SpaceX is now accepting Dogecoin, and it’ll be paid exclusively in the cryptocurrency to launch an upcoming satellite named DOGE-1 to — yes — the Moon.
The DOGE-1 is a cubesat meant to acquire “lunar-spatial intelligence” using onboard cameras and sensors. It’s being sent and paid for by a company named Geometric Energy Corporation, and it’ll be flown up on a Falcon 9 rocket in the first quarter of 2022.
Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency that started out as a goofy meme and is now a somewhat more valuable goofy meme, has been on the rise lately, with enough trading around spikes in the currency to cause crashes of the trading app Robinhood. Elon Musk is the coin’s highest profile supporter, tweeting Dogecoin memes, referring to himself as the “Dogefather,” and hyping it up (sort of) on Saturday Night Live. Investors like to talk about sending Dogecoin’s value “to the Moon,” thus, we’re getting this silly stunt about sending a satellite named DOGE-1 paid to Musk’s company in Dogecoin to the Moon.
Given all that, SpaceX includes in the announcement the exact quote one might assume Musk mandated the company include: “We’re excited to launch DOGE-1 to the Moon!” said SpaceX vice president of commercial sales Tom Ochinero.
It’s a spot of good news for Dogecoin, which has had a tough week. After spiking in price, falling around a Robinhood crash, and spiking again in anticipation of Musk’s SNL appearance, the cryptocurrency crashed overnight following a segment in which Musk joked about Dogecoin being a “hustle.”
The announcement seems to be designed to fight back against that narrative. Ochinero says the partnership sets “the foundation for interplanetary commerce.” And Geometric Energy Corporation’s CEO says the transaction “solidified DOGE as a unit of account for lunar business in the space sector.” The press release goes on to say that Dogecoin is “sophisticated enough to finance a commercial Moon mission in full” and that it’ll be used for all lunar business between the two companies. (Musk’s other company, Tesla, recently started accepting car purchases in Bitcoin.)
So assuming all goes according to plan, Dogecoin will help send DOGE-1 to the Moon next year. Will that also send Dogecoin to the Moon? It probably depends on how much the parties involved continue to hype it. As Musk’s SNL character admits, “Yeah, it’s a hustle.”