Pepe Is Love, Durham Report, A Shot In the Dark
Twitter News Digest for the week of 5/10-5/16
This week’s news digest covers the transformation of Pepe the Frog, the Durham Report, a pandemic awakening, and Elon’s tweets about George Soros and Magneto. Be sure to check out the meme bank at the end.
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Pepe Is Love
Pepe the Frog is one of the world’s strongest memes. Now, it is passing through a profound transition.
Several large crypto exchanges have already listed Pepe Coin, and pressure has been building for Coinbase to make it available to customers.
Last week Coinbase sent out an email newsletter explaining its stance on the Pepe meme: “Over time it has been co-opted as a hate symbol by the alt-right groups.”
The idea that Pepe is a hate symbol originated in 2016, when bigoted Pepe memes circulated online.
The media ran with the characterization (and largely still does today) despite a campaign by Pepe’s creator and the ADL to rehabilitate the meme’s image.
The Coinbase newsletter drew a strongly negative response from the $PEPE community, who didn’t appreciate having the idea of hate projected onto their beloved frog coin.
The newsletter was rumored to have originated from a single Coinbase intern. Still, the $PEPE Army unleashed a torrent of tweets to #DELETECOINBASE.
On Thursday, Coinbase chief legal officer Paul Grewal apologized for the newsletter.
After Grewal’s apology, the hashtag #pepeislove trended for several days.
The pushback on Coinbase is a testament to the power of meme-based community, and signals a moment of transformation for Pepe the Frog, itself a symbol of change.
Saturday morning, Elon broke his silence by tweeting a Pepe meme about the Constitution.
Later in the day, he reposted a version of the famous “Ligma Johnson” video with an added Pepe.
The memes are the message, and Pepe is telling us that change is in the air.
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