Making Bitcoin Real: Portsmouth, N. H., Businesses Begin Accepting BTC
Yet another business in Portsmouth, New Hampshire starts taking Bitcoin, as the small seaside town’s impressive proportion of Blockchain-related businesses continues to grow.
Another establishment has begun accepting Bitcoin as payment in what is fast becoming one of the most Bitcoin-centric towns in the United States.
Street, a posh restaurant featuring food inspired from around the globe, began accepting Bitcoin earlier this month. The integration came as a result of outreach by Steven Zeiler, a local software developer and Bitcoin evangelist, who has also succeeded in getting a local yoga studio he frequents to take Bitcoin.
Matt Carano, owner of The Music Class (which also takes Bitcoin) and former owner of the Pão Cafe, one of the first restaurants in New Hampshire to take Bitcoin and appreciates the ability to use Bitcoin locally, not just through online transactions.
Carano says to Cointelegraph:
“I love that we are starting to see a real Bitcoin presence around the Seacoast region, from brick and mortar retail businesses to service providers. It used to be that Bitcoin commerce pretty much only happened online. I enjoy the more personal aspect of local community adoption, because every time I transact with someone locally in Bitcoin, it reinforces that there are people living nearby who share my values.”
The Free State Project’s role in New Hampshire’s Bitcoin community
According to Mike Vine, technology evangelist for the Blockchain-based content-sharing platform LBRY, New Hampshire’s vibrant Bitcoin scene can be traced back to the Free State Project involvement.
“The Free State Project brought a critical mass of liberty lovers together in a small area and thereby made it possible for us to form a viable community for the first time. One of the many happy byproducts of that process has been the growth of a cryptocurrency haven where you're surrounded by people who understand the potential of crypto and the adoption has steadily increased for years. FSP activists were among the first to embrace and evangelize on behalf of Bitcoin when it debuted, actually introducing the technology to such figures as Bitcoin.com's Roger Ver, ShapeShift's Erik Voorhees, and Lamassu BTM's Harvey brothers.”
The Free State Project hosts the Porcupine Freedom Festival, or PorcFest, a weeklong festival in a mountain campground with a heavy emphasis on Bitcoin and decentralized technology. Largely thanks to the efforts of the Free State Project movers, New Hampshire ranks as one of the world’s most Bitcoin-friendly places.
Portsmouth as an unlikely hub for Blockchain innovation
A touristy, seaside town of only 20,000 residents in a mostly rural state with a low population, Portsmouth is an unlikely destination for a vibrant Bitcoin community. Yet, in addition to the above mentioned businesses, it is also home to several Blockchain startups.
Vine also founded the Praxeum, a Portsmouth-based co-working and community space, with Carano. He sees New Hampshire as a future renowned hub of Blockchain and decentralized tech innovation.
“LBRY is the latest complex organism to form out of the primordial soup of New Hampshire's liberty community. Many readers might find this far-fetched, but I'm comfortable saying that New Hampshire is well-positioned to become a global locus for Web 3.0, along with Prague for Europe and perhaps Tokyo or Hong Kong for Asia.”
Arcade City, the Blockchain-based ride-sharing service with a new app slated for release on September 1st, was founded in Portsmouth, and owes its origin to the Free Uber campaign, which protested against the city’s ride-sharing regulations by Bitcoin-funded swarm activism.