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The Irish bitcoin scene is split into those in the Republic of Ireland, which currently has no rules in place for bitcoin, and Northern Ireland, which as part of the UK does.
There has been some controversy in relation to the installation of Bitcoin ATM's in Ireland, which has been covered in the broadsheet media. A pub in Dublin, formerly known as the Baggot Inn accepted bitcoin through a bitpay system for food and drink and shortly after hosted a bitcoin ATM in March 2014. However, the pub changed ownership, and the ATM was removed in October 2014
Separately in March 2014, GSM Solution's owned Bitvendo was due to place a Bitcoin ATM in a venue in Dublin's famous Temple Bar, but was refused an Irish bank account which received considerable media coverage in print and radio. This was moved to the GSM Solutions shop in Abbey Street, and retired soon after from active service, although has been used in demonstrations. It was replaced by a Skyhook ATM which is currently in place.
Between February 2015 and February 2016, a second Skyhook ATM was installed by a separate owner in Busyfeet & Coco Cafe in South William Street , which is no longer available. However, the café continues to accept bitcoin for food and drink at the till.
Bitcoin Events in Ireland
The Dublin Meetup Group was formed in May 2013, and has regularly put on talks, or social events.
In July 2014, Bitcoin Finance (BitFin) 2014
was held in Dublin's Royal Dublin Society, which attracted speakers including Max Keiser of The Keiser Report, Nicholas Carey of Blockchain.info, Bobby Lee CEO of BTC China, Michael Terpin, CEO and founder of the bitangels , and an address by Director of Markets Supervision Gareth Murphy
Gavin Andresen also addressed the Dublin Bitcoin Meetup Group in November 2014. ()
In May 2015, a Belfast Meetup Group commenced running events.
A number of bitcoin related companies attended or exhibited at Web Summit in November 2015. . There were also several bitcoin talks, including with Sam Neville of Circle and Gavin Andresen .
In February 2015, the Cantillon 2016 summit in Institute of Technology Tralee featured a number of talks about bitcoin.
International Bitcoin companies in Ireland
Circle Internet Financial incorporated in Dublin in August 2013. . They have attended or sponsored several of the Dublin Bitcoin Meetup group events.
Irish Bitcoin Advocacy Groups
There are two official chapters of the Bitcoin Foundation, Bitcoin Association Northern Ireland and the Irish Bitcoin Foundation. Separately to this, there is the Bitcoin Ireland group that runs a lot of events. Recently, a similar meetup group was formed by Bitcoin Belfast. While it seems that there is some crossover in membership, there doesn't seem to be any coordination between the three groups.