August 18, 2022
By Murtuza Merchant
The Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT collection appears to be the newest victim of the hacktivist collective Anonymous.
The group promised to look into the charges made against BAYC in a video that was released on Twitter.
Particularly, Anonymous is investigating claims that the most valuable NFT collectable is guilty of racism, sexism, Nazism, and occultism.
NFT Twitter, on the other hand, disputes the video’s veracity.
Here’s all you need to know about the Anonymous group’s message for BAYC holders.
What is the message from the Anonymous group to BAYC holders?
In the video, Anonymous claimed that BAYC NFT characteristics have been linked to paedophilia, racism, occultism, amongst others.
“As we navigate through the curated research that openly ties the artwork to these accusations, we can’t help but wonder why none of these accusations has actually been put to rest,” the video states.
Although they are aware of Yuga Labs’ comments, the group said, they have not found anything that has been “identified as unrefuted.”
“Anonymous wants to take the time to open a discussion about the BAYC collection…We don’t believe in half measures and want to be thorough with our investigation,” according to the group.
Further, Anonymous stated that it may take many months to complete the probe into the “heinous claims.”
“BAYC collectors and enthusiasts, we feel empathy for what you may be going through right now. Even just allegations can be truly unsettling but the thought of even one of these allegations being true, must be intolerable to think of.”
Allegations made against BAYC by Ryder Ripps
Ryder Ripps made the initial allegations against BAYC in January of this year, alleging that the founders of Yuga Labs had close ties to alt-right 4chan meme culture.
He went on to compare the BAYC insignia to the Nazi Totenkopf emblem and say that the BAYC collection is racist.
Further, he created the website gordongoner.com to describe the problems with BAYC.
Yuga Labs responded by disputing the allegations in many comments.
In addition, the entity sued Ryder Ripps for deceptive advertising, trademark infringement, unjust enrichment, and consumer misinformation.
Is the Anonymous group truly involved?
Following the message from the Anonymous organisation to BAYC holders, other NFT users have come out to cast doubt on the video’s veracity.
For instance, BookSweepers asserted that the associated Instagram and YouTube accounts, as well as the Twitter account that tweeted the video, are all phoney.
In reality, the @YourAnonNews Twitter handle of Anonymous has more than 7.9 million followers despite being unconfirmed.
The BAYC video was released on the @anonewsco Twitter account, which barely has 14,100 followers.
The official Anonymous Twitter feed had already criticised a DeFi token that the imposter account had promoted earlier this year.
They further stated that they do not use YouTube, TikTok, or Facebook.
It’s interesting to note that at the beginning of this month, a post by a verified Anonymous Facebook page honouring Ryder Ripps and Pauly Cohen was removed.
Additionally, some members of the community claim that Ripps himself appears in the video.
“From what I’ve seen, they don’t record camera angles from different views of the speaker,” tweeted Jay-Albert.eth. “He also sounds similar to Ryder and team to me. I think it’s fake.”
About the author
Murtuza Merchant is a senior journalist and an avid follower of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.