Bitcoin Conference Reviews with Julia Tourinski and Tatiana Moroz
After wrapping up the 2015 Inside Bitcoins conference, Julia, Tatiana, and I take a moment to discuss the state of conferences in the Bitcoin movement, and what ...
What's up, party people. So it's me, Chris DeRose, Community Director of the Counterparty Foundation. And I'm here at the end of the Inside Bitcoins Conference 2015 in New York City. I'm very lucky to be doing this wrap up video with: Tatiana Moroz. ulia Tourinski. And we were talking about how maybe we could combine our efforts.
We've all been doing stuff here. And I think that what we want to talk about for a little bit is what we think of the conference space, and specifically, what we think of the conferences in this space and just communicate to you guys what we've been seeing lately and how we feel about it. So, I guess, Julie, do you want to take the lead? What did you think of this conference? I like the Inside Bitcoin conferences, I think, mostly because I see, this could be taken as a criticism too, I see the same faces over and over again. But I like most of those faces. My last video criticized and the self-trolled the conference space a little bit. I believe I said that a lot of these conferences invite boys trying to be men.
You can hear the sounds of dick-sucking as you walk by. But this one was okay. There's a lot of camaraderie. Maybe as tis space ages and matures, people know each other already, people know each other's reputation, so there less of that false civility. People don't need to, they don't need to do the dick-sucking. They have their reputations.
They go to the dinners. Everyone knows each other. You get introduced. That's how it felt to me this time. In some of the earlier, more business oriented conferences, I felt people were still trying to get there. There were some scams going on.
It's kind of waning out. Am I wrong in that? Judging with this conference, I didn't see any obvious scams. I think that one great thing I can say about Inside Bitcoins is it was scam-free, damn near, best I can tell. Yep, that was refreshing. It's not just Bitcoin conferences, it's events. The last bad event I went to was the -- it wasn't the Berkley, what's the other University in the Bay Area? Stanford Stanford, It was the Stanford Bitcoin thing.
There was some odd vibes there. I don't know. A lot of dick-sucking or scams? Oh so much dick-sucking, so much dick-sucking. Because the crowd again, when you get crowds from, there's a lot of regulation bodies there, there was a lot of educational bodies. There was some friction. There was a lot of a Ethereum people.
There was a lot of friction and base core beliefs. There was also a lot of people that were neutral, so everyone was trying to get each other on their side. That's where you get that, I think. There are a lot of politics in Bitcoin. We all see it here. If you come, you stick around for a while, you'll see it very quick.
What about you Tatiana, what did you think of this Inside Bitcoins conference? I really liked this Inside Bitcoins conference. I had a really good time. I spoke with a lot of interesting people. It seemed like there was a lot of professionalism, but it was still, I don't know, there was a lot of good networking, I thought, that people were spending time together. It's fun for me because I'm based out of this area. So anytime people are coming to New York City, I don't actually have to go anywhere, which is a lot easier and I like that.
Obviously, I felt warmly toward it and I saw some new faces as well, so that was good. Let's talk about the professionalism too, because we're watching the space grow, and I can't help but to say that the suit to non-suit ratio is pretty high here at the conference. I think that's professionalism. I'm not positive. Is that good or is that bad? What do you think? I think, again, it's hard to tell because anyone could put a suit one. I know most people here, so I know if they're just dressing up to dress up or they're actual suits.
But to someone who doesn't, it would look very professional, for sure. Inside Bitcoins, the one in London, it was way more suits, like legitimate suit. I think England is more of that kind of country anyways. I think it's much more regulation-oriented. There is less entrepreneurialism, there. The economy is not doing that well.
I think America is still the heart and soul of startup, the heart and soul of innovation and I love that. Versus the British conference and the American conferences, very, very different vibes. Again, to get back to professionalism, no one was drinking at this conference. This one? Yeah, the after parties, comparatively to the Vegas, it's like people were closing here. People are solid, they're closing. They have things to do.
People weren't staying out that late, I don't know. It was professional. Tatiana? I don't really think that people wearing suits is that important. To me, it's more important if people actually behave professionally. There are a lot of companies in Bitcoin, and in my experience, they don't do what they say they're going to do. The ethics are poor.
The follow through is unacceptable. I was actually speaking about it with a friend early today, and he said, "Don't even worry about those people, because in two years, they are not going to be here anymore." I think that that's a good thing. I think Bitcoin inspires a lot of people. One of the reasons why I like Bitcoin and the community around it is that go-getter mentality. People are judged by their ability to do what they say that they're going to do and execute.
