On Sept 26, internet hacktivist group Anonymous released a video addressing blockchain technology company Yuga Labs and its NFT-driven social club, Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC).
The group’s statement included a laundry list of allegations regarding Yuga Lab’s alleged use of esoteric symbolism in BAYC’s art — which Anonymous believes shows the company’s support for numerous controversial subjects, such as Nazism, racism, simianization, and pedophilia.
The hacktivist group alleged that, after thorough research and interviews with key figures, it can confirm “without a shadow of doubt” that the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) and Yuga Labs are guilty of hiding these esoteric symbols in plain sight — a conclusion the company and project both openly protest.
The group cautioned against relegating its accusations to baseless “conspiracy theory,” adding that people who do so are “simply ignorant,” or “not versed, or worse, at a financial conflict of interest.” A representative of the internet hacktivist group shared:
“Anonymous is certain that the BAYC collection and the Yuga labs brand are infected with not one or two — but with dozens of examples of esoteric symbolism and dog whistles reflecting Nazism, Racism, Siminization, and Pedophilic support.”
Anonymous suggested that holders of these artworks are also victims of Bored Ape Yacht Club and Yuga Labs’s trolling, and urged owners not to stay silent out of a desire to protect their financial interests.
“Don’t your founders owe you more than this? Many outside the BAYC community continue to whisper how you’ve been deceived in a way that is both unprecedented and unforgivable.”
The group called on investors, partners, and high-profile celebrities such as Andreessen Horowitz, Mark Cuban, Dez Bryant, Tom Brady, Ben Simmons, Neymar Junior, Kevin Hart, Drake Bell, Shaquille O’Neal, and big brands such as Lion Tree, Adidas, Tiffany & Co, to speak up and take an official stance on the practices of Nazism, racism, simianization, and pedophilia.
On Jun 24. Yuga Labs Co-founder Greg Solano denied similar claims against his company in a Medium Post, saying:
“We’ve become the target of a crazy disinformation campaign accusing us — a group of Jewish, Turkish, Pakistani, and Cuban friends — of being super-secret Nazis.”
Solano firmly stated at the time that the allegations of racism made against his diverse team were whollyunfounded.
On July 25, Cointelegraph reported on a proposed class-action lawsuit which alleged that Yuga Labs “inappropriately induced” the community to buy Bored Ape Yacht Club non fungible tokens (NFTs) and the project’s affiliated ApeCoin (APE) token. The proposed class-action lawsuit suggested that Yuga Labs used celebrity promoters and endorsements to “inflate the price” of the BAYC NFTs and the APE token.
Cointelegraph reached out to Yuga Labs, but received no response by the time of publication.