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back to article Australian pub to serve beers for bitcoin

A 107-year-old Australian pub has decided to accept the world's newest currency: Bitcoin. Garry Pasfield, publican at The Old Fitzroy in Sydney's bohemian inner city suburb of Woolloomoloo told The Reg he likes the idea of getting in early on Bitcoin. Pasfield said he's no idea if Bitcoin will take off, but likes the idea of …

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1BTC = 1pint

Wonder what the exchange rates will be? Don't know about Australia but the main on beer in the UK is fairly slim when you consider the taxes (which must be paid in 'real' money), so you would need to hedge these transactions pretty quickly.

I'll bet the local bitcoin pusher takes his slice on brokering the conversion back to money, maybe? Bitcoins are a bit like a hot potato, you don't want to hold onto them too long unless you want the risk of getting burned.

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Re: 1BTC = 1pint

'main' should read 'margin' above.

Reg, for a publication with a technical audience who will often be posting on smartphones and being autocorrected on a small window, perhaps allowing the editing of posts would be suitably cutting edge that we might just be able to handle it. The more advanced among us could probably cope with threading too, but let's not go too far...

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Try using the preview button

Proof read carefully in case you any words out.

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Cliff

"Don't know about Australia but the main on beer in the UK is fairly slim when you consider the taxes"

A possibly false assumption: you seem to assume that the cafe needs to charge tax over all the bitcoin purchases, and that remains to be seen. After all, according to El Reg themselves it was Germany which was the first land to recognize and tax bitcoin as an official currency.

Sometimes you don't have to charge taxes if you get payment in foreign values. But of course that most likely heavily depends on the country you're in.

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'Getting in early' with Bitcoins?

I think he has missed the boat, Governments around the world are begining to put curbs on or take ownership of it.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 1BTC = 1pint

1BTC = 1Schooner

Schooners not pints, it's a shorter measure, Australians can't hold their ale as well as the Brits. So in effect you will get less for your money.

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Re: Cliff

>>you seem to assume that the cafe needs to charge tax over all the bitcoin purchases, and that remains to be seen<<

>>Sometimes you don't have to charge taxes if you get payment in foreign values. But of course that most likely heavily depends on the country you're in<<

Yep, you're right, assumptions ahoy! I know that in the UK, a pint of beer has not just sales taxes but also a large slice of duty, both of which will certainly be levied based on the sale being in person in the country. You can't get a cheaper pint in London by being Japanese and offering to pay in Yen, for instance. If it is different in Australia, seems like a suicidal system for tax revenues, but it must be working for you/them !

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Pint

Re: 1BTC = 1pint

The hotter the climate, the smaller the serve. This is so we dont have to swig down a warm half pint. Go to far north Queensland, and they regularly serves beer in seven's, as anything larger tends to get warm before you finish it.

And just for the record, plenty of pubs in Sydney still serve pints. Most of these are air-conned in order to allow the beer to remain cool whilst being consumed.

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Pint

Re: 1BTC = 1pint

Also: The hotter the climate, the lower the alcohol, and the blander* the taste. There is a reason XXXX Gold is so popular in Queensland: the lower alcohol (only 3.5% compared to 4.6% for normal XXXX) means you don't get light-headed and dehydrated so quickly in the heat, and up to 40% cane sugar in the recipe reduces the malt flavour to make the beer seem more "refreshing". Personally, these are the exact reasons I avoid the stuff like the plague and drink proper craft beer instead, but then I'm not in Queensland.

*is "blander" a word? Less flavourful.

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Pint

Re: 1BTC = 1pint

As a British expat in Aus, I actually prefer a schooner to a pint. The standard beer is generally stronger than the standard beer in the UK, and a smaller measure means it doesn't stay in the glass long enough to get warm. Which is why in other parts of Aus, for example Queensland where it's even hotter, you get beer served in pots, which is an even smaller measure. A stupidly small measure.

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Stop

Not legal

The old, "I'm not a lwayer, but..." trick.

The wording seems pretty clear to me: http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/ca1965120/s9.html

Good luck.

