2015 has seen a noticeable drop in the number of conferences dedicated to Bitcoin. In 2014, they numbered at least one per month on average. These days, it can be argued that they’ve been effectively replaced with the showcasing of blockchain technology and payment innovation at various FinTech conferences, of which there are now many.
Whether it’s a devalued bitcoin or simply a matter of waning interest remains to be examined, but the trend will likely continue and there may even be fewer events in 2016.
So it would have been a welcome change for Montreal, home of the world’s first Bitcoin Embassy, to at least get what might be its only turn. “Montreal is one of the most active bitcoin cities in the world,” said Francis Pouliot, a spokesperson for the Bitcoin Embassy, further claiming that Montreal has the most bitcoin ATMs per capita.
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The event’s organizers announced that the conference, originally scheduled for August 21-23 at Centre Mont Royal, has been postponed indefinitely. Part of the problem was that unlike most Bitcoin conferences, this one was to be free of charge for attendees, supported by sponsors. “Due to the unfortunate circumstance of low financial sponsorship support we would not be able hold this free-of-charge convention,” they said.
The conference would have brought together local and international pioneers in the field and offer discussions on both basic and advanced topics. The website no longer shows any such details, rather a large headline, “Montreal Bitcoin Expo-Withdrawal Announcement”, followed by explanations of the situation in English and French.
The message’s tone and the fact that all details have been scrubbed from the site seem to suggest that the indefinite postponement is in fact a cancellation.
“Although we are all saddened by this turn of events, we look forward to continue to assist and educate the growing number of Montreals who use bitcoin in their daily lives. We remain committed to our ongoing efforts to spread knowledge about the wonders and possibilities of bitcoin as a solid alternative to traditional currencies. We wish to extend our best wishes of success to all bitcoin users in the island of Montreal and beyond, and we invite you to stay tuned for future updates,” say the organizers, without making even speculative mention of the possibility of rescheduling.