When it comes to Bitcoin adoption and awareness, Europe seems to be struggling a bit compared to other continents such as North America, Asia and even South America. But that doesn’t mean Bitcoin is not popular in our continent, the efforts just seem to be far more localized than we would like at this time. According to Alan Donohoe, one the founders of the Bitcoin Foundation of Ireland, that situation will change relatively soon.
Ireland & Bitcoin – A Brief History
You may have picked up various bits of news regarding Bitcoin in Ireland over the past few months, in both a positive and negative spotlight. About six months ago, a pub in Ireland had to shut down the Bitcoin ATM machine on their premises because there were some concerns about the legality of using it, which could potentially lead to a hefty fine and time in jail.
On the other hand, there was also incredibly good news just a few weeks ago. Dublin, the capital of Ireland, got its second Skyhook Bitcoin ATM installed at Busyfeet & Coco Cafe. The best part about having a Bitcoin ATM in this location is the fact that it can be accessed seven days a week , giving people ample opportunity to check out the machine and take their first steps in the world of digital currency.
And who could forget the most glorious moment, when Ireland’s very first Bitcoin ATM was installed in March of 2014 at the GSMSolutions store in Dublin? If we have to chalk up one downside about both devices,, it has to be that they are both just one-way machines, meaning customers can buy Bitcoin from these ATMs but not sell digital currency in exchange for fiat currency.
Up until this very day, Bitcoin and altcoin regulation in Ireland is still up in the air. No one seems to be moving towards trying to regulate things just yet, which make it an interesting place to set up a Bitcoin business. However, as is always the case with regulation, things could change at any moment. Some people in the Irish Bitcoin community seem to think this could be the year of Bitcoin in their country.
Alan Donohoe – One of the Bitcoin Foundation of Ireland’s Founders
Before Bitcoin takes off in Ireland, it will need to work diligently on raising its profile. So far, Bitcoin has had a mixed history of good and bad press, where bad press weighs a lot heavier on the minds of business people and novice digital currency enthusiasts. Then again, no one liked the initial development of the Internet either, and look at where we are right now.
“As soon as some form of regulation comes in, it’s going to flourish. This year, it’s starting to take off but without regulation it’s going to take some time before it really takes off,” Alan Donohoe told CryptoArticles. ANd he may very well be right, as uncertainty is not best for business, and only a few brave souls will try their luck with Bitcoin and digital currency right now.
One of the ways to make Bitcoin more “high profile” than it is in its current form could come in the way of making the bitcoin currency even more transparent than it already is. Ideas such as a credit check database would allow for users to retain most of their anonymity, yet also give potential partners the tools they need to do some research on each other.
Overall in the UK – and Ireland is not an exception to that statement – Paypal remains one of the leading payment processors for online shopping. However, there is a noticeable trend going on in Ireland where Bitcoin transactions are on a level where they can compete with the number of Paypal transactions. Needless to say, Bitcoin is turning a lot of heads in Ireland already.
Alan Donohoe concludes by saying : “Once the benefits are recognized by larger institutions, Bitcoin will only become more popular over time. Bitcoin is going to take over every money institution in the world. It’s just going to get bigger and bigger, and it’s not going to stop.”