DCTRL Media Interviews

DCTRL Media Interviews

DCTRL in the News Since 2014

Blockchain Hangout V1.0 Lightning Talks for Dec 1, 2018 at a spacious venue with beers* on Bitcoin, along with food sponsorships from Blockchain companies.


Named DCTRL–pronounced “decontrol”–the location is a radical, artist-run basement that has acted as the crucible for the majority of the city’s blockchain companies. Local hacktivists debate ideas in a central room with well-worn, movable couches; congregate in a small jam space with a free-for-use keyboard and rudimentary soundproofing; and sit quietly in a separate, disorderly area earmarked for coding. The walls are covered with haphazard meme-related murals, and the washroom is marked with a sign that reads “cemetery.”


The most passionate individuals formed the Vancouver Bitcoin Co-op—a group closely associated with those who would go on to operate the first bitcoin ATM. Leasing a space underneath a downtown barbershop, they established a location to meet, code, and talk shop about cryptocurrency and the untapped promise of blockchain. They dubbed the new hub DCTRL.


On a recent night, computer-controlled lights were using old sidewalk glass prisms to play Tetris alongside a street in downtown Vancouver. Underneath the pavement and the adjacent hair salon, a Bitcoin ATM sat in one corner while coders gathered for a meet-up about the Go programming language. This ramshackle basement is home to Decentral Vancouver. Opened in 2014, Decentral is a Bitcoin-inspired community incubator for decentralized-technology projects.


Decentral Vancouver’s drop-in members pay $25 per month for access to the space. For $50 a month, premium members get workshops, meet-up hosting privileges, and maybe even a key to the basement, which Gray and Heartline are renovating.

“We hack in here,” Heartline said. “We’re building companies in here. We hang out and exchange information. We play video games. We have meet-ups.”


“Many Bitcoin conferences end up being kind of an elitist thing,” Wagner, a director of the Bitcoin Co-op—a local group that promotes the use of Bitcoin—said during an interview at the Decentral Vancouver incubator (436 West Pender Street). “They charge hundreds of dollars to attend.”


CoinFest is a fun event where the Bitcoin community gathers to demonstrate how cryptocurrency works. Here you can practice and learn about the revolutionary technology and concept behind new digital money. It’s also the perfect place for Bitcoin afficionados. Each venue will have its own activities and themes; they will all be within close walking distance, or access to Bitcoin-themed transportation will be provided.

Vancouver English Centre is a large building downtown that can be booked using Barter Dollars, another alternative currency that’s been around for a while. We have 8,000 square feet of space, large monitors for digital presentations, a sound system and high speed Internet with livestream capability to the International Hangout and Utherverse. We have dozens of booths showcasing art and creative projects related to and/or available for Bitcoin, facilitating attractions.


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