The $DEGEN Archives
The $DEGEN Archives

The $DEGEN Archives

Created
Mar 30, 2024 2:28 PM
Tags
defithesis
TLDR
The document provides an overview of the $DEGEN memecoin, its origins, mechanics, and its impact on the Farcaster ecosystem and web 3 consumer social protocol. It also includes a timeline of important events and milestones in the development of $DEGEN.
Key points
- The Degen L3 saw over $1M+ worth of assets bridged to the Degen chain, 16K+ unique wallets, and 1.9M+ transactions on launch day. - @matt90 on Dune is a consistent $degen dashboard creator. - The official $DEGEN Dune account is led by Jacek. - $DEGEN has officially partnered with Perl, Drakula, Degen Jeeves, Aerodrome Finance, and Airstack. - Building with $DEGEN involves using the official degen API and collaborating with third-party developers. - $DEGEN has a strong memetic culture and symbol system, including the top hat symbol and various NFT collections. - $DEGEN has been used for tipping, grants, partnerships, and incentives within the Farcaster and BASE ecosystems.
ELI5
Imagine there's a special kind of money called $DEGEN that people use when they're having fun on the internet. It started as a game between friends, but then it became really popular and everyone wanted to use it. It's like a secret code that people use to show they're having a good time and to reward each other for being creative and funny. It's become so popular that lots of people are talking about it and using it to do cool things online!

Folklore has a mission to explore and understand our evolving digital worlds. Today, we’re happy to dive into the $DEGEN memecoin – a crypto-native fungible digital asset, tied to a social media meme – that emerged within the most recent break-out web 3 consumer social protocol called Farcaster. Before diving in, a note of gratitude to Bountycaster, for enabling us to find the right person to document $DEGEN.

Tips and earnings from this post will be split among those that submitted essays for this bounty and Folklore, enabling us to fund future research.

Documenting $DEGEN

Memecoins have been part of crypto since its inception; the concept behind monetizing IP, attention, and online proliferation is as entrenched in onchain culture as the very internet desire for your creation to go stratospheric with millions of people remixing, reusing, and re-interpreting your idea.

Up until recently, memecoins weren’t fully able to be tapped into because of the very constraints that make them so powerful. A meme can’t be harnessed by any given person by design, that is, until the perfect storm unfolded that made this possible, without compromising on the virality and powerful erraticness of memes.

If you've used Farcaster, crypto’s premiere social platform, at any point in the past couple of months, you've probably noticed the conversation around the $degen token; you may even be fortunate enough to have received a “420 $degen” tip for a good or engaging cast.

With over 60k holders, a $350M realized market cap, and controlling a huge portion of the conversation and activities on Farcaster, the $degen project has pushed the boundaries of what a memecoin can achieve in just a handful of months.

image

https://warpcast.com/itsbasil/0x674f755f

When searching for an official definition of the $degen token, you might find the following:

“Degen started as a reward token for participants in the Farcaster Degen channel. What began as a meme coin now boasts a substantial following of developers, crypto content creators, and enthusiasts who have bought into the coin. During its initial launch, 15% of the total supply was airdropped to active members of the Farcaster's Degen channel, and there are plans to airdrop 70% of the token's total supply eventually.”

This is how most exchanges define $DEGEN. It does the job of covering the essentials of what this token set out to achieve at first, but over the past month, the de-facto Farcaster and BASE memecoin has grown beyond the bounds of just a “for fun” project, and into what we could only call a Meme Economy.

image

Credit to @hinhuk

In this piece, we’ll share the origins, mechanics, and noteworthy contributions that have led to this token exploding in popularity and taking over your Farcaster feed.

What is $DEGEN?

As the tweet above outlines, $DEGEN (or just “degen'') started as a memecoin that sought to channel Farcaster users’ speculative energies, focusing on rewarding good and engaged creators.

Jacek, its creator, could not have imagined what was to come afterward. But the token’s design did suggest a bias toward getting the token into the right people’s hands and some pretty long-term thinking.

