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Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT series might have racist ties

A collection of evidence suggests that BAYC is steeped in racism and antisemitism.

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The Bored Ape Yacht Club is arguably the most popular series of NFTs, and one that has spawned several spinoffs and copycats. Easily identifiable by their crudely drawn depiction of anthropomorphized apes, these NFTs have been controversial for some time. Now, new compiled evidence makes the case that the Bored Ape Yacht Club has some strong racist ties.

Internet user Ryder Ripps created the website gordongoner.com, which looks to prove that BAYC and its creators are racist and practice antisemitism. It opens with the most blatant evidence, the fact that many of the apes don gold chains, grills, and even have a “hip-hop” trait. The terms “monkey” and “ape” have long been used as a slur against black people, as well as other minority groups, and are known as simianization. It’s an issue that many members of minority groups have discussed since BAYC was originally launched.

Left: The BAYC logo. Right: The Nazi Totenkopf emblem

The website then goes deeper in compiling evidence connecting BAYC to racist ideology. This includes the fact that the official logo design is quite similar to that of the Nazi Totenkopf emblem. The website creator also points out the fact that one of BAYC’s anonymous founders uses the moniker of “Gordon Goner,” which is an anagram for Drongo Negro. “Drongo” is a slang term found on sites like 4Chan and essentially means stupid. Another founder goes by Gargamel and uses an image of the Smurfs character, who has long been accused of being an antisemitic depiction of a Jewish person.

The website goes much deeper in explaining several factors that would suggest there’s some racism and antisemitism directly tied to Bored Ape Yacht Club and the people who created it. As this speculation picks up steam, it will be interesting to see if the creators make any public statement, or if some of the more popular adopters begin to denounce the digital products.

News Editor

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom's desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Star Wars nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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