Pepe Claus Saves Christmas
On the bright Christmas morn, crypto degens awoke to discover that Pepe Claus left them the best present they could have dreamt of (besides a return of the bull market): a new airdrop. SOS, a new token associated with mysteriously undefined project OpenDAO, was recently airdropped to any crypto users who bought or sold on leading NFT platform OpenSea. Immediately crypto Twitter, and particularly NFT Twitter, went ablaze over the token, claiming that is the next hottest meme token after ConstitutionDAO and Mongoose Coin.
Just like other meme coins, the energy surrounding SOS caused the token price to spike more than 200% in the first day of trading hours, with daily volume increasing from approximately $17 million to $467 million in the same time period. This price rise yielded the SOS airdrop to be worth more than $50,000 for some users, which means it was probably a much better gift than the lottery tickets Aunt Sally got you as stocking stuffers!
But why has the crypto community embraced this new token, which seemingly has no fundamental use case?
SOS: Save OpenSea
While the hype around SOS will surely subside, the reason behind the token’s appreciation, and the conversation that surrounds the token, surely accomplished its memetic goal. The SOS token release directly challenges the path leading NFT Platform OpenSea has opted to take as a company.
OpenSea, with approximately 288,000 MAUs and $2 billion in monthly volume, has had tremendous business success. In fact, the company recently was fielding investment offers that would put the NFT marketplace at a whopping $10 billion valuation. Unsurprisingly, because of all this dramatic growth, the OpenSea was reasonably considering pursuing an IPO in the near future.
Yet, as we have learned many times in the past, crypto degens are not exactly the most reasonable bunch. I mean, who in their right mind would have made the jump to crypto in the past five years? Just as there was community outrage over OpenSea’s IPO direction, the SOS token further represents degen’s frustration with the fact that OpenSea by many metrics has not opted to embrace the Web 3.0 of decentralization, transparency, and most importantly, enriching its early users with a token. Users want a token from OpenSea, not a stock that enriches their VCs.
While mainstream corporations feel that they must cater to their incredibly active social justice minded users, so do those same ideological pressures exist in cyrpto. As with activists in the traditional corporate world, crypto degens feel that they deserve what they deem as just and fair. Furthermore, these users will actively agitate until they get what they want.
Crypto Projects Must Tread Carefully
While some might say that these users are merely a loud minority, there are many clear instances where this loud minority dramatically affected the adoption of a particular project. For example, the community deeming BitClout as a centralized VC shill project severely impeded its adoption among active crypto users.
Until we hit true mainstream adoption, which we are nowhere close to considering Uniswap, the most popular dapp on Ethereum, only has approximately just over 50,000 DAUs across its two most popular versions, catering to the crypto native user audience will continue to be essential. They are the beachhead, and right now, the only game in town.