Elon Musk is yet to explain why Doge has appeared in place of the bird, but there are several theories floating around.
Many Twitter users will have noticed that the little blue bird that lives on every Twitter page has been replaced with a badly-cut image of the Doge Shiba Inu meme.
Before we look into the theories behind the Doge icon, let take a quick look at the man behind Twitter himself – Elon Musk. As an entrepreneur, Musk is the founder and CEO of several disruptive technology firms including SpaceX (which did what NASA couldn’t), Tesla, Neuralink and The Boring Company.
His personality is unconventional, but he has been instrumental in making significant advancements in space exploration, electric cars, and sustainable energy. He’s a known advocate of human autonomy and freedom of choice, so it’s no surprise that he’s endorsed cryptocurrency (i.e. as a borderless, peer-peer, decentralised currency).
So, what’s with the Doge?
Theory 1: It’s to flood out, or mock, the Dogecoin lawsuit
On April 3rd, Elon Musk asked a U.S. judge to drop the $258 billion lawsuit accusing him of running a pyramid scheme by publicly supporting Dogecoin.
The plaintiff – Keith Johnson, a Dogecoin investor – accused Musk of using his status as world’s richest man to “operate and manipulate the Dogecoin Pyramid Scheme for profit, exposure and amusement.”
Musk’s lawyers in response said that Johnson’s claims are a “fanciful work of fiction”, adding that the silliness of Musk’s tweets were far too innocuous and vague to support a legitimate fraud claim.
(Said tweets: “Dogecoin Rulz” and “no highs, no lows, only Doge”).
Theory 2: It’s to pump Doge enough to pay off Twitter debts
A less popular theory that’s been floating around Twitter is that Musk is trying to pump Doge in order to pay for Twitter debt.
The price of Doge climbed a sharp 22% in the minutes after the logo changed, pumping $1.7 billion into the total market capitalisation – the highest it’s been since December 2022.
It’s a hard theory to believe, though. With Twitter’s debt running into $13 billion, it’s highly unlikely that an entrepreneur of Musk’s prestige would turn to a pumping a meme coin as a legitimate solution to rectify Twitter’s balance sheets.
This is even more true when considering that Musk’s personal fortune could cover the debt, if he so wished, with billions leftover in excess.
Theory 3: Dogecoin will become the payment network of Twitter
Musk was known as the ‘Dogefather’ long before he became CEO of Twitter. In October last year, tweeted that “buying Twitter is an accelerant to creating X, the everything app”.
An ‘everything app’ is one that offers a wide range of functions for users including social networking, messaging, payments and more. China’s WeChat is a good example.
For a CEO widely known as the Dogefather, what other currency would we expect than Dogecoin? Musk certainly hinted at the potential of Dogecoin as a transaction system back in 2021, back when Twitter was in the comfortable hands of Jack Dorsey.
In addition, Tesla, Musk’s electric car and AI brainchild, only accepts Dogecoin as a digital currency.
If Tesla only accepts Dogecoin, who is to say that in the coming months or years, Doge won’t be the transaction system we use on Twitter, be it to fund Twitter Blue or something much bigger?
Elon Musk has transformed Twitter into a world unto itself – anything can happen, anything will happen, its press office responds to press enquiries with a single poop emoji.
Despite this, user engagement on Twitter is higher than ever, and whether we like to admit it or not, the platform is slowly becoming the “digital town square” Elon envisioned.
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