Dogecoin (/ˈdoʊ(d)ʒkɔɪn/ DOHZH-koyn or DOHJ-koyn, code: DOGE, symbol: Ð) is a cryptocurrency created by software engineers Billy Markus and Jackson Palmer, who decided to create a payment system as a joke, making fun of the wild speculation in cryptocurrencies at the time. Dogecoin features the face of the Shiba Inu dog from the "Doge" meme as its logo and namesake. It was introduced on December 6, 2013, and quickly developed its own online community, reaching a market capitalization of US$85,314,347,523 on May 5, 2021.
Dogecoin was created by IBM software engineer Billy Markus, from Portland, Oregon, and Adobe software engineer Jackson Palmer, who set out to create a peer-to-peer digital currency that could reach a broader demographic than Bitcoin. In addition, they wanted to distance it from the controversial history of other coins. Dogecoin was officially launched on December 6, 2013, and within the first 30 days there were over a million visitors to Dogecoin.com.
On December 19, 2013, Dogecoin jumped nearly 300 percent in value in 72 hours, rising from US$0.00026 to $0.00095, with a volume of billions of Dogecoins per day. This growth occurred during a time when bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies were reeling from China's decision to forbid Chinese banks from investing into the bitcoin economy. Three days later, Dogecoin experienced its first major crash by dropping by 80% due to this event and to large mining pools exploiting the small amount of computing power required at the time to mine Dogecoin.
On December 25, 2013, the first major theft of Dogecoin occurred when millions of coins were stolen during a hack on the online cryptocurrency wallet platform Dogewallet. The hacker gained access to the platform's filesystem and modified its send/receive page to send any and all coins to a static address. This hacking incident spiked tweets about Dogecoin, making it the most mentioned altcoin on Twitter at the time, although it was in reference to a negative event. To help those who lost funds on Dogewallet after its breach, the Dogecoin community started an initiative named "SaveDogemas" to help donate coins to those who had them stolen. Approximately one month later, enough money was donated to cover all of the coins that were stolen.
On March 2, 2021, NASCAR Xfinity Series team B. J. McLeod Motorsports announced that Dogecoin would be sponsoring the #99 car in the Alsco Uniforms 300 at Las Vegas alongside Springrates; Stefan Parsons drove the car to a 36th-place finish as fuel line issues prevented him from completing the race. Coincidentally, his father Phil was the owner of the team that fielded the original Dogecoin-sponsored car in 2014.
In January 2014, the trading volume of Dogecoin briefly surpassed that of Bitcoin and all other crypto-currencies combined, however, its market capitalization remained substantially behind that of Bitcoin. Initially, Dogecoin featured a randomized reward that is received for each mining block, however, in March 2014 this behaviour was later updated to a static block reward.
The Dogecoin community and foundation have encouraged fundraising for charities and other notable causes. On January 19, 2014, a fundraiser was established by the Dogecoin community to raise $50,000 for the Jamaican Bobsled Team, which had qualified for, but could not afford to go to, the Sochi Winter Olympics. By the second day, $36,000 worth of Dogecoin was donated and the Dogecoin to bitcoin exchange rate rose by 50%. The Dogecoin community also raised funds for a second Sochi athlete, Shiva Keshavan.
Dogegoin started with a supply limit of 100 billion coins. By mid-2015 the 100 billionth Dogecoin had been mined with an additional 5 billion coins put into circulation every year thereafter. Although there is no theoretical supply limit, at this rate, the number of Dogecoins put into circulation will only double in 20 years (the next doubling will occur in 60 years, in the year 2075). There is no implemented hard cap on the total supply of Dogecoins. Initially, Dogecoin had a supply limit of 100 billion coins, which would have been far more coins than the top digital currencies were then allowing. Nonetheless, in February 2014, Dogecoin founder Jackson Palmer announced that the limit would be removed in an effort to create a consistent reduction of its inflation rate over time. In other words, the inflation rate improves over time starting at 5% in 2015 to less than 4% by 2019, 3% by 2027, and 2% by 2035.