Let’s break down the two official DEGEN contracts:

The Token

The Degen token, officially named '$DEGEN,’ operates under a unique set of rules to manage its supply and ensure the security of its transactions.

Initially minted with a supply of approximately 36.97 billion tokens, it introduces a careful approach to inflation through a minting cap of 1% of the total supply, enforceable only after a mandatory waiting period of 365 days between minting events.

Governance features embedded within the token's design include mechanisms for token burning, transaction pausing capabilities for security purposes, and a democratic voting system for token holders.

$DEGEN Token Contract Breakdown

Token Overview:

  • Official Name: Degen
  • Symbol: DEGEN
  • Initial Supply: 36,965,935,954 DEGEN tokens
    • Defined by: TOKEN_INITIAL_SUPPLY = 36,965,935,954

Supply Management:

  • Minting Cap: 1% of the total supply
    • Defined by: MINT_CAP = 1
  • Minimum Time Between Mints: 365 days
    • Defined by: MINIMUM_TIME_BETWEEN_MINTS = 1 days * 365
  • Minting Start Time Constraint: Minting is allowed after a predefined timestamp set at contract deployment.
    • Defined by: mintingAllowedAfter variable, set in the constructor
  • Inflation Control Mechanism: Minting restrictions (cap and timing) to manage supply expansion responsibly.

Security Features:

  • Transaction Pausing: Allows the contract owner to halt all token transfers in emergencies.
    • Implemented via: ERC20Pausable extension from OpenZeppelin
  • Ownership: Contract actions such as minting and pausing are restricted to the contract owner.
    • Implemented via: Ownable from OpenZeppelin

Governance Features:

  • Token Burning: Holders can reduce the total supply by burning their tokens.
    • Implemented via: ERC20Burnable extension from OpenZeppelin
  • Voting System: Tokens come with voting rights for governance decisions.
    • Implemented via: ERC20Votes extension from OpenZeppelin

Customizations and Deviations from OpenZeppelin:

The token seems to be a slightly modified version of the OpenZeppelin template, so there’s not that much that separates $degen from your run-of-the-mill ERC-20. This was pretty surprising at first, but it goes to show just how much you can achieve with the existing tech as long as you get people to adopt your creation.

  • Minting Logic: The standard ERC20 contract from OpenZeppelin does not include minting capabilities. The custom mint function in the $DEGEN token contract enforces unique rules:
    • Minting only after a specific timestamp (mintingAllowedAfter).
    • Enforcing a minimum time between mints.
    • Limiting the mint amount to a cap of 1% of the total supply.
  • Error Handling: Custom error messages (e.g., MintingDateNotReached, MintToZeroAddressBlocked, and DegenMintCapExceeded) provide clearer feedback on failed operations than generic reverts.
  • Governance Integration: Integrating ERC20Votes for a token that can also be paused and has a controlled minting system is a tailored approach to embedding governance capabilities directly into the token's functionality.

Deployment Precautions:

The constructor requires a mintingAllowedAfter_ parameter, ensuring minting cannot start immediately after deployment, a deviation designed to add a layer of planning and foresight to the token's economic model.

The Airdrop

The Degen Airdrop contract is designed to securely and efficiently distribute $DEGEN tokens to a predefined set of recipients within a specific timeframe.

Using a Merkle Tree for claim verification allows the contract to handle many claims without storing each recipient on the BASE chain, significantly reducing gas costs and enhancing security.

Including a fixed claim window and robust administrative controls ensure that the airdrop process is fair and transparent.

Merkle Tree Verification

  • MERKLE_ROOT: An immutable state variable that stores the root of the Merkle Tree. This is used to verify claims without storing the entire list on-chain, ensuring security and efficiency.
  • Claim Process: Recipients prove their entitlement to an airdrop amount by providing a Merkle proof, verified against the MERKLE_ROOT.

