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A Brief History of The Dogecoin Rise in 12 Memes
In the new, retail-driven financial paradigm, the memes are the message.
In 2021, memes have proven capable unifying large, decentralized groups of people into a powerful market force through humor, symbolism, and artistry.
The Dogecoin Rise—Doge’s ascent from a comic meme coin to 2021’s most disruptive and charismatic financial asset—has been powered by memes, especially those posted by Elon Musk.
Let’s take a look at how memes have carried Dogecoin on its rollercoaster ride this year, and what they suggest for its future.
Elon tweeted this meme In the middle of 2020, hinting at the then-laughable possibility that Dogecoin would play a key role in crypto's challenge to the legacy financial system.
The tweet kicked off a one-of-a-kind experiment, as the world's most innovative entrepreneur partnered with millions of pseudonymous Twitter accounts to launch a meme-powered alternative to the US dollar.
On the day of the tweet, Doge was trading at $0.0029, or a little less than a third of a cent.
At the time, it was natural to wonder: was Elon serious or joking. Could it be both?
Doge wouldn't reach a full penny until six months later, in January 2021, meaning anyone who bought on the day of the tweet had to wait half a year before seeing serious returns on their investment. Talk about Diamond Paws!
Now, Doge is one of the best-performing financial assets of 2021, up nearly 5000% on the year.
2. In Dogue
This meme arrived in the middle of an intense period at the end of January when Doge exploded, going from less than a penny to four cents in a matter of hours.
Overnight, Doge went from a comic afterthought to a cultural force.
Doge's early 2021 run overlapped with the meme stock frenzy involving GameStop, AMC, and Robinhood.
The events of late January captured headlines, halted markets, and led to CEOs and retail investors alike testifying before Congress.
Retail investors, it emerged, were using memes to establish communities around certain stocks and assets, making it difficult for big-money players to manipulate markets in their customary ways.
Memes had gone fiscal like never before, and even the stodgiest of Wall Street blue bloods could no longer afford to ignore their power.
At the time of the "Dogue" meme, Doge still had doubters, but didn't look back, carrying its meme momentum into February and beyond.
3. Up Dogey
In early February, Dogecoin continued to surge, topping seven cents as both Snoop Dogg and Kiss's Gene Simmons gave it their blessing.
The Elon-holding-Gene-holding-Snoop meme was a riff on an earlier meme featuring just Elon holding up a Shiba Inu puppy in the famous "Rafiki" scene from the Lion King.
With growing celebrity support and cultural cachet, Doge was starting to look like it had real staying power.
This February meme of a Doge planting its flag on the moon provided early confirmation that Dogecoin would figure in SpaceX's long-term plans.
As a decentralized, borderless, digital medium of exchange, Doge is adapted to thrive in outer space.
A few months later, SpaceX would double down on their interstellar commitment to Doge by announcing that it had accepted Doge as payment from the Geometric Energy Corporation's DOGE-1 lunar mission.
5. People's Billionaire
Like most upper-class citizens, Bezos, Gates, and Musk have all seen immense growth in personal wealth during the pandemic.
Notably, his Doge-boosterism has brought financial freedom to thousands of early retail investors.
6. Institutional Monkey Fight
The Coinbase Robinhood monkey fight meme captures the wild spectacle of institutional Dogecoin adoption.
Despite massive customer demand for businesses to become more Doge-friendly, adoption has proceeded slowly: Coinbase didn't list Doge until June, while Robinhood is just now rolling out crypto wallets in October.
While the DogeArmy would doubtless have preferred faster adoption, the slow-walking of Doge has provided plenty of opportunities to roast both companies with a litany of memes and jokes on Twitter.
7. Legendary Item
The term "meme-stock" often carries a negative connotation.
In fact, as Doge has shown, memes are a revolutionary financial technology.
Just as the dollar is backed by people's faith in the US government, Dogecoin is backed by the DogeArmy's memes and the positive vibes they engender.
Memes are the glue that keeps the Doge community together, ensuring that Doge remains a positive experience regardless of price fluctuations.
In the face of countless obituaries and dismissals, Doge has persisted. Memes, more than anything else, are the reason.
Few events in Doge lore are more controversial than Elon's May SNL appearance.
Lost in the shuffle was Elon's sincere description of Dogecoin as "an unstoppable financial vehicle that's going to take over the world."
Anticipation leading up to the episode was insane. Many hoped SNL would ignite a buying frenzy that sent Doge to the moon that night.