On March 25, 2014, the Dogecoin community successfully raised 67.8 million Dogecoins (around $55,000 at the time) in an effort to sponsor NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Josh Wise. Nicknamed the "Moonrocket", the car featured a Dogecoin/Reddit-sponsored paint scheme and was driven by Wise at the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway. Wise and the car were featured for nearly a minute, during which the race commentators discussed Dogecoin and the crowdfunding effort, while finishing twentieth and narrowly avoiding multiple wrecks. On May 16, Wise won a spot at the Sprint All-Star Race through an online fan vote beating household name Danica Patrick, largely due to the efforts of the Dogecoin Reddit community. He finished the race in fifteenth, the last car running. The following race in the Coca-Cola 600, Wise debuted a Dogecoin/Reddit.com helmet. Wise later announced he would run the car again at the Toyota/Save Mart 350 as a thank-you gift to the community and the GEICO 500. He finished twenty-eighth in the race due in part to a refueling issue; he was in twelfth place after a gas-and-go pit stop, but the gas can did not engage long enough, resulting in a second pit stop that took him towards the back of the pack. Eutechnyx, developer of the NASCAR '14 video game, added the Dogecoin car as a drivable car in a DLC pack.
In April 2015, Jackson Palmer announced plans to take an "extended leave of absence" from the cryptocurrency community.
Dogetipbot was a cryptocurrency transaction service used on popular sites like Reddit and Twitch. It allowed users to send Dogecoins to other users through commands via Reddit comments. In May 2017 Dogetipbot was discontinued and taken offline after its creator declared bankruptcy; this left many Dogetipbot users losing their coins stored in the Dogetipbot system.
During 2017 to early 2018 cryptocurrency bubble, Dogecoin briefly reached a peak of $0.017/coin on January 7, 2018, putting its total market capitalization near USD 2 billion.
In July 2020, the price of Dogecoin spiked following a TikTok trend aiming to get the coin's price to $1.
In January 2021, Dogecoin went up over 800% in 24 hours, attaining a price of $0.07, as a result of attention from Reddit users, partially encouraged by Elon Musk and the GameStop short squeeze. In February 2021, Dogecoin hit a new high price of $0.08 following Twitter encouragement from Musk, Snoop Dogg and Gene Simmons. In March 2021, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban announced his NBA team would allow purchasing tickets and products with Dogecoin; within two days, Cuban had declared his franchise had become the top Dogecoin merchant, having carried out 20,000 transactions.
In April 2021, Dogecoin and other cryptocurrencies surged, stimulated in part by the direct listing for cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase on April 14, although that platform did not provide trading of Dogecoin. Its price first reached $0.10 on April 14, before hitting a new high of $0.45 on April 16 (up 400% that week ), with a volume of nearly $70 billion traded in the preceding 24 hours. At the time , Dogecoin's market capitalization approached $50 billion, making it the fifth-highest-valued cryptocurrency; its value had increased more than 7,000% year-to-date. Interest in Dogecoin contributed to an outage in electronic trading platform Robinhood's cryptocurrency system on April 15, caused by "unprecedented demand", and prompted concerns from experts of a nearing speculative bubble in the cryptocurrency market.
On May 4, 2021, the value of Dogecoin first surpassed the symbolic hurdle of $0.50, a greater than 20,000% increase in one year.
On May 8, 2021, despite, or perhaps because of expectations of a surge in interest in Dogecoin resulting from Elon Musk's appearance on Saturday Night Live, Dogecoin dropped 34% from $.711 at the opening of the show to below $.470 45 minutes later. By the following morning Dogecoin hit a swing low of $0.401, a cumulative drop of 43.6% and lost value of $35 billion.
On May 9, 2021, SpaceX announced a rideshare mission to the Moon completely funded by Dogecoin, thus becoming the first space mission funded by a cryptocurrency. Elon Musk confirmed this news via Twitter. DOGE-1 will be a minor 40kg rideshare payload on Intuitive Machines' IM-1 mission in Q1 2022.