The cryptocurrency market has taken a major dive, as it does. Now a band of traders has decided to form the people’s coin, appropriately named StopElon, to Stop Elon Musk from wielding intractable control over the market with his tweets. Much like China. And Mark Cuban. And volatile economies. And major financial institutions. And hedge funds. And the march of time.
Bitcoin crashed this morning by roughly 50% from its April high of over $US60,000 ($76,956). (Ethereum, Litecoin, and Dogecoin are also in the toilet.) This came six days after Elon Musk tweeted that Tesla will suspend its Bitcoin payments for its cars due to the fact that mining expends massive amounts of fossil fuel, after which Bitcoin vacillated a bit. A more recent potential catalyst for the crash might be China’s reminder announcement that banks and payment processors are forbidden from accepting Bitcoin, perhaps to drum up demand for the digital yuan. Anyway, the big news is that “Elon’s rally” has been wiped out.
But his announcements have historically correlated with price movements for Bitcoin (and with almost no uncertainty catapulted Doge). There was the time he added #bitcoin to his Twitter bio, announced that Tesla would accept Bitcoin as payment, and Tesla bought a ton of Bitcoin (making the company look more profitable than it is).
Incidentally, the Dogemaster General tweeted today that Tesla has ????????, presumably meaning that they’re holding [something].
Tesla has ???? ????
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 19, 2021
Credit to our Master of Coin
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 19, 2021
As crypto-enthusiasts seethe over Elon’s perceived betrayal, a band of fed-up traders has created a memecoin scheme to circumvent Elon Musk’s meddling, with a “Road to Fucking Pluto” plan. One of StopElon’s three co-founders (an admin for the StopElon Telegram channel, who identified themselves as a European named “Daniel”) told Gizmodo via Telegram that the idea was inspired by Elon Musk’s tweet last week about pausing Bitcoin purchases for Tesla. They claimed that they’d never ridden the Doge wave, and that the majority of their portfolio “is crypto with real use case.”
The site displays a complex flight plan, but one of StopElon’s three co-founders summarized the rough outline to Gizmodo via Telegram.
1) Buy StopElon. 2) Encourage users to hold StopElon by charging 10% buy and sell fees (intended to “punish” panic sellers). 3) Redistribute those fees (generated in BNB, crypto wallet Binance’s coin) amongst the community and the liquidity pool. 4) Get listed on major exchanges like Binance or Coinbase.
The last step is buying up enough Tesla Stock to gain significant voting power to, according to the site’s blueprint, take “full control of Tesla.” The final destination is Pluto.
But those two outcomes kind of cancel each other out. HODL; buy stock. From what funds?
As Daniel explained, conquering Tesla could be done by buying Tesla stock. Alternatively, they suggested, they could offer shareholders StopElon tokens in exchange for proxy voting power. But that would require a lot of people to do a lot of paperwork, possibly proof of power of attorney, not to mention hunting down individual shareholders. (“We are Europeans, so we need to look more into this matter,” Daniel said.)
It’s more of an overall community “protest,” to steer attention away from Elon’s favourite joke currency. The number of coins will be limited. They also plan to safeguard people from bag-holding large volumes of cash with fees or maximum transaction limits. And, hopefully, create community governance with voting power, not unlike a Decentralized Autonomous Organisation.
Sure, Daniel admits that other factors independent of Elon Musk move cryptocurrency markets. There’s no doubt though that a prominent hustler is messing around with an immense following of unsophisticated traders, with little apparent concern. “StopElon is a way to protest [against] Elon Musk crypto market manipulation,” the Daniel said. “Elon is a smart guy, he knows what he is doing and he knows the influence he has on the crypto sphere, yet he is using it to manipulate the market.”
Daniel said they have “more actions” in mind but can’t elaborate yet.
At the moment, the multi-step process of app downloads and currency conversion from Binance looks prohibitively complicated for naive retail investors who want to just click and move on, which might be a good thing.
Some details need ironing out, but nobody’s here to shoot down a bold vision. May any mission to stop Elon soar.