Claim Window

  • END_TIME: An immutable state variable defining the deadline by which all claims must be made. After this time, no claims can be processed, enhancing the security and finality of the airdrop.

Claim Tracking

  • claimedBitMap: A mapping used to track which addresses have claimed their airdrop to prevent double claims. This structure efficiently records the claim status of potentially thousands of recipients.

Events

  • Claimed: An event that logs the successful claim of an airdrop, including the recipient's index, account, and the amount claimed. This ensures transparency and traceability of claims.

Custom Errors

  • Custom errors like AlreadyClaimed, InvalidProof, and ClaimWindowFinished improve error handling by providing more specific feedback than generic error messages.

Constructor

  • Initializes the contract by setting the token address, Merkle root, and claim window end time. It employs checks to ensure the end time is in the future, establishing a valid claim period from the outset.

Claim Function

  • This function allows eligible recipients to claim their allocated tokens by providing their index in the Merkle tree, account address, the amount entitled, and Merkle proof. The function checks the claim window, verifies the proof against the MERKLE_ROOT, and marks the claim as processed to prevent double claiming.

Withdraw Function

  • This function enables the contract owner to withdraw any unclaimed tokens after closing the claim window. It ensures that the tokens are not locked indefinitely in the contract.

Differences with OpenZeppelin and Uniswap Boilerplates

  • The contract does not inherit from the Uniswap IMerkleDistributor interface, allowing for a more tailored implementation specific to its use case.
  • The Degen airdrop contract Incorporates OpenZeppelin's Ownable for administrative actions and SafeERC20 for safer token interactions, enhancing security and usability.

The above breakdown is just part of my normal due diligence when interacting with unchecked tokens, and while we’re happy to report there’s nothing out of the ordinary, we do admit it might be a little overkill for a token we already know is safe and widely used. For a more succinct breakdown of what degen is and what makes it special, you can check out this post by @bitfloorsghost.

Degen has taken a life of its own; what started as just an incentive for the /degen Farcaster channel has since become the unofficial currency for most corners in the FC ecosystem; we’ll outline some standout examples of this later in this article, in the meantime, these are the official $DEGEN communication channels for anyone looking to get started on the degen ecosystem:

  • The Original /degen Farcaster channel: You’ll find most $DEGEN activity here. Anything from airdrop farmers to exciting frames experiments. This channel is hosted by 0xen, kenny, wake, purp, pedrowww, and Jacek himself. It was originally a channel for memecoin traders, repurposed once $degen exploded in popularity.
  • /Degentlemen: $DEGEN’s official community channel led by 0xen, it was created before the /degen takeover. Most of the degen memes we’ll explore in the symbols section of this article happen here.
  • /degenangels: Want to fund your project by pitching degenerates? This channel allows you to crowdraise using people’s tipping allocation.
  • /houseofdegen: A lesser-known onboarding channel hosted by wake.
  • The DEGEN newsletter is a semi-daily recap of everything worth noting in the $degen ecosystem. It was invaluable in sourcing the key dates and events for the $degen timeline, which I’ll share below.
  • The $DEGEN telegram channel isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s volunteer-led by the community; you’ll usually find people asking about their wallet being disqualified from the leaderboard and the occasional bullpost.

$DEGEN Timeline

$DEGEN’s history is frantic and full of outstanding achievements; we could dedicate an entire piece to every notable event and launch within the $degen space so far. Instead of doing that, I’ll be limiting this timeline mostly to official milestones and crucial actions taken by Jacek and the community that we believe helped make $degen what it currently is.

Keep in mind it’s been less than three months since they launched:

Late November 2023 — Jacek’s first post on /degen, which was originally a channel for memecoin traders.

December 15, 2023 — First announcement hinting at what would become $degen.

December 21, 2023 — First official $DEGEN announcement.

image

January 6 — The Official Degen X account posts for the first time and announces the launch to the public.

Jan-07-2024 03:25:35 PM +UTC — $DEGEN total supply of 36,965,935,954 is minted ($669,719,226 at today’s price vs the $226,415,430 current circulating supply).

