* In the days following the queen’s passing, more than 40 types of meme coins were minted, industry data and media reports show.
* These virtual forms of currency are often created by anonymous people with access to coin-creating websites and an idea for a clever name.
* And they are notorious for wild swings in value.
* Even bitcoin, a cryptocurrency that has been around for more than a decade and is considered more mainstream, is prone to steep swings in value.
* Meme currencies are often limited in value, with many going for less than a fraction of a penny.
* Their value has limited financial underpinnings and is often based on the belief that “other people will buy it from you for more than you paid for it,” said crypto critic and web3 blogger Molly White.
* “If it goes viral, that’s the best-case scenario because … people see that it’s going massively up in price and so they want to buy it,” she said.
* Cryptocurrency creators are on the lookout for viral moments to make a quick buck.
* Experts said most of these coins are typically a joke or a scam rather than legitimate forms of payment or even akin to gambling in the new decentralized world of the internet, known as web3.
* “People who hold these tokens are trying to get other people to hold these tokens [and] believe that the token will go up for some reason,” White said. “That’s in [their] best interest.”
* White, who writes the blog Web3 Is Going Just Great, said viral cryptocurrencies have significant consumer protection flaws.
* “With these meme tokens and things like that, there’s no level of disclosure or transparency around who’s behind it, what their goals are, or who they even are,” she said.