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DOGE, SHIB, ELON? What’s the Endgame of Meme Coins?

It is hard to pinpoint the endgame of so-called meme coins. This bull market has seen the rise of two: Dogecoin, and Shiba Inu. Dogecoin has been around since before this bull market, but Shiba Inu has managed to grow to equal Doge in size within this run.

How were these projects able to grow to billions of dollars in size, and is this growth sustainable? Are meme coins a short-term phenomena or do they have intrinsic value? We will be investigating the fundamental utility of meme coins, uncover the “recipe” of a successful meme coin, and speculate as to which meme coins we may see blast off next.

What's the endgame of dogecoin?

What Gives Meme Coins Value?

Boiling down the intrinsic value of anything is inherently a conversation with many avenues. However, the intrinsic value of meme coins is twofold. First, there’s the question of the pragmatism of meme coins. People could theoretically choose to transact in, say, Dogecoin, but what are the chances of that coming to fruition? Would global society ever accept a common currency based on a joke about a breed of japanese dog? Maybe not, but there are examples of people accepting DOGE as a means of payment. As far as I’m concerned, as long as they bring growth to crypto, then meme coins provide a net benefit.

The other aspect refers more to a philosophical take on intrinsic value. I use a broad philosophical view – classifying intrinsic value as being a quality that makes something an end in and of itself. What makes a meme coin an end in and of itself? Well, memes are fun – they are built on a foundation of widely shared ideas that make people laugh. If laughing isn’t an end in and of itself, then I don’t know what it is.

Long-term Growth?

On the topic of the long-term viability of meme coins, it may help to look at the key differences between Dogecoin and Shiba Inu. On the blockchain level, Dogecoin is a fork from Litecoin, which is a fork from the Bitcoin blockchain. Shiba Inu was built on the Ethereum blockchain. Ethereum provides much more functionality for DeFi applications, which indeed have been integrated into the Shiba Inu project.

Both projects use a very similar, if not the same, meme, but Shiba Inu is boosted by DeFi functionality. What this implies is that there might be more functionality for Shiba Inu as time goes on. However, Doge has a brand image that has not been equalled. As far as currency is concerned, it is much more likely to see people accepting Doge over Shiba Inu due to lower transaction costs.

What Makes a Successful Meme Coin?

So how does one create a successful meme coin? Anyone can create a meme coin, but how do you create one that goes to the moon? Well, apparently there’s a recipe of four parts.

The first is to create a total supply for your coin of about 1 quadrillion. This absurdly large number is arbitrary, except for the fact that it is, well, really large. This large supply translates into each coin having a really low value. Something like $0.000001 per coin. Despite the faulty logic, many people see this as an indicator that their value can increase very easily. Not true.

The second step is to send half the total supply of coins to Vitalik Buterin. Don’t ask me why this has become a thing, but it’s a common theme among meme coins.

The third part is to get Elon Musk involved in any way, shape or form. His tweets are preferred and have precedence in shifting market sentiment.

The final part of the recipe has been to incorporate a dog in your logo – the Shiba Inu breed being the only successful breed thus far.

What is the Next Big Meme Coin?

Here are a couple meme coin projects that have some potential, but this is notoriously difficult to predict, and this is not investment advice. When it comes to investing in meme coins, you’re essentially gambling unless you have some serious insider information.

One is a project known as Dogelon Mars (ELON) that developed a meme coin with the vision to be the future currency on Mars. Its image is based on a Shiba Inu with the clothing and hair of Elon Musk, and is hovering around CAD $1 billion in market capitalization.

I will only mention one other project here – Meta Doge (METADOGE). It still has quite a small market cap, has seen some steady growth, and is doing well to piggyback on the metaverse buzz that’s been going around.

Are Meme Coins Here to Stay?

We’ve looked at the historical trends and growth behind meme coins thus far, and speculated on upcoming projects.

The fun and community around these projects can be seen as an end in and of itself, let alone the potential for DeFi and gaming programmability. Is there really an endgame to meme coins? I’m going to venture to guess that they do. They have an eye-catching theme that seems to tap into human curiosity – a trait that may keep them relevant throughout the growth of crypto.

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Gerrit van Sittert

About the Author

Gerrit van Sittert

Gerrit van Sittert is a cryptocurrency investor keenly interested in the ramifications of blockchain technology. Since graduating from a commerce and entrepreneurship degree, he has specialized his knowledge of how cryptocurrencies are set to impact the global supply chain and emerging markets. He started his crypto journey in 2017 while hosting an entrepreneurial focussed meetup group in Victoria, BC.

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