January 8 — The $DEGEN Airdrop 1 is available for /degen OGs to claim, with a 93% claim. Jacek goes live on Unlonely.

January 10 — Degen Telegram Launches.

January 11 — Aburra live spaces to discuss $degen.

January 12 — $DEGEN crosses $1M MCAP.

January 13 — The $degen logo bounty is live.

January 19 — Warpcast officially integrates the “Degentleman” hat as a feed reaction button.

January 22 — Bountycaster starts accepting $degen payments.

January 24 — Basepaint #169 (nice) has Degen as its topic.

January 25 — Degen has an official logo.

January 27—The Airdrop 2 tipping mechanic is officially launched, with Farcaster integrations for the familiar in-feed tipping experience.

February 3 — Degen Frames bounty is live, just in time for FC’s own user explosion.

February 6 — The first $degen IRL party is held in Madrid.

February 9 — Boost.xyz integrates $degen rewards.

February 12 — The $DEGEN leaderboard is live; it adds a competitive element and an easily frameable interface for all users.

February 13 — The Degen API is launched for frame and app builders to fetch data from.

February 14 — Jacek launches the Valentine’s Day $DEGEN incentives. Anyone using the hat emoji on their Farcaster handle receives a 1M $ DEGEN allowance boost, which reportedly led to 1.3B tokens being distributed to 6,552 wallets.

February 15 — Rainbow Wallet launched a 2x multiplier on $degen swaps.

February 20 — Degen raises 490.5 ETH in an angel round.

February 26 — Airdrop 2 tipping snapshot taken and frames bounty winners announced.

February 28 — After many collabs, the official Perl and Degen partnership is established; this later led to Perl becoming Degen’s first grantee. Tip allowances are gated to users holding a minimum of 10,000 $DEGEN.

February 29 — Degen Airdrop 2 is live, people immediately figure out how to claim early, to Jacek’s amusement.

March 1 — Aerodrome finance liquidity incentives.

March 14 — Degen partners with Drakula.app to enable tipping on short-form video.

March 17 — Drakula.app becomes the second-ever $degen grantee with a 10M allocation.

March 20 — $DEGEN meme contest is live with a 200k $degen pool. The team removes spammy accounts to make the tipping leaderboard fairer.

March 25 — Farcaster client Supercast enables native $degen tipping.

March 26 — Degen partners with Airstack to fuel their upcoming “L3” initiative.

March 27 — Zora launches multi-ERC20 payments which allow you to mint NFTs with $degen. Two degen-centric farcaster clients are in the works (Degencast.xyz and Memecaster).

March 28 — The Degen chain officially launches using Syndicate infrastructure and built on Arbitrum Orbit: “The public Layer 3 rollup chain for Degen. Built on Arbitrum Orbit, Base for settlement, and AnyTrust DA”

Some Onchain Insights into Degen

Finding patterns in $DEGEN’s onchain breadcrumb trail has proved tricky. Since its original launch intent of rewarding engagement on Farcaster’s /degen channel, the token has evolved beyond any predictable frame of reference.

It’s become a signal of good content across the entire farcaster ecosystem; it’s the memecoin of choice for anyone betting on BASE and FC’s long-term success; it’s being used to bet in gamified frames on warpcast’s feed, and it’s even the currency of choice of a handful of platforms, with plenty more to come.

Still, some noteworthy insights surface when looking at the macro trends and the specific use cases some people have given it.