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Re: Not legal

Clearly, I can't even spell the word...

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Re: Not legal

Interesting.

So if BC is considered a currency, then it would be illegal.

However non-currency transactions are surely legal in Oz. Nothing to stop me swapping/bartering a dozen eggs for a pint surely, so long as the relevant taxes are paid.

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Re: Not legal

So if BC is considered a currency, then it would be illegal.

That is not the case. As you've already stated, "foreign" (non-Australian) currency is acceptable, but it needs to be converted, then dealt with as Australian currency for the actual transaction.

So bitcoin would work, as long as it's "cashed" into Australian currency for the beer transaction. All costs, taxes, fees and whatnot are dealt within the Australian realm - so it's legal.

But as far as the customer is concerned, they don't see (or need to see) the middle bits, for them, they pay bitcoin, they get beer.

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Re: Not legal

It could come down to a pedantic definition of what "foreign" means.

If "foreign currency" was interpreted to mean the national currency of some other country, then that could be a problem since BC is not a national currency.

Of course the whole law seems a bit wionked, since Australia seems to have, or have had, many "alternative currencies" eg. LETS http://www.lets.org.au/, Baroon dollars and other eco-greeny-communy style trading tokens.

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Anything for publicity

I'm sure the owner doesn't want to sell too much beer through BC.

BC transactions currently take too long to confirm for any over the counter selling. That means waiting (many minutes) to get payment or putting up with some bad transactions.

That is really not viable as a mainstream payment method when the trend is towards NFC payment because even swiping a card is too damn slow.

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Re: Anything for publicity

This is just a marketing stunt, just like it is at the Pembury in London. At the Pembury they just assume the transactions will go through OK. If after a few minutes one of them gets declined - well, you're only down one pint, and the customer is almost certainly still on the premises, and will probably want to buy another pint soon.

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Don't need to go around the world for a pint...

My Local accepts it already!

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/ norwich_pub_one_of_the_first_in_country_to_accept_virtual_payment_1_2255332

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Don't need to go around the world for a pint...

East Anglia is evidently ahead of the curve.

http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Business/Business-News/Use-virtual-currency-Bitcoin-to-buy-a-real-pint-in-Cambridge-pub-20130612060000.htm

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beercoins?

it might take off a bit more with a handy name change

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Another UK pub got their first

http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Business/Business-News/Use-virtual-currency-Bitcoin-to-buy-a-real-pint-in-Cambridge-pub-20130612060000.htm

Although it's owned by the same brewery as the Norwich one, now I look.

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Coat

Is that...

....at the University of Woolloomooloo, Bruce?

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Re: Is that …

Howls of derisive laughter!

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Re: Is that...

Is your name not Bruce? That might cause some confusion - mind if we call you Bruce?

Great, now I've got 'the Philosphers Song' in my head.

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Happy

Australian place names

There's plenty of Australian place names worse than that. Just a few miles from me there's Koo Wee Rup and Nar Nar Goon. On the way to work I drive past Ernst Wanke Road. I've visited Suggan Buggan and Numbugga, but I haven't yet been to Wagga Wagga or Humpty Doo. They're all genuine places, I assure you. Look them up if you don't believe me.

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Thumb Up

Re: Australian place names

'Cause we all call Wagga Wagga Wagga, but we don't call Woy Woy Woy!

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Re: Australian place names

<<'Cause we all call Wagga Wagga Wagga, but we don't call Woy Woy Woy!>>

Actually it's pronounced "Wogga Wogga"

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World's newest currency?

Wouldn't that be the South Sudanese pound?

Admittedly the SSP is probably less likely to go tits-up.

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how much?

not being up too much on the bitcoin thing, but seeing the exchange rate is about 125 usd... it would be interesting whether the punters are getting a fair deal.

I sure as heck would not spend one whole bitcoin on a pint, unless it had magical properties..

are the smaller denominations bitpennies?

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Pint

The real news

There's beer in Australia?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The real news

Nope, no beer in Aus, only inferior lager

After all if you're drinking beer you dont need it freezing cold or as some would say;

What's the matter lager boy, afraid you might taste something ?

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