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Bored Ape Yacht Club’s latest merch drop can only be purchased with ApeCoin

Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT holders can: buy new merchandise items from Yuga Labs – but they can only use the newly launched ApeCoin to do so, according to an announcement on the BAYC Discord server. Yuga Labs, which has a significant stake in the organization that supports ApeCoin, will gain more ApeCoin (and more control over the organization) if NFT holders pay for their merchandise.

That is, assuming they can. Continuing the cryptocurrency trend of “money but worse”, users complained that they were having trouble checking out.

“Total shit show,” said one user.

“No hassle and I’m a happy owner, but this is a very small online event compared to building a metaverse,” said another, referring to the planned development of acrossa game intended to connect NFTs. “Would like to see much more thorough testing and smoother customer experiences before bigger drops happen. Just my .02.”

The merch drop shows something strange about ApeCoin, which until now has been used as an in-game currency for Benji Bananas, a game by Animoca Brands. ApeCoin is also a way to vote in the ApeCoin DAO – DAO is short for “decentralized autonomous organization”, although in this case the decentralized and autonomous parts both seem nice, uh, arguable.

Members who pay in ApeCoin essentially return their ApeCoin DAO vote to Yuga Labs, further consolidating Yuga Labs’ control over the DAO. The company has received 150 million tokens, but they are locked up for a year. The founders of Yuga Labs will get 80 million tokens, which will also be locked for a year. In addition, Yuga Labs owns seven Bored Apes and 10 Mutant Apes. The launch of the merch – and the transfer of tokens to Yuga Labs – comes as there are still two days left to vote on the first DAO proposals.

To access the BAYC merchandise store, users must own a BAYC or Mutant Ape Yacht Club NFT. Based on screenshots in the Discord – I don’t have a BAYC NFT so can’t see the store directly – the items appear to be priced in dollars. They include hoodies, football shirts, hats, sweatpants and blankets. Token holders who pay Yuga Labs in ApeCoin essentially surrender their DAO votes to Yuga Labs.

Yuga Labs initially announced the merchandise on Friday at 1:57 p.m. PT. After Yuga Labs made its announcement, ApeCoin rose from $13.83 at 2 p.m. PT on March 26 to $15.13 at 12:33 a.m. PT today, according to Coinbase.

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