  • $degen and its variations are the most used terms in the entire Farcaster ecosystem, with 361,380 unique “$degen” instances and 29,310 for “degen” appearing on a cast in the past two weeks as of 03/28/24.
  • /degen is one of Farcaster’s oldest channels at 205 days old, and it’s Farcaster’s most engaged, competing closely with /base. As of 03/28/24, it sports 35919 casts, 319.8k engagements, and 2,395 transactions (via frames) in the past week alone!
  • To put those numbers into proportion, just on the 25th of March, the /degen channel saw 7,364 casts from 3,836 unique users and a total of 80,449 $degen tips.
  • The 25th of March, 2024, was $degen’s most transacted day to date with 36,494 cumulative transactions.
  • Thanks to their Valentine’s Day activation, $degen’s top-mentioned day was the 14th of February, with 103,433 mentions, followed closely by the 25th of March, with 102,165.
  • You could say that January 27th was the day $degen took on a life of its own, with the launch of the tipping leaderboard for Airdrop 2, it started to increase in engagement and popularity exponentially.
image

https://dune.com/degentokenbase/degentokenbase

  • $DEGEN’s current realized capitalization stands at $340,623,172. You can check the individual P&L for every $degen holder here.
  • According to the Degen Newsletter, the Degen L3 saw over $1M+ worth of assets bridged to the Degen chain, 16K+ unique wallets, and 1.9M+ transactions on launch day.

As before, we could dedicate an entire piece to $degen’s onchain trail, including how specific activations and launches impacted the price, number of transactions, and social mentions. The above will suffice for now; let me know if you want to see more!

@matt90 on Dune is possibly the most consistent $degen dashboard creator for the data degenerates out there. Notable mentions include the $DEGEN Tipping Dashboard, DEGEN Overview, and DEGEN Evangelists

The Tipping Mechanic

What’s about to follow is an in-depth breakdown of $degen’s tipping mechanic from a technical level. For an easy-to-understand guide on how to tip using $degen, we highly recommend this guide by @pichi

One of Degen’s most distinctive features is its tipping economy. They established a clear incentive for rewarding consistency and participation from the outset. And while it may sound basic initially, there’s much more to $degen tipping than meets the eye. The $degen tipping allocation is based on the following Dune SQL query:

This Dune SQL query is structured to analyze user engagement and reward allocation within Farcaster. It meticulously constructs a series of insights regarding user activity, reactions to casts, and calculates a "tip allowance" based on various engagement metrics. Here’s a breakdown of its components and the insights it establishes:

  1. Date Series Construction: This function generates a series of dates from a fixed start date (2021-09-23) to the current date, ensuring every day is covered for analysis. This series is used to observe user activity and engagement over time.
  2. User Profiles Aggregation: Compiles user profiles, selecting the one with the most verified addresses per user (if multiple profiles exist) as the primary profile for further analysis.
  3. Display Names Collection: This collection retrieves users' most recent display names, which could change over time, ensuring the latest identity is used in reporting.
  4. Initial User Engagement Filtering: This filtering method identifies users who have made at least 3 original casts (posts) that are not replies or deleted, marking their initial engagement date. It limits the user base to those who have demonstrated a baseline level of activity.
  5. Daily User Engagement: Cross-references the date series with users' initial engagement, allowing for an analysis of daily active users based on their first activity date.
  6. Reaction and Cast Counts: Counts daily reactions to user posts and the number of original posts by users, setting the groundwork for engagement and contribution metrics.
  7. Cumulative and Median Reaction Metrics: Calculates cumulative cast and reaction counts and derives median reaction metrics over different periods and thresholds, providing insights into user engagement trends.
  8. Final Engagement Insights:
  9. This section of the query adjusts the median reaction count based on the volume of user contributions. This is achieved through conditional logic that selects different percentiles of reactions as the "median reaction" metric, depending on the user's total number of casts (posts). Here's how the criteria break down:

    For users with 1,000 or more casts, the 60th percentile of reaction counts in the past 7 days is used as the median reaction metric.

    For users with 500 to 999 casts, the 50th percentile (the true median) is used.

    For users with 100 to 499 casts, the 40th percentile is used.

    For users with 50 to 99 casts, the 30th percentile is used.

    For all others (below 50 casts), the 20th percentile is used.

    This approach recognizes that more active users might have different engagement patterns, and it adjusts the engagement metrics accordingly to provide a fair and nuanced view of user engagement.

