When you put a bunch of techie bigwigs with New Age wellness beliefs together in a city that has eschewed pandemic precautions for months, of course they're going to spread what's now a totally preventable illness.
Like, they're smart enough to understand cryptocurrency but dumb enough to believe that morning meditation and "good vibes" will protect them from COVID better than an actual vaccine can? Gotta love those Silicon Valley types.
Per reports, the Bitcoin 2021 conference drew around 12,000 computer nerds and billionaire wannabes to Miami for the "largest Bitcoin conference in history" and one of the first big industry events to emerge in the age of COVID. The weekend-long convention, which kicked off on June 4th, featured high-profile speakers like Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey along with satellite networking events and boozy after-hours parties. The New York Times described the scene as a "raging fireball of finance, technology and joyful anarchy, of unfathomable wealth and desperate striving."
Masks, obviously, were nowhere to be found. Vaccination status? No one cared!
So, to absolutely no one's surprise, the weekend of crypto revelry has resulted in a surge of COVID cases.
In a series of Tweets (some now-deleted or blocked behind newly placed privacy settings), multiple attendees confessed that they've tested positive for the virus after the conference while other industry insiders chimed in, "I'll be shocked if BTC Miami does not lead to a special new, super virulent variant of covid."
The #Bitcoin 2021 conference in Miami was the first major in-person conference since the pandemic started.
It may have been a "super spreading event" as dozens of participants reveal they've tested positive for COVID-19. pic.twitter.com/jdYnl6PgsR
— Mr. Whale (@CryptoWhale) June 10, 2021
I'll be shocked if BTC Miami does not lead to a special new, super virulent variant of covid.
— Emin Gün Sirer (@el33th4xor) June 10, 2021
In a statement to VICE, Bitcoin Magazine, the organizer of the conference, said, "Vaccines have been freely available for months in the US, to the extent that anyone who wanted to be vaccinated could do so by the time of the event... We provided all attendees with the current recommendations of the CDC and State of Florida and expressed to our audience that those who were high risk or hadn’t been vaccinated should consider waiting until next year. All attendees were offered free masks and hand sanitizer upon entering the event."
Miami's mayor, Francis Suarez, who was introduced by an organizer at the conference as "probably the most irresponsible politician in all of America, the mayor of the mecca of freedom," has responded to the reports, stating that, "My office has been made aware of a number of unconfirmed tweets about people contracting COVID-19 during last weekend’s Bitcoin 2021 Conference. Based on public data from hospitals and other watchdogs, we have no reason to believe the conference was a ‘Super Spreader.’"
Do hospitals in Miami take Bitcoin now?
[Photo via Unsplash]