Elon Musk, the Tesla chief executive who’s apparently adopted the meme-based bitcoin rival dogecoin as his pet project, has again signaled his support for the “joke” cryptocurrency.
The dogecoin price shot higher, climbing 5% over the last 24 hours, after Musk said it is “important to support” a dogecoin upgrade proposal to significantly reduce dogecoin transaction fees—something Musk has previously said he wants to do in order to make dogecoin “the currency of Earth”.
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“This proposal to all dogecoin stakeholders suggests to reduce average fees 100x for standard transactions on the dogecoin chain, split full control over all aspects of fees between miners and node operators, rely less on core development, and bring back a functional (small) free transaction space that incentivizes keeping the network healthy,” Patrick Lodder, a dogecoin core developer that has been involved with the memecoin since 2014, posted to the Reddit thread detailing the upgrade proposal.
Dogecoin’s price explosion this year, up 11,000% on this time 12 months ago, has helped rejuvenate interest in the stagnating cryptocurrency—and led to Sam Bankman-Fried, the billionaire chief executive of crypto exchange FTX, naming dogecoin as the “asset of the year for 2020 and 2021.”
Earlier this month, an ethereum cofounder who went onto create rival blockchain cardano, Charles Hoskinson, said he hopes Musk’s support will help some “real developers come in and start working on dogecoin” to create some “use and utility.”
Musk, the self-appointed “technoking” of Tesla who was once voted dogecoin’s CEO in a tongue-in-cheek Twitter poll, has alienated much of the bitcoin community with his dogecoin support in recent months. Many bitcoin investors believe Musk’s playful antics to be damaging to bitcoin.
While Musk has previously said all of his dogecoin-related social media posts shouldn’t be taken seriously, he’s followed through with plans to “put a literal dogecoin on the literal moon” and consistently tweeted in support of the doge meme-based cryptocurrency.
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However, despite pulling the plug on Tesla’s acceptance of bitcoin payments in April, the electric car company continues to hold most of the $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin it bought early this year and Musk has indicated he’s willing to restart Tesla’s bitcoin support if those that secure the bitcoin network and validate transactions, known as miners, reduce bitcoin network’s sky-high carbon footprint.
Last week, Musk said he’d be open to attending a bitcoin-focused online event organized by Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey and designed to help companies and institutions adopt bitcoin.
Meanwhile, the bitcoin price has soared over the weekend, despite news that major bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchange Binance is facing expulsion from the U.K. after the country’s regulator ruled it can’t conduct any “regulated activity.”