The irony of a conference dedicated to all things cryptocurrency that’s unable to accept bitcoin payments for conference tickets is glaring.
On the North American Bitcoin Conference ticketing page — where last minute tickets are $1,000 USD for the Jan. 18-19 event in Miami — an explanation for the “no cryptocurrency” policy cites “network congestion and manual processing.”
To be fair, processing fees are high for bitcoin. The price fluctuates, but it’s gone up in recent months, reaching an average as high as $55. This week it’s closer to $30. As Bitcoin.com reported, a growing list of merchants is pulling back from bitcoin payments. It’s not a quick and easy transaction system.
Also, bitcoin — no matter how hard we try — is not a transaction coin. It’s more about its stored value. Instead of treating it like dollar bills in a virtual wallet, it needs to be viewed more as an asset — something you wouldn’t pull out for any old purchase.
Still, the optics aren’t good on this, and show the limitations bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies face to become more mainstream. Cue the “not the Onion” jabs and bubble-bursting predictions.
Here’s the full explanation from the Bitcoin Conference ticketing page:
Due to network congestion and manual processing, we have closed ticket payments using Cryptocurrencies — Hopefully, next year there will be more unity in the community about scaling and global adoption becomes reality.
We have, and always will, accept cryptocurrencies for our conferences, up to fourteen days before the event. However, due to the manual inputting of data in our ticketing platforms when paid in cryptocurrencies, we decided to shut down bitcoin payments for last minute sales due to print deadlines.