  10. Tip Allowance Calculation:
  11. The "tip allowance" calculation uses a sophisticated formula that uses logarithmic and exponential functions to translate engagement metrics into a reward value. The two main factors that affect allocation size are:

    Median reactions: Based on the user's activity level, adjusted median reaction counts proxy engagement quality and impact.

    User's activity duration: The time difference between the user's first post and the current event day, plus a constant (to ensure the logarithm is never calculated for a value less than 1), provides a measure of longevity and sustained contribution.

    The formula calculates the tip allowance as follows:

    1.Logarithmic Scale for Activity Duration: The base-10 logarithm of the user's activity duration (in days) plus 10, rounded to the nearest whole number, represents a "retroactive boost.” This factor rewards sustained engagement over time.

    RetroactiveBoost=⌊log10(ActivityDuration+10)⌋Retroactive Boost=⌊log10(Activity Duration+10)⌋

    2.⠀Exponential Scale for Engagement: The exponential function, using a base slightly above 3, scales the median reaction metric, emphasizing higher engagement levels.

    ScaledEngagement=exp(log3.3(MedianReactions×1000))Scaled Engagement=exp(log3.3(Median Reactions×1000))

    3.⠀Combined Metric for Tip Allowance: The product of the previous “retroactive boost" and the “scaled engagement metric”, rounded to the nearest whole number, determines the final tip allowance.

    TipAllowance=⌊RetroactiveBoost×ScaledEngagement⌋Tip Allowance=⌊Retroactive Boost×Scaled Engagement⌋

    Special adjustments for identified users or policy changes would act as conditional modifications to this formula, applied after the calculation based on specific criteria (e.g., user IDs, dates).

    This calculation method ensures that rewards are more sensitive to higher levels of engagement and sustained activity, incentivizing both quality contributions and long-term participation.

  12. Special Adjustments: The query implements specific overrides and adjustments for identified users and situations:
• **User-Specific Overrides**: Certain users are identified by their **fid** (user ID), and their tip allowance is set to a minimum value if the calculated allowance falls below this threshold. This can be seen as a way to ensure that key contributors or specific roles within the community are adequately rewarded, regardless of the automatic calculation.

• **Cutoff Date Adjustment**: For allowances calculated after a specific cutoff date (2024-02-28), the query applies a reduction factor (70% of the calculated allowance), rounding the result. This adjustment reflects policy changes or recalibration of the reward mechanism over time; it is in response to inflation and the ongoing drops that would put $degen’s economy off balance [if left as-is](https://warpcast.com/jacek/0xbf3db9c1).

Insights and Outputs

While this may sound like a mouthful, it’s actually a quite straightforward and fair way of calculating who has actually been consistently adding value to the farcaster tipping ecosystem.

In a nutshell, the all the above does is:

  • Ranks users by engagement, adjusted allowances, and other metrics, providing a daily snapshot of top contributors and their rewards.
  • Filters out disqualified users, ensuring only eligible participants are considered.
  • Aggregates data to include user profile information, display names, and engagement metrics.

Incentives, Partnerships and Grants

As you saw on the timeline section of this piece. $Degen owes a lot of its success to people’s enthusiasm to build on top of it. Platforms, frames and average degen connoisseurs have poured their time and energy into making this ecosystem more than just a simple memecoin.

So far, Jacek and the team have only officially partnered with four projects so far, with probably a lot more to come down the line:

  • Perl: The socialfi prediction game that pits creators and their community in a race for engagement officially adopted $degen payments on February 28. Before that, they had previously voiced their support for the /degen community, participating in an activation and $degen’s angel round.
  • Drakula is a short-form video platform for degens who are passionate about $degen. A couple of days after its launch, Drakula opted for $degen as its official creator compensation rails and even launched a $degen creator fund.
  • As an extra onchain data goodie for this section, you can use this Dune dashboard to see Drakula’s real-time engagement, growth, and $degen payouts.