I think that's just something that people should really keep in mind, whether or not they're wearing a T-shirt or a suit, I don't really care. Just make sure that you have your shit together, basically. I'll comment on this real quick, because you bring up a really good point there. I think there are a lot of undercover suits here, guys that you and I have seen, and you're watching this and you know who you are, that have come here with a suit on and I haven't seen them with a suit on in a while. So it makes me think okay, they're here to close. I'm not saying it's necessarily bad.
This may be what we need in Bitcoin is a little more professionalism. That's a separate discussion. But I will say, for all you who allege that I bro-down, there's a lot of guys copping out out there. So I may be my own style, but I'm staying true to my style and I'm not looking to throwing it out the window just because I'm in Wall Street. Yeah the whole how you dress, it's really funny at the conferences. I flip flop a lot.
The first day, I wore gun tights and high tops. The second day, I worn six-inch heels and a really nice top and pants. Today, I'm in between, but that's just always been me. I can just do whatever. Dressing up like a suit to close, that works, but the opposite works too. If you look like a mad scientist or look like you don't give a fuck, there are people here, there's the under-20-year-old programmers who look like they've never been in the sun, that's legitimizing what they are doing.
You could go either way. Putting on a suit isn't a fail-proof tactic. You know what I want to talk about is comparing, we're comparing different conferences, what about conferences two years ago, three years ago? I agree. Yeah, because I think the first conference ever was in England and it was organized by Amir Taaki and there was five people and I think Max Kaiser was there and it was all crypto dudes, basement dwelling crypto dudes, and now it's just boomed into its own culture. I think there is definitely a culture around it. Yeah, I'm watching the exchange.
I go back and forth. At times, I really like the professionalism, like you have seen some very unprofessional people that are offensive. But then there's times where I say I kinda miss the old days when we used to go to conferences, we didn't even know if we were being followed by the Feds. By the way, for anyone who has seen my Michel Espinoza video, we had the Secret Service out at at least one conference I was at, the 2013 North American Bitcoin Conference. Back then, there was this culture of we are changing the world. There are people that are out to get us.
Maybe that was actually true at the time, but now I'm here, and I don't see any of that. I don't know. Do you miss the old days? Or do you like it better now? In Acapulco, we had a Fed there, for sure. And before we even realized we did...
He had a mustache on or...? No, it was a woman. Yeah, she was a honey pot. Honey pot woman, and Roger Ver, before we even realized, he was like, "To the undercover Fed, I'm sure there's one here, this is what we're doing.
You can't stop us." That conference was very interesting, because it was very anarchy-oriented and there's a lot of Bitcoin stuff, so it kind of merged. But we had a Fed there for sure. They have good resources. Good for her, she does a good job, gets to go to Acapulco. As far as the conferences, I really like the destination ones.
I think that that's really awesome when you have a little bit more time to spend with people and you get to know them. If a person is a decent person, they're going to be at least ethical in their business dealings, which is important. I really enjoy the Bitcoin South Conference in New Zealand. That was amazing. And Acapulco was wonderful. When we did the Buenos Aires conference, the first ever Latin America Bitcoin conference, that was really good.
I know I'm missing one that I really enjoyed recently, but anyway, the point is that I like those opportunities... Coins in the Kingdom? The Coins in the Kingdom ones are very good. Yeah, I like the opportunity to get to know people a little bit more and to understand their motivations. Another thing that popped out at me, at this conference I was doing a series on women in Bitcoin.
What I have noticed is that there are increasing numbers of women, and also women are really impressive. There's just a lot of them and I think that's great. I think the more diversity that we can bring to this space, the better. I don't know. I still think that there is still a little bit of a rock and roll revolution vibe to it. But talking about a revolution and putting something together and making it really work are two different things.
I think that you have to have, whether or not you believe in regulation or that side of things, you still have to have accountability for your actions, and so I think that's a good thing that we are growing into. What you reminded me, we were just talking about the woman aspect. It reminded me that LifeMasters came to this conference. It's cool to see the anarchist becoming the suits and doing the business. It's cool to suits becoming the Bitcoiners. She left a very good job at J.
P. Morgan that she was at for 30 years or something. That's rare. That's rare for someone to go and do that in a very highly volatile, uncertain area. That's interesting to me. Do you think the professionalism is bringing more of them out? Do you think that is a directly correlated thing or do you think that just goes hand in hand incidentally? I don't know.
I think what scares women off sometimes is the aggressive nature of new tech. Maybe because it is all men at first, there is a psychological barrier to entry. And unfortunately, that's not necessarily because of the men, that's just because of the visual. I have never had anything terrible, but there are some people who definitely don't think you're there because you know what a Bitcoin is. They don't think that you know anything about it, just because you're blond and a girl. Other people treat you perfectly fine.
