Prominent Women Make Their Voices Heard at Bitcoin Conference in Chicago

Journalist:
July 21, 2014

Early in the North American Bitcoin Conference, Cloudhashing President Lukas Gilkey stated that, according to their market research, Bitcoin users are 99 percent male. To many, this is not breaking news. The realm has been targeted at males seemingly since the beginning simply due to the interest. Though there are successful groups such as CryptoWomen and the Women in Bitcoin meetup, the female presence in Bitcoin, at least on the surface, is staggeringly low, and that’s something that is being recognized as an obstacle between merchant adoption and mass adoption.

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During the all-female panel titled “Who Is Mrs. Nakamoto?” five “Bitcoin women” were not poised to talk about the supposed lack of “Bitcoin women.” Instead, they simply were ready to take on the serious questions facing Bitcoin’s future. Sarah Hody, Pamela Morgan, Lisa Chang, Alyse Killeen and Perianne Boring of the Chamber of Digital Commerce all weighed in on topics of law, mass adoption and moving forward.

To kick things off, Boring made a quick quip and lightened the mood:

“I’m sorry; I thought we were here to discuss how we plan on getting more babies into Bitcoin.”

The crowd erupted in laughter. An air of relief washed over the room, so she made her opinion on the matter clear.

“We shouldn’t marginalize women. We should just have more women on Bitcoin panels.”

With that sentiment, they jumped directly into the questions and commentary.

The Impact of BitLicense

“This proposed BitLicense is disastrous,” Boring said. “It is absolutely imperative we flood his [Ben Lawsky’s] office with comments.” While she leads the Chamber of Digital Commerce in Washington D.C., she plans to use that position to educate Capitol Hill and fight dangerous legislation. She urged digital currency users to send comments Lawsky’s way to make sure this dies, especially if businesses are planning on moving overseas due to said regulations.

Morgan, an attorney at Empowered Law Firm, also reminded the audience that while they were all sitting in Chicago discussing New York, Bitcoin is global. She believes that the legislation and regulation that the United States passes could potentially affect the decisions made by the entire world. New York is a center for finances, so their sentiment carries quite a bit of weight.

How to Use the Blockchain Differently

A popular topic of discussion was how to use the fascinating technology of the blockchain in different avenues. The idea of a public ledger has shown its benefits for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, but also has an opportunity to show its worth outside of that realm. Many people refer to these potential applications of blockchain technology, collectively, as “Bitcoin 2.0.”

Pamela Morgan posed an interesting idea to combine Property Management with the blockchain. Her example targeted cyclists who have possibly gotten their bicycles stolen. If they had a public ledger that people would be able to register on, she sees the blockchain being utilized in a much different fashion.

Whether or not the idea would work, the discussion carried on, and the panelists brainstormed about new ways to use this technology in other ways. Another idea was that musical artists can utilize altcoins to stay connected with fans and promote crowdfunding.

These prominent figures brought a wonderful dialogue to the community not from a different perspective, but from a different tone. They proved that the discussion shouldn’t be about “women in Bitcoin,” everybody should just simply have discussions about Bitcoin.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

Last modified (UTC): July 23, 2014 23:00

Clay Michael Gillespie @thelivingaspect

Clay Gillespie a writer and reporter for many different platforms across the tech industry. He holds a B.S. in Public Relations from Ball State University, and freelances for different clients in technology and cryptocurrency. For more information, visit his personal website, claygillespie.com.