  • Degen Jeeves (aka. @degentip): A community-built bot for onchain $degen tipping, NFT minting, and much more on the horizon.
  • Aerodrome Finance: $degen’s first third-party LP incentives provider and a huge partner in their official liquidity mining interface.
  • Airstack: Not much is clear as of yet on what the Airstack partnership will entail for $degen. This onchain data provider will be at the helm in running the $degen L3 API.

Building with $DEGEN

As with any ERC-20 token, building with $degen can be pretty basic; what’s made this memecoin special is mostly the landslide of excited builders looking to use $degen as their main currency, onchain vehicle, and incentive mechanic. @0xluo.eth has spoken about what makes $degen unique from a builder’s perspective in what he calls an “Onchain Social Summer”, a combination of composability, memetics and aligned incentives for participants of all kinds.

Besides the official endorsements and partnerships above, here are some tools and examples of what building with the farcaster token by default can look like:

Some of the top builders we’d recommend reaching out to if you want to learn more about how you can launch your own $DEGEN tool include: Matthew Fox, Ng, Limone, and Jtgi

Farcaster and BASE

BASE and Farcaster walked so $degen could run, or maybe it’s the other way around. These three projects have developed a symbiotic relationship of sorts, where Degen’s success leads to a direct increase in FC DAU, which lead to more attention to the BASE ecosystem, which leads to more people finding out about $degen.

It’s hard to say which one is more beneficial or impactful to the other. Still, there are some sources studying this phenomenon and trying to replicate it in other ecosystem flywheels.

image

As of today, $DEGEN is considered Farcaster’s unofficial token, and BASE’s prime memecoin (even though there were some others before). The memetic power of being a degen in a new ecosystem with a platform designed to amplify the voices of those closest to you has created the perfect storm for one of the most interesting experiments in what the right incentive can create for protocols and ecosystems.

Of course, it hasn’t been all good. Farcaster has adopted the $degen tipping culture with open arms, but this has led to a gigantic increase in spam, scammers trying to pass off malicious tokens, copycat rug pulls, and every other extractive behavior that comes with the success of an onchain experiment. Thankfully, the $degen community is keenly aware of this, and they’re doing their best at combing the onslaught of spam.

$DEGEN Memes and Symbols

“Imagine what happens once we have consumer products that package their economic and social superpowers into broadly accessible experiences”.

With $degen, we’re approaching what this vision hinted at.

In my opinion, the main thing Jacek and the team did right to ensure $degen’s success was leaning very strongly on the memes, icons, and symbols that have become the lifeblood of the community. Creating a strong symbol system can be tricky, and by focusing on laying the foundations from day 1, $degen managed to out-meme any of the pre-existing farcaster and BASE tokens.

image

Credit @insidethesim.eth

  • Making games is usually one of the easiest ways to familiarize outside audiences to a meme. Thankfully, $degen has been known to have the odd cameo here and there, as well as their own dedicated games and use them as the reward token.
  • The degen community has started to dip their toes on music composition as well, the social feed is slowly becoming multimedia, and they’re coming for your playlists as well.
  • There’s even some community-approved $degen merch out there! @lluis has launched a $degen e-commerce storefront if you’re looking to sport a purple hoodie to go with your tophat.

All of the above are just a few of the sources we could find while doing my research. There are countless other examples of how $degen is championing the media proliferation front more so than the technical one (which is in itself high praise). The community has started to call $degen “More than a Memecoin” for good reason; none of its peers have been able to break through the speculation bubble quite like this.

Sure, $degen is still 99% speculation, but in this case, that same speculation has actually been channeled into a positive impact. Funding Gaza relief efforts, supporting newcomers in the FC space and new platforms launching; some founders have even called their $degen tips their “marketing budget”. The power in degen isn’t only found in their market cap; it’s also in leaning on the meme, the degenerate gambler, and using it to accelerate and catalyze an entire space in a way no other token has made possible.

And in the end, it’s all about the giving, isn’t it?