Consensus 2018: Rounding Up The Main Crypto Event Of The Year
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Consensus 2018, the largest event in the world devoted to bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and blockchain, concluded yesterday in New York.

Over three days, 250 speakers and experts took the stage at the Hilton Midtown,among them Litecoin (LTC) creator Charlie Lee, Stellar founder Jed McCaleb and other famous personalities. The guest count exceeded 8500 people - a huge increase from last year’s 2700 - bringing in $17 million in ticket sales.

Highlights

Joseph Lubin and Jimmy Song Make Bet On “Magical Blockchain Dust”

Joseph Lubin, founder of Ethereum startup studio Consensys, and Jimmy Song, partner at Blockchain Capital, shook on a bet in front of a 2500-strong crowd in New York on Monday.

Triggered by a discussion of Clovyr, an online store for decentralized applications started by two former JPMorgan Chase employees, Lubin offered tobet Song “any amount of bitcoin” that blockchain tech projects by large corporations will have meaningful adoption within the next five years.

Song, a notable skeptic, said that he doesn’t see “much of this stuff gaining much traction”, dismissing it as “magical blockchain dust”.

According to Lubin, the details of the bet will potentially be ironed out on Twitter.

Lamborghinis parked at the entrance turn out to be rentals

Three Lamborghini supercars, parked in front of the entrance to the Hilton Midtown in Manhattan on Monday, turned out to be part of the event’s promotion. According to a CNBC report, the cars did not belong to the bitcoin investors who arrived at the conference. Two of the three Lambos were from Broadway Supercars, a rental company based in New Jersey, and one belonged to John Nouri, the company’s founder.

Images of the supercars quickly made the rounds on the Internet, symbolizing the potential for earning huge capitals with cryptocurrencies.

“We do this for a lotof companies all the time,” Nouri said. “It’s an attention grabber. It’s for the people walking in. They all say once you make money in crypto, you buy a lambo.”

Renting one Lamborghini at Nouri’s firm costs $1000 a day.

Bitcoin price takes a hit

Last year’s edition of the conference saw a 69% rise in BTC price, with the following two months elevating its value by another 138%. The conference usually has a bullish effect on the currency - BTC also grew in both 2015 and 2016.

This year, however, the cryptocurrency’s value suffered a 5% decrease, falling from above $8700 to around $8250.

Buterin boycott

Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum creator and one of the cryptocurrency world’s key figures, boycotted Consensus 2018, citing the extremely high ticket cost: "And by the way, the conference costs $2-3k to attend. I refuse to personally contribute to that level of rent-seeking,"- Buterin said.

Buterin also accused CoinDesk, one of the organizers, in supporting scams: "[CoinDesk's] reporting policies are designed to trap you with gotchas. Did you know that if you send them a reply, and you explicitly say that some part is off the record, that's explicitly on the record unless you go through a request/approve dance first?"

New York City To Develop Blockchain

James Patchett, CEO and President of the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), announced that the city will be starting several initiatives associated with blockсhain technologies.

“There’s no city in the world that’s better positioned to lead the way in blockchain. We’re a global leader in finance, real estate, media, and tech - all industries seeing incredible innovation from this new technology. The City is putting a big focus into blockchain to find out how we can grow the industry and make sure it’s creating great opportunities for New Yorkers,” – he said.

FedEx president: "Adopt New Tech Like Blockchain or Be Disrupted"

Fred Smith, president of the U.S. logistics giant FedEx, announced his commitment to blockchain technology.According to Smith, it will help the company remain a leader in the market against the backdrop of rapidly developing digital technologies. "Blockchain has the potential to completely revolutionize what's across the border," - Smith said.

Winklevoss-owned Gemini gets approval for Zcash

Gemini, a digital currency exchange owned by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, recently won regulatory approval to trade Zcash on its platform. Gemini will become the world’s first licensed Zcash exchange, which is notable due to the coin’s intense focus on privacy. The currency’s total market value currently stands at around $1.3 billion.

“We are proud to be the first licensed exchange in the world to offer Zcash trading and custody services and look forward to providing customers with a safe, secure, and regulated place to buy, sell, and store Zcash,” Tyler Winklevoss said.

Gemini users will be able to start trading Zcash on May 22.

Former JPMorgan Chase employees succumb to bitcoin fever

During the conference, Amber Boldet and Patrick Myland Nielsen, former JPMorgan Chase blockchain employees, revealed Clovyr, an online store for decentralized applications and services.The startup is currently attracting funds from investors.

Consensus 2018 Twitter mentions

Here are some of the conference’s hottest tweets tagged #Consensus2018.

By Ekaterina Ulyanova

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