin conference in Berlin next February - why Berlin?

Berlin is experiencing a high-growth moment and has become an entrepreneurial hub for a thriving start-up scene. In fact, I’ve heard that startups are helping to draw about 30,000 new residents to Berlin every year. Berlin is also a magnet for worldwide investors so it is the perfect location for a conference that focuses on ground-breaking innovations in digital currencies and the potential for a new global payment system.

Whom do you want to reach with the Berlin conference? What are your main objectives?

We are planning to have the conference take place in both German and English so we expect to attract a diverse and highly-engaged audience. Our main objective, as always, is to provide our attendees with actionable ideas and practical advice through sessions that are designed to shed light on critical issues and the latest trends impacting Bitcoin. Keeping the content fresh, original and timely while immersing attendees in a substantive learning environment is our biggest objective. Whether you’re a venture capitalist, lawyer, technologist, entrepreneur, regulator, cryptographer, payment pioneer, or public policy expert, our agenda offers valuable insight for everyone and anyone interested in learning more about a digital, decentralized, peer-to-peer-based currency like Bitcoin.

Which speakers have you already confirmed?

We’ve been fortunate enough to bring together an eclectic lineup of business visionaries and virtual currency veterans who are driving the Bitcoin space forward. Some of these industry experts who plan to share analysis on the current and future state of Bitcoin include: Oliver Flaskämper, Geschäftsführer, Bitcoin Germany GmbH, Bobby Lee, CEO and Co-Founder, BTC China, Jaron Lukasiewicz, CEO, Coinsetter, David Kinitsky, Senior Director, SecondMarket, Brock Pierce, Managing Director, Playsino and Clearstone Global Gaming Fund, Radoslav Albrecht, CEO & Founder, Bitbond.net, Tamás Blummer, Founder and CEO, Bits of Proof, Matthew G. Roszak, Co-Founder, SilkRoad Equity, Justin O’Connell, Author, Bitcoinomics, Pamir Gelenbe, Partner Hummingbird Ventures, and Aaron Koenig, Managing Director, Bitfilm and Organizer, Bitcoin Exchange Berlin (BXB).

Why does the Berlin conference happen at the same time as the Berlin film festival?

The Berlin International Film Festival is a fantastic time to be in Berlin and we felt it would give us the chance to reach a wider potential audience.

How is your connection to the Bitcoin community in Berlin?

Our connection to the Bitcoin community in Berlin is quite favorable as we continue to forge new partnerships and alliances each day. Because we have run several technology events before in Berlin, the Mediabistro brand is already well recognized among local thought leaders and industry influencers.

How would you react to people who consider it strange that a US based company organizes a Bitcoin conference in Berlin and not the local community itself?

Each conference we create is designed to match the perspective of that particular region while still tackling the broader issues and overarching challenges at hand. Perhaps this is what distinguishes us from the competition and allows us to create a memorable event that is illustrative of both local and international markets.

Are there any questions we forgot to ask? Anything you want to add?

The beauty of Bitcoin and currency digitization in general is that it is by definition global. As a result, we’ll be rolling out our Inside Bitcoins events globally with upcoming shows in NYC from April 7-8th, Hong Kong from June 24-25, and London on September 10th. More international dates to be announced soon!

3 comments:

  1. I couldn't agree more! It's all over the Bitcoin Daily News and blogs; Berlin streets became the most sought-after place where people can go shopping with virtual money. In fact, Berlin is known as a magnet for worldwide investors, that is expected to attract highly-engaged audience for bitcoin.

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  2. If Berlin is the right place to hold a bitcoin conference, then possibly this could be the bitcoin market capital in the future. And in the next couple of years, it would hold a land-based bitcoin gambling community. Virtual bitcoin casino will also burst in popularity and boost its revenue.

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