This year’s SXSW was all about blockchain dreamers, cryptocurrency scammers, and everything in between
The event, a play on the initial coin offerings that have turned digital currencies into some of the buzziest and most fraught investment opportunities on the planet, is being held at a steakhouse on Lavaca Avenue in downtown Austin. The organizers, a group called the Founders Organization, lured attendees away from more traditional sessions in the city’s convention center and nearby hotels with the promise of complimentary food and spirited discussions about the future of cryptocurrencies.
At SXSW this year, cryptocurrencies are far and away the hottest topic, vacuuming up billions of dollars in barely regulated and crowdsourced investment. Blockchain-focused panels have been granted top placement at the convention center’s biggest stages and have at times drawn crowds comparable to those for talks featuring Bernie Sanders and the cast of Westworld. Even the smaller talks held in a smattering of Austin hotels often hit capacity in a manner of minutes, with standby lines snaking across the floor as people waited in hopes that a seat would free up. Read more