To no one’s surprise, a dating app created exclusively for collectors of the increasingly infamous Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFTs was forced to shut down earlier this month due to a lack of women members.
“Unfortunately due to the vastly uneven ratio of men to women who signed up for our waitlist, we have decided to put the BAYC dating app on hold indefinitely,” reads a May 12 tweet by the app’s creators. “Too many bros!”
Conceived by Year 4000 Labs, a self-described “ragtag team of hackers and NFT collectors interested in how we can integrate crypto and web 3 with the dating space,” the Lonely Ape Dating Club required users to own a BAYC NFT (non-fungible token) to register for the app — already limiting the dating pool, since there are only 10,000 Bored Apes in total.
Owners of the tokens, which depict anthropomorphic cartoon apes that can be used as social media avatars, become members of the “Bored Ape Yacht Club” and include celebrities such as Eminem, Jimmy Fallon, and Snoop Dogg. The price of entry is around $200,000.
After a months-long crash has knocked cryptocurrencies’ valuation down by $1.6 trillion, being explicitly told they do not attract a statistically significant number of women romantic interests was another hit to the crypto “community.”
Lonely Ape Club’s gender problem is reflective of NFTs’ and crypto’s larger gap. At the end of last year, women artists made only 16% of all NFT art. Twice as many men invest in cryptocurrencies than women, and misogyny in the industry has been reported again and again. The industry is heavily male, young, and White.
BAYC tokens, which have sold for more than $1 million, made headlines again this week after one set to star in a TV show was stolen in a phishing scam. Actor Seth Green was planning to have his ape NFT appear alongside him in a new comedy series called White Horse Tavern, but now he’s begging Twitter user @darkwing84 to give it back. It is unknown whether the show will go forward.