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It’s now official: Tesla has started accepting Dogecoin as payment for some of the company’s merchandise following weeks of rumors, pushing Dogecoin’s price higher and further solidifying Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s reputation as a champion of the cryptocurrency. The move marks one of many interesting economic news stories as 2022 kicks off in earnest.
Musk sent out a tweet early on Jan. 14 confirming that Tesla will accept Dogecoin as payment for a small selection of the electric vehicle company’s merchandise. The tweet was short and to the point:
“Telsa merch buyable with Dogecoin.”
So, what can you buy with Dogecoin? Well, you can get a whistle shaped like Tesla’s Cybertruck for 300 DOGE, CNBC reported — the equivalent of about $59 as of the morning of Jan. 14. If you want to fork over a little more, a commemorative belt buckle celebrating Tesla’s Gigafactory in Texas was reportedly listed at 835 DOGE, or roughly $164.
It was all good news for Dogecoin: its price rose as much as 15% on the news — topping $0.20 a coin at one point — before slipping back to $0.18 later on Jan. 14. As has been widely reported, Dogecoin started out as a meme coin, but gained considerable traction last month when Musk tweeted that Tesla will make some of its merchandise purchasable with Doge and “see how it goes.”
If you want to buy Tesla merch with Dogecoin, you’ll have to follow the rules laid out on the EV maker’s website. These include setting up a “Dogecoin wallet” that accepts the crypto’s transfers. It’s your responsibility to ensure that Dogecoin is transferred to Tesla’s Dogecoin wallet accurately. If an order is overpaid in Dogecoin, the overpayment amount will not be refunded to the original form of payment, Tesla’s website said.
You can also expect to pay Dogecoin network fees each time a payment is made in the crypto. Tesla advises consulting your Dogecoin wallet provider for information regarding additional fees. Buyers are responsible for any fees associated with a Dogecoin transaction.
Tesla also said it can take up to six hours for the Dogecoin network to confirm your payment.
The company is no stranger to cryptocurrency. Last year it bought $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin and said it would start accepting purchases with the world’s biggest crypto. But Musk later stopped accepting Bitcoin because of the large amounts of energy needed to mine it. Dogecoin uses much less energy, according to industry analyses.
Meanwhile, these latest Dogecoin headlines took the spotlight away from something Tesla might not be so happy to share with the public — reports that a teenage hacker in Germany found flaws in third-party software that allowed him to remotely control certain functions of some of the company’s EVs. The alleged hacker claimed the ability to unlock doors and windows, start cars without keys, and disable security systems on a number of Tesla vehicles.
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