The Dallas Mavericks, a professional basketball team based in Dallas, has announced that it will be the first NBA team to accept Dogecoin as a payment method, allowing crypto holders and fans to buy tickets and merchandise using the popular cryptocurrency.
The decision is the result of BitPays announcement of the rollout of Dogecoin payments for merchants and consumers using their cryptocurrency payment services.
Stephen Pair, CEO of BitPay, referred to the team’s decision by stating:
“The Dallas Mavericks are a long-time enthusiast of cryptocurrency, opening up new opportunities for the team to sell tickets and merchandise to its global MFFL fan base. BitPay believes that with continued cryptocurrency adoption, the industry is reaching an inflection point that will forever change consumer confidence, trust and pave the way for blockchain payments to disrupt the way consumers and businesses receive and spend funds.”
The Dallas Mavericks have been accepting Bitcoin payments for more than 2 years, with other cryptocurrencies like BCH, ETH, USDC, GUSD, OAX, BUSD, and now DOGE also being accepted.
Cuban is Hot for Dogecoin
Mark Cuban, one of the co-owners of the Dallas Mavericks, has been a vocal supporter of cryptocurrencies as he believes that the “tech is here to stay” and has the potential to disrupt different industries by facilitating transactions.
Cuban compared cryptocurrencies to the internet in previous interviews, sharing his thoughts that cryptocurrency supporters were crazy in a way reminiscent of the early days of the internet.
The Mavericks also made the news earlier this year when he released his personal NFT collection titled “The RollUp 202!, which had the highest bid of 7.3 WETH, the equivalent to. $10,813.65.
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) January 27, 2021
Dogecoin Popularity Continues to Grow
Despite being originally launched as a mock cryptocurrency inspired in the popular meme of the Shiba Inu “Doge” meme.
However, despite being originally designed as a joke, support from personalities like Elon Musk has allowed the coin to quickly rise through the ranks of the crypto market.
Having reached an all-time high of $0.083947 back on February 8th, DOGE is currently the top 14th cryptocurrency by market capitalization according to CoinGecko Data, experiencing an increase in the value of over 1900% over the last year.
Back on Tuesday 2nd, ATM provider CoinFlip announced that it would now allow users to purchase DOGE in any of the ATMs in its 1800 machine network, further increasing the use cases of the cryptocurrency.
Despite the growing support for DOGE by the cryptocurrency community, some financial experts like Michael Novogratz believe that the adoption of DOGE by brands like the Mavericks is a mistake not because it is crypto but because it puts inexperienced investors at risk.
He referred to Cuban’s move in an interview with Bloomberg TV by stating:
“Let’s put people in the safest best stuff, not these joke coins. I think Mark’s making a mistake there. He’d be better off with 15 other different ways to pay for his tickets.”
The Power of Meme Culture
Internet culture has become increasingly influenced by meme culture over the past years.
Originally seen as a niche in unknown internet boards and forums like 4chan and Something Awful, memes have quickly become a staple of the internet used widely by people around the world.
Just like Richard Dawkin’s definition of meme proposed in his book “The Selfish Gene”, internet memes can spread and repeat themselves across communities in a way that allows them to operate as a new means of communication
As memes become more heavily ingrained into popular culture, they have also become tools at the disposal of governments, companies, and communities to spread their messages and join people under the same cause.
In recent months, the popular website Reddit made the news as members of the WallStreetBets subreddit join efforts to raise the prices of Gamestop stocks, which resulted in hedge funds losing millions of dollars while internet users enjoyed the gains and regulators had to intervene.
While the history of Dogecoin so far is the history of other internet memes, raising to popularity due to the irony and messages they imply, the cryptocurrency has transformed into something else as time passes on: a real project with real-life applications.
After all, any kind of money has value only if it has people who believe it does.