It didn't happen. But in the months since, Doge has continued evolving at breakneck speed.
In time, the episode may come to be seen as the start of intermission between the first and second acts of The Dogecoin Rise.
9. Dog Dollar Takeover
On the heels of Doge's post-SNL crash, the DogeArmy was, understandably, a little bereft.
Had Doge revealed itself as a worthless pump-and-dump, as detractors had claimed?
This photograph, featuring a sticker of the Doge dollar meme on his gaming laptop, brought hope that Doge would soon resume its mission to a dollar, with the DogeArmy as a band of digital vikings pillaging the global financial system.
10. Fear the Doge
A May Cointelegraph article quoted Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin questioning Doge's ability to remain decentralized as it scales up.
In response to the article, Elon tweeted "He fears the..." along with this meme of a Jaws-like Doge stalking its prey, suggesting that Vitalik's criticisms were made out of self-preservation.
Vitalik subsequently backtracked his comments, claiming "I love the Doge every day."
11. Matrix Breaker
This exchange between Neo and Doge-as-Morpheus is a twist of a well trafficked Bitcoin meme on the same theme:
Bitcoin advocates like to talk about hyperbitcoinization, an idealistic scenario in which Bitcoin becomes the world's global reserve currency, frees humans from debt bondage, and remedies all manner of social ills.
This take on the original meme put Doge in the role of Morpheus, suggesting that Dogecoin, like Bitcoin, could have earth-shattering effects once it hits the global mainstream.
For a long time, hyperbitcoinization has seemed like a fairy tale.
Now, with banks, businesses, and nation states adopting Bitcoin, hyperbitcoinization may soon be upon us.
Can hyperdogecoinization be far behind?
12. Floki Liftoff
Six months later, he announced Floki's arrival by tweeting a picture of his adorable pup sleeping on a colorful rug.
By following through on his plans, Elon confirmed his future support of Doge. Shiba Inus typically live for 12-15 years.
Floki arrived as the crypto market rebounded from its slump, raising hopes for a Dogely end-of-year rally.
This meme, by faux Doge CEO greg, featured the sleeping Floki riding a SpaceX rocket into orbit, signaling good times ahead for the DogeArmy.
The Memes Are the Message
The Dogecoin Rise has been one of the financial world's most exciting and hopeful stories of 2021.
Memes have provided both a record of significant events in Doge history and a place for the DogeArmy to rally when things got tough.
With Elon, Floki, and some of the world's most meme-savvy companies on its side, Doge looks primed for a phenomenal close to the year.
Will The Dogecoin Rise continue? If memes are the message, the answer is much Yes.
Dogey Treats: News Bites
Tesla moved its headquarters from California to Texas.
SpaceX reached a $100 billion valuation.
Robinhood wallets waitlist hit 1 million people.
In an interview on The Best Business Show, Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev spoke about the Dogecoin community: "It's really interesting to watch it evolve. I think it's kind of an emergent phenomenon that will be studied, and I don't know if anyone is adequately explaining the factors that've [given] rise to all these communities." Tenev also gave his account of the GameStop saga.
The number of Bitcoin wallets in El Salvador surpassed the number of bank accounts.
Bloomberg reported that the White House was considering an executive order for government agencies to study and regulate crypto.
Mark Cuban went on Fox Business to explain why people prefer paying in Doge over other cryptos.
Bitplaza shopping app is integrating Dogecoin, allowing users to spend it directly from their phones.
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Disclaimer: This is not financial advice and I am not a financial advisor. The article above references an opinion for entertainment purposes only and it is not investment advice. Do your own research and consult with a licensed financial adviser before making any investment decision. Do not treat any opinion expressed in this newsletter as a specific inducement to make a particular investment. Content, news, research, tools, and securities symbols are for educational and illustrative purposes only and do not imply a recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell a particular security or cryptocurrency or to engage in any particular investment strategy. The information provided is not warranted as to completeness or accuracy and is subject to change without notice. The projections or other information regarding the likelihood of various investment outcomes are hypothetical in nature, are not guaranteed for accuracy or completeness, do not reflect actual investment results and are not guarantees of future results. All investments involve risk, losses may exceed the principal invested, and the past performance of a security, industry, sector, market, cryptocurrency, or financial product does not guarantee future results or returns. Dogecoin is a speculative and highly volatile asset susceptible to pump-and-dump schemes.
Disclosure: I currently own some Dogecoin, Bitcoin, and Ethereum. At the time of publication, Dogecoin is around $0.22 per coin.