This coming weekend and the following week will be an interesting time for Bitcoin users, fans and businesspeople to visit London.
In addition to the Inside Bitcoins conference (disclosure: CoinTelegraph is a media partner for that event), there will also be an ongoing series of events around Shoreditch to bring Bitcoin use — and general awareness of the currency — to the average consumer.
The latter festival, BlockStock (think “blockchain” + “Woodstock”), starts Friday evening and continues for 10 days in and around London’s Tech City.
BlockStock’s goal is to simply get consumers and merchants used to Bitcoin by organizing a series “of events, activities, special offers, seminars and exhibitions interconnected with everyday high street businesses such as shops, pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes,” according to the festival’s website.
The festival will kick off Friday night with drinks at 7 p.m. in a venue to be named later in the week. Over the course of those 10 days, customers will be able to do a variety of things with Bitcoin, including buying tickets to a comedy show, shopping at a market in Hoxton Square, attending workshops and even booking yoga sessions.
“My main motivation for setting up a festival was a noticed there were quite a few programmers, bankers, predominantly in the Bitcoin community … it would just be great to get other people on board and have a little debate about economics and open their eyes to things they’ve never really thought much about,” mononymous festival co-organizer Tashoma told the Bitcoin UK Media podcast back in July.
The goal is to engage more people — especially young creative professionals — get them familiar with using Bitcoin and showing them how it’s just another method of transacting value, he said.
“When you go to all these Bitcoin meetups, it’s all very business focused. [...] I just wanted to see a bit more variety and more people debating and trying things about practically instead of just talking about it.”
Most of BlockStock’s events will take place between the Shoreditch High Street and Hoxton stations, with a few more events still just a walkable distance away. Hoxton Square appears to be the festival’s epicenter.
Sponsors include Hashers United, fashion retail site List, co-working and shared-office-space company The Brew, and the Borough of Hackney.
Here is a full list of local merchants that will accept Bitcoin at least for the duration of the festival:
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