Was it a delayed April Fools’ Day prank, a trolling response to Elon Musk’s ongoing lawsuit, or a sign Twitter would integrate the OG joke cryptocurrency? These were among the countless questions ricocheting around the Twitter-sphere after the social media platform’s blue bird icon was replaced by Dogecoin’s shiba inu logo on April 3.
The confusion was hardly dispelled by Elon Musk’s explanation for the change, a tweet that simply read, “As promised,” accompanied with a screenshot of his 2022 conversation with a user who suggested flipping the bird in favor of Doge. Dogecoin chimed in by tweeting: “Very currency. Wow. Much Coin. How Money. So Crypto.”
Irrespective of the thinking behind the move (or lack thereof), the price of Dogecoin spiked dramatically from $0.077 on April 3 to $0.090 at the time of writing. It’s a 16 percent increase that represents the coin’s highest value in nearly six months.
As promised pic.twitter.com/Jc1TnAqxAV
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 3, 2023
Despite these gains, Dogecoin is still trading 86 percent below its 2021 peak. Musk has been a tongue-in-cheek booster of Dogecoin for several years and it featured prominently in the he hosted in 2021. Since first tweeting about Dogecoin in April 2019, the coin’s value has increased 2,547 percent.
Aside from the market volatility sparked by the presence of the shiba inu on the social media image swap, it renewed discussions that Dogecoin was on track to find a place in Twitter’s future. This is extremely unlikely. Dogecoin, which is a clone of Bitcoin and was released as a joke in 2013, is a proof-of-work coin (read: bad for the environment) with slow transaction speeds and ultimately little utility for Twitter.
Another theory is that Musk is trolling the plaintiffs who have brought a $258-billion racketeering lawsuit against him. The lawsuit brought by Dogecoin investors accuses Musk of running a pyramid scheme and using his position of influence to drive up the price of Dogecoin and then letting it crash. On March 31, days before Twitter’s image change, Musk asked a U.S. judge to throw out the case, labeling it a “fanciful work of fiction.”
Titter on Market St., SF 🤷🏼♂️ pic.twitter.com/GzWL8yZipM
— Jameson (@softwarejameson) April 5, 2023
Musk appeared to follow through on another one of his pet jokes on April 5 when the ‘W’ on the sign of Twitter’s headquarters was covered, a reference to a poll Musk took in April 2022 that asked if he should “delete the ‘w’ in Twitter?”