And then you have the developer boys who can't even look at you in the eye. You can't leave that to sexism or discrimination. It's just the way things are, which is changing, the more exposure people who have only seen one kind of way, the more exposure they get to women who know what they're talking about and are interested and are interesting. I think girls should just give zero fucks, that's what I think, and use the advantages that we have. I think we are more emotionally in tune. I think we read people better.
That's really good for business, use that. Makes sense enough to me. Do we want to talk about the things that we come to conferences and don't like or even the conferences that have been a little bit of a disaster? Do you have any conference disaster stories that we can talk about on camera. No, I don't really have any disaster stories, sorry. I'll take a pass. I'll give you the result of my disaster story but I won't give you the story.
At the Vegas Inside Bitcoin conference, I got banned from the Top Club in Vegas. That's a disaster story, but it was all good fun and not to reflect badly upon the conferences. Personal choices. I'll make my opinion very clear. I go to all these conferences and there is spam. I have seen so much spam and spam is usually, not in the form of a bad product even, but a flat out Ponzi scheme.
That always leaves a really bad taste in my mouth, in part because we have people that are new to Bitcoin and we're trying to make business or make knowledge happen. And then they go in the exhibitor room and they are handed Ponzi scheme after scandal, and you name it, that always is really difficult for me as a Bitcoin enthusiast. As far as disaster goes, the first and foremost disaster I can think of is the North American Paycoin Conference of this year. That was a little rough. Hopefully we won't see that level of spam happen again. Conference organizers, they need to be responsible for some of the decisions they make in terms of the exhibitors that they allow.
That's my feeling. We shall see. Judging from the Inside Bitcoins conference, I think the exhibitors were just great. I really think they were well-picked. This is my first Inside Bitcoins Conference. I'm very, very impressed.
They were very professional with me throughout. They vetted me, asked me some solid questions. I could tell they were serious conference organizers. They put on a really good event. That's what I think. I think Stuart has a really long history of conferences.
He used to do other tech conferences. He's really nice. He's always been very polite and professional when I've seen him. That alone is going to reflect on what the conference is like, right.? Yeah, I think so. I was going to say that this conference had a lot of women as speakers.
I like that. You mentioned the North American Bitcoin Conference, and there were a lot of people that were very upset that there weren't enough women speakers. And not that women should be selected just because they're women, but you can't just have people that are the rich guys that are controlling the industry as your speakers. You want to have a diverse perspective offered. I think that that's really important. I don't really care for women having to dance naked.
I think that that's inappropriate. It's a business conference. Go to a strip club. Yeah, exactly. I would like to see more women treated normally, not special, just equal. Making that environment more welcoming to other kinds of people would be nice direction that I think that we are actually going in that direction which is good.
We all worked throughout the entire conference and we don't even get to see many of the speakers during our time here. We get some, but not as many as you guys get. What kind of content do you girls like to see? Is it political, technical, business? What do you come to find when you can sneak away to see a speaker? What brings you the most value? I like the regulation panels because I troll them, usually the only ones I listen to. Anything startup, competitions, hackathons, that's always the best, I think. In all my time at Bitcoin conferences, I have never actually gone to a hackathon. I just walk in the room and it looks really boring and I leave.
As an artist, I like things that make me feel something. I think that that's a really important component of Bitcoin. When Connie, from BitGive, talks about her trip to Kenya and how they put in a well because of the power of Bitcoin, that's something that I really like to see. Basically Bitcoin for social good is always something. Also Pamela Morgan does a lot of really great talks about smart contracts. And every single time that she speaks, I'm really interested and I'm also on the same path as her.
I understand what she's talking about. When I think about the possibilities for that type of technology, as an artist, we get screwed over all the time. If I had a contract that is a smart contract, I can protect myself. I think that the impact that has on society is incredible and immeasurable. If that curiosity can be sparked with others, I think that that's a very good thing and that could keep people interested in Bitcoin. What else, girls? Did we cover everything? Is there something else we should add to the discussion? Are we about done with our Inside Bitcoins New York Discussion? Yeah, the conference is wrapping up, so I guess we should go too.
I think that's it. Tatiana? Nope, that's it. Bye, everybody. All right, everyone. I guess that's it for this Inside New York Conference. I will probably show this video last, so if you're watching this, check out my channel.
There's a whole bunch of other videos and interviews that will really give you a good feel for the whole conference. Tatiana, you'll have some videos on your site as well. So check out, I'll put some links on the bottom. Julie, do you have any videos from the conference? No, I didn't do any video work this time. Okay, maybe next time. In any case, she has a channel.
Bravetheworld.com, and you can get links to my Twitter, Facebook and YouTube channel from there. If you have an questions for me, you can reach me on Twitter @derosetech. I think that's about it. I'm looking forward to the long flight home down to South Florida. Catch you later, party people.