Launched less than a month ago, the PEPE coin is a cryptocurrency that is making massive splashes on social media. Despite being a very new coin, PEPE is already a member of the top 100 cryptos club. It took the market by storm but is now in a precipitous fall, costing the early investors their hard-earned money. What is PEPE, who launched it, and what’s the deal with all these accounts promoting the coin recently?
What Is PEPE?
PEPE is an Ethereum-based ERC-20 token launched on 16 April. It is the latest addition to the family of the so-called “memecoins” – cryptocurrencies based on memes and typically lacking any defined business fundamentals, purpose, or utility. It is based on the 2010 internet meme “Pepe the Frog” by cartoonist Matt Furie.
Being a classic meme coin, PEPE doesn’t have any clear purpose other than being a good dose of laugh; at least that’s what we hope. The person or people behind the PEPE coin project remain anonymous.
In many ways, PEPE is not different from other memecoins, such as Dogecoin (DOGE) or Shiba Inu (SHIB). However, the coin’s fervent promotion on social media raised some red flags when picked up by our social media analytics platform, PUMP.
PEPE’s Bot-Driven Promotion
Soon after PEPE’s launch, PUMP, which continually monitors social media for a wide range of cryptos, equities, and commodities, spotted massive bot-driven activity related to the coin. In the space of a few days, a limited number of social media accounts suspected of being bots furiously promoted PEPE by making over 20,000 posts and reposts on the subject. This was in addition to by then the large number of real human accounts that discussed or mentioned PEPE.
The promotional posts generated by bots had all the classic features of bot-driven content – overuse of hashtags and cashtags; irrelevant and spammy hashtagging and cashtagging; and postings with often unintelligible or absurd content. A lot of these bot-driven promotions of PEPE also mentioned another very new crypto coin of unclear origins – WSBC (WallstreetBets Classic).
PUMP’s ability to detect bot-driven content on a large scale helped us single out the PEPE coin for closer examination. Although many memecoins, including DOGE and SHIB, have a history of being promoted by bots, in the case of PEPE, this is happening on a more organised and grander scale.
Just 3 weeks after its launch, on 5 May, PEPE entered the list of the top 40 cryptos by market cap, in the 39th position. Evidently, the massive promotion of the coin by all possible means was paying off. However, the subsequent developments started to paint the typical picture of an overhyped cryptocurrency.
PEPE’s Price Performance
Similar to many other controversial meme coins of unclear origins, PEPE has a price per unit that is represented by tiny fractions of a cent. Due to this, it’s often more convenient to express the coin’s price in millions of PEPE. Upon its launch, PEPE was worth less than 10 cents per 1 million. Heavy promotion, including via bot activity, sent PEPE’s price sharply higher by early May.
On 5 May, the coin reached its all-time high price of $4.31 per million PEPE. By that time, the coin had climbed to the 39th spot in crypto rankings by market cap.
Following the stratospheric rise, PEPE started to show all the typical signs of an excessively hyped-up crypto. Its price has been in a sharp downtrend since the 5 May peak. As of the time of writing on 11 May, the coin is worth $1.62 per million. The price keeps falling, but with cryptos of this kind, any abrupt developments can happen at any time.
Despite its massive rise upon launch, PEPE exhibits some worrying characteristics. Of particular concern is the coin’s wild promotion using bots, which was promptly picked up by PUMP. If you are a crypto investor impressed by the coin’s early rise, we would advise stopping at the stage of being impressed and not proceeding to the stage of buying. Future developments surrounding the PEPE coin might soon turn very interesting.