Over the past few months, Dogecoin has gone absolutely viral, becoming one of the most popular and talked about digital assets in the crypto space and the world. During the month of February 2021 alone, Dogecoin surpassed Bitcoin as the most discussed cryptocurrency on Twitter (ICO analytics) and quickly became the favorite topic and meme of many, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
In this article, we explain the ironic and interesting history of Dogecoin and its quickly growing fan-base.
What is Dogecoin (DOGE)?
Dogecoin (DOGE), also known as the “internet’s currency,” is “a decentralized, peer-to-peer digital currency that enables you to easily send money online.”
DOGE is similar to Bitcoin (BTC) since it was built based on Bitcoin’s source code. However, it's much easier to mine (or "dig' as it’s referred to in the DOGE protocol), and unlike Bitcoin, DOGE has an unlimited supply of tokens, and more than 120 billion of those coins have already been mined.
One of the early credits to DOGE’s popularity is its use for "tipping" fellow internet peers who create or share great content. It represents a more meaningful “like” with real value that can be used anywhere on the internet.
Disclaimer: Keep in mind that Dogecoin, while having real-world value, is a highly-speculative investment. Cryptocurrencies, and DOGE, are subject to market risk and extreme volatility. Do your own research, and this blog is not investment advice.
Where did Dogecoin come from?
Dogecoin was founded in December of 2013 as a “joke” currency based on the popular internet meme of the Doge. And since this joke has truly caught on, its market cap has skyrocketed north of 7 Billion dollars.
What is a "doge"?
The doge came from an internet meme of a Japanese dog breed called the Shiba Inu (Shibe). The meme typically consists of a Shiba Inu dog picture accompanied by multicolored text in Comic Sans font in the foreground. The text is deliberately written in broken English, as the Shiba often proclaims, “Wow” and “Much Wow,” in response to trends, memes, and social posts.
Jackson Palmer, one of the founders of DOGE, decided, as a joke, to combine two of the most popular online trends at the time, the doge and cryptocurrency. He tweeted, "investing in Dogecoin, pretty sure it's the next big thing." The tweet received quite a lot of attention, so he continued. He bought dogecoin.com and uploaded a photoshopped coin with a Shibe on it.
The viral tweet and website caught the attention of IBM software engineer Billy Markus. Markus had just wrapped up another crypto-based project and reached out to Palmer to make Dogecoin a real cryptocurrency. Although he did not hear back from Palmer immediately, he started working on the project, which took all of three hours and ended up setting Dogecoin live on his lunch break.
Both Markus and Palmer did not think Dogecoin would take off, but then came the Dogecoin subreddit and the systemic growth that followed.
Dogecoin and Reddit
The Dogecoin subreddit amassed popularity almost immediately. Along with the popularity came the foundation for the mining pools and services that power the token.
On popular Reddit posts, generating hilarious or informative comments, users would post something like "hey 'dogebot' tip this person five dogecoin," and that Reddit user would automatically receive DOGE in a wallet linked to their account. People were sending Dogecoin back and forth in a complimentary manner that cost next to nothing. Reddit users shared Dogecoin back and forth constantly, expanding the user base of Dogecoin and increasing its value as a cryptocurrency. In time, a larger portion of Reddit users began to hold Dogecoin.
The Growth of Dogecoin
Fast forward to 2021. As of March 2021, the price of Dogecoin is up over 2,700% YTD and recently hit an all-time high of $0.08711 on February 3, 2021. DOGE currently sits at a ranking of #17 on CoinMarketCap with a market cap of ~$7.3 Billion, trading at $0.0571 a coin (at the time of writing).
Dogecoin’s recent skyrocketing growth is due to its rise to internet fame. One of DOGE’s most prominent supporters, Elon Musk, sent the price of DOGE upwards when he tweeted a rocket with a doge on it, implying DOGE would “go to the moon.” The Dogecoin rocket then moved its way onto the video app TikTok sparking the Dogecoin Challenge, which trended for several days. Dogecoin also soared when retail traders organized via Reddit's WallStreetBets, frustrated by GameStop trading restrictions, dove into the crypto world.
Elon Musk has historically embraced the joke-like quality of DOGE, stating that its success could result from the fact that “Fate loves irony.” However, he has also said the primary thing stopping him from fully embracing the cryptocurrency is that a select few wallets hold a staggering portion of the circulating supply of Doge, giving concerns for centralized control. In the meme-time, Elon continues to make surprise posts and jokes about Dogecoin on Twitter, to fans and investors' excitement.
Dogecoin’s prices have corrected since the social media trends have died down, but the community of supporters has grown, and many believe that Dogecoin could be the next “it” coin. Dogecoin now serves as the new gateway into the crypto world, as Bitcoin once did.
Due to its recent resurgence, developers plan to work to “roll out another major release to address dogecoin's scalability and security issues within a year.” These updates and the continued mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies are promising news for the future of DOGE.
Where can I buy Dogecoin?
Dogecoin* (DOGE) is available for buying and trading on the Voyager app! Plus, as of March 1st, 2021, you can earn 2% interest (APR) when you hold a monthly minimum average balance of 5,000 DOGE.
How to buy Dogecoin on Voyager:
1. Get the Voyager App: Now available in Apple iTunes Store and Google Play Store, visit the store and search Voyager or click here to download now.
2. Open a Voyager Trading Account: Fill in your personal information to create a trading account. As a licensed financial institution, we're required to collect this information to protect our users, but know that your personal information is always safe with us.
3. Link your Bank: Link your bank account by navigating to the User Icon on your Market Screen. On your account page, tap "Bank Accounts" and add your bank
4. Fund your Voyager Account: To deposit USD, go to your account page, tap "Transfer Cash or Crypto," & tap "Deposit to Voyager Account," and select USD. Then enter the amount of USD you'd like to transfer and slide the "Slide to Deposit USD" banner. Now you can trade instantly.
5. Buy Dogecoin: Navigate to the Market Screen scroll until you reach "DOGE" and tap to access the Serum page, then tap "Buy DOGE." Insert the amount of USD you'd like to spend and slide the "Slide to Buy DOGE" purple banner to complete your purchase.
Trading on the Voyager app is currently available to all U.S. residents (excluding New York state). We are actively working with regulators to expand to New York and internationally in the future.
*Disclaimer: Doge is not yet available for transfers on Voyager but can be purchased via